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A sample 72-hour kit

In this section, we will be going through the process of how to prepare a 72-hour kit. A 72-hour kit is exactly what it sounds like; it is a pack that is prepared in advance and is ready to be grabbed when you are leaving in a hurry. Your pack should include everything you will need to survive over the next three days (or 72 hours), and includes food, water, and shelter. Below is a list of essential items that must be included in your kit, as well as some optional equipment.

Let's begin.

Here is a list of all the times that should be included in your 72-hour kit. Items marked with a star (*) are items that are necessary for your survival and must be included in your kit. Items without a star are optional, but should be included to make a complete 72-hour kit.

(Mouse-over any item to display a picture)

While packing, you will want to keep the items you will not be needing often at the bottom of the pack and small emergency items should be kept in small pockets on the side or top of the pack where they are easily accessible but not in the way of your everyday items. External frame hiking packs are also very good as they generally contain adequate internal storage room, and also have plenty of mounting points for holding larger and bulkier items.

Only pack what you will use; DO NOT pack things you won't. In other words, leave your fucking iPod® at home. During the day while traveling, even 1 extra pound of weight will start to feel like 10. Also pack food you will eat, and also contains adequate nourishment (Twinkies® are small and portable, but you wont survive solely on them for very long). Cloths that serve duel purposes are also highly desirable (for example, pants with zip off legs, or a vest with numerous pockets). Last of all, even while on the move, keep your pack together as best you can. There is no telling when you will have to move again, and repacking all of your gear may be a waste of valuable time.

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