Let's talk safety! Have you ever heard of a Bug Out Bag? This is a portable kit that you can have packed at your house that would allow your family to survive for in an emergency situation. The great thing is this kit contains things you want to bring on a longer treks and backpacking adventures! Here are some of our essentials:


1. Water: Water is an essential commodity in every survival situation. In my pack I have a water bladder that can carry 3 liters of water (like my Osprey hydration pack), a water filter (such as the Lifestraw (and a heatproof water bottle. Your heatproof water bottle can be used as a heat source at night as well to keep you warm.


2. Food: Freeze dried food and protein bars are the lightest and easiest way to carry emergency food. The meals from Mountain House weigh next to nothing and provide a substantial amount of nutrition if you find yourself staying longer than expected.  Their freeze dried food only requires hot water and your meal is ready to go. Lara Bars are our favourite protein bar as we have allergies and these bars are gluten free and vegan! If you find yourself stuck outside without a stove, there are many trick to heating up water including using a simple pop can, leaves or dropping hot rocks into your heatproof water bottle water bottle.


3. Clothing: Sturdy water proof shoes, cold weather gear, extra merino layers and a waterproof jacket are essential. Our KEEN’s have got us through every situation whether snow, rain or slippery rocks, their shoes are always on our feet! I also slip in a pair of Superfeet insoles for extra comfort and support for happy feet at the end of the day.  For a day trip we carry a 30+ L pack from Osprey and for overnight trips we use 50-75L bags depending on if the kids are coming along.


4. Shelter:  The SOL brand emergency bivy is a ultra light emergency sleeping bag/weather cover. It can be used in an emergency situation or even just for ultra light backpacking! They have also come out with a breathable model which I am excited to try out this summer. The tiny roll is the orange bag just above my InReach in the picture. We also carry an emergency blanket for those last minute situations where someone needs a quick source of heat or protection from the weather.


5. Safety Gear: All of my safety gear fits inside a dry bag in my pack. A few things we have in our safety back include: A knife, SOL weather proof fire starter, goal zero solar panel to charge devices, a head lamp, extra batteries, a first aid kit, basic medication, rope and our two way satellite InReach communication device! The waterproof first aid kits from Adventure Medical are lightweight and completely safe from any moisture if your pack gets wet. You can choose your size of kit depending on the length of trip you will be using it for and the number of people in your party. Our InReach Explorer comes with us everywhere we go now. It only needs a view of the sky to have reception and has built in navigation so you never get lost! It also allows for two way communication so you can send and receive information or safety instructions. 



6. Pepper: Ok, so Pepper isn’t really IN my Bug Out Bag but he does keep me safe in the back country! A dog can warn you of potential animal danger, keep you company and keep you warm if you are stuck in the cold. Pepper is always happy on the trail and I find myself able to go longer when I see his smiling face ahead of me on the trail. In his pack we carry a water dish, snacks (like the Petcurean Spike bars and trial bags) and sometimes extra water for him if we know the trail will be extra dry.

Is there anything I’ve missed? I’d love to hear what you have in your Bug Out Bag!

  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Instagram Icon

Copyright to In the River Valley 2020. No images on this site are to be used without sole permission from In the River Valley.

Chilliwack, British Columbia