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Kayak Bug Out – Essential Gear Checklist

kayaking with wildfires in mountains

Image this: a disaster strikes your metropolis, chaos engulfs the streets, and conventional bug out routes are nothing however an limitless sea of visitors. How do you escape the turmoil and safe your security?

A kayak bug out shouldn’t be typically mentioned in prepper circles and I’m undecided why. Kayaks are an unconventional bug out automobile, for certain, however in the suitable state of affairs they’ll provide a speedy escape from a harmful state of affairs. Everybody thinks about their automobile or truck, however when a disaster strikes, roads and highways shortly grow to be jammed with visitors. Automobiles hit a standstill.

Kayaks might help you escape extra shortly if you happen to stay close to a river, lake, or ocean.

With a kayak, you’ll be able to rise above the turmoil and entry distant areas that others can’t attain. A kayak can grow to be the life boat in a sea of chaos (excuse the puns), a lot in the identical approach a bug out canoe can.

Historic Significance of Waterways and Kayaks

All through historical past, civilizations flourished round waterways, and for good motive. Rivers, lakes, and coastlines supplied the means for transportation, commerce, and sustenance. That is exactly why giant cities and cities are virtually all the time positioned alongside the coast, rivers, or giant lakes. For that motive, a big proportion of the inhabitants is close to navigable water – exactly why a kayak bug out ought to be thought of as an alternate, if not major, bug out technique.

Slightly watch than learn? Right here’s my YouTube video.

Within the early days, water served as a lifeline, facilitating transportation for items and other people. It allowed for commerce to flourish, connecting distant communities, and fostering cultural change. Waterways had been the highways of the previous, enabling the expansion of mighty empires and bustling commerce hubs.

Furthermore, water provided a dependable supply of sustenance. Fishing supplied communities with a gentle provide of meals, whereas fertile lands close to rivers and lakes supported agriculture. The shut relationship between people and water instilled a profound respect for these pure sources.

As time went on, people developed ingenious methods to navigate these waterways, creating varied forms of watercraft to swimsuit their wants. And some of the exceptional amongst them—the kayak—has stood the take a look at of time.

The kayak, initially utilized by indigenous peoples in Arctic areas, was an ingenious invention designed for survival and transportation. These light-weight and maneuverable vessels allowed them to navigate icy waters and attain locations that bigger boats couldn’t entry.

historical kayak
Inuit man with a kayak in 1854. Public area.

Immediately, we’ve taken this historic idea and tailored it to fashionable instances. Kayaking has advanced into a well-liked leisure exercise, but it surely additionally holds unimaginable potential as a survival device throughout crises.

Historical past has proven us that when chaos strikes, highways can grow to be traps. However by returning to our roots and embracing the kayak, we achieve a novel benefit—the power to flee and survive when others are caught within the chaos.

Kayak Bug Out Disaster Eventualities

Life is unpredictable, and when disaster strikes, it may possibly catch us off guard. Whether or not it’s a pure catastrophe, civil unrest, or another attainable SHTF occasion, typically staying put shouldn’t be the most secure choice. That’s the place bugging out turns into an important survival technique.

Crises can escalate quickly, leaving us with little time to make life-saving choices. When the state of affairs turns into dire, bugging out turns into a prudent selection—a strategic retreat to a safer location.

However let’s be clear: Bugging out doesn’t imply operating away out of worry. It’s a calculated response to protect your well-being and that of your family members. You should be knowledgeable, ready, and geared up to execute your bug out plan successfully.

So, when would possibly bugging out grow to be essential? Properly, think about some disaster situations the place a bug out technique may very well be a game-changer.

  • Pure Disasters – Mom Nature might be relentless, and when a strong hurricane, flood, or wildfire strikes, it may possibly shortly flip areas into hazard zones. In such conditions, evacuating to increased floor or safer areas turns into paramount.
  • Civil Unrest – Civil unrest can erupt unexpectedly resulting from varied elements, and it may possibly result in violence and widespread disruptions. Throughout such occasions, you might must swiftly evacuate to guard your self from hurt.
  • Infrastructure Breakdown – Infrastructure breakdowns, like energy outages or constructing collapses, can depart city facilities paralyzed. If staying turns into untenable, having a bug out plan with a dependable escape route generally is a lifesaver.

In the end, bugging out by way of kayak offers another escape route—one which lets you bypass highway congestion and entry areas inaccessible to automobiles. However bear in mind, planning forward and staying knowledgeable are very important to executing a profitable bug out.

Keep vigilant and monitor native authorities’ steerage throughout a disaster. Develop a complete bug out plan that features a designated assembly level for your loved ones or group, pre-selected evacuation routes, and contingency plans for varied situations.

Benefits of Bugging Out by Kayak

Let’s dive into some great benefits of utilizing a kayak for evacuation, as a result of there are greater than most individuals suppose!

  • Agile and Stealthy Motion – A kayak’s best energy lies in its agility and stealth. Not like bigger boats or automobiles, kayaks can navigate by way of tight spots, shallow waters, and slim channels with ease. This means lets you keep away from congested roads and attain locations that may be off-limits to different modes of transportation.
  • Entry to Distant Areas – Give it some thought—in a disaster, everybody else may be making an attempt to flee by way of the identical routes. However with a kayak, you’ll be able to take a less-traveled path. Distant waterways, hidden coves, and small islands grow to be accessible havens, providing security and seclusion.
  • Self-Sufficiency – Your bug out kayak might be your self-sufficient survival capsule. With correct planning and packing, you’ll be able to carry important provides and kit to maintain your self for an prolonged interval. It’s like having your emergency equipment on the water—a compact and environment friendly resolution.
  • Restricted Dependency on Infrastructure – Throughout crises, infrastructures like roads, bridges, and public transportation could grow to be unreliable and even unusable. However with a kayak, you’re not depending on such infrastructure. Your bug out route lies on the water, free from visitors jams and obstructions.
  • Stealth Tenting – When bugging out by way of kayak, you’ll be able to make the most of stealth tenting strategies. Discover hidden spots alongside the shoreline or small islands to arrange camp. This low-profile method helps you keep inconspicuous and ensures your security all through the journey.
  • Lowered Encounters with Others – In a disaster, encounters with others may be unpredictable. By selecting a waterway route, you’ll be able to cut back the possibilities of sudden interactions and keep a decrease profile. It lets you focus in your security and escape, minimizing potential dangers.

Keep in mind, the important thing to efficiently utilizing a bug out kayak is preparation and observe. Familiarize your self with the kayak, construct your paddling abilities, and take a look at your bug out route earlier than an emergency strikes.

Kayak Bug Out Gear Checklist

kayak bug out gear
My kayak bug out gear laid out on dry baggage.

Within the video I embedded above, you’ll be able to see me undergo my kayak bug out gear. I’m additionally detailing the record under, and if you’d like, you’ll be able to obtain your entire record under to print for reference.

Obtain My Bug Out Kayak Gear Checklist

The gear is listed in alphabetical order. What works for me could not give you the results you want, so use my record as a information and customise your equipment to fulfill your state of affairs. Keep conscious that that is primarily gear chosen for a freshwater kayak bug out. If you happen to plan to bug out over salt water, your record will possible embody another objects.

Your bug out kayak is your lifeline, and with these rigorously chosen objects, you’ll be well-prepared to deal with varied survival challenges. Often evaluation and replace your kayak bug out equipment, making certain that the whole lot stays in good situation and inside the expiry dates. Modify it to suit the seasons.

Keep in mind, the purpose is to be self-sufficient throughout not less than a three-day bug out interval. Prioritize the necessities and keep away from pointless objects that will weigh you down. Maintain your bug out kayak organized and accessible, so you’ll be able to shortly entry what you want whenever you want it.

Redundancy can also be one thing that it is best to purpose for. In prepping, two is one and one is none. It’s too straightforward for one thing to interrupt or fail. You want redundancy to account for gear failure, shedding an merchandise, and so forth. It is a idea it is best to use in all of your preps, not simply bug out gear.

  • Aquaquest Tarp – A tarp is a flexible device in any bug out state of affairs, however much more so in a kayak bug out equipment. It will probably present safety from the weather, cowl your gear, create a shelter, or assist disguise your kayaks. I like the Aquaquest tarp as a result of it’s a mission-built tarp. It’s designed for preppers. If price is a priority, a less expensive tarp will do, however the Aquaquest tarp has extra attachment factors, stronger stitching, and higher general high quality. I coated this tarp in additional element in my Tarp vs Tent article.
  • Backpacking Range – Backpacking stoves are good for a kayak bug out as a result of they’re compact and light-weight. I exploit the Jetboil as a result of it’s so handy, however an alternative choice is the MSR Whisperlite, which I’d used for a few years previous to the Jetboil.
  • Bic Lighter – Easy and low-cost. Pack just a few.
  • Billy Pot – These are a bushcraft primary, a easy chrome steel pot that may dangle over an open fireplace. You’ll be able to boil water (purify it) and prepare dinner meals. It’s also possible to retailer meals and kit in it to preserve house. If price is a priority, simply lower out a big tin can and add a wire deal with, just like the hobos did.
  • Boonie Hat – You want a hat that can maintain the solar out of your eyes and off your face and neck. A daily solar hat can work, however I just like the boonie-style hat as a result of it additionally retains a bug internet away from my face.
  • Bug Web – Biting bugs may not be a problem the place you’re at, however bug nets are so compact, low-cost, and light-weight that I’ve one in each bug out bag and automobile.
  • Bushcraft Knife – You want a great, mounted blade knife, and a powerful mounted blade normally means a bushcraft knife. Want recommendation? See my video on one of the best bushcraft knife.
  • Caffeine Drugs – Bugging out could require you to push your physique past its regular limits. Caffeine capsules can provide the power wanted to maintain transferring.
  • Cellphone – This most likely doesn’t even must be on the record as most individuals by no means depart the home with out one. Their worth can’t be understated, nevertheless. The fashionable cellphone is far more than only a phone. It’s a small pc in your hand that may maintain contact info, maps, digital information, and so forth.
  • Garments – Fast drying is the important thing right here. Oh, and don’t neglect additional socks!
  • Emergency Whistle – Odds are being discovered is the very last thing you need in a bug out, however you’ll be able to’t take probabilities on the water. A whistle is louder and takes so much much less effort than hollering. They’re low-cost, tiny, and weigh virtually nothing. Each member of your social gathering ought to have one.
  • Further Batteries – Clearly.
  • Ferro Rod – A Ferro rod can begin numerous fires. One observe: observe utilizing one upfront. There’s extra to creating a hearth with a Ferro rod than simply hanging it with metal. Know the fundamentals of beginning a hearth within the outdoor.
  • First Support Equipment – That is one other “no duh” merchandise. Don’t neglect private pharmaceuticals.
  • Meals – The standard bug out bag is designed for 3 days. Deal with calorie-dense meals. Freeze-dried packaged meals and MREs are nice selections. Their packaging can also be waterproof. Vitality bars are additionally good.
  • Handheld GPS – A map and compass are foolproof. A handheld GPS is quick, handy, and efficient. Carry each.
  • Handheld Radio – I exploit the Baofeng UV-5R radio with upgraded antenna. It’s a well-liked radio with preppers for good motive. It’s low-cost sufficient that everybody in your social gathering ought to carry one.
  • Headlamp – I exploit the Petzl ACTIK CORE as a result of I exploit mine on daily basis and I don’t wish to maintain changing batteries. It’s rechargeable, but additionally takes AAA batteries. I like the choice to both recharge the sunshine or use batteries.
  • Map and Compass – Ideally you understand how to make use of a map and compass for navigation, however even with out in-depth land navigation data, they’ll nonetheless be utilized by a novice to help navigation. I deal with my maps with a waterproofing product to assist maintain them secure in moist environments.
  • Multi-tool – These are essential in any bug out bag.
  • Paracord – Preppers know the worth of Paracord.
  • PFD and Paddle – Don’t skimp on high quality or consolation.
  • Tactical Mild – I carry the Olight Odin Mini. I prefer it as a result of it’s highly effective and rechargeable, however the draw back is it doesn’t take exterior batteries, so that you want a method to recharge it within the area.
  • Rest room Paper – It’s higher than utilizing leaves.
  • Pack Noticed – This may be elective for some folks, however I prefer it along with a bushcraft knife. It’s nice for gathering firewood or different bushcraft makes use of like fixing your shelter.
  • Sunscreen – You don’t wish to take care of a extreme sunburn on day one.
  • Utensils – Deal with light-weight right here. Purchase an inexpensive however sturdy fork/spoon combo or some titanium utensils.
  • Water Filter – It is a should. I exploit the Katadyn Vario. It’s dependable and pumps out a whole lot of clear water in a brief period of time. It’s nice for a gaggle of individuals, however there are cheaper choices such because the Water Straw.
  • Water Knife – By “water knife” I principally imply a diving-style knife, one that enables fast entry whereas within the water in case you have to lower one thing (typically straps or rope) however doesn’t have the purpose that might trigger unintentional hurt. I strap mine to my PFD.

Further Kayak Bug Out Suggestions

  1. Pre-plan and Rehearse Your Route: The important thing to a easy bug out is correct planning. Examine your space’s waterways and determine potential routes that result in safer places. Have different routes in thoughts in case sure paths grow to be blocked or unsafe. Rehearse your bug out route in calm situations to familiarize your self with the journey.
  1. Apply Paddling and Fundamental Kayak Abilities: Kayaking might sound simple, however paddling effectively requires observe. Spend time paddling on calm waters to construct your abilities and confidence. Discover ways to maneuver, carry out turns, and keep stability, so that you’re ready for any challenges throughout your bug out journey.
  1. Carry out Common Upkeep Checks: Often examine your bug out kayak and kit. Verify for any indicators of damage and tear, and promptly deal with any points. Make sure that all compartments are watertight and take a look at your communication units and navigation instruments to ensure they’re in working order.
  1. Arrange Your Bug Out Kayak: An organized bug out kayak can prevent beneficial time throughout an emergency. Maintain your important objects in simply accessible compartments. Use dry baggage or waterproof containers to guard gear from water. Apply loading and unloading your kayak effectively to optimize your bug out course of.
  1. Keep Knowledgeable and Up to date: Keep knowledgeable about native climate situations, emergency alerts, and potential hazards. Being conscious of the state of affairs in real-time might help you make higher choices throughout your bug out. Maintain a climate radio or a dependable communication gadget helpful to remain up to date.
  1. Contain Your Bug Out Group: If you happen to’re bugging out with a gaggle or household, contain them within the planning course of. Focus on the bug out technique, roles, and tasks. Make sure that everybody is aware of the right way to use the kayak and understands the evacuation plan in case you get separated.

By getting ready upfront and following these sensible ideas, you’ll be able to embark in your kayak bug out with confidence. Keep in mind, observe makes good, so make kayaking a daily a part of your out of doors routine. Keep ready and vigilant, and also you’ll be well-equipped to face any challenges that come your approach.


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