Hey guys, I hope you enjoyed the first part of the winter survival series. Again, I’d like to thank you for coming by and if you have any comments just leave them below and make a conversation happen. We just ask that you keep things relative and healthy! I look forward to hearing from you.
I’m a huge supporter of having as many backup sources of important items that I can possibly store. When it comes to survival, I believe you should find the very best source or product to fit your particular needs and then implement at least 1 backup for it. This goes for any of the main principles of survival or preparedness, shelter being the most important.
Emergency shelter options vary wildly in quality and price, but when it comes to selecting emergency shelter options, you need to go with something in the highest quality that you can afford. You need something that you know you can rely on in a disaster situation. If you’re well informed and prepared (hopefully we help with this), you can be lounging snug in your warm home reading a book while the storm passes. However, if you find yourself stranded in a ditch you wrecked in to on your way home, you want something that can help you ride it out.
Let’s run a scenario where you crashed your car into a ditch in a remote area that’s encountering persistent snowfall and the engine is ruled inoperable. Your cell phone has no service and the worsening weather is limiting travel. You can either try to hump it out in search for help (which should be a last resort effort, especially in unknown terrain) or you decide to ride it out until help arrives (which is the smartest initial choice). You should be prepared for scenarios like this with a Car Kit or a Get Home Bag.
The first thing you should do to prepare for a scenario like this would be to develop effective communication with someone you know before you travel. He/she should know what route you’re traveling, how long it should take, and when you started traveling that route. This way, in the event that you don’t check in, a general area where you are possibly located can be determined. This should be something you do no matter where you go, whether it’s the grocery store or a relatives house across the country.
In this part of the series, I’m only going to cover the shelter element of things you should pack in your vehicle. More items will be discussed in future posts, as relative to the content. I plan on compiling many different Get Home Bag setups in greater detail in a future post.
Your vehicle will provide some shelter from the elements, but if it’s damaged so bad that it doesn’t run…you’re not going to make it very long if you can’t stay warm.
A good insulated sleeping bag would be the warmest and most comfortable option to keep in your vehicle. They roll up compact enough to fit pretty much anywhere…stuff it under a seat if you have to.
If you want bomb-proof durability, then you should check out what the military is using. The Military Modular Sleep System comes with a Gortex bivvy and a carrying bag, so it’s virtually water proof. It will keep you warm in snug in temperatures as low as -50*F.
If you’re not looking to spend that kind of cash, you can always look in to a cheaper “camp quality” bag, like this TETON Sports Celsius XXL. It’s got a nice flannel lining, weighs around 8 lbs, and it’s good down to 0*F. A cheap emergency type bivvy, like this SOL Emergency Bivvy would be a last resort option. They’re not really insulated, they come with a “heat relective” mylar material that basically radiates your body heat. They’re better than nothing, but they’re not good for below freezing temperatures.
Another good option for the vehicle, would be a US Military Wool Blanket with a pillow like this Teton. The pillow stores compact in a compression sack, and the blanket rolls up very compact. You could throw them both in a dry bag like this for a cheap, water proof option.