Sheila's Survival Pack

May 5, 2014

Sheila's Survival Pack

The contents of my pack have been an item of much discussion at the table of many survivalists. After many years of packing too much “stuff” I have been able to downsize my pack to a comfortable nine pounds. Of course once I add two water bottles I am around eleven pounds but that is still far more comfortable than my comrades who are weighing in at over 50 pounds.

On longer trips I do add my fleece sleeping bag for an extra couple of pounds and that extra spare pair of socks is always welcome around the campfire on the second night.

To be completely honest, I do love a huge dinner when I get home but when I am gone for only three days my pack is more than sufficient. If we are returning to base camp each night I can typically count on a fresh meal of grouse or rabbit. (and I didn’t have to pack it in). And there are plenty of greens for a respectable salad.

Not only have I listed the contents of my pack for you but I have also given examples of what I use each item for. You will notice that everything in my pack has more than one use or purpose.

I am in the process of creating an online store where you can purchase individual items or a complete pack.

Drop me a line if you have questions regarding where to get some of these items and I will guide you as to where to purchase with a good chance for the best price.



Leatherman- I carry the Skelotool CX. It is a light weight tool that is perfect for my small hands. It does not have a multitude of gadgets and is very light

Dental Floss-building shelters, fixing almost anything, sewing clothing back together, stringing packs, making improvised stretchers (and a whole lot lighter than rope)

Emergency blanket- This blanket is used on the ceiling of your shelter and can also be used for collecting rain water or making signals for overhead search teams.

Para Cord-10ft to be precise then you actually have 70ft. This is another great light weight way to get lots of string. Again used for stringing your pack, improvised stretcher making, sewing clothes


Wax bombs-Okay so not really a bomb, but they are the bomb when you are trying to light a fire. These are simply home-made fire starters. I use my kids old home-work and old candles. I went to the Salvation Army and bought a heavy bottomed pot, threw in all of my old wax candles, folded the old homework and dipped it a couple of times into the melted wax. Each one of these “bombs” are good for a few fires-typically three!

Lighters- I could teach you how to light a fire with a bow but don’t be silly, carry a bic lighter or THREE

Flint- Just for the moment when your lighter does no work

Wire saw- I have this as a back-up in case the blade in my folding saw breaks. In a pinch may also be used to snare larger animals.

Folding Saw-This saw will cut large game, wood for shelter and fire.



Mini camp stove- Let’s face it, we don’t always have the time or inclination to light a fire to cook lunch. This tiny little stove heats water and food in minutes.

Mini-camp pot- These little guys are used for all of my cooking needs. In my pack they also serve to store most of my dried food and protein powders… shh and my coffee. From this set, I only use the small pot with the lid. 

Camping fork and spoon- Let’s not be barbaric bring utensils ;-). I picked up a fork and spoon from the local thrift store. 

Home-made fishing line- this requires drinking a bottle of wine then cutting the cork out in the center to be a H shape. Wrap lots of fishing line around the center and then poke your Dry fly, Wet Fly, Hooks in the end

Bobber-For hands free or set fishing

Water purification tablets-excellent for 99% purification

Protein bars and drinks-High energy low weight food

Hard candy-for the diabetic or just a good sugar high

Hot chocolate mix and tea- simply comfort and warmth

Black tea- for removing stingers and puss from wounds, and of course a cup of tea

Snare Wire- two weights, one for squirrels and one for rabbits

First Aid

Triangular bandage-Traditionally used to immobilize an injury these pieces of fabric can also be used to filter tea, hang meat in a tree to keep the flies off or to make an improvised stretcher

SAM splint- Simply put this is one of the key items in your First Aid kit. SAM can be formed to splint any part of your body, cut to fit fingers or smaller appendages. Don’t  miss out on him… (fold him flat in your pack to save space)

Lip chap- Luxury item to some but essential if you have ever had wind burn. Burts Bee’s all the way on this one, stay away from the petroleum based cheapos

Scissors- just in case you have to cut clothing away from a wound. Scissors can also be good for harvesting some vegetation

Tea Tree Oil- Anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, anti-septic. I use this for purifying water, cleansing wounds, keeping mosquitos and black flies away and if I am starting to feel ill- a few drops go in my water and I am spry again in no time.

Assorted Bandages and sterile guaze- make a good variety here for the basic wound to some sterile gauze for the more serious wound

Tampons (blood absorbency)- excellent for major wounds, punctured radiators and gas tanks

Ibuprophin- recommended by former British Secret Services as one of the best medications to have in the wilderness.

Charcoal- too settle an upset stomach and to absorb acids

Plastic gloves- I tend to come into contact with other people’s blood. Gloves are also good for making a flap for flail chest or other gaping wound management.


Compass- “When do we take a bearing? Before we leave” Use this little guy to ensure you can find your vehicle again.

Flagging tape- This is excellent for making shelters, tying “things” together and leaving notes for others in your party or a search party. If you have to leave your camp at night or mark a trail, the flagging tape will mark your return trip.

Head lamp- Petzl all the way. This is the best hands free way to have night time light. It also helps to keep my hat on at night when I am sleeping.

Other Essential Stuff

Hot pads (hotties)- Man or woman you have to love these guys! Place on “spots that get cold!” The two use system for this is warmth and happiness…

Rite in the rain book-If you have to leave a message this is the way to do it. This is paper so it will also burn if you need fire starter.

Leather Gloves- for building shelters, tending the fire and keeping bugs off your hands –especially at night

Buff Neck Warmer- used for keeping warm, keeping cool, keep ticks and other bugs off your head, hat from the sun, hair tie, wound management, tie hands together for patient on a stretcher, over your mouth to keep smoke out at night… 101 uses

Plastic Bread Bags- keeping your feet dry in wet boots, gathering water, wound management, collecting food

Whistle-Signal to ground search crews or other members of your team

Signal mirror- the obvious… signaling overhead planes


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