A Get Home Bag is a bag of survival supplies that can help you make it to your home if there is a natural disaster that occurs while you are away from your home. The bag is more compact than a Bug Out Bag and the supplies in it should help your survival for 24-48 hours. The best place to keep this bag is in your car, or you can also keep multiple bags in common places you are at when you are away from the home, such as work.
We've looked at the best get home bags out there, and broken it all down so that you know exactly what contents you'll need to have on hand. In the following article, we'll show you what we recommend, and even link to some of the items that we like best for each purpose.
And if you just want a simple bug out bag list, here's a usable PDF checklist that we've put together for you:
Container - You will want to use a medium or large backpack for your Get Home Bag so that you can store all of your 48 hours essentials and supplies in one place. Keep in mind that a smaller bag would be better so that you can travel lightly until you reach home.
Water – Water is essential to maintaining health and energy on your journey home. We recommend a high-quality, single-walled metal water bottle for storing and boiling water, which is a method of filtering debris from water you get from streams or ponds, and a method of purifying any of that water so that it’s safe to drink.
Single-Walled, Metal Water Bottle Recommendations
Water Purification System Recommendations
Food – Food is fuel, and you will need a lot of energy so you can get home as quickly as possible. We recommend having dehydrated food because you get all the important vitamins and minerals from it without it taking up too much room. You should also have protein bars, energy, bars, and granola bars so that you have a quick and easy way to get energy and protein in the most compact form.
Dehydrated Food Recommendations
Protein/Energy/Granola Bar Recommendations
2. CLIF BARS
Cover – The weather can be unpredictable, so you want to have equipment that will protect you from the elements, and it’s a bonus if it can help you blend in to avoid predators. We recommend you have an emergency sleeping bag which will retain your body heat throughout the night. Emergency blankets will retain your body heat if you are trying to be more mobile, such as when you are cooking, hunting, or fishing. If you want you could also just pack a regular blanket.
Emergency Sleeping Bag Recommendations
Clothing – Weather conditions can always change, so making sure you have an extra set of clothing is important for a comfortable hike. You will need a great pair of either hiking or walking shoes so you can travel comfortably. A beanie will help regulate body heat and a hat is essential if you are in a humid weather situation and need to protect yourself from overheating. Having a bandana or shemagh helps protect your skin from the sun, and a bandana can also be used to filter water. You will need tactical gloves for completing tasks, and hand warmers to retain heat that are more prone to hypothermia, such as your hands and feet.
Spare Change of Clothes
3. Underwear & Socks
Walking / Hiking Shoes Recommendations
Bandana or Shemagh Recommendations
Hand Warmer Recommendations
Combustion – Being able to create a fire will be essential if you have to stop for a night. To purify water, cook food, retain body heat, and ware off predators, you’ll need multiple tools that’ll create a long-lasting fire. We recommend you have a lighter to burn vegetation and a ferro-rod to create sparks on a bird’s nest. You’ll also need emergency tinder to make your bird’s nest easier to light and increase its ability to burn longer. An emergency fire kit with multiple fabrics and tools to build a fire is necessary so that you can create a fire if you are in an area with a lack of flammable material.
Emergency Tinder Recommendations
Emergency Fire Kit Recommendations
Tools – The tools you bring with you affect the efficiency of your journey. We recommend a knife to cut cordage or do any other tasks you need to do. A multi-tool will help accomplish multiple tasks, so you will definitely need one. Paracord is a necessity because it can do anything from creating shelter to creating a splint. You’ll also need a first-aid kit in case you obtain a minor or major injury.
First-Aid Kit Recommendations
Miscellaneous – These items are necessities that you will most likely need when you face multiple obstacles. We recommend you have a compass or a GPS device to help your navigation when you are not aware of your current location, and a flashlight or a headlamp to help you find your way if you are traveling in the wilderness at night. We also recommend you have a solar power bank so you can place it in the sun and be able to charge your phone or any other electronics you need to reach family members or other resources. Emergency cash is important to have in case you come across a small store where you can purchase anything you need. We recommend you have an emergency whistle to make others aware of your location. You’ll need sunscreen so that you can protect your skin from too much exposure to the sun, and duct tape can be used for multiple purposes such as fixing shelter and sealing food. We recommend you have wet wipes to protect items and stay hygienic and healthy. For a powerless source of light, you will need chem-lights or glow sticks, so you will always have a source of light without worrying if a battery will run out.
Navigation Tool Recommendations
Solar Power Bank Recommendations
Emergency Cash Recommendations
Emergency Whistle Recommendations
Duct Tape Recommendations
Wet Wipes Recommendations
Staying prepared will help you and your loved ones make is home safely, so make sure you have all the right equipment in your Get Home Bag. You can also take our checklist on the go with this downloadable PDF.
IMPORTANT: When building out your Get Home Bag, redundancy is very important. Whenever possible, you'll want to make sure that you have items with dual purpose, such as a Solar Power Bank with and integrated LED light, or a SurvivorSteel Ferrocerium Rod with an integrated emergency whistle.
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