The Ultimate Winter Bug-out Bag: What you should pack.
If you have to bug out in the winter, there’s more to pack than just your bug out roll. We’re going to give you the rundown on winter necessities to ensure you not only survive, but thrive.
Let’s start with your pack.
Choose a bag that is both comfortable and durable. Civilian bags meet this demand more than a military duffle because they prioritize ergonomic design. If you’re bugging out, you need to consider the amount of time you might have to spend in the wilderness before you develop a sustainable campsite. This means you should be prepared to pack heavy. We use an 85L bag, but recommend a minimum of 60L and over.
Normally, we recommend utilizing a sled to be able to carry more weight with less expended effort, but in this blog, we’re specifically discussing the worst-case scenario and how to prepare.
Essential survival items for winter prepping.
These rations will keep you nourished while you adapt to your surroundings. In the winter, your number one threat is the elements. Warm food specifically designed for your body will go a long way in helping you thrive. Our freeze-dried foods retain all their nutritional value and flavour for over 30 years and you can cook directly in the mylar bag, eliminating the need for heavy dishes. You can also try a military ration, or MRE, which is particularly geared towards total nutrition as opposed to both nutrition and taste.
If you watch our Youtube channel, you know how much we rely on the Katana boy 650 from silky saw. This saw is lightweight yet incredibly durable, making it a great addition to your bug out bag.
An axe will also prove itself indispensable. Finding a high-quality axe to cut trails, fell wood, or even to use as a last resort in self defense, is a necessity for survival.
We recommend a knife that serves multiple functions in a bushcraft setting, such as the Morakniv Bushcraft knife with carbon grip that doubles as a fire starter and can be used for gutting animals, fish, gathering, and more.
Having detachable spikes for your shoes is a great and lightweight tool that will help you get grip in environments that are icy or have densely packed snowfall.
In a winter climate, a hot tent is a must. A lightweight titanium wood stove, like the one featured in our youtube video, will fold and fit in your pack, but we recommend investing in one that can stand up to bushcraft use. Learn more about hot tents on our blog and youtube channel.
A good quality sleeping bag, liner, and portable cot or sleeping mat are quintessential to sleeping well and warmly in deadly temperatures. The setup we recommend is: sleeping cot, wool blanket, and sleeping bag with a winter-rated liner to keep you warm.
A small jet boiler will go a long way in keeping you fed and will also double as an emergency firestarter. The MSR PocketRocket Camp Stove is a great and extremely lightweight option that we use and trust.
If you find yourself alone in the woods, defense is something you need to consider. Whether you are hunting, contending with wildlife, or defending your family when SHTF, learning how to protect yourself is an imperative part of being prepared. If you’re new to prepping, learning about firearm safety is the first step in your journey. Do your research and find a local program to enroll in to become certified and trained in firearm safety protocols.
The winter bug out roll.
Building out your bug out roll is an essential part of preparedness. Our rolls are made in Canada and feature waterproof vinyl and durable materials. Having a bug out roll for multiple SHTF scenarios is the best way to be prepared. This checklist of essentials is for your winter bug out pack roll. See the bug out roll in action here.
- Toilet paper tablets & toiletries
- Soap & sanitizer (alcohol-based sanitizer can also be used as a firestarter)
- Zippo hand warmers & fuel
- GPS & satellite phone
- SAS survival guide
- Firestarters (we recommend several)
- First aid materials
- Binoculars or Monoculars
- Bear banger or Bear Bells
Essential gear list for winter bushcraft:
- Silky Saws
- Bug out Roll System
- Sleeping bag
- Toilet paper tablets
- Freeze dried food
- Titan survivorcord
- Bug out rolls
- Crank generator
- Solar panel