American Survival Guide - - NEW PRODUCTS -

While there are dif­fer­ent packs for dif­fer­ent pur­poses, there are some con­stants—things I look for in any pack for any mis­sion.

1. SUF­FI­CIENT SPACE. If I’m choos­ing a bug-out bag or pack, it has to have enough room in it, not only for my sur­vival gear, spare cloth­ing, guns and ammo, but also for wa­ter con­tain­ers and food to last for sev­eral days. If I’m choos­ing a day­pack, it has to have room for my ne­ces­si­ties; that is, the min­i­mal­ist gear I need to im­pro­vise ev­ery­thing I might need in a sur­vival sit­u­a­tion, in­clud­ing build­ing a shel­ter, start­ing a fire and cook­ing meals.

2. COM­FORT­ABLE CARRY. Hold­ing enough gear is use­less in a pack if I strug­gle to carry it ev­ery step of the way. Is the pack stable, or is it con­stantly shift­ing? Do the straps dig into my shoul­ders, or are they suf­fi­ciently padded and shaped? Does it have a waist belt, and is it po­si­tioned for my body size to sup­port a good amount of the pack’s weight?

3. RUGGED CON­STRUC­TION. I need to de­pend on a pack in ex­treme con­di­tions. I don’t need it to fall apart when the go­ing gets rough. I don’t need to lose gear be­cause of bro­ken zippers or the bot­toms rip­ping out of pock­ets. 4. SEV­ERAL COM­PART­MENTS. When I reach for a piece of gear, I might need it now. I don’t want to have to rum­mage around through the vast depths of my pack as if it were lip gloss tossed into the bot­tom of my wife’s hand­bag. Hav­ing a va­ri­ety of pock­ets or com­part­ments within the pack helps keep my gear or­ga­nized, ac­ces­si­ble and pro­tected from dam­age—es­pe­cially smaller items, such as a flash­light, com­pass, GPS unit, cell phone or two-way ra­dio, whis­tle, fire-start­ing kit, multi-tool, first aid kit, etc.

Above: Other smaller Voodoo Tac­ti­cal packs the au­thor has used with good re­sults are the Mini Tobago (left) and the Raven Dis­creet Pack.

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