17 November 2015

You need a Bag of Evil, here are the essentials

Early last week, before the attacks in France, I was talking on Facebook to a friend and longtime MCS fan.  He messaged me about whether I thought he should buy a ready made med kit or put one together.  I asked him where he planned to keep it, and he said his truck.  My immediate reaction was why not carry it in your EDC/ BOE.  He said he does not carry one all the time.  It is time to start and here is why.

Anyone familiar with my writings knows that I cannot stand the term BOB (Bug Out Bag).  The reason is that in my experience a BOB is a bag, usually too large for EDC that is filled with tons of stuff that you might need.  Since most people are not going to carry around a bag full of stuff that they would only use in an emergency, it usually gets left in the trunk of the car, if not at home.

The Bag of Evil concept is pretty simple.  The BOE is usually a medium sized pack like the Mountainsmith Red Rock 25 .  The important thing to remember is that your BOE should always be 50% empty after filling it with your EDC/essential items.  This allows you room to carry stuff you pick up in an emergency, or maybe even your lunch or a change of clothes.  The most important thing is to keep the bag as close to you as possible all times.  The farther away it is, the less likely you will have access to your gear when you need it.  The more you work out of the bag the more you will realize exactly what you need to have in it, not only for emergencies but also for morale.  Make sure what you carry is based on the most likely situations you will face, not what a Navy SEAL would face, unless you are a Navy SEAL.

Here is a list of what I would consider essentials.  In some cases, there are links to specific models that I endorse.  Items are listed in no particular order.

Headlamp- there is nothing better for hands free low light navigation and work. My go to headlamp is the Petzl Tactikka .

Gloves- bungee corded to the outside of your bag.  The reason is if they are at the bottom of the bag you will not dig for them in an emergency.   I have always been a fan of the Fastfit series by Mechanix, both because of how they wear and ease of replacement.  My current favorite are the Mechanix Wear Hi-Viz FastFit .  Click here to see an article I wrote on why I prefer this model.  Many emergencies will involved environments with sharp edges and heat, so you need to protect your hands.

Water purifier - you can do without many things, but water is not one of them. This is like a trauma kit, one of those things you carry and hope you never need to use.

Gortex Jacket- there are tons to choose from.  Consider this first line shelter for your body.  Personally, I prefer one with a hood.  Make sure that the waist, hood, and wrists can be cinched.  After doing so, you can fill it with whatever you have as insulation to stay warm.  Remember hypothermia can occur during any time of the year.

Fix it kit containing the following items-
Zip Ties
100 MPH Tape
Super Glue
Bank line (strands can be separated and used for gear repair)
Bailing wire
Safety pins
Sail needle  (used to sew bank line)
Parachute cord

The above items, carried in addition to the Leatherman that you should have on your person all the time, will allow you to fix broken things that would otherwise cause major issues.

First Aid Kit- there will be another follow up article on this specifically.  I separate mine into two parts; a TIM (Traumatic Injury Management) kit, and a Boo Boo kit.  If you currently don't have anything as far as trauma goes, first get a SWAT-T Tourniquet and an Israeli Bandage .

Water bottle- I have been through all of them.  These days I just use a few Gatorade bottles.  I affix a piece of paracord to the neck with a ziptie to make them easier to carry.

People will likely have all kinds of things they would add.  Just keep in mind that nothing weighs nothing, and the heavier it is the less time you will spend carrying it.  The listed essential items are just that...essential.

1 comment:

  1. Do you still use the "Jack Bauer" bag, George?