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  Survival Kit

A Survival Kit is very useful in all outdoor activities. It is the extra measure that shows how prepared you are. Your kit should be small, light, and with you at all times when outdoors. This small kit has saved many lives, or made a not so serious situation more comfortable. If you enjoy fishing, camping, canoeing, hiking, etc., this should be your best friend, and could possibly save your life.
Remember if you are lost or in trouble:

alt all movement
bserve your surroundings
ake yourself comfortable and:
xpect rescue. (It doesn't hurt to let them know you are there either)

top - stay where you are
hink - calm down and think about your situation
rganize - take stock of your belongings
roceed - build shelter, fire, find food, etc. Stay in the relative area of where you where lost.

These are the items that should be included in a pocket sized survival kit.

2 oz tobacco tin or other similar sized plastic or metal box. A waterproof box is a good idea, but Zip-Loc bags can be used instead. The container should be small, light, and able to fit in you pocket. Containers are available that fit the contour of your leg, and are very comfortable to keep in a pocket. Pack your kit in this box and fill the empty spaces with cotton wool to keep things from rattling, and to start fires. Use a piece of tape, or heavy elastic band to keep it closed and waterproof. Never leave your kit lying around, and always replace items that deteriorate, or get lost.

A small piece of paper with your name, address, phone number, etc. This paper can be laminated, or covered with a piece of clear tape, to keep it readable. Also include anything else like allergies or medical needs that may be specific to you, or anything else important.


John Doe
Birth date - Oct.30 1987
Health Card # 101 0001 010
#5 My Street
Anytown, Ontario,
Canada, Postal Code
Phone Number
Allergies: Bee stings


Wooden, non-safety matches are the best. Don't bother waterproofing them, just put them in a waterproof container. Take plenty of matches, but only use them when one of the alternate methods fail. Don't waste matches by using them to light cigarettes, use a hot coal for that. (Better yet, quit smoking, at least when you are camping, canoeing, etc.) Every time you light a match, light a candle.

Fire Starters
There are many types of fire starters, or emergency tinder available. Pick one that is lightweight, easy to use, compact, and preferable waterproof. These are useful for emergencies when a fire is badly needed, and there is no time to waste gathering tinder, or carving fuzz sticks. Do not waste these, but use only when absolutely necessary.

Great for lighting, and fire starting in damp weather. Also useful for saving matches when multiple fires are to be lit at the same time. (eg. Signal Fires) Also produces heat, often enough to heat a small shelter or snow cave.

Flint is a great way to get a fire started when you know how to use it. It works when wet, and you can start more fires with a flint than the same amount of matches. Buy a processed flint with a special metal striker. Also available is a magnesium fire starter that consists of a block of magnesium, and a flint to strike with. When needed, the magnesium is shaved off into a little pile with a sharp knife, then the flint is struck, producing a very hot flame that will ignite the tinder.

Magnifying Glass
A magnifying glass can be used to start a fire in bright sunlight by focussing the suns rays into a small dot on a piece of tinder. Also useful for picking out splinters. Get a small, flat, credit card sized "fresnel lens", as they're very compact.

A useful thing to have, but too bulky to put in your survival kit. Keep one in a pocket though.

Cotton Wool
Useful as tinder, and keeps the contents of your kit from rattling when stuffed into all of the empty spaces.

First Aid

Consult your doctor on what to bring.

Water Purifying Tablets
Use to purify water when camping, etc.


A heavy-duty lock back knife is all that is really needed. Chose one of good quality, with a positive lock. Shop around and see what you like. Make sure it is comfortable to use, and that it is always sharp and working well. Know how to use it safely.

Purchase a good quality small, lightweight, compact compass, like the Silva Huntsman. Make sure that you keep it in working order, and that know how to use it.

Space Blanket
A very useful thing in an emergency, but is bulky and therefore would not fit in most pocket survival kits. It is a blanket made of aluminized material that reflects your body heat back to your body, keeping you warm. Also keeps out some cold, and keeps rain, wind and snow off you.

Safety pins
Very good for repairs, etc. Take a couple of different sizes.

Razor blade
Useful for cutting things, as well as medical needs.

Needles and Thread
Take a couple of needles, with large eyes that can be used for tough thread, fishing line, sinew, etc. Take strong, thick thread, or use fishing line.

Wire Saw
Great for cutting small to medium sized logs, branches, etc. It can be used by one or two people. Great for fire wood and shelter making. Make a handle by bending a green branch in a bow shape and cutting notches for the saw.

Aluminum foil
Take heavy duty foil to be used for cooking and signalling. Take 3 feet at least.

Zip-lock bag
Take a large one for carrying water, and use it to keep your kit waterproof.

Emergency Food

Oxo cubes
Soup mix


Snare Wire
For snares and other uses. Brass wire is good. Take as much as you can fit in your kit.

Fishing Kit
Fishing line
Include as much strong line as possible (20 lbs test), it can also be useful for catching birds.
A few split shot, bullet weights, etc. in assorted weights.
3-4 small, sharp fish hooks.

Fox 40, or other loud signal whistle, preferable plastic so that it doesn't freeze to your lips in cold weather.
Signal Mirror
A good quality signal mirror, with instructions. Make sure you know how to use it, but never practice on real air planes. Use a real signal mirror, not just a cheap mirror, although it would work if you didn't have a real signal mirror.

Some of the best books to learn more skills!
  This page was last updated on March 25, 2011 at 02:46 PM