*Bug Out Bag Contents*
By: Ajax
16 November 2004

I know, I know - another BOB article. Just what everyone needs. I mean how many times have we been over this topic? Well, please allow me an indulgence and let me tell you about why I went back to ALICE. I just revised my BOB to meet the challenges I think I may face. This is the bag I keep in my "civilian" vehicle which I use for day to day operating. For a long time, I used a commercial internal frame backpack similar to the ones I use while hiking. But I decided I wanted something with an external frame that would not stick out like a sore thumb. The external frame allows me to carry all my "normal" equipment and also permits me to add extra "mission specific" gear as needed. So I went with the ALICE. So far I have not been disappointed - I have been able to carry heavy loads very comfortably over long distances with it. I will never use it for general backpacking, however, I think it fits the bill quite well for BOB duties.

Additionally, the bag is tailored to a more general approach - with equipment to meet a variety of challenges satisfactorily, but not focusing exclusively on any one area. I also went with a lot less equipment because I decided to rely on skills rather than gear. Much of this has been done to reduce weight in some areas so I can carry more weight in others. The poncho becomes multi-use - shelter, clothing, and protection. The sleeping bag has been traded in favor for an aluminized bivy sack (which I have tested in my AO). My traditional cartridge stove was traded for an alcohol stove which fits inside an aluminum cook pot. I traded my Cold Steel Ranger for a Cold Steel Bush knife that is rugged and easy to sharpen with a few licks of a diamond sharpener. Given our potential problems with radiation - I added an e-tool for digging a last ditch shelter, a fighting position or for use as a melee weapon. I added a few plastic shopping bags for use as boot covers if I have to cover potentially contaminated ground. Finally, I decided not to use the absolute "top of the line" gear because the bag will not be in my possession all the time and to lose it will not be as much of a disaster.

Weaponry has also changed when I acquired an AK. I used to pack for a Mini-14, but I think the AK will serve me better. My .45 1911 will remain.

In the future, I will more than likely add a bayonet with a wire cutter for the AK, some loaded magazines, and a better decontamination kit. Also, I need to find some sort of light weight radiation detection equipment. I am weighing the addition of some sort of "bump" hat but I am not sure what direction I want to go in with that item. I will also add my nomex flight suit to the bag and a balaclava for protection instead of fatigues. Since we have a very real threat, better NBC needs to be considered. A better GPS unit is also in the works - one with maps. So this is not the last incarnation of the BOB for me…

"Normal" Bug out Bag Load Out:

One large ALICE pack

Space Blanket (the real deal, not the el cheapo)

OR Survival Bivy

Several large plastic garbage bags

Pair of heavy wool socks

Pair of light polypropylene liner socks

Vinyl large poncho

Leather shooting/work gloves


Pair of well-worn hiking boots

20 ft para cord

Large Cold Steel Bush knife

Wegner Swiss Army knife

Cold Steel entrenching tool

Sharpening stone


Princeton Tek headlamp

First Aid kit

N-100 mask

Latex gloves

Ivory soap bar




Personal toiletries

Three Mountain House meals

Other "cookable" food

Six "power bars"

Water Bottle, 1.5 liter

Water purification tablets

Repair kit

Duct tape

Trangia Alcohol cooking stove with pot and lid

20-lifeboat matches

Plastic matchsafe with strike anywhere matches

Flint and steel


100 rounds of 7.62x39

50 rounds of .45 acp

Minimal cleaning kit


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