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Patrol/Readiness/Escape-Personal "PREP" Pack

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This article covers a pack that is very versatile. It has three different functions that are performed with basically the same contents. It is critical that all survivors have access at a moment's notice to a pack of this type. This pack is designed to keep a survivor alive for a minimum of 72 hours while completely isolated from their group. The goal of this pack is to keep you alive long enough to make contact with your group, escape from a compromised fortress, or to be carried by vehicle crew members or infantrymen while on patrols or during campaigns.

Backpacks can be to your own personal liking but certain things must be had.

  • Sternum straps// this will help with some of the pressure on your back and allow you another point to attach more items.
  • Compatible with hydration bladders// You will be carrying a 32 ounce canteen but the hydration bladder is a valuable back up.
  • High visibility reflective areas// this can be covered for combatants but if you are using this to escape from a situation, people are going to be looking for survivors and this will help make you easier to find.

When you are using this pack the order of concerns are 1) Water 2) Shelter 3) Food 4) Defense 5) Gear.

Water

  • 2-3 liter water bladder
  • 32 ounce canteen
  • Sawyer Mini
  • Coleman Drinking Water Purification Tablets

The human body cannot survive long without water. Keep in mind that not all water is safe to drink. You may die from infectious organisms or toxins in water long before the undead get to you. Keep your water bladder and canteen full on a regular basis. Depending on how water is rationed at your fortress, you should always have as close to full water as possible. You will want to carry a way of filtering device so that you can acquire new water if needed. I recommend a Sawyer mini straw. A secondary method of filtering water is an iodine or chlorine drop or tabs. Coleman makes a very cheap kit for this. These can be found in the camping section of nearly any department store. It is absolutely essential that you carry at least two methods of acquiring new water while you are in the field.

Shelter

  • Transparent rain poncho
  • Mylar survival blanket
  • tube tent
  • 6'x8' tarp

Being out in the elements can be hard on an individual, especially the young, old or out of shape individual. The intent is that you will be out in the elements alone and this will keep you alive long enough to reestablish contact with other survivors, this is not camping or a long term solution, this is the absolute bare bones to keep you breathing long enough to get home or get to another safe zone. these are extremely cheap and you can acquire these supplies many times over.

Food

  • 1x Meal Ready to Eat (MRE)
  • 2x SOS Emergency Food Rations (3600 calories)

These may not be the tastiest but they will keep you alive and kicking. Many people make the mistake of jamming a couple candy bars into their backpack and calling that good. It isn't. The human body can last for almost two weeks without food. However, you are likely going to be less than well nourished during the undead apocalypse so that number may be slightly decreased. The rations and MRE will provide you with the protein and carbohydrates you need to survive. Candy bars are very empty calories and will not sustain you adequtely.

Defense

  • Hatchet/Machete
  • Fixed blade tactical knife

A simple spear should be given to every single able bodied survivor. This will provide defense on a daily basis. A fixed blade knife should be on your pack at all times. This is a good thing to have on your shoulder strap of your non-dominant arm to allow for rapid drawing. Your hatchet or machete should be close to the pack and have a way of attaching either to your belt or to the pack in a way that could be rapidly draw. Both of these items have survival and defensive implications. Depending on your climate the machete or hatchet might be more approriate. If you are in a cooler climate that does not have as dense of foliage a hatchet may be your better option. While if you are in a more tropical locale a machete might get you better results at clearing bush. Both can be used to cleave into skulls rather effectively.

Gear

  • Detailed local map with rendezvous points and plans written on it.
  • Compass
  • 2x LED flashlights that use 2 AA batteries.
  • 2x lighters (one in the package and one already open)
  • Leatherman multi tool
  • 3x Chem Lights
  • Fixed blade tactical knife (from above) some of them come with fire steel in the handle, get that one.
  • 4x hand warmers
  • Sun Screen and Bug Spray
  • Seasonally appropriate change of clothes
  • 2x pairs of wool socks
  • 100 yards of 550 paracord
  • Walky Talky that uses AA batteries.
  • 4x AA batteries.

One of the first things you should do is decide to commit to either AA or AAA batteries. There are other options like CR123 batteries but they are not nearly as common and you may not be able to scavenge for them effectively. Keep a package of which ever batteries you select in your pack at all times just in case you cannot find more. A walky talky that has a good range (2-5 miles) that can scan channels is key. If you are stuck in the woods away from your group they are going to be attempting to make contact through the radio. It is key that all electrical devices you have with you can operate on the same type of removable batteries. 550 paracord can be your best friend. A billion different uses ranging from security trip wires to building shelter. We lose a lot of heat when we are wet so it is important to have a change of socks or two stored in a ziploc bag or some other water tight bag. See comment above for a change of clothes. Sun burns suck and can drain your energy. Bug bites can transmit diseases that can be fatal. Handwarmers are actually not used in these situations to warm your hands. Instead, in a cold weather situation, hunker down in your assembled or found shelter and place them under your clothes, the wrap up in your blanket (shiny side toward you) and then get into your tube tent. When selecting a fixed blade knife, there are tons that have survival tools built into them. Several have a fire steel, survival matches, compass and some amount of paracord, get one of these. Chem lights are not the brightest but can be used to illuminate spaces similar to lanterns. Leatherman multi tools can do just about anything. Lighters, light things on fire. Keep on in it's original package and then the second one should be kept open for rapid use. Small LED flashlights are a dime a dozen and they will be your best friend.

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