Every Prepper Should Have Multiple Bug-Out Bags. Here’s Why.

ReadyNutrition Guys and Gals, we have covered the “Go” Bag, aka the “Bugout” Bag on numerous occasions.  We’re going to cover three areas: Duplication, Synchronization, and Maintenance.  This is to promote efficiency, and also to allow for recovery and use if one of the bags or more is compromised.  Let’s get started.

The word for the day is Redundancy.  This word is usually something that connotates a “boring” or “mindless” repetition, almost in a drone-like fashion.  In this case, that definition does not suffice.  Redundancy in our usage is the repetition to promote a good follow-through in the event of seizure/theft of your goods so that you have a backup plan and can continue to march.  You want to put together as many bags as are in as many locales as you frequent in the course of the day.  Here are some locations, for starters:

  1. Your home
  2. Your vehicle
  3. Your workplace

Surely this can be added to, but the logic is in these examples.  If you are in your home, and disaster strikes and your vehicle is stolen…you have a bag in your home.  If you are at work, and the vehicle is stolen, you should have a bag at work.  The key is to make them light enough so that you can strap them together (bungees or cargo straps) and take both bags without killing yourself.

We have already covered lists ad infinitum, so we’re just going to mention the bullets, beans, band-aids (the 3 “B’s”) that need to be in your bags.  Let’s jump into the terms.

Duplication: this means that your bags need to be the same…John Smith’s bag in his car, home, and vehicle need to contain the same things…and all of these things in the same location with an inventory sheet for each bag (as covered in other articles).  John Smith will then know (overall) what he has, and that he has one bag with each of those items at home, in his vehicle, and in his workplace.

Synchronization: this means to keep the bags as “uniform” as possible for all the family members.  The same amounts of food, water purification gear, and so forth.  Differences will arrive with regard to ammunition.  Mr. Smith may carry a Desert Eagle .44 Magnum pistol, where Mrs. Smith may carry a Ruger SP-101 in .357 Magnum.  Guess what?  There needs to be a box of Mrs. Smith’s ammo in Mr. Smith’s bags, and vice-versa.  Similar gear packed in a similar manner other than that.  What will this do?  Promote effectiveness.  Mrs. Smith then knows that if all her bags are compromised, she can use one of Mr. Smith’s bags and be familiar with its contents.

Maintenance: well, this goes beyond just simple cleaning maintenance.  This is also a maintenance of familiarization.  What this entails is unpacking the bags, checking the contents for accountability and serviceability, and then repacking them.  Sound boring?  It is, but the alternative is to be unfamiliar with your equipment and then fumble around with it in the dark…only to find that it is incomplete.  You need to be able to take the bag apart in the dark, in less than ideal conditions.  So many people have all of the ducats to spend on beaucoup equipment…and then they just set it off in a shed or a corner, and ignore it for years at a time.  That’s not the way, except the way to fail.  You should practice all of this at least once a week for a few hours at a time until you are proficient with all of the equipment and locations.

Preparing is not just a bunch of supplies.  It is a posture.  It is a state of mind and one that you have to be continuously on your toes and on your game.  By doing these things with your bags, you reduce the chances of failure when you have to perform.  You also reduce the risks of losing your supplies to marauders (usually your friendly neighbors on Sesame Street) and other assorted creeps.  Use these techniques to increase your efficiency and better your performance, making you readier on the day the “S” hits the fan.  JJ out!

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published October 5th, 2017
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  • Mic Roland

    I guess I’ve got 2 out of three. Working on the 3rd. Got an EDC for work (or being out and about). Got a fairly well-stocked BoB in the car. Since the car is home when I’m home, it doubles as the “home bag”.

    The hole I’m working on filling is making a wider range of “kit” at home that can be grabbed and loaded quickly. These will augment the 72 hr bag already in the car, but aren’t the sort of things to be always driving around with. 4-person tent, 5-gallon jerry can of water, more food, arms, ammo, clothes, etc.

    Don’t have all the grab-n-go elements buttoned down yet.

  • soluna1969

    Prepping is about having the right gear in the right place at the right time and the skills to use that gear. Survivalism is about building your skills to survive when you don’t have that gear. A prepper can always enhance their chances if they build survival skills and additional gear caches. The three named in the article: home, work, and car are good starters. The homes of relatives and other places that you frequent are good too. Finally, you should have caches along planned evacuation routes.

  • Bolofia

    Apart from two pre-assembled bug out bags, one at home and one in my vehicle, I maintain the gear to equip five additional bags. In my case, my vehicle is my office, so I have no permanent/reliable physical facility to store a third BOB. I certainly agree with Mic that you should have “extra” kit that can be quickly assembled when a need arises. Must agree also with Solana that you have to have the necessary skills to survive if you find yourself separated from your bag. Good article!

  • John Hertig

    Concentrating on “bullets, beans and bandaids” ignores some of the things which are most likely to kill you soonest. Lack of air or severe bleeding can kill you in 3 minutes; the bleeding might be squeezed under “bandaids”. But lack of shelter can kill you in 3 hours, and lack of water can kill you in 3 days. It’s a cute saying, but relying on it can leave huge holes in your survival supplies.

    Maintenance should include checking any batteries for leaking or loss of charge, or expiration date, as well as any medications

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