Outdoor Survival Gear

In a recent article by Popular Mechanics Magazine, over a hundred different items were listed as part of an all round Survival Gear Kit. What is the rationale for such an extensive list? “When disaster strikes and there’s no time to think, you won’t have to.”

Similarly, when you’re in the outdoors, and you don’t have the appropriate gear for your need, chances are that’s a disaster in the happening already.

Here are three basic groups of survival gear that you will need no matter where you are or what you prepare for.

First Aid

This can include anything from as advanced as scalpels to as simple as bandages. You should always consider first aid as your first line of defence against the harshness of natural disasters. Whether it is the injuries are the result of an accident or the illnesses that we can suffer. Here’s a list of a few important first aid items:

  • Analgesics
  • Intestinal sedatives
  • Antibiotics
  • Antihistamine
  • Water sterilizing tablets
  • Anti-malaria tablets
  • Potassium permanganate
  • Surgical blades
  • Butterfly sutures
  • Adhesive bandages

Nearly all of these are available over the counter from your local pharmacy. In addition to these items, keeping an outdoor medical emergency handbook handy can also help you to create measures on the spot.


Not all the food you find in the outdoors will be safe to consume, In fact, clean water could be the most difficult to find. At the same time, hiking and constantly moving around will require a lot of energy, so its good to keep a small reserve of energy bars around for replenishing your energy. Here’s a list of food items that you can have in your survival gear.

  • Energy bars
  • Fishing kit
  • Chlorine dioxide tablets
  • Emergency filter
  • Metal container for boiling water


This is by far the most important gear for survival. You’ll spend nearly half your time here, whether it’s sleeping or eating, so it’s important that you’re at a safe point where you can rest and relax. Here are a few items that you can have in your survival gear.

  • Survival blanket
  • Heavy duty garbage bags
  • 550 cord
  • Tarp
  • Candles
  • Tinder
  • Waterproof matches

Again, it’s not necessary to have all these items, but things like waterproof matches can come in hand should the weather take a turn for the worst. Garbage bags are also important because you don’t want to leave your waste behind. Mother Nature won’t clean it up and they might be toxic for the environment, so make sure you dispose of your waste accordingly.

Miscellaneous Items

Here’s a list of tools that don’t fit into any one category, but that doesn’t mean they’re not important. In fact, tools like the knife are the most important tools of survival.

  • Knife
  • Multi-tool – the proverbial Swiss Army knife.
  • Knife sharpener
  • Compass
  • Survival manual
  • Aluminium foil
  • Duct tape
  • Cyalume light sticks

It’s like the Boy Scout motto: “Be Prepared.” You never know what’s going to happen.

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