Survival gear isn’t just for adventures who like to delve deep into the wilderness. It’s an insurance policy.

What would you do in a survival situation? Do you have everything you would need to keep yourself alive? From necessary tools to bedding to food, there are certain things that will help you last for months and years if you use them correctly. The best survival kit will be tailored to your needs, while also keeping in mind some of the essentials like emergency food. Stocking up on survival gear is an important step to protecting yourself and your family. In addition, you want to store and pack your gear so that it’s easy to get to when you need it the most.

Even if that emergency never arrives, you’ll still be the owner of some amazing gear.

So what types of survival gear are most important?

1. Emergency Kits

There are a variety of emergency survival kits, and they are made for people with any kind of need. You can buy one for everyone in your family, as well as specific types of kits, such as kits for the desert or swamp. Some of these emergency kits include just the basics, which is all you need. A disaster preparedness kit may look different depending on what type of disaster you want to gear up for. As always, the best survival kit is going to have things in it that you need for your own survival, too. This includes things like prescriptions or eyeglasses.

Typical and advanced kits include things like:

  •  Backpack
  •  Flashlights
  •  Good knife
  •  Multi-tool
  •  Water
  •  Non-perishable food items
  •  Battery-powered or hand-cranked radio
  •  First aid kits
  •  Dust masks
  •  Waterproof containers
  •  Pliers, wrench, screwdriver, and other tools
  •  Cell phone with solar charger
  •  Moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties
  •  Flares
  •  Water purifying tablets
  •  Waterproof matches

There are some extras that you should think about when building your own kit.

  •  Prescription medications
  •  Feminine supplies
  •  Sleeping bag
  •  Warm blankets
  •  Pet food and supplies
  •  Infant formula and baby food
  •  Eyeglasses
  •  Non-prescription medication
  •  Fire extinguisher
  •  Emergency reference materials and resources

The best survival kit also offers a good way to get started and at least have the basics on-hand in case something happens.

2. Water Filters and Tablets

Water is going to be a major issue if you run into a survival situation in the woods. It could be a long time before you find clean water, and you may not be able to boil any water either. In this case, you can purchase something like the Katadyn MyBottle microfilter water bottle.

In addition, you may want to buy water disinfecting tablets. When you run across water in the wild, you never know what kind of parasites and bacteria could be living in it. Katadyn also makes Micropur tablets. You can also get iodine tablets from Portable Aqua to ensure that your water is free of pathogens. Of the two products, Portable Aqua’s iodine tablets have a much longer shelf life.

3. Emergency Food

There are a lot of brands out there that sell ration bars, freeze-dried packs, and other survival food. You can actually get large supplies of freeze-dried foods, such as chicken and rice, and other meals from the Wise Company. This is probably the best resource for long-term emergency food. It’s one of the best ways to get food for weeks of survival all at once. Wise Company’s food packs span breakfast and dinner entrees, so you can actually get decent-tasting food.

UST Survival Rations are also a good choice for those times when you can’t cook and just need to eat something. These taste like apple cinnamon oatmeal, so it’s not too bad. Plus, you don’t need to each much of it to survive.

4. Shelter and Sleep

You may want to pack your own tent, but you should think about the best situation for your family. You may want a large vestibule tent with a rain fly. You may also look at one-person shelter solutions, such as the SOL Bivvy. The SOL Emergency Bivvy is a sleeping bag that is made from polyethylene, which means it won’t rip or tea. It keeps in 90 percent of your body heat while also protecting you from extreme cold. You can also seal the sleeping bag for when it rains or snows. Despite all of this comfort, it’s still quite light.

The Sundome 2-person tent is another great idea if you want quick shelter. It spans across 7 by 5 feet and it comfortably fits two full-sized adults. You’ll be able to keep out all of the moisture with the 75 denier fly as well.

Perhaps you want to pack more than one tent or need a smaller tent idea to go in your backpack. In these situations, you can go with the Sharp Survival emergency shelter tent. While it won’t last very long in extreme conditions, it will get through most nights and protect you from rain. It’s small, lightweight, and easily folders into a miniature size to carry with you.

Go Time also sells the Life Tent, which is an emergency tube tent that you can set up with rope to ensure that you have a quick place to get out of the sun and rain.

So you don’t cold, why not invest in a 2-sided Mylar survival blanket? These blankets lay light as feather over your body while keeping you completely warm and protected. They re also tear-resistant and quite affordable.

5. Headlamp

If you don’t own a headlamp, you’re missing out! The headlamp is something that every outdoor survivalist knows is vital to get around in the dark and cloudy days. Headlamps enable you to illuminate wherever you look, leaving you free to work with your hands. Olympi’s Explorer headlamp is one of the better designs and it comes recommended from outdoor lovers. In addition, it doesn’t cost a fortune.

Headlamps allow you to cook in camp at night or early morning, and work under the hood of a truck or head into caves with a safety light. The headlamp comes with a 550 lumens light, and the beam can reach 135 meters. There is even a distress strobe function.

6. Portable Stove

You may have a pot in mind or a makeshift stove, but you can spend a few dollars and get the Mustang of camp stoves. Jetboil is an incredible product that allows you to quickly boil and cook all types of food without a big, huge pot or stove. It’s lightweight and made to use blended fuel, and it works in all types of situations, even when it’s extremely cold. It’s also one of the most convenient miniature stoves to carry with you, because it’s so lightweight.

7. Communication Device

You definitely want to keep yourself in communication with other people during survival times. In a true survival scenario, you will need a shortwave radio or cell phone with solar power charger to ensure that you can make calls. The radio is a better buy, and you can use it as a LED light, USB charger, and radio. You can also get a crank radio that only requires your physical strength to power it.

8. Solar Power

With a solar power battery charger, you can do all kinds of things. We are truly living in an age where solar power can save you in multiple ways if you are truly in an emergency situation. You can use it to power up your devices, stove, lights, and heated blankets. There are a ton of solar battery powered survival tools as well, such as the 9-in-1 Roadside HERO flash light or the 7627 Solar Wireless Radio.

9. First Aid Kits

When it comes to medical treatment, you can’t go wrong with a basic first aid kit. However, you can find everything in the latest kits online. These include way more than just gauze and tape usually. A disaster preparedness kit is likely to have a few of these items as well. Basic first aid kits typically come with the following:

  •  Antiseptic wipes
  •  Multiple bandages
  •  Scissors
  •  Sunscreen
  •  Bandaids
  •  Gauze
  •  Medical tape
  •  Burn cream
  •  Antibiotic cream
  •  Sting wipes
  •  Single use saline
  •  Eye bandages
  •  SInus and congestion medicine

Want to make sure you have everything for you and maybe a lot of other people? The Uline First Aid Kit is the ultimate choice with enough supplies to treat 250 people.

10. Fire Starters

When you have to make a fire, you don’t want to waste time or energy trying to do it the old-fashioned way, especially when you could just have WetFire products. Each cube is just .16 ounces and can burn up to 10 minutes for around 1,300 degrees Fahrenheit. Wet cubes can even work in windy and watery conditions. Made of wax, these cubes are great to feature in survival classes as well due to how they float and burn even in chips. You can use these chips to start fires in the wild and make them last for weeks.

11. Sanitation and Hygiene

Travel size toothpaste and shampoos are a lifesaver in a survival situation, but you should also think about hand sanitizer, Gold Bond, or even a portable, “Tote-able” toilet or just the toilet seat and lid. These are able to fit over any bucket, so you can quickly do your business. However, if you want to save some money, you can always try hygiene and dental kits from

12. Storage and Tools

You want to be able to pick up and go at a moment’s notice. There are always some tools and gear that will make your survival more successful. For example, you should always have a multifunctional tool, such as a Swiss Army Knife. In addition, it’s a good idea to have a Fox 40 Whistle and UST StarFlash Signal Mirror. These are helpful if you get lost or want to find others nearby. You can use the whistle and mirror to signal people to your location, and the mirror can beam a ray of sunlight up to 10 miles away.

In addition to a multifunctional tool, you should get a good survival knife. You can start with the Swedish FireKnife. While some may say that a larger hunter knife is better, this knife is all you need. It’s a 3.5-inch blade crafted from stainless steel. It also has a fire starter rod and can provide 5,400-degree Fahrenheit sparks with one strike.

13. Smart Gadgets

You may never know when the survival kit you build is going to come in handy. With a goTenna, you can use your smartphone to send GPS coordinates and texts even if your cell phone service goes out. The goTenna app will also send your coordinates to authorities if necessary. You can also access offline maps and other emergency tools just by using this handy antenna.

Final Thought When preparing for survival, you should always think about your region and what is most likely to cause you to need to survive. With a disaster preparedness kit, you may be looking at something different if you live in Alaska as compared to Florida. Before buying anything, you should also take an inventory of what you have at home that you can add to your kit. You don’t need to spend a lot to make sure that you and your family are prepared. Stay safe out there!

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