Bugging out with small children – things you should consider

This is a guest post and entry in our non-fiction writing contest  by Chonte F

I am a stay at home mom to a 2-year-old little girl and while I have been through my fair share of snow storms and being housebound, I had never put any thought in what would happen if I had to leave my small apartment in an emergency. Then in 2010 there was a small earthquake on the east coast that put things into perspective. An earthquake was one of those things that “never happened here”. It was then that I started to wonder, what if?

So I got online and started doing some research. I decided like most people the best place to start would be a bug out bag. Having a small child makes things a little more difficult. She can’t carry much and wouldn’t be able to walk for long distances. So I knew that I would have to carry all of her needs as well as my own. I bought a back pack and began compiling my list. I had all the basics covered.

It addition to those things I have a pack of diapers and wipes, an additional outfit, a pack of lollipops,a small toy and a “binky” to comfort her. If a lollipop will ward off a melt down then so be it. The last thing anyone wants is a child freaking out in an already stressful situation. I also have a small tent and another small duffel for food and water. When there is room in the budget, I will buy a larger backpack that will hold everything but for now I’ll make do with what I have.

If your child is still bottle fed it is important to make sure you have extra water to mix the formula. I recommend using the pre-mixed kind if you can. When my daughter was an infant we were lucky enough to barter eye services and glasses for formula. My fiance is an optician and his office shared a building with a pediatrician’s office. Formula reps would come once a month and give the office cases of the ready-made stuff so we would always trade.

The next step is figuring out where your bug out destination is. Do you have somewhere to go? While having a retreat would be amazing we don’t all have that option. Is there a family member who you can go to? Make sure that they know you would be coming in a bug-out situation. Family or not I don’t recommend just showing up, especially if it’s a night-time situation. You want to be welcomed with opened arms not sticks and stones.

Especially when there are kids involved. My Father is about 4 miles away from me and Google says that it would take an hour and a half to walk. I imagine that with a child in tow this trip would at least double. The next question is how do I get there? Do you have a vehicle? What if you can’t use it (EMP)? What if you’re stuck in a traffic jam with no end insight, what if you just run out of gas? I see many people talk about using a wagon to transport small children.

While this may be a good option for some I don’tthink a wagon is for me. It offers no protection from the weather and I worry that if the terrain got bumpy my daughter would fall out. So I took all this in mind when I went stroller shopping. I purchased a Jeep brand stroller that is made for all terrain and has a good-sized storage basket. I then bought a stroller cover from my local drugstore. It looks just like a poncho only more heavy duty.

This is the stroller that we use all the time so I know that she’scomfortable in it. I keep my BOB by the front door next to the stroller. My plan is to put the tent and duffel in the basket of the stroller and carry my bob on my back. Now that my daughter is a little older she has her own small backpack. This bag is strictly to keep her happy. She has crayons and a coloring book, a travel first aid kit, a kid friendly flashlight, some granola bars and fruit snacks and a juice pouch.

Most of these things can be found in a dollar store if youdon’t already have them at home. Just try to keep things as normal as possible.Every once in a while we play in the tent in the living room. It’s become a fun thing for her so if we had to sleep in it, it’s all fun and games to her.

The most important thing when dealing with kids is that you HAVE to have some sort of plan. Kids need to feel safe or they will not be calm and you need to in control. Running off into the woods willy-nilly is not going to benefit anyone. In fact you will probably end up putting you family in more danger.

This is an entry in our non-fiction writing contest where you could win:

Comments

  1. It might be a good idea to practice bugging out with the kid(s). If they are very small it could be made into a game. Older children could be told something more as long as it doesn’t freak them out. You could hike that distance with the kid in the wagon, and go to the relative’s house for dinner, then have spouse meet you there and drive you home, in order to get familiar with the route and see if there’s anything you would change or anything you notice about it from having “boots on the ground”.

    If nothing else, it’s physical conditioning for you.

  2. This is an excellent article. Very often we only think of how quickly we could move in the event of the SHTF. However, when you bring small kids into the equation it adds a lot more planning.

    The trick to this in my mind is how you prepare them for this event. Two of my kids are very skittish and would be up many nights if I prepared them the wrong way (scared them). I believe the right way of doing this would be in the context of a fire drill. This way their friends are also hearing this from their parents.

    Be curious to hear others’ thoughts.

    • Survivor Mike, there are many reasons people will evacuate their homes. I have an evacuation list for my family, and we practice. I just say, to them that we have to leave the house. Dont necessarily give them a reason why. The goal is to have everyone out the door with their designated item and in the car or at least driveway within a set amount of time. I am shooting for 5 minutes but right now we are at 10 minutes.
      Of course fire drills are different, fire drills are get out of the house now, and you are not allowed to grab anything (except a sibling).
      I will even play act with my kids, have them outside playing, and will walk up behind them grab one and say “I am someone who is trying to take you what do you do” and my kids will instantly start fighting me.
      While I agree that scaring your kids is not helpful in any way, the more you practice, the less scared they will be.

      • Chonte' in MD says:

        TG i like the “drill idea” im also a fan of acting out the situation and i don’t really think it would scare them to much. i think we did stuff like that in elementry school when a police officer came to talk to us about not talking to strangers. don’t forget to tell them to make a lot of noise while they are fighting back!!

      • TG,
        I remember discussing and practicing the “Stranger Danger” scenarios with my DD when she was young. There is a very fine line between scaring the crap out of them to the point of losing sleep, and being serious enough that they take you seriously. Your camping in the tent in the living room and practicing “bugging out” without any panic is an excellent strategy.

        • Nor' Country says:

          We practice the “stranger danger” drills too. Living in Alaska, I have problems with bears and moose coming into the yard frequently so I added “animal danger” to the drills.

          My kids know what to do and proved it one time when we were in town for supplies and we were approached by a very large and mean looking dog that looked more like a wolf than dog. I was in the back of my pick-up truck trying to secure a cooler when I heard my kids yell, “animal danger”. In the span of what seemed to be 3 or 4 heartbeats, my kids were back in the cab of the truck with the doors shut. My oldest son had even picked up my youngest son and shoved him into the truck and shut the door and then ran to the back of the truck and jumped into the bed with me before I could even figure out what direction to look in for the animal.

          Different areas have different animal threats of course, but dogs are pretty universal… Keep that in mind when doing the “stranger danger” drills.

          • Nor’Country….that’s definitely something to think about WTSHTF…roving packs of dogs and other animals. In the extreme, zoos will shut down too, so there could be exotics roaming about. But dog packs are truly a threat. I had a pack confront me once when I was hiking. They were just short of feral, so I was able to “sweet-talk” my way out of the situation. But it was just luck. Now I carry pepper spray, but they’re still a threat, especially in numbers. I’ve heard that one of those horns that people sound-off at ball games is a deterrent, but I don’t know.

            • Chonte' in MD says:

              good idea.. gonna buy an air horn!! would also be good for natural disasters so people could find you. like a whistle but way louder

  3. Chonte F
    Great thinking. The next step is taking the 4 mile walk to Dad’s with your gear. Make you first runs on a nice day though. Keep up the great work.

    • Chonte' in MD says:

      thats the plan, as soon as dad has a spare key made for me. he knows that is SHTF we are headed to his house. it would be a bust to get there and be stranded outside. lol

      • You might also talk with dad about pre-staging or storing some items at his place, depending of course on your financial and his storage situation. This would allow you to be either more prepared or perhaps lug a little less weight on the trip.

        • Jennifer (Prepping Wife) says:

          Just a thought but what kind of condition is your dad in? If he is in good condition what about him meeting you halfway? Or a mile down the road? Bugging out with child in tow will be taxing and if it were my kids I think I would want to meet half way to be of assistance….

          • Chonte' in MD says:

            meeting half way wouldn’t be an issue but if it happens during the day he’ll be at work. im a stay at home mom so i have my Mini 24/7. im planning on it happening when everyone is at work. if everyone is at home then thats less work for me but i wanna be prepared if i have to go it alone.

  4. By the way I am the parent of a 5 yr old and a 2 month old. I changed jobs to a lower paying position so I can be on the same side of the river as my family and 15 miles closer to home. I worried about the river crossing after my CERT classes. The City’s emergency manager said what will we do with only one hospital on our side of the bridge? Then I realized that if the metro bridges did go down that it was nearly a 200 mile trip to the north to cross the river and come through the Mountains and get home. The things we do for our wife and kid’s. We now have 2 new hospitals on our side of the bridge and there are a lot of helicopters in our area thanks to the Air Force and National Guard.

    • Chonte' in MD says:

      it used to worry me that my local hospital is a bit of a drive, 20-30 mins depending on traffic, and i guess they thought of that as well because now we have an emergency room in my city. it’s juts like a mini hospital. it’s within walking distance from my house and if you need to be admitted to the real hospital they will have an ambulance come and take you. you’ll get to bypass the admin desk since you are already in their system.

  5. I would get a double stroller.That way you would have cargo in the stroller with the kid.I would get one that is single file instead of doublewide.That would be more maunervable in my thinking.I would also stock up in your destination.If you are going to bug in with your Dad then I would stock up some formula at your Dads place.I used to see a jogger with a triple stroller and I asked her if she had tripplets and she said no that she was a nanny.She had a very nice stroller.

    • j.r. guerra in s. tx. says:

      Gonna get slammed for suggesting this due to long time jokes about a guy named Gun Kid, but . . .

      Have you thought about using a plain jane no flat tired wheelbarrow for your carriage? No, seriously!

      The pluses – its in front of you, so you keep an eye on your kids. A harness could be rigged up for someone up front to help pull it. Single tire travels on thin paths, Designed for a heavier than normal loads – heavy duty model that is. Carries other things plus the kid(s).

      Just something to think about. Just leave the gun mount off it, lol.

    • axelsteve,
      I was picturing the same thing; only get the version with the larger bicycle style wheel and tires. I think you could haul quite a bit of gear over pretty rough terrain with one of these.

  6. Really great article, Chonte! And, LOL, I love that you have a Jeep “All-terrain” stroller! Way cool. When I was raising my son, all I had was an aluminum frame baby carrier, with a canvas seat in it, that went on my back….like this: http://www.amazon.com/Kokopax-Eco-Classic-Framed-Baby-Carrier/dp/B003T9P7KW. I carried my son all over the mountains in this…must be why I’m so strong today.

    And the “playing in the tent” is a great idea. You are giving your daughter a very good chance of being safe and secure. Kudos.

    • Chonte' in MD says:

      well when i got pregnant money was really tight so i only bought the basics. thankfully i have an AMAZING family who help alot. my dad bought me a used bassinet and my uncle’s ex wife gave us her old car seat so i didn’t make any big purchases until i went back to work. the stroller had good reviews and was on sale online so thats the one we got. it never even crossed my mind to get a carrier, i think because i was due in the winter so i wasn’t thinking i would be be out much. but now i have a sheet in my BOB in case i have to make a carrier for some reason.

  7. Encourager says:

    Good article. Thanks, Chonte! I do not have small children at home anymore, they grew up into fantastic men. But my heart goes out to those who do. Those with infants or toddlers could use a backpack that you put the child into. That would leave your hands free to push the stroller loaded with what you need. Hopefully, you will not be traveling alone with your child/children. Even just one more adult or teen could help carry the burden of bug out bags and other supplies. You mentioned the travel time would be doubled; try at least tripled. With a heavy load you will need more rest stops and also a break for your little one to be out of the back pack or stroller. Make sure you pack lots of water!

    • Chonte' in MD says:

      if we had to bug out in the evening then my fiance would be here to help but id rather prepare for me and mini being here alone when “IT” happens. if he’s here then great he can help, and we can carry more but if not that i know that i can get out with the essentials. i keep a 12 pack of emergency water pouches in my BOB. i went with those because they have a 5 year shelf life so i don’t have to worry about rotating and if i stick a straw in it it Mini can drink it on her own. she cant drink out of a regular bottle without spilling it everywhere yet.

      • If you have other water sources (lake, pond, river, etc) on the way, then consider a water filtration bottle like the Seychelle or Katadyn which have been discussed in this forum. Good for 100 gallons and very lightweight when empty.

        • Chonte' in MD says:

          we were just discussing buying a couple Life Straws. i showed my fiance the website and he was surprised that they don’t cost way more then they do.

          • Chonte’,
            I mentioned the bottles instead of the straws precisely because you are talking about a small child who may not be able to use the straw. You can use a bottle to filter water that can be placed into another container moree suitable for the needs and use of the child.

  8. Chonte, you are so right, bugging out with kids is completely different then just being able to up and go. Even the grocery store takes planning. LOL. I agree with the bag of lollipops 100% and have a bag of dum-dum pops and M&m”s just because I know that it will instantly catch my kids attention and possibly advert disaster with them.
    The back pack for the little one is a good idea. Kids get bored easily and if we have something to keep them occupied it will go a long way to keep them from panicking.
    As for bugging out on foot. This is where I keep getting hung up on. I dont really have anywhere close by to bug out to, as all my friends would bug out to my house. So for me, bugging out on foot with my kids, and all of my friends kids, would take extremely dire circumstances. I have been looking for ways to travel with a bunch of kids and found this wagon, it is the first one on the page.
    http://www.almost-amish.com/wagonpages/wagonaccesscatpage.html
    It would need some adjustments to it, such as weather proofing. But it would be a good start. I like the high sides, and I have one of those “napping mats” that could be put on the bottom to add some cushion. I like that it also has the place on the back for the cooler. Of course that could be used for holding other items, or be rigged with a basket of some sort. My husband has also been talking about getting our kids one of those power wheels trucks. I have been fighting that one until I remembered this video I seen with a remote control semi pulling a car. That got me to thinking that we might be able to do something similar with the power wheels. (that and my parents and bil said they would split the costs of one, which really helps).
    Here is a link to that video if anyone else is interested
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xlUZjjJa6M

    • Ok, I just reread that and just for clarification, I would try to rig the power wheels up to pull the wagon…. not a car. LOL.

      • Chonte' in MD says:

        LOL!! power wheels are not crazy expensive anymore. i have seen quite a few “quad style” online for $60. the only thing would be worrying about the battery dying. the only reason we would bug out is because we live in an apartment, on the second floor and there is a tree right in front of out deck. if things got really bad i worry about people climbing up that tree to gain access to the patio door. however all this will change when our lease is up in august. the fiance has a much better paying job and we are not staying here after that!!

        • I need to check them out online then. The battery dying would be my concern with that as well. But like I said, it would take something extreme for us to bug out on foot. Just because my back up plan is soooo far away and I dont have anywhere closer to go. For that type of situation, while the wagon may make things more difficult, it would be essential.

  9. ANorthIdahoMom says:

    A stroller may not be a practical solution, if for some reason, a person has to avoid sidewalks, or sidewalks are not clear. And what if it breaks down? (A wheel falls off or gets jammed?).

    I am a HUGE HUGE HUGE fan of babywearing. A good baby carrier like an Ergo (or Becco), its worth its weight in gold. I spent a couple summers ago packing around a 35lbs kid up and down some good sized hills, in an Ergo. It was the single best purchase I made as a parent. I wore them while cleaning, cooking dinner, you name it. Also, kids can be conditioned. We started out that summer going 1-2 miles (me carrying my then 18mo old), and my 3yr old walking. By the end, we could easily go 4 miles (and did!). Not at adult speed, but it can be done.

    If I were bugging out, alone, with a child, I would wear them on my back, and have a large hip/fanny pack to wear on my front, or maybe two duffles of equal size and weight approx to carry in each hand. Divide up gear so if you have to ditch one, you can just drop it and go, not have to sort on the way. Some carriers (the Ergo for sure) have small back packs that can attach to the carrier. My ergo also has loops that I could attach things to with a carabiner, though i never did.

    Another benefit of wearing vs putting them in a stroller is they are ON YOUR PERSON. Something bad will have to happen to you first, before them, assuming you are facing a possible attacker.

    And this should go without saying, but if you can breastfeed, its always the best way to feed your child. And in a post-crash situation, it ups your childs rate of survival immensely. Its portable, prepackaged, and pure. No worries about contaminated water giving your baby a (possibly fatal) “stomach bug”. Packing pre made formula would be heavy, and you would not be able to take much (and more may not be available). Having to boil water several times a day (or once and carry it around), isnt very practical either. Also, even if you arent eating, your body will still feed your baby, as long as you can hydrate, if you are breastfeeding.

    Yes, I understand, that some women have issues, and for whatever reason (adoption, low supply, breast reduction, etc), and cannot breastfeed, at all, or not 100%. I also know that some women choose not to breastfeed, and resuming may not be an option.

    If anyone needs breastfeeding help or information, please contact your local La Leche League, and also check out kellymom. com (I am affiliated with neither one).

    • Chonte' in MD says:

      like i said, this is how I went about it. everyone’s own personal preferences will be different. i would much rather take my stroller and be able to get part of the way with it then not have one at all. i do not have a good back anymore (labor issues) so trying to carry a squirming 2 year old is not high on my list. my BOB will give me issue enough but at least it wont be trying to escape lol. and if the sidewalk is out i can walk on the road or through grass. that’s the purpose of an “all terrain” stroller.
      and yes not everyone can breast feed so wouldn’t it be better for them to carry any formula that they can and deal with running out later or carry none and be doomed from the start?

    • I second the idea of babywearing. I have two kids, so not sure how I’d manage to wear both at the same time, but just wearing one would make a big difference. With any luck, Hubby would be with me and we could each wear one kid… and pull our gear behind us or strap it to us as necessary. Keeping the family safe and protected is #1 priority, and I’d definitely feel safer with my kids strapped to my body. I’ll ditch my MREs and flashlights if necessary.

      My experience with strollers tells me that they won’t work well on rough terrain – even nice joggers – and they’ll take a ton of work to push up hills, keep level on inclines, etc. For me, it’s always easier and more comfortable just to wear my kids.

    • I have worn my babies, but for me personally, there are times when the stroller really comes in handy. Having a way to do both would be a good idea. As for the breast feeding, I did breast feed mine (and plan to with the next) but at the same time I always kept formula on hand. What if something happens to the personal milk cow?

  10. My son will be 2 on the 19th. I have a stroller cover for him as well, in case we are unable to drive to our bug out location. I love the cover, we have used it many times! It will keep him dry and out of the elements. He will also stay warmer since it is enclosed, and I don’t have to worry about bugs with the stroller cover on. I have a bag pack for him and myself, and he also has a minnie backpack that would be in with him. He has worn it many times when we go places. It holds a travel size pack of wipes, three diapers, hand sanitizer, snacks, 2 cars, and about 5 of the bigger legos, and a little ball. He has a little water bottle that I picked up at walmart that also attaches to it. He can carry this with no problems if for some reason we would have to leave the stroller behind. This also saves with having to open up the bigger backpacks atleast for a little while.

  11. Mama Bear in Fl says:

    I have thought long and hard about this “bugging out with kids thing” also. We currently do not plan on bugging out, having 3 kids under 8, and no verified BOL, and so we will be “bugging in”. Honestly, getting out of the urban environment and somewhere more rural would be a better option(if you can do it). I still live in suburbia, for now.
    Now, having said that, we still have EDC gear, an auto BOB, and also 96 hr BOB’s for me, the hubby and the oldest child. Supplies the younger ones need are in our bags as well.
    In the event we MUST leave the safety of our fortified home, and cannot take our 4×4 truck(EMP or whatever), then we have 2 choices depending on several factors such as time allowed to vacate, level of the threat, supplies we are taking, etc. If we have more time… then we’re biking out with DH’s bike having the carrier attached for the 100 lbs of supplies/gear to ride, and another carrier for the younger kids attached to my bike. And the oldest on her bike. Their weight combined is less than the 100 lb limit, so we could put a BOB under there feet, or behind the seating area. All three bikes have baskets and attachments over the back wheel to storage more “stuff”.
    For walking out on basic to moderate terrain we have the double stroller . For walking out on moderate to difficult terrain we have Kelty’s for the kids to ride. Either way, walking out as a bug out option would be our absolute LAST choice as your ability to carry kids and supplies/gear is extremely limited, not to mention the stealth/security factor would be zero.

  12. Great analysis of a difficult issue. As the father of two young children (1 and 3), I’ve come to the conclusion that we’re either bugging in, driving out, or will be limited to a range of just a few miles (at most) if we need to travel on foot. With young children there’s just too much to carry and too few people to carry it.

    The all-terrain stroller is an excellent way to prepare for a bug-out scenario. If possible, I would recommend loading your BOB on the stroller as weell, thus maximizing the use of the wheels and minimizing the weight on your own shoulders, hips and feet.

    Practice is also a good idea. If you’re going for a walk with your daughter, perhaps bring your bug-out supplies along to see how you do under the full load. During a family hike this summer, I quickly learned that my family was not up to the task of traveling on foot without the assistance of wheeled conveyance. With me carrying the 3-year-old and my wife carrying the baby, neither of us was in a position to carry more than a few pounds of gear, and my wife was quickly exhausted. I’ve taken notes from that experience and modified our plans accordingly.

    In the end, I’ve come to the conclusion that we have to do what preparation we can and hope for the best, learning and accepting our limits.

    • Chonte' in MD says:

      i would much rather bug in but the apartment we live in is small and wouldn’t offer much safety im afraid. as i said in another comment when the lease is up we are outta here!! lol but im out of here at the first sign of trouble that way if it’s a false alarm then so be it, we’ll just stay the night and grandpas house. minor situations (snowmageddon) we’ll be fine bugging in but if i feel like things are gonna get dangerous then we are headed to grandpas.

  13. Lint Picker (Northern California) says:

    If I bug out with young children, I’ll know I’ve gotten into the wrong car.

  14. Lake Lili says:

    As the single parent of a 6-yr old, I took a hard look at it our ability to bug out from the downtown core of the Big Smoke. As any resident of Southern Ontario will tell you, the Big Smoke is no place to try and get out of quickly on a good day let alone when the SHTF. So three years ago, we moved to our BOL and now live in a multi-generational setup. Location-wise, it is still not ideal but we continue to look at ways to improve our chances. The only reason we would currently have to BO from here is fire. We have done the drills, but it is a 10 mile walk to our closest village but with plenty of farms and acre lots in between. If we go along the old lake allowance, we can probably cut about 3-miles off and if we go out by water… well there are lots of options but the water is what makes our BOL undefendable. In the summer you need a boat in the winter you need a good pair of boots and a willingness to do the half hour walk across the lake.

  15. My 4 and almost 3 year old are the reason I’m so obsessed with prepping. We’ve always had extra food in the pantry, but having my own kids put me on a whole new level. No way in hello would I ever put my kids’ wellbeing in the hands of government agencies… ie. disaster relief supplies or waiting in food lines.

    IMO All terrain jogging strollers or better yet kid carriers (ie kelty backpack types) are the way to go. I have a sturdy wagon as people mentioned, but I find it unstable and will tip too easily… Plus put two kids in there and all you have room for is a gallon of water and a few snacks… Plus plus wagons can be quite heavy by themselves so perhaps compare the weight of a wagon vs a kid carrier / sling. IMO

    Traveling with young kids is a handicap. Food and candy bribes all the way. We do lots of hiking. I once told my then 3yo, “When we reach the top of the mountain I’ll give you an Oreo!”. Hey it worked. Keep them upbeat and keep moving.

    I’ve finally trained the DH to never let either vehicle to go below half full gas tanks. I keep simple clear plastic tubing in the car to siphon gas if necessary.

  16. SrvivlSally says:

    If you get any kind of rain in your area, you might want to make sure that the bags you will be carrying everything in are waterproof. Watch out for the cloth around zippers and flaps because it will not stop water from getting inside and soaking everything. If it holds water, you will also be toting around that weight. If the shoulder straps are wet on top of it all, you may have a miserable experience. A lightweight waterproof-treated fanny pack with a plastic bag filled with items, stuffed inside your bob, would be ideal if you find yourself having to, for any unforeseen reason, dump the bob. If you have the room for it and can afford, you may want to try a closed cell foam pad when you and your daughter need a rest. They are pretty lightweight and will keep you and she off of the cold hard, possibly wet/snowy, ground. If it is nightfall, the two of you may need to stop for any number of reasons and need something which will allow for resting or a little shut eye. It would even make a nice rear barrier if you need a fire to warm up by, as long as you do not get it so close that the flames or heat will melt it.

    • SrvivlSally says:

      Closed cell foam pads can be found at online military surplus sites and some take money orders if you do not use credit cards for such purchases. Do not go with the first military surplus site you see because some sites sell cheaper than others.

    • Good comment about waterproofing, SS. I always spray pretty much everything with waterproofing. I’m currently using KIWI brand spray, which works well. I’ve sprayed my shoes/boots, canvas outback raincoat, canvas hat & visor, all my BOBs, backpacks, small tent, etc.

      Then, everything packed into BOBs and backpacks is in ziploc bags (I use the freezer kind with the double lock). For very important items (like papers, camera, electronics, phone, wallet with ID), I use “dry bags” like what river-runners use. I found some small ones at Academy Sports, and REI has them, and I even found some in a $1 store once, but they didn’t look too well made. I use clear bags all the way around so I can see what’s in them. Google “dry bags”.

      My 72-hour box has individual sets of items in their own bags (toiletries, matches, etc.), then the whole is in a large leaf bag which is knotted shut. I have each day’s rations in its own large ziploc bag. I am looking to replace the current plastic storage box with a wheeled ice chest….easy to transport and does double duty.

      Also, there are many types of seam sealers available…just google “seam sealer”. I used one once along a tent zipper.

      • Chonte' in MD says:

        my BOB had been sprayed with a waterproofing spray and everything inside is in ziplock. i stock them in all sizes. so i should be good if it’s raining. i also have a few trash bags so if i need to make a poncho i can. and if we have to head out at night then i won’t be alone, the fiance would be home to help 🙂

  17. A bike would also come in handy. Tie your pack on to the frame and either sit the child onto that and ride or sit the child on the seat and push.

    Luckily I have had no problems breastfeeding so I’ve made a point of feeding them until they’re 2 to keep the milk flowing. I also think that being able to feed someone else’s baby (wet nurse for those unable to feed) would be good for trade. That said, I’ve kept formula around just in case something happened to me or milk dried up because of stress. When it got too old I fed it to our poddy calf.

    I’ve tried a few different baby wearing techniques which have gone ok and would be great in an emergency or to climb over rubble but have found for me that it’s better if I can push them and my backpack. Just keeps my energy levels higher for longer.

    I’d love to have a baby seat and wagon for my bike but so far they’re too expensive.

    On another note, check this out – http://theextinctionprotocol.wordpress.com/2012/01/17/what-are-they-mysterious-unexplained-noises-now-being-reported-across-the-globe/
    Disturbing! I reckon it’s the .gov, pretending that it’s aliens. They have something they want to push soon and are trying to make belivers out of us.

  18. Even before I started thinking about prepping, one of my best purchases was a hiking pack that holds a child AND supplies. It’s made by Kelty (well-known for their outdoor gear), and has a collapsible compartment for your child, but it can also be used as just a plain hiking pack. It will hold a child up to 35 pounds, in addition to an impressive volume of supplies. In case of emergency, I can carry my 1 1/2 year old and our supplies, and my 4 year old can walk and carry a small backpack.

    • Chonte' in MD says:

      do u happen to have a link? i have never seen a backpack with a kid carrier attached!!

      • Here’s the link to the Kelty Kid Carriers:
        http://www.kelty.com/c-kids.aspx#subcategory=child-carriers

        I didn’t see the exact model that I have, but there a couple that are similar. The “Junction 2.0” looks most similar, but mine has a detachable day pack, in addition to the main backpack compartment. You can collapse the child-carrier part of it, so it is just a normal hiking pack, and the child seat part is fully adjustable for height, girth, etc. so it will fit kids up to 35 pounds. I started carrying each of my little ones when they were about a month old. The pack is well-constructed, sturdy and VERY comfortable.

  19. A stress free bug out with kids would be a great weekend project. Plan a bug out day with the kids and make it an adventure for them. have them pack their bag the first time with what they think they might need and then maybe show them what they really need the next time. A couple of practice bug out times should make the real time, when needed, go much smoother.

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