Build the Alternative “Out-the-Door” Bag


Build the Alternative “Out-the-Door” Bag

There are Plan B’s to just about every SHTF contingency, or there should be. You have heard often about creating at least one comprehensive “BOB” or bug out bag, but what about having an alternative or a secondary bag for less serious travel or escapes.

The idea of an OTD Bag or an Out The Door bag comes from one John Connor, a favorite writer of mine and one on my bucket list to visit in person one day. When John talks about his own OTD though, he is not really talking from our perspective as a prepper or survivalist in the purist sense. He just grabs his do-all gun bag whenever he goes out.

Another writer on my list is John Taffin. His BOB or OTD is actually the zipper bag supplied with a Ruger Take-Down 10-22 rifle. I have seen several of these and they are perfect for a sort of day pack. Taffin adds the rifle equipped with a scope and two extra 25-round loaded magazines. He calls it his Survival Bag he grabs when he goes to town or takes short trips, just to be on the safe side. I like that perspective, too.

A smaller BOB or an OTD is not all about weapons carry though, but one should be included. Then add just a minimum few essentials for the day. Add water, of course, and something to eat. Put a knife in there, a compact first aid kit, maybe a t-shirt or ultralight rain jacket, and a cap. I recommend always keeping a secondary pair of shoes, hiking boots, or athletic shoes and heavier socks in any travel vehicle outside any bag.

What else could we add to a smaller bag for day travel not intended for any kind of long term survival? Maybe a handheld GPS, another cell phone, flashlight, head lamp, a multi-tool, roll of electrical tape, light work gloves, other weather sensitive garments. In the summer you might want some bug repellant and sunscreen in case you get caught having to walk or hike.

There are lots of options for the bag itself. I guess most will opt for some kind of backpack with shoulder straps. I like a handle grab bag, but not if I have to walk with it. Buy one made of sturdy fabric and super strong zippers. Just watch the overall weight of an OTD bag.

Avatar Author ID 67 - 299569829

Award winning outdoor writer/photographer since 1978. Over 3000 articles and columns published nationally. Field & Stream Hero of Conservation in 2007. Fields of writing includes hunting most game in American, Canada, and Europe, fishing fresh and saltwater, destination travel, product reviews, industry consulting, and conservation issues. Currently VP at largest community college in Mississippi in economic development and workforce training with 40 years of experience in Higher Education. BS-MS in wildlife sciences from MO. University, and then a PhD in Industrial Psychology. Married with two children and Molly the Schnoodle.

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