Sunday, July 11, 2010

My Get Home Bag

I've touched on the GHB in the past but I've never really gone over what I put in mine. The idea is simple. It's just a miniature bob that's designed to get you home in the event of an emergency where you can't just drive home. It should be small, lightweight and easy to carry. Some people go so far as to carry there's everywhere so that they always have it on them. I'm rarely far enough away from my car to warrant that so mine stays in the trunk. When I go to fairs, festivals or other places where you have to park 10 miles away and deal with huge crowds of people then I take it with me. So what should you put in it?

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

As you can see, I probably pack a lot more than I need. The pack only weighs 8 lbs, though, so I don't even notice the weight. If I ever need it there's a good chance that I'll be walking several miles to get home. There's a very big network of green belt trails in my city which I plan on utilizing if I happen to be in town when something happens. If I get caught outside of town then I might have to live out of it for a day or two. Here's a rundown of the contents:

The bag - It's just a generic backpack with a hydration bladder. I don't remember where I got it. I just had it and everything fit so I've stuck with it. I prefer civilian gear to paramilitary style gear.

Water - My water solution for this pack is a Platypus 1L Hoser hydration bladder and iodine tablets. I can also boil water in the pot.

Food - The cliff bars are convenient. The 1L pot has a folding handle that locks down on the lid. The altoids tin is an alcohol stove. Take the lid off and it fits neatly into the esbit stove. I keep a few esbit tabs in the stove for backup/firestarters. There's also a small bottle of everclear for the stove. Why a cooking setup but no food that needs to be cooked? For day trips I can throw in a backpacking meal or two. I can also use it to cook up some wild edibles if I get sick of Cliff bars and decide to do some foraging.

Fire - Between the strike anywhere matches, a bic lighter and a magnesium bar I should be able to get a fire going. The knife has a firesteel in the sheath, too.

First aid - My first aid kit is pretty bare bones. I've added some things since taking this pic. Basically, though, it's just medical tape, gauze, small bandages, small tweezers and moleskin. I can also use the everclear for disinfecting.

Shelter - The idea is to get home not to go play in the woods. If worse comes to worse I can use the poncho and some 550 cord to cobble something together. Throw in the emergency blanket and I should be fine... as long as it's a beautiful summer evening.

Lighting - I've got a small pen light and a xenon with a spare set of C123 batteries. I should probably throw in a headlamp. I keep one in my car, though, so if I really think I'll need it I'll have one.

Miscellaneous stuff - Duct tape, 550 cord, a cheapo fixed blade knife (a real piece of shit that I must replace soon...don't buy cheap knives unless it's a Mora), some kleenex, pencil and a small notebook (not in the picture), a small mirror, sun block, one of those compass/whistle/matchbox/signal mirror "survival tools", some body warmers and a couple of waterproof bags round out the rest of the kit.

If I get stuck on the other end of town and I have to hoof it home this should cover me. If it takes longer than expected to get home or I can't go directly there then a little ingenuity should get me by for a day or two. Besides what's in the bag I'll also have my EDC on me (Keltec P3AT, CRKT Urban Shark, Gerber Clutch, Streamlight Stylus Pro and whatever is in my wallet).

If you're looking for a "get it and forget it" premade option I'd probably go with Nitropak's executive 72-hour kit. They claim that it covers two people for 72 hours. It weighs in at 17 pounds. At first glance it seems expensive but you'd probably end up spending a lot more if you were to try to buy everything a piece at a time. Then there's the time it takes to research, decide what you want and then actually go get it. There are a few things that I'd probably replace or remove immediately but for the most part everything looks pretty solid. I'd also add a few things. They claim that there's extra space for some more stuff. There's a detailed description of the contents on their site if you follow the link above so you can decide for yourself. It's the best looking premade "survival kit" that I've seen.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Very good. Add suggestions:

A can opener
A tube of super glue ( I prefer the gel )
A small pepper/ mace sprayer.

Anonymous said...

Very good. Add suggestions:

A can opener
A tube of super glue ( I prefer the gel )
A small pepper/ mace sprayer.

Jimmy P said...

Well, you got me thinking, so I started my own blog and my first post was talking about my GHB and EDC, step on over if you feel like it and take a gander, I follow you now, so you can use that to get to me.

Anonymous said...

I would suggest a small roll of TP and some hand sanitizer

Anonymous said...

If some long walks are anticipated, some petroleum jelly or diaper rash medicine would be great for lessening effects of Atomic Monkey butt. Also, making sure of having a good pair of well fitted hiking boots or shoes is a foregone conclusion.

Anonymous said...

A desiccant pack or two to put in with socks and underwear. Trust, dry feet and bum are essential to survival.

Anonymous said...

multitool, map, compass.

Scott P said...

I keep a Henrey US Survival Rifle (stores in it's own stock) and 200 rounds of ammo in my bag the nice thing is that the rifle when stored in it's own stock is legal in all 50 states...

Anonymous said...

In the south you will need bug repellent except in the dead of winter.