Living in a 4 season State means being prepared at all times for the change of seasons. That means every change in season means redoing my packs I use.. Whether a camping pack, daypack or my EDCC ( Everyday car carry bag) I need to repack them to suit the season. As much as I do enjoy going through my packs on a regular basis, I find it can be a chore at times. Having to unpack, go through everything in it and removing and adding items I will not be needing and adding things I will.
It is still winter here in Minnesota, but FINALLY it looks as though the weather is warming up. Its been a tough winter for sure. Extremely cold in general, and late snow storms, Ok a lot of late snow storms will certainly extend it a bit more. (see previous post).
But I have to start preparing for spring. What that means is getting rid of the winter extras and adding what I consider to be essential spring items I should have in my packs. For my camping pack That means a lot of changes as well as my EDCC. However for my day pack I have devised a very basic way to minimize my changes I need for the new season.
Because it is the pack I use most (My L.L. Bean Maine Warden Day pack), anytime I go out doors for a walkabout and scout It is on my back. In it are the basic essentials for a 72 hr emergency situation. (see 10 CC’s of survival). Something I have in all my packs. Then the seasonal items I will need for the current season. This is what changes. To minimize the changes I need to make, I have come up with a basic setup that is all the things I need no matter what the season. That way I then only need to make small changes for the season. Below is a list of what I have in my day pack according to the season. As well as all season items. These are my preferences that I find suit me. Admittedly I am always looking to improve what I have.
As a Novice Survivalist you should always be prepared for an emergency. That’s what the 10 CC’s are for. Then add to it the basics for the season and only then any “extras’ for comfort you are willing to add to the weight and bulk of your pack. Keep in mind that adding these, can if not curtailed, turn a great daypack into a miserable bulky dead weight on your back. Choose your luxury items carefully. You may regret them later, when its too late!
Here are the lists I have …..Ok here we go, me and lists…. put together to show the all season, and each seasonal items that go into my day pack. Keep in mind that although I say I never change the all season items, you should make sure everything in it is in good working order.
1 My things bag. Also known as the possible’s pouch. This is a German Army ditty bag I got at a local surplus store for a whopping 50 cents.
2 Leg Gaiters and Boots chains. The Leg gaiters all seasons and the boot chains most seasons.
3 Water Carriers. A military Canteen, cup and lid nesting in the cover which also holds a bush box and coffee/tea making in the small side pockets. And a Kleen Kanteen 44oz stainless steel bottle and nesting gup (GSI)
4 Frogg Toggs. Lightweight poncho 2 from Frogg Toggs.
5 First Aid kit. Very basic first aid kit. I added a few of my own items.
6 Emergency Blanket/Tarp. This is not one of those flimsy, small, compact, tiny, one time use types. Its a solid thick well made reusable type. Both reflective on one side and emergency orange the other. Large enough to make a comfortable shelter and a large signal device as well.
7 Kitchen. For those of you who follow we on YouTube know I like to enhance my walkabouts and Scouts with a small meal and hot coffee or tea. For these needs I carry the Qunlie Compact cook set for 1-2 adults. This is a wood system and on occasion Ill switch it with a single gas burner and put system. I do have the bush boxes in the ditty bag as well. I also have a Egoline wind protector for the cook system.
8 Other things. These items are my “luxury items” Knee and Butt saver pad, Hand Towel and trash bag.
9 Snack pack. This is a small Sea 2 summit Dry bag which I use to carry my planned meal or snacks.
As the seasons change I add or remove a few items.
The most important item that I add to my Pack is the Boot chains for my waterproof boots. These are a must when out and about in Winter in Mn. Ice on paths, rocks etc. can turn a nice day out in a very painful time after a slip. These go hand in hand with my hiking staff. It is a self made staff from an idea I found online. It is a multitasking tool that can be used as a small 3 leg chair, tarp poles and has storage for basic emergency things. At my age I need all the help I can get.
Remember I am talking about what I carry. Obviously I dress according to the season. I do have an extra pair of Gloves, wool cap and socks in my pack in winter. Just incase. There is nothing worse than wet hands or feet in the cold.
These are my 2 favorite seasons. I am normally out and about on a scout or fly Fishing for the day. These seasons I reduce my pack by removing all the winter items. If scouting I still have my staff but just about all the other stuff goes into storage. I do keep my leg gaiters as after rains or dew covered grass I still need them. My wool cap is replaced by my favorite Tilly hat.
For me summer brings in a few concerns to keep in mind. Obviously the Sun, heat and humidity. I dress accordingly, depending on these factors. I always carry a rain jacket when Kayaking or land fishing and I have my Frogg Toggs poncho. A sudden down pour in the middle of the day is all you need to get soaked and be miserable. A spare “Bush style” hat replaces my wool cap. Bug spray is replenished ( A lot). And sun tan lotion a must. I also increase the amount of water I carry by simply making sure I have my Katadyn water purification kit and an extra smaller Kleen Kanteen in the pack.
That’s the basics. remember this is a day pack not an overnight camp pack. It does have the necessaries for a unplanned overnighter should I need it. Its not a perfect system , yet. But every seasonal change, I work at reducing the changes with out making my day walkabout unnecessarily dangerous or just uncomfortable. I’m to old to not have some comforts …….
What’s in your pack?
Want to know a little more about some of the items in my pack, check out the “my things page” which has either a video or write up on products I typically use.
Remember Knowledge and a little preparation is a survival skill! Keep working to improve them.
The Novice survivalist