July 17, 2011

5 items kit for zombie apocalypse!

let me state right from the beginning: “the x items kit” thing is not a practical exercise, because if you can have x items, why not have y items?!? there is no limitation, and you can take as many items as you like and you can (and are willing to) carry…

that being said, “the 5 items kit” is an interesting theoretical exercise, because it will make you think… you will consider a lot of items and how can you use them, in conjunction with your skills and prior experiences, in order to narrow it down to 5.

so, in order to begin the exercise, i had to set the frame first: what is “zombie apocalypse”?!? in my understanding, it is a situation that made the inhabited areas impossible (or very dangerous) to live in. therefore, a “zombie apocalypse kit” is composed of gear that allows me to spend a looong time in uninhabited areas, with no probable possibility to “return to civilization” (because there’s nothing left to return to). these pieces of gear should serve my basic needs until i can find a better alternative.

now, i'm not going to cheat (you know… “the next item is my fire kit”, “I count my metal cup, my canteen and my water purification tabs as one because they fit together” and so on) and i will choose only 5 items.

the most important is shelter… i need a shelter that can be used regardless of weather conditions, time of the year or location, that keeps me warm and dry even on the move,  that is easy and quick to set up or break down – so i choose the poncho and the wool blanket (also, the poncho can be used to gather and carry water and the blanket can be used to carry the rest of the kit and everything i might add to it). i can get lucky and find a natural shelter, or i can make one if i have the right materials at hand, but this 2 items will provide a decent shelter in almost any conditions.

the next item is a cutting tool (for obvious reasons that i’m not even going to discuss):  the knife that i choose is a general purpose one, not a big one… i know, this will rise some eyebrows! but please hear me:  on longer term, the small tasks tend to get more important than the big ones… so, if i’d rather have an axe (or a tomahawk) for a short-term emergency, for a longer timeframe a small bushcraft knife is more suited for me; however, different skills&experience might require some other cutting tool.

my fourth item is a teapot for disinfecting water and cooking and for other uses that i go on about in the vid J… it has one flow, though: i can’t carry water in it. still, i prefer it over a metal bottle because it boils water faster, it is easyer to cook in and (very important!) to clean it afterwards. also, it has a very important “like&enjoy factor” as it makes (for me) the difference between camping/bushcraft and survival… so let’s call it a “moral-supporting item”.

the last item is the ferrocerium rod (the modern firesteel) because it lights a fire waaay easyer than any fire-by-friction method… also, it can be used to make a fire with less conventional materials (just try to make fire by friction when all you have is dry cow droppings J ) and/or in less-than-perfect conditions.

so, my 5 items are (the order is not important): poncho, blanket, knife, teapot, firesteel.
also, there are 2 important items that i need to find/make asap: a walking stick (to help... walking, but also to use as a pole for the shelter if there are no trees available or as a weapon against zombies!) and a water container (it is very probable to find a plastic one even in the most remote area, as the human ability to litter is really astonishing, but if not - i can make a water container  from a variety of materials... until then, i can use my poncho to carry water).
having all from the above, i can set up traps and i can start making other things: tent pegs for the poncho, a bow and some arrows, a bow-drill setup, a cup, a bowl, a spoon, cordage, a tinder bag etc...
enjoy the vid!