Bug Out Bag Essentials : Weapons

Well, it’s no secret that we like guns and knives here in Texas!  I mostly think about handguns for a survival bag, but you will see many people attaching their AR-15 to their bag and there are many good reasons for this.

First of all, let me tell you about the AR-15 so that you can get rid of any misconceptions you may have about it right away.  Just because it is a black gun does not mean it is sinister!  The AR-15 platform is revolutionary in the way it is designed.  It has many interchangeable parts and you can custom fit it to whatever you are comfortable with.  When it boils down to it, it is just a rifle.  With the pull of two spring loaded pins, you can swap out the upper half of it for several different calibers.  Heck, I just saw in Guns & Ammo that you can even get a crossbow upper for it!  The point is, it is a very versatile platform for a rifle and if you wanted, you could have one upper for small game hunting and a separate upper for large game hunting.  I am in the country, if I had to bug out on foot, I would like to have an AR-15 if for nothing else than to have protection from wild animals.  I am in the process of building an AR-15 now, but they aren’t free and money can be tight at times.  But at some point in the future, there will be a spot on/in my bug out bag for it.

Now back to handguns.  I am a firm believer in the right to carry a handgun, but I don’t believe anyone should carry one without knowing how to use it and keeping their skills up at the range.  For a bug out bag, it really doesn’t matter much if your handgun is a compact or a full framed pistol, but if you intend to carry it on your body you may want to take that into account.  Get one that fits your hand and you are comfortable enough in how it works, is the right caliber for you, and then practice…practice…practice.  As far as bug out bag application goes, buy extra magazines for it and stock them in your bag.  Just remember, ammo does have weight to it, so the more you plan to carry, the heavier it is going to get.

When it comes to knives, I love ‘em all!  Well, most of ‘em anyway.  Some stand out above the crowd a little more than others though.  The Gerber LMF II is a prime example.  This is a great all around survival knife.  It can handle just about any job you throw at it and some you wouldn’t even think about!  I also like the Gerber Game Pro and have it too.  I haven’t skinned any small game with it yet which is what this knife is designed for, but I have it in my bug out bag in case I need to.  I am pretty sure that Gerber has stopped production on the Game Pro so it may be hard to come by. There are other great knives that I really want to get hold of and try out, like the RAT Cutlery knives.  They have some awesome looking knives that get great reviews in real world use, but that is just going to have to stay on the wish list for now.

Kimber Pepper SpraySome people don’t feel comfortable with a firearm and don’t wish to carry one and that’s okay because there are alternatives to that as well.  Pepper spray is probably the next best thing and is non-lethal.  Kimber even makes one that looks and handles like a handgun.  I haven’t tried it, but it is the same Kimber that makes the 1911 style .45 caliber handguns and I have one of those and love it.  They are top of the line in my book, so I can only assume their pepper spray meets up to the same standards.

There are other options for weapons that are a little less conventional, but please, for the love up Pete…don’t get a katana! (Sorry, just a little joke from survival forums…I couldn’t resist!)

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