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Multi-Use Survival Items
When it comes to prepping your backpack or survival kit, including multi-use items is a game changer for the weight of your pack. You can maintain the same weight while adding other necessities you’d like to include.
Our founder, Kent Hering, has a great example of a versatile tool he uses on his backpacking trips: his bamboo hiking staff.
“My bamboo hiking staff is not only in constant use on the trail. I also use it to support my tarp and hammock. When I can't scoop clear water into my water bag, I attach my pot to the end of it to extend my reach.”
Here’s a few items to consider for your backpack or survival kit:
These come in a variety of varieties, but the majority of them will perform the functions of a hatchet, pry tool, shovel, and wrench. To prepare the best survival kit, we should seek for any opportunity to remove high weight to volume ratio things like steel tools, thus being able to leave any of these behind is a positive step.
These are often inexpensive and cover a wide range of topics. Most survival whistles include a compass, a dry container, and a fire-starting flint.
Anything that has the terms "multi" and "tool" is worth looking into. Multitools come in a variety of sizes and weights; when shopping, consider weight and usability. Is the one with the allen key and corkscrew truly necessary? Stick to the essentials: a straight blade, saw, and can opener (like this one), and add any extras you think are necessary. A magnifying glass and a USB stick are two supplementary items that are rarely considered. These are found on several multitools and can be used to ignite fires or hold important family documents.
A tarp is a multitool in and of itself since it can do so much. They can be used for signaling and readily converted into a stretcher to carry injured party members, in addition to keeping gear dry and serving as a shelter.
It's a good idea to have a few of them on hand because they have so many applications and are so light and compact. Plastic bags can be used to transport water, store food, and organize small goods. They can also be used to keep garments and fire-starting materials dry.
In general, a strong, full-tang knife from a reputable knifemaker such as Ontario, Camillus, Becker, or Gerber is preferable. If at all possible, avoid survival knives with hollow handles. The lack of storage capacity will not compensate for the poor overall construction quality.
Duct tape can be used as an emergency bandage, to fix a splint, to reinforce or repair waterproofing, to replace rope in shelter construction, and to tape over tender regions to avoid blisters.
A bandana can be moistened and placed around the neck to keep you cool, can be used to filter water before you boil it, can protect you from the sun, can be used as a bandage, can be used to tie on a splint, or can be used to replace rope in jobs like shelter construction.
This is a small, sturdy cord that can be used to create a shelter, ascend or descend inclines, hang garments, fasten a splint, or make a snare. Here's an article about how to use and store paracord.
These are frequently neglected, although they are extremely adaptable. A sanitary pad can be used as a bandage, shredded and used as tinder, and used to filter silt from water, in addition to its intended usage.
Last, but not least, we encourage you to add a Littlbug stove to your pack! Our Littlbug Junior stove is ultralight and can easily fit around your tarp or sleeping bag. It’s great for cooking, boiling water, keeping warm, and more!
It’s important to utilize all the space in your pack or survival kit. Why not carry multi-use items instead? We hope this list helps you either start your pack or improve it. If you’re still working on your pack, check out a couple of our other blog posts:
Cooking and Camp Stoves in an Emergency or Disaster
Are You a Hiker? Easily Create a Disaster Kit with Your Trail Essentials
Which of these items are you most likely to add to your pack (if you haven’t already)?