What our BOBs have evolved into, and are now becoming through NEED.

Most of us plan on bugging in or out or BOTH depending on the likely scenario,  Originally (1970s) it was a luggage system to allow people to be partially self sufficient for a few days during a crisis or conflict.

These Bags / Rucksacks quickly became more comprehensive and extensive as the original “survivalists” wanted to BUG OUT for ever longer periods of time, usually to remote rural areas.

This led to BOBs quickly being supplemented with VEHICLE KITS and  EDC gear, to allow survivalists / preppers to be self sustaining for ever longer periods. Originally most were 3 day kits, but as time passed and experience was gain many preppers were planning on bugging out in terms of WEEKS and some hardy souls for MONTHS.

That was the pinnacle of the BUG OUT BAG

Pretty soon things began to change as individual survivalist/prepper and families NEEDS began to change.


For example some people felt very strongly that the threat/risk/hazard they feared the most meant they needed to plan for the eventuality of have to leave home permanently. This led to INCH bags (I’m Not Coming Home) and GOOD Bags / kits (Get Out Of Dodge) bags which were large and much more comprehensive (AND HEAVY) and adaptations / upgrades to their lifestyles also happened ( People got rid of family cars for large SUVs, 4x4s, Camper Vans and RVS. They stopped going on vacation to Disney land and started renting / buying or building lodges and cabins way out of town.

However as time passed, society changed and urban conurbations grew many people started to realise that Bugging out looked to be getting ever harder, more complicated, more risky and for some almost bloody impossible to achieve.

These preppers had to change both their preps and lifestyles drastically to improve their chances of surviving the threats they were most concerned with.

They began to plan on BUGGING IN.

Realising the futility of their plans to flee in the face of a disaster that saw the roads, bridges, tunnels, causeways , trails, tracks etc become impassible BEFORE they could escape. They decided to turn their HOMES into their retreats / safe places, homesteads etc .

For those who could chose to relocate their families to new homes better suited to prepping further and further away from large urban areas. Flight to the Burbs and Boonies was common.

Some courageous families up sticks and moved to other states or regions entirely to make their lives in safety..

So for those who turned their homes into their safe places their BAGS & PACKs also evolved. They basically became kits to help them GET HOME from the Office/ Factory/ School/ College.

They lean more towards aiding safe movement from work or school to getting home than sustaining the prepper survive away from home for days or weeks.  Better maps, alternative routes, noted danger / high risk areas etc.  GHBs are more akin to military patrol kits that aids swift safe movement through possible dangerous areas.

Now people are looking at the news coming from Ukraine much closer as families flee the war.

BUT very often the menfolk are having to remain in situ to fight the invaders,  thus dividing families. People are now starting to discus EVAC Kits AND PLANS  to help vulnerable women and children reach safety WITHOUT the male member of the family.

1 PERSONAL SECURITY features VERY HIGHLY training the women and kids to be equipped and ABLE to protect themselves.

2 HAVING A DESTINATION, MILLIONS of Ukrainian women and kids are now found wandering around Europe looking for a safe place to stay AND LIVE.

The media reports on PEOPLE SMUGGLERS, PIMPS, CHILD ABDUCTORS and RAPISTS preying on the Ukranian refugees.

Arrests are being made DAILY in Poland, Romania etc as police target and stop criminals abducting vulnerable women, girls and children

So preppers are now starting to look at WHERE CAN YOU SEND THE WIFE AND KIDS to safety ON THEIR OWN ?  and developing suitable packs, supplies, ROUTES and DESTINATIONS.

Never say it wont happen where you live, 21 days ago Ukraine was a safe modern democratic European nation. Please at least have a conversation on ensuring the vulnerable members of your family have the best chance of survival if they have to be sent away ON THEIR OWN.

I mean no disrespect to single parent families or singles in this article. I think its vital that as a community we need to be discussing improving SAFETY and MOBILITY for women and children.


  • Comments (9)

    • 5

      This is a well written history of people’s thought patterns behind bugging out. Where will it be in 10 years? No one knows. 

      Interesting that you instantly saw how the war against Ukraine to be another milestone in bugging out history. It does bring up the idea that the men will have to stay behind and the women and children will have to not only travel to their destination safely but also know where to go. So bugging out plans should be shared with the whole family and it can’t solely rest on the shoulders of the man.

      I’m not saying that women aren’t capable of bugging out but there will be those who prey on them if they do not see a man around and can see them as an easy target. 

      For women, stay away from the bright pinks and other clothes and bags that men traditionally would not use. 

      Have enough guns and ammo or alternative forms of self defense that can be taken out on the bug out by the women and leaving some for the men at home to fight and defend the city with.

      Men and women should take self defense classes.

      Hope this doesn’t come off as sexist or offensive to anyone. I fully believe that both genders can do anything the other can. 

      • 5

        Thank you Bradical for your comment, I would like to make some additional observations.

        I would like to point out that while men have their collective histories about fighting wars, women have collective histories about surviving them. Europe has been fighting wars with itself for the best part of 2000 years, this isn’t something new that started in the last month.

        Are there going to be victims? Always. Is that victim going to be you or your loved one? Not necessarily (and hopefully not).

        Women, on the whole, are aware of their surroundings. Threat of violence is something we grow up with, but that’s a whole other topic.

        You SHOULD be discussing your bug out plans with the women and girls in your life anyway!

        If you’re thinking of planning a ‘women & children’ only evacuation plan then there is no point YOU (a male) making the plan and saying ‘girls you need to do this and go here.’ because you will make a MALE plan.  You need to sit down, plan and discuss it and LISTEN to what the women say, because women often problem solve in a different way based on skills and experience and they will see problems which you wouldn’t even think of!
        And, as with all plans, a trial run is never a bad thing! 

      • 3

        A trail run should be a regular thing

      • 6

        Jumping into the conversation… I am more of the prepper in the family than my wife is. She is amazing in some areas where I am horrible at. We each have our strengths and weaknesses. I should sit her down, go over all our preps, and say “I may not be around someday, here’s how I do this and this. If you ever had to bug out on your own,  I would do this and bring this and avoid this based off of my experience and what I know, but ultimately it is up to you and your judgement. I will not be there and there are so many factors so don’t blindly just do what I say but use it as a rough guide if you have no other idea on what to do.”

        Women are survivors and have a natural tendency and gift to sense danger where I as a man may not. I accept it and during an emergency I will not just rely on my previous knowledge but work together with my wife and with both of our life knowledge come out on top.

      • 5

        Robert, it’s the same in my house – I’m more the prepper than my husband.  He is very supportive, but isn’t into the research, organization, etc.  The pandemic has made him go beyond supportive to more proactive so possibly I’ve got less of a hurdle here. I started small with what-if discussions and requesting he unpack and go through the BOB and GHB contents with me.  I purposely made our bags as identical as possible and had him lead the exercise.  I also setup the tents in our living room so he could check the size, etc. as I acquired them for the BOBs.  This isn’t the same as actually practicing, but it did get more engagement with him.  And that’s what helps the most.  You can tell her everything you know, but it won’t help as much as involving her and listening to her perspective.  You need her strengths in the prep design and planning if you are going to use them in the execution.  True for me too, it has started the evolution of our preps being more shared responsibility.  I’ve had to loosen my control freak nature a bit but have more partnership.  

      • 1

        That’s a great idea Alicia and is something I want to run by my wife. I’ll give her the completed bug out bag and tell her to teach me about it and/or use things in there. I’ll just shut up and watch and see what her current level of understanding is and what we need to practice on together.

      • 4

        For my family, prepping means that there are no hard truths. Every part of the equation is a variable. We do not assume that we will all be together.  Obviously, our unit is strongest when we are together, but any number of things could happen to split us apart. We practice skills together. My 6yr old loves to practice skills like making fire, etc….. and we do it as a family and sometimes have fun competitions.  We also discuss scenarios where one parent or the other is unavailable. Our oldest son, who is 19 knows what is expected of him if both of us are unavailable. We do practice our escape routes together, we have a pre-determined meeting area. Each of the adults in our family is fully capable of taking the lead if necessary.  We are blessed though, as my family has equal interest and shared values and goals.

        I will say we are still discussing scenarios where we would want/need to leave the country. Where would we go? How easy would it be to get out of the States? Considered placing money in foreign banks or starting an offshore account. All of our currency could be taken, devalued, or unavailable. Good to not have all your eggs in one basket. Has anyone else given this idea some thought? Interested in any ideas on this topic.

      • 2

        A very smart family group.

    • 2

      “BUT very often the menfolk are having to remain in situ to fight the invaders, thus dividing families. People are now starting to discus EVAC Kits AND PLANS to help vulnerable women and children reach safety WITHOUT the male member of the family.”

      This also underscores the need to evacuate early, ahead of the crowd. Families that evacuated during the troop buildup, before the invasion, were not divided.

       I have a lot of respect for the Ukrainians that fight for their home snd country. I would not make the same decision myself. My family comes first.