Bug out Bag Gear

Bug out Bag Gear Redundancy Solutions

Redundancy in Bug out Bag Gear

This may seem obvious but redundancy in bug out bag gear doesn’t always mean having two of something. It’s closer to the old saying, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.” Redundancy in survival gear means having more than one way to cover a basic function. For example, some kind of stove can do the cooking, such as a backpacker’s butane stove. You can also cook over an open fire. The trick is that either way you also need an appropriate cooking pot.

That’s the key to redundancy; you need to have all the pieces that can be used to achieve the same effect in different ways. If you know your movies, the classic example of improvised redundancy was in “Apollo 13,” where NASA figured out how to replace the function of the broken carbon dioxide scrubbers by building something with a pile of everyday items found in the space capsule (socks, duct tape and the like).

That kind of redundancy is a little extreme, but it saved the astronaut’s lives. Redundancy in bug out bag gear can do the same for the survivalist. This doesn’t mean you fill the bags with a lot of miscellaneous gear, just for the odd case where it can be repurposed into something vital. It’s better to look at your survival gear and figure out some redundancies ahead of time – and stock your bag accordingly.

Bug Out Bag GearThat’s why many of the bobs at Survivalist 101 have combinations like this: emergency tube tent, poncho and a Mylar sheet. Singly or together, these can make a shelter. They won’t make a palace, of course, but they could save your life in bad weather. They are also substitutes, so that if one is damaged, say a campfire fire burns holes in the tube tent, the poncho and/or Mylar sheet can be pressed into service to provide rudimentary shelter. That’s what redundancy is about.

Not all bug out bag gear should be redundant

While redundancy is important for survival, in bags or otherwise, there’s a price to pay – bulk and weight. Truly redundant items take up more space and add weight, which if they’re not used, are an ‘overhead,’ an extra burden. Knowing that should lead to two things: Selecting redundant gear only for critical functions, and attempting to find redundant gear with multiple uses.

The bug out bag gear that you really need to stay alive is water to drink, food, and protection from the weather. Foods are the easiest to make redundant, just have plenty of reliably packaged survival foods (mainly dehydrated) and your food redundancy is covered. Shelter is a bit more complicated. Much depends on the climate and terrain where you expect to bug out.

Obviously if you have to hit the road in winter, the shelter requirement goes up several notches. The thing is, what’s clearly most important in winter is staying warm. That means out of the wind and with enough layers to retain body heat. This doesn’t have to be a well-defined shelter; a sleeping bag with a windproof cover will do the trick, since moisture is not an immediate problem in winter.

There are several ways to have redundancy for warmth – layers of clothing, blankets, sleeping bag, reflective (Mylar) sheet, most of which could be used for other purposes.

Protection from rain is even more complicated. Wind, rain and low temperatures are in many ways the most dangerous conditions. Most cases of hypothermia occur in above freezing temperatures, where wind and rain (moisture penetration) combine to chill the core body temperature.

In truly wet, cold climates, the only effective shelter is a fully enclosing tent. All other substitutes might prevent rain from penetrating for a while, but won’t provide protection for very long. Redundancy in these conditions is limited.

Bug Out Gear HydrationRedundancy in drinking water comes in two forms – carried water and the ability to find water in the surroundings. Carrying water adds weight, a lot of weight, so having enough water for the climate and terrain may need some intelligent estimation. It also needs to be stored in a way so that the loss of one water container isn’t a disaster.

For example, if you have a pack with a built-in water bladder, it’s important to have other containers of water, just in case that main bladder is punctured or has leaks. Water availability in the environment depends on climate and terrain, but the constant is the necessity of ensuring the water won’t make you sick. Water treatment should be redundant, for example, a filter and pump rig, and purification tablets.

Outside of water, food and shelter there is some other  bug out bag gear that needs to be redundant as well. Matches, of course, and socks (dry socks) are two examples. With some of these items, redundancy means literally having multiple copies. It should also mean having them packaged and distributed in the pack (and your clothing) so that if one container is damaged or wet, other containers will remain intact.

Improvising on redundancy in bug out bag gear

As mentioned, sometimes redundancy can be fashioned from odd pieces, which is a variation on the old saw, “Necessity is the mother of invention.” However, invention requires imagination and having some things that make assembling stuff possible.

This means, rope, string, tape (probably duct tape), bungee cords, plastic bags, rubber bands, and glues need to be available not only to patch things, but also to put things together. Again, the supply of these items will have to be limited, but every bug out bag should have a collection that will help repair or build critical bug out bag gear.

When it comes to redundancy, having space for redundant items may be one of the greatest difficulties. It’s important to think of storage spaces outside the bob – in clothing and things hung on the outside of the pack.

The need for some redundant functionality in every bug out bag should be obvious; however achieving the redundancy without overloading isn’t automatic. It takes thought and planning – and ultimately a good sense of imagination for using stuff to solve problems.

What Say You?

Comments on this entry are closed.

Bug Out Bags 101

Bug Out Bag List - Building the Ultimate BOB

Bug Out Bag List – Building the Ultimate BOB

Putting together a bug out bag is really not that difficult if you have a bug out bag list to go by. However,  putting together a comprehensive, well packed bug out bag requires a little bit more attention to detail. Using a bug out bag list will help you stay organized,
Read More
Bug Out Bag Essentials - Top 10 Bug Out Bag Items

Bug Out Bag Essentials – Top 10 Bug Out Bag Items

Bug Out Bag Essentials. Every article that you read about how to build a bug out bag is going to have a list of 50 or 60 items that you should include, but what if you just want to start a basic bag? Can you get away with just a
Read More

Picking the Best Bug Out Bag Backpack

Considerations for a Bug Out Bag Backpack When it comes to a bug out bag backpack, there’s a spectrum of options. At one end, there’s literally a non-descript bag, into which you throw survival gear and get out of Dodge. At the other end is a bug out bag, or more exactly
Read More
Bug out Bag Gear

Bug out Bag Gear Redundancy Solutions

Redundancy in Bug out Bag Gear This may seem obvious but redundancy in bug out bag gear doesn’t always mean having two of something. It’s closer to the old saying, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.” Redundancy in survival gear means having more than one way to cover
Read More
Bug Out Plan

Bug Out Plan: Why Bug Out at All?

Why Develop a Bug Out Plan? Are you are a prepper without a bug out plan, or very strong bug-in plan? If so, you're basically wasting your time if an "end of the world as we know it" event happens. This is a pretty strong statement in which some people may not agree.
Read More
Bug Out Bag List

Here’s the Ultimate Bug Out Bag List

Bug Out Bag List If you've read our tutorials you have probably noticed that we have shied away from publishing a definitive bug out bag list ... mainly because a real bug out bag list is relevant to your specific circumstances like geographical location, skill set, food and water availability
Read More
Survival Skills

Bug Out Plan: Assessing Your Survival Skills and Weaknesses

Survival Skills Quiz Bugout Profile: Assessing your survival skills and ability A disaster situation, especially one where survival may be at stake, exerts a lot of unusual pressure – on you. If you can grab your bug out bag, throw it in the car and drive to safety in a few
Read More
pack a bug out bag

How to Pack a Bug Out Bag: Making it Personal

Addressing Your Personal Needs When You Pack a Bug Out Bag: When you begin to pack a bug out bag, you need to consider some personal needs, medicine for example, may be critical. Other items, such as a Bible, speak to different needs in a survival situation. The point is
Read More

Bug Out Plan: Provision Your Bug Out Bag for Inclement Weather

 Bugout Profile: What are the weather realities? Let’s suppose that you live in a northern U.S. city and disaster strikes, say citywide riots, and you need to grab your bug out bag and get (far) away from town. What’s the first thing you need to know is in your bug
Read More
bug out location

Bug Out Plan: Your Bug Out Bag Dictates Your Bug Out Location

Bug Out Location: Where are you most likely to be should you need to bug out? It’s an important question, because it’s a big part of determining your bug out plan and survival strategy. A lot depends on the type of disaster, survival means avoiding it, not running into it. Your
Read More
Developing a Family Bug Out Plan

Bug Out Plan: Developing a Family Bug Out Plan

Bugout Profile: Family Bug Out Plan This is a common image for bugging out: You hear a warning, some kind of impending disaster. You run to the closet and grab your bugout bag. You head for the car, throw the bugout bag in the back seat, and drive away to
Read More
Bug Out Vehicle

Bug Out Plan: Should I Have a Bug Out Vehicle?

Bug Out Vehicles? Wherever you are going, how will you get there? When disaster strikes, it’s a good bet many people think they can jump into their favorite petroleum fueled bug out vehicle and bug out. Not so fast. Literally, it won’t go so fast. For one thing, assuming the disaster hasn’t
Read More
Planning bugout bags

Bugout Plan: How Long do Bugout Bags Need to Last?

Planning Bugout Bags: How long will survival conditions continue? Most disasters don’t cause generalized survival conditions, bugout bags need to be planned accordingly. Their effects, though severe, are usually dangerous (a matter of life or death) for only a few hours, days at most. It’s mainly disasters that radically change
Read More
Build a Bug Out Bag

Should I Buy or Build a Bug Out Bag? – Bug Out Bag List Included

Should I Buy or build a bug out bag? Bug Out Bag List Why in the hell would I buy a bug out bag when I can build a bug out bag? We here this quite often, and the truth is, you shouldn't if you have the time and money
Read More

Accuracy ProductsFood Storage
Water Filtration & StorageWater Filtration & Storage
Bug Out BagsBug Out Bags
Survival KitsSurvival Kits
AmmunitionFirst Aid Kits
Ammunition AccessoriesBug-Out Packages
Packs, Bags & PouchesBackpacks & Pouches
Fire StartingFire Starting
Flashlights & LightingFlashlights & Lighting
Knives, Axes, ToolsKnives & Accessories
Tents & SheltersTents & Shelters
Survival SeedsSurvival Seeds
Bug Out Bag CoreKitsBuild a Bag / Kit
Cookware & StovesCookware & Stoves
MRE's & RationsMREs & Rations
Sleeping GearSleep Gear
First Aid KitsFirst Aid Kits
Survival BooksSurvival Books
Paracord & ClipsParacord & Clips
Solar EnergySolar Energy
Fishing GearFishing Gear