While it can be fun to pack your own 72-hour emergency kit (and to modify it now and again), don’t lose sight of the various categories for ‘the stuff’ inside…so that you ‘cover all the bases’ so to speak…
Let me rewind for just a second. What is the purpose of a 72-hour emergency kit? The answer may be a bit different for everyone, but the general purpose is to provide emergency preparedness supplies to assist in your survival and well-being for several days or more during a time when you might need it.
Some people refer to this kit as a bug-out bag, or BOB. The reality is that the differentiating lines get blurred, but that’s okay given that their purpose is generally similar.
So lets get back to the categories of preps that may go into one of these emergency kits:
Note: The fun thing about any ‘survival kit’ is that you can tailor them to specific needs, specific scenarios, and specific methods of carry and travel. You might put a small lightweight kit together to easily carry during a day-hike. Perhaps a larger 72-hour kit that’s kept in you vehicle. You might also put together a BOB kept in a closet at home specifically for an emergency evac or bug-out. The sky’s the limit to your own intended uses.
Categories Of Preps Within A 72-hour Emergency Kit
If you think in terms of prep categories, it might be easier to put it all together without forgetting something important. It might also make it easier to organize and pack in such a way that is more convenient.
For example, the individual components of the fire-starter-kit within each of my overall kits are always kept in one place, pouch, or Ziploc bag within the kit itself.
The First Aid Kit portion of the overall 72-hour kit is similarly kept in one area of the bag, generally within its own Ziploc bag. (Love the Ziploc’s for the waterproofing)
Categories to consider:
Medical (prescriptions, pain, etc.)
First Aid – Trauma (bandages, splints, tweezers, scissors, wound irrigation, etc.)
Once you have identified the major categorical groups, you can then drill down to the specifics within each group. Unfortunately your kit will be limited and restricted to the size of the ‘bag’ – which itself will be constrained to your own intended uses, your ability to carry, and where it will all be stored…
It’s easy to put ‘too much’ in a kit (we all want to have ‘everything’ that we might need) however it may get to the point where you’re going to say to yourself, “We’re gonna need a bigger boat” (one of the top all time movie moments – JAWS – loved that movie ;) ).
This can be the challenging part of building any survival kit – whittling it down to necessities vs. ‘wants’ if your space is limited. Although if kept in a vehicle you may have the ability to spread the kit around versus all being kept in a single bag or pack.
Okay I’ve put it out there – the idea of categorical organization to one’s kit and have listed several categories. Lets hear your own recommendations of categories and the ways that you trim your own kit to include what you need without having to get a ‘bigger boat’…