I was talking with a good friend of mine the other day and he wanted to know if I’d ever posted a blog post regarding what I consider to be the most important bug out skills.
I realized I hadn’t, at least not in a long time.
And being the good friend he is, my friend decided he’d like to share with everyone who reads this blog what he considered to be the top 7 skills for bugging out.
Since I know you’d like to hear what exactly is involved with bugging out I decided to share his article.
It’s incredibly informative and I agree with everything he wrote.
7 Skills for a Successful Bug Out
We all know bugging out is not going to be easy, but what exactly does that mean? Well putting together a BOB just won’t cut it. To make sure you reach your bug out location safely, you need to anticipate all the things that can happen to you when you evacuate.
I did that for you, and I came up with 7 survival skills you should focus on as part of your bug out plans. Ideally, you want to focus on nothing but bugging out for the next 30 days, for maximum results.
#1. Getting in Shape
Needless to say, you’re going to need all your strength. Bugging out is not for everyone but it’s definitely something everyone should plan for. No matter where you’re located, no matter what home defense plan you have in place, you might be forced to evacuate… even if you don’t have a place to go to (in which case I recommend you put together an INCH bag).
So get in shape as much as you can. Because you will have to walk, run or drive fast. Because you will have to fend off attackers. Because you will have to move downed trees out of your way.
Start with mobility exercises to get those tendons flexible again, then move up to walking, jogging and bodyweight exercises you can do at home. There are plenty of at-home work-outs on YouTube for every age group.
#2. Starting a Fire
Though at your BOL you’ll have all the supplies you need, you always have to prepare for the unexpected. What if you get stuck in the woods or on the side of the road overnight? You’ll need a way to heat yourself and your loved ones.
Having a lighter or waterproof matches is great, but imagine none of these will be available. Starting a fire is so important, that you just have to know as many ways to do it as possible. Consider learning the hand-drill or the bow-drill method, using a flint and steel, a magnesium fire starter, a magnifying glass and so on.
#3. Filtering and Purifying Water
For most bug out situations, a simple personal water filter will do, but if you really want to be a survivalist, then you’ve got to learn to make one with materials you can find around you. So long as you have a plastic bottle, a bandana, gravel, sand and some activated charcoal, you’re good to go, although keep in mind the resulting water should only be drank if you’re dehydrating and you have no other choice.
Unless you’re so lucky that you won’t run into anyone during your bug out, you may have to deal with difficult people and difficult situations. I could have written “bartering” instead of “negotiation”, but the reality is you might have to do a lot more than just trade goods.
For example, you might have to negotiate passing through a checkpoint or a bridge. You can’t assume you’ll do well, you have to practice in advance and get good at getting the things that you want.
#5. Tying Knots
Whether you have to secure your tent, to cross a river or climb up or down a tall structure, you may need to tie a knot. Most of the things involving Paracord require you to learn this skill, by the way. Sure, you may have instructions and pictures of how to do it on your phone, but what if your phone won’t work or if you lose it?
One of the biggest challenges we face today is learning to do without technology. And learning to tie a couple of knots is a great way to start.
#6. Making Primitive Weapons
Whether your firearms are stolen or if you need to hammer something into the ground, a few primitive tools you can make on the spot can help. Creativity is key here but so is practice. Since you’re on the run, you won’t have your woodworking tools with you, so you’ll have to “go hardcore” and learn to make truly primitive tools such as stone hammers, hook knives and spears.
#7. Making Shelter
There are plenty of shelters you can make and, although you may already have a tent in your BOB, that doesn’t mean you can just set it up and go to sleep. You have to find the perfect camp site, make sure it stays dry overnight and know what to do if a wild animal pays you a visit.
You should also know how to make one out of branches, moss and pine needles.
Pro tip: keep in mind that sand will NOT keep you warm. Moss and dead leaves are much better for this.
Before we wrap this up, I just want to remind you that I only made this list to get you started. There are other bugging out skills you should master, such as hunting and fishing. The trick is to anticipate which you’re most likely to need and then focus on one at a time, two at the most.