6 Essential Things You Need in Your Daypack

6 Essential Things You Need in Your Daypack

This is a discussion on 6 Essential Things You Need in Your Daypack within the Bushcraft - Primitive Skills - Survival Skills - Camping forums, part of the Related Topics category; 6 Essential Things You Need in Your Daypack Having a Daypack is common, but are you packing all the essentials? There are many factors that ...

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    Member Array USAPatriot97's Avatar
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    6 Essential Things You Need in Your Daypack

    6 Essential Things You Need in Your Daypack


    Having a Daypack is common, but are you packing all the essentials? There are many factors that could impact what goes in your daypack or rucksack including the season, the duration of your adventure, or even the terrain your scouting. No matter where you are going, here is a basic guide for what you should have strapped to your back.



    Food Is Your Gasoline
    Hiking usually requires a lot of energy which is only going to come from what you consume. So on the upper part of your list should be some sort of food. Preferably should be a food that will not go bad within a week like yogurt or a sandwich. A few examples could be sunflower seeds, canned fruit, energy bars, or even freeze dried meals which have ridiculously long shelf lives! Itís important to only have snacks for snacks and pack a decent meal if you have a trip longer than a day. Freeze dried meals have come a long way, they have anything from scrambled eggs, to lasagna. The great thing about freeze dried meals is that they can be so compact and save a lot of space, and who wants broken eggs in their backpack! One of my favorited ideas is when people fill an Altoids can with fishing line, hooks, split shot, and bait for emergency fishing.





    2. Hydration

    The next essential item not only for daypacks but also for life is good olí H2O. The worst thing you could probably do is find yourself without water halfway through the trip because of a bad estimate. A few years back I found myself in this situation when hiking White Tank mountain range in Arizona, not a good place to be without water! Itís said that you should carry at least 2 Liters on your person. I much prefer a bladder pack because itís a bit more convenient than water bottles. At some point you will run out of water so you will need some kind of a water filtration system. There are many different products (will be listed below) that clean your water like pumps, straws, and tablets. You could even take two types in case one breaks.





    3. Navigation

    Not only do you need navigation tools but you have to know how to use them. Just take a few minutes to learn the skills, there are plenty of videos on YouTube that will do the trick. It really comes down to preference when choosing what tools you NEED to navigate. Some folks like the old fashion map and compass and some chose to invest in a GPS. If you do go with a map you will have to make sure it doesnít get wet, you could laminate it or even keep in in a zip lock bag.



    4. Tools

    This list could be a mile long if it included every outdoor tool by itself, but there are only a few that are truly essential. On the top of the tool list is the knife. Knives can be used to so much for you. Most knives work fine whether it be a fixed knife, a folding knife, or even a Swiss Army multi-tool. I would advise to stay away from butterfly knives or automatic knives. If you chose to pack the freeze dried food you need eating utensils and a measuring cup would also be helpful. I always find it easiest to start a fire with matches, here again you could head over to YouTube to watch a few videos to master staring fires with a flint and striker. If you do get a flint fire starter you donít have to worry as much about water. If you chose matches BE SURE to put the matches in a sealed pouch or bag. Pelican makes small cases that are perfect for this. Pack a few pieces of normal paper for starting fires in case it has rained. Oh and donít forget that flashlight and extra batteries, thereís no reason to be blind in the dark.

    5. Shelter

    You donít need to pack all of Caesars Palace in your backpack for your shelter, it can be as simple as you want, as long as it protects you from rain and wind, and decently holds heat. I always pack an emergency aluminum blanket or as some people call them Ďspace blanketsí; they donít look like much but they can save your life.



    6. First Aid

    First Aid kits are really just a precautionary item, but if you find yourself injured itís up to you to heal yourself because most likely you wonít be close to any towns or hospitals. You may even have to help someone else who becomes injured. I always pack thinking about the worst possible situations I could end up in. I prefer to make my own first aid pack but there are many companies that make pre-made kits for not much money. An ideal kit should have Band-Aids, a small bottle of peroxide, scissors, stitching tools and thread, disinfectant wipes, Aspirin, Tweezers, Gauze pads, Snake bite kit, razor blade, and cotton balls.



    If you followed this guide you wonít need to be pulling a MacGyver, and your friends will probably call you Mr. Packing Man, probably not but you can always call yourself that. If you still have room and you likely will, try picking a few of these helpful miscellaneous items to add to your pack.

    Signal Mirror
    Extra Ziploc bags
    Rope
    Spare Socks
    Toilet Paper
    Insect spray (can be used as a Fire starter)
    Hatchet
    Whistle
    Waterproof ammunition case
    Duct Tape
    Poncho

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    VIP Member Array Hodad's Avatar
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    Good suggestions, but you forgot to include Duct Tape!!!
    ghost tracker likes this.
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    Senior Member Array MB53's Avatar
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    zip ties. they take up zero space but can come in very handy

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    Good list Patriot
    USAPatriot97 likes this.
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    Member Array USAPatriot97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hodad View Post
    Good suggestions, but you forgot to include Duct Tape!!!
    It isnt in the main sections but it is the 2nd to last item in the miscellaneous list.

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    VIP Member Array Hodad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAPatriot97 View Post
    It isnt in the main sections but it is the 2nd to last item in the miscellaneous list.
    Sorry my attention span and reading comprehension aren't what they used to be.
    Rhinoman and USAPatriot97 like this.
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    I keep what NASAR recommends that SAR members have as essentials for 3 days in the wilderness. Our packs weight about 45#'s, without medical equipment.

    A day can turn into 3 before someone can locate you, in a hurry
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    VIP Member Array G26Raven's Avatar
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    Better than a space blanket is an emergency sleeping bag. They are relatively small and light weight. Also inexpensive.

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    Thread moved here. Always a worthwhile thread topic and there are similar threads already in this forum area.

    Carry on.
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    VIP Member Array BadgerJ's Avatar
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    Also some kind off rain protection. Emergency ponchos are good for keeping the chill off. Available here in country stores most places.

    Good find on the emergency sleeping bag!
    Concealed_in_KY likes this.
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    Good list, I also, vacuum seal my ammo to help keep fresh as a brisk spring day...
    G26Raven likes this.

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    VIP Member Array Rhinoman's Avatar
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    I carry a couple of large trash bags. They make an adequate warm weather shelter or poncho in an emergency. I also carry a leatherman and an SP101.
    Retired USAF E-8. 74-96.

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    Member Array bpurdy0's Avatar
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    I would include a phone charger and a power bank. I've found that quite a few sticky situations can be resolved with a few phone calls to the right people. Having a dead phone will put you at a disadvantage in many situations.

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    Bourbon will get you thru times of no civilization better than civilization will get you thru times of...no bourbon.
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    Member Array carracer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhinoman View Post
    I carry a couple of large trash bags. They make an adequate warm weather shelter or poncho in an emergency. I also carry a leatherman and an SP101.
    I've used large trash bags for ponchos several times. They work amazingly well!
    Toolmanbutch likes this.
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