A couple of weeks ago, I posed the question “how ready are you at any given moment”. Since then, things have gotten progressively worse in this country and we’re now seeing armed groups openly preparing for conflict and having armed confrontations with police. They’ve been resolved peacefully so far, but that won’t last.
Regardless of your political leanings, if you don’t think we’re sitting on a powder keg, headed for a violent conflict, you are either not paying attention or relying on hope. Neither is a good strategy.
With all of this going on, what can we do? First, we must assess if we are truly ready, or not.
That reminds me of a piece of Tactical Wisdom:
Therefore be ready, because you do not know the day or the hour.
Just as applicable today.
We all have piles and cases and bags of gear, but what state is it in? What could you actually walk out the door with in 5 minutes? 30 minutes? 3 hours?
It’s one thing to gather supplies, it’s quite another to have them in a ready to move format or to be able to find a particular piece of gear. Many people into preparedness have so much stuff, that they wouldn’t be able to find a particular piece of kit if they needed it RIGHT NOW.
If you’ve read my books, you’ll know that I don’t advocate giant food or gear stashes. I advocate having the skills and gear to PRODUCE food and be MOBILE, if needed. Having giant stashes means that if you are forced to flee, you have to decide what to take. And face it, even if you plan to bug in, you may very well be forced to move by local conditions.
With this in mind, I thought I would share my system, and hopefully it will help some of you.
My first bag is the Patrol/EDC bag. The bag in the photo above is actually my Get Home Bag, but it’s the same size. The is the “Walking out the door right now bag”. This bag contains the essentials to live and survive in the field for 72 hours.
In it, I have a poncho that can be used as a shelter, like a tarp. It also has a ranger roll (a poncho liner wrapped in another poncho) for sleeping. It has a few other survival items, and a radio attached. It also has enough food for 3 days. With this bag I could survive for about 3 days, as long as I also took my Belt Kit.
Yes, we all have a chest rig or belt kit, but how do you keep it stored? Mine has all the pouches full and ready, with full magazines, my bayonet/combat knife sheathed on it, and both canteens full at all times. Each canteen pouch also has purification tablets and there is a Sawyer Mini on the belt kit. I can resupply water indefinitely.
If you don’t have at least these two sets, the Patrol/EDC bag and the Belt/Chest Rig Kit fully stocked and ready to go on a moment’s notice, then you aren’t “ready”. You’re a hoarder, not a prepper. (Lighten up, it’s a joke)
The next bag is the “Full Ruck”. With about 30 minutes notice, I can have this pack ready with about 7 days worth of food, which I could stretch out to 14 if I had to. The remainder of the pack is fully ready to go.
In this one I keep a couple of USMC tarps, that could be made into a fairly large tent, along with stakes and cordage. It also has a couple of sets of camouflage utilities, a hygiene kit, and cooking gear. I keep this bag full and ready, and the only thing I’d need to add is outerwear and food.
The reason I use the ILBE system is because the Assault Pack, which I use for my Patrol/EDC bag, attaches directly to the main ruck, and can be made into one large system. I could sustain myself indefinitely with this system and a firearm.
These concepts are explained in my first book, The Base Line Training Manual, available here under the “Books” tab. How to actually move and set up a secure site is in my second book, Fieldcraft, also available here.
Take the time, be READY, instead of just “PREPARING”.
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