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Outdoor survival equipment

Outdoor Survival Equipment for a Crisis

Outdoor survival equipment


Outdoor Survival Equipment for a Crisis


On a daily basis, thoughts of natural disasters and crises rarely cross our minds. Often times we don’t plan for these problems, or think, “That won’t happen to me.” The fact of the matter however, is that a crisis can happen to anyone. Weather, accidents and emergencies don’t follow an itinerary and they don’t always give a warning. It is extremely important therefore that you have some outdoor survival equipment ready for a crisis.


Why would a crisis hit?


Crises come in many forms, but the most common are natural disasters like earthquakes, hurricanes and wildfires. Depending on where you are located geographically, these disasters may be more, or less common than in other places. For example, tropical areas are more prone to hurricanes, while semi-arid climates are more prone to wildfires.

Evacuation efforts are always the first goal during these emergencies, but evacuation is not a guarantee. During hurricanes for example, a lot of people must be relocated and high winds can quickly halt helicopter efforts, while flooding makes roads impossible to maneuver. Refugee areas often fill up quickly and there isn’t always enough space, or supplies available on short notice. In addition, not every country is well equipped to provide this disaster relief quickly, so location really plays a big part.

Crises can also strike in the form of shipwrecks, plane crashes, getting lost while camping, or backpacking, on vacation and etc.


Survival collapse


How could I prepare?


The first step to being prepared should an emergency, or disaster befall you is to have a plan. Sit down and write out a plan, of what you and your family will do, should a crisis happen. What small items, or valuables will you take with you? What is your escape route, where will you go? If you have family located elsewhere, include them in this plan. A lot of times families are separated during disasters and the grief of worrying about their safety is stressful. Make sure everyone is on the same page.

If your area is prone to weather emergencies, keep a bag packed for every family member, as well as a bag for any pets. You can store these in the trunk of your car, a closet, or even in your garage. Make sure each person has a few days of clothing, sunscreen,


Storing for survival


personal hygiene products, a toy for younger children and any medically necessary supplies. Things like a days supply of medication, or an inhaler. If you have an infant, or are pregnant, it may be a good idea to also pack an emergency diaper bag.

For pets, be sure to pack a few days worth of food, water bottles, a bowl to drink from and a leash. Also include a day, or twos supply of any medication your pet needs. A favorite toy, or a small blanket can also be included. Be sure to pack any pet food into airtight containers, or zip-lock bags. This way you won’t be inviting bugs, or rodents into your emergency luggage and your pet’s food will stay fresh and dry. Always keep a bag packed with the bare minimum of supplies you would need if something should happen.


Bushcraft wild camping equipment



Outdoor survival equipment for a crisis – Top 30 items



Military Rucksack


A rucksack is a kind of backpack, the main difference between rucksacks and your typical backpack is durability and size. Rucksacks are a lot larger than a standard backpack. A rucksack is one of the most important pieces of equipment you will need, as it will hold most of your other equipment, as well as supplies like water and food. A good quality rucksack is a very important piece of outdoor survival equipment.



Military Rucksack

Berghaus Vulcan II Rucksack



Rucksack Dry Bag


A rucksack dry bag is also an important piece of gear. This bag is designed to keep valuables, electronics, food, other gear, or anything that fits in it dry, should your rucksack be submerged in water. This bag would be particularly useful during a flood, or hurricane.


Wild camping dry bag

Dry Bag



Water purification Straw and Tablets


Water purification supplies are essential. There is no guarantee that clean water will be available to you. A water purification straw functions in a way that you would be able to drink directly from any natural water source, such as rivers, lakes, or ponds without worry. These straws effectively filter out bacteria and parasites, however they can not filter out viruses, or salt.

Water purification tablets work by releasing chlorine into the water, they kill bacteria, parasites and viruses. These tablets are great if you need potable water for cooking, drinking, or a pet. Like a purification straw, tablets will not remove salt. Everyone should have some form of water purification in their outdoor survival equipment.


Water purification straw

Water Filtration Straw



Wood fuelled camping stove


A wood fuelled camping stove ensures you have a heat source and a method of cooking, no matter where you are. It can be difficult to cook on a large campfire and in extremely wet conditions, starting one may be almost impossible. These stoves are light, they don’t require propane, and some styles even collapse. So you won’t have to worry about lugging around propane tanks, or a bulky piece of equipment.


Bio Lite USB stove

Biolite wood burning stove



Waterproof Tarp


A waterproof tarp can be used in many ways and should be included in your supplies. A tarp can be used to create an emergency shelter, or keep your firewood supply and excess gear dry. It can also be used like a large sack, to hang food and supplies up away from scavengers and predators, like raccoons, bears and coyotes. Many of these animals can climb, but unless they’re starving, they’ll usually opt for an easier meal and move along.


Unigear wild camping tarp


Unigear tarp





A tent is essential to having ample protection from the elements. Tents provide a secure shelter away from the elements, as well as, a safe place to sleep. Tents don’t have to be elaborate, but you should choose one that is suited to your environment. Choose a tent that is only as big as you need it to be and not bigger. The larger a tent is, the harder it is to keep it warm and the harder it will be to tear down, set up, or carry.


Coleman survival tent

Coleman 4 man tent



Camping Mat


Camping mats are designed to place under your sleeping bag. Their purpose is to create a cushion, as well as a barrier between you and the ground. They will improve your comfort, make it easier to sleep and keep you up off of damp, cold ground. Camping mats are usually air filled, self inflating and resemble small air mattresses, or over sized pool lounges. In a pinch, your sleeping pad can also be used as an emergency raft, though it won’t be able to hold you and all of your belongings. Camping mats can add extra bulk to your outdoor survival equipment but will make you comfortable and warm when bugging out.


wild camping sleeping mat equipment

Blow up camping mat



Sleeping Bag


A sleeping bag is essential to staying warm while you sleep. Sleeping bags are superior to blankets, they can’t be kicked off, they’re insulated and they function like a cocoon that traps your body heat and uses it to keep you warm. Most styles of sleeping bags are water resistant, so they won’t easily allow water to pass through to you either.


Thermarest Polar Ranger

Thermarest Polar Ranger




A compass will function long after GPS batteries have died and your map has been damaged. These simple, sturdy, inexpensive directional devices are essential to knowing which way you are going and have been carried by just about every explorer, backpacker and outdoorsmen since they were invented.


Survival compass

Survival Compass


Fishing Kit


A fishing kit ensures you have a source of food. Depending on your circumstances, foraging may not be an option. Fish are generally unaffected by most disasters that destroy natural food sources and drive wildlife to new locations. As long as the water maintains livable conditions, fish and other water life will continue to thrive. Fishing kits can literally safe your live and should always be included in outdoor survival equipment.


Fishing kit


Survival fishing kit



Boil-able Water Bottle


This simple piece of gear has many uses. It can be used to boil water, as well as, to cook and store food. They are usually stainless steel and function much like a cooking pot. They can placed directly on a fire and they are large enough to make soup, or boil fish and other meat. You can then carry your meal with you, sealed in the same container you cooked it in.


Boilable water canteen

Titanium Military Water Bottle 




A torch is essential to seeing what you are doing after the sun has set. You are likely to need to do things at night and a torch is essential to finding your way and not getting turned around, or lost. A torch can also be useful in spooking off curious wildlife. Many of these critters will be startled by a strange bright light in the middle of the night and not stick around to find out what it is.


Wild camping torch

Heavy duty maglite



Head Torch


A head torch allows you to see where you’re going, or what you’re doing, while allowing you the free use of both hands. This can be useful if you need to manoeuvre in the dark, while being able to use your hands. Head torches can be more useful than traditional torches because of this added convenience.


Wild camping head torch


Head torch


Solar Battery Charger


A solar battery charger is essential to keeping your torches, head torches, gps device, radio or other electronics working for as long as you need them. Without electricity, or a store nearby these devices are a godsend if the batteries in an important piece of gear fail you.


solar battery charger

Solar battery charger




It’s easy to take a simple lighter for granted, until you need to start a fire. Starting a fire for cooking, or staying warm can be done without the use of a lighter, but it is not an easy task. Keeping a lighter in your gear supply can mean the difference between warm meals and being hungry.



Wild camping lighter

Zippo Lighter



Fire steel


Fire steel, unlike a lighter, won’t run out of fluid, or quit after it gets wet. They won’t produce a flame, but they’ll give you the spark you need to create one. Fire steel can be used as your only fire starting means, or as a backup when your lighter inevitably ceases to work. They are especially useful in windy conditions, where a lighter will be hard to keep lit long enough to be of use. Fire steels are essential outdoor survival equipment I recommend stockpiling these.


fire stick

Fire steel




This thin, surprisingly tough cord has hundreds of uses. From binding the frame of an emergency shelter, to being used to make a fire bow, you are likely to find a use for paracord. Some crises related uses of paracord include, making a snare trap, emergency leash for pets, secure a splint, a rescue line, fishing net and more.


stealth camping paracord

Para cord





Just like paracord rope is an essential to being able to bind, hang and secure objects. Rope is more sturdy than paracord and can be applied to more heavy duty, or long term applications. For example, rope can be used to secure large bundles of wood, so you can drag them back to your camp for firewood.


Climbing rope

Climbing rope





A firearm provides you a method of self defense and a way to hunt. Depending where you are stranded, you may be up against any number of predators, or even other people. People aren’t always helpful and depending on the situation, they may be more willing to steal your supplies, than they are to work together. Stressful situations, especially survival situations, can cause people to behave in ways they otherwise wouldn’t. Not everyone will be able to include a fire arm in their outdoor survival equipment. One thing is for sure if you do no one will successfully take anything from you in a collapse situation.


Fire arm


Hunting Bow


Having a hunting bow provides you a sustainable method of securing food. Quality bolts can often be reused and sometimes even repaired. This means that your supply of bolts is likely to last you longer than gun ammunition would. A plus side to this hunting method it its stealth, unlike a rifle, bows make minimal noise and are unlikely to spook your target.


Hunting bow


D&Q Hunting bow



Survival Knife


From cutting rope and fishing line, to cleaning and preparing fish and game, a survival knife is going to come in handy. Survival knives are sharp, sturdy and designed to handle just about any task.


Survival knife


Survival Knife





Multi-tools are essential pieces of gear, they provide an assortment of small knives, files, pliers and more. Pliers will come in handy when removing bolts from game, or trying retrieve your fishing hook from a stubborn fish. The smaller knives are likely to come in handy when faced with a task that requires precision, over the brute strength of a survival knife.


Survival Multi


Alpine stainless steel multitool



Wood Axe


A wood axe allows you to collect firewood if fallen sticks and branches are scarce. It also allows you a way of rationing your wood by splitting it into smaller pieces to be burned separately, or procuring smaller pieces to fit inside your wood stove.




Bushcraft axe


Wood Axe



Sharpening block


A sharpening block is essential to keeping your knives in functioning condition. Many things that you will need to use your knife for, will also quickly dull it and a dull knife isn’t of much use. A sharpening block can also be used to sharpen bolt heads for reuse.


Sharpening stone

Sharpening stone



Digging Spade


A digging spade is important for quite a few reasons. Not only will you need to bury your bathroom business, but you should also opt to bury animal remains, such as the head, bones, entrails and any other portions you don’t use. Rotting animal parts are a good way to attract scavengers and hungry predators, as well as bugs and parasites. In addition a digging spade can be used to build a ground water still and in foraging for roots.



Digging survival spade

Heavy duty digging spade



Wind Up Radio


A wind up radio probably won’t pick up your favorite radio station, but it is a good way to stay up to date on weather warnings. Some wind up radios can pick up talk, or music stations and this can be a form of entertainment, or just a way to not feel so alone, and have some familiar background noise.


Wind up radio

Wind up radio



Night Vision Scope, or Goggles


A night vision scope allows you to hunt at night, which is when many small animals prefer to be active. Using a night vision scope increases your chances of being able to include meat in your next meal. A night vision scope will easily mount to most rifles and night vision goggle can be used while bow hunting. While it is illegal in most places to hunt at night, or with the use of infrared, or night vision, if you’re trying to survive you most likely aren’t concerned about breaking a law.


Thermal night vision scope

Thermal night vision scope



SAS Survival Manual


A survival manual will provide you with just about any info you could ever need to survive without modern comforts. From securing shelter, to how to prepare game, it covers everything. A survival manual is an invaluable source of information and even if you think you know everything, it can probably teach you something. Some would say a book does not count as outdoor survival equipment. Knowledge however is one of the most important factors in your survival in a crisis situation.


SAS Survival


SAS Survival guide



Sewing Kit


A sewing kit is going to come in handy. From repairing, clothing, tents, and tarps to emergency sutures, you can’t go wrong with having a sewing kit on hand. Wear and tear happens and so do accidents. You won’t have a way to replace your gear. So, you’re going to need to know how to repair it. If you don’t know how to sew, practice makes perfect.


Sewing kit

Army survival sewing kit



First Aid Kit


Injuries are likely to happen at some point and scrapes and cuts are some of the most common. Without running water and general sanitation, infection is a real threat. A first aid kit is essential to being able to administer basic wound care, as well as doctor up more serious injuries. A suture kit should be included in your first aid kit.



Wild camping first aid kit

Camping first aid kit



The Conclusion


Disasters can happen anywhere, to anyone. Rich, or poor, life doesn’t discriminate and when it happens, it helps to be prepared. These 30 items are all basic items that will make your situation easier, whether it lasts for a week, or months. It is possible to survive without some of them, but it will be that much harder. The more prepared you are, the more likely you are to succeed when faced with the challenge of survival. You should familiarize yourself with all of your gear, learn how it can and can’t be used and how to properly use it, before you need it. During a crisis is not the time to first learn how to set up your tent. For more information on wild or stealth camping equipment why not check out our article here. 



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