Wednesday, 15 September 2021

An Alternative Go-Kit


I use an alternative set-up which can be used as a set, or different parts taken where this suits the occasion and aim of the training. This set comprises -

  • A Water-Bottle Carrier (shoulder-bag).
  • A Survival Bag (Bum-Bag) (*)
  • A Bum-Bag.
(*) I shall refrain from using the US term 'Fanny-Bag' since it would not be suited to the English meaning of the word, which is totally different.

The Water-Carrier -

The water-carrier is carried on one shoulder, the Survival Bag (Bum-Bag) is carried across the back from the other shoulder, and the Bum-Bag is carried where it is usually meant to be. 

This is a cheap water-carrier which is carried on one shoulder, and can be strapped to the belt by two loops on the back of it. This would hold some of the weight, since water is one of the heaviest things that we need to carry. 

Contents of the Water-Carrier -

  • A stainless-steel water-bottle & stainless-steel mug with folding handle. These are carried in the main compartment. The mug fits over the top of the bottle, easier than over the bottom where it is a tight fit into the compartment.
  • Tea/Coffee/Suger/Dried Milk, and two spoons. These are carried in the small front compartment.

The Bum-Bag -

This is carried across the back over the 'bum' ('ass' or 'butt') and is a lightweight bag from Jack Wolfskin, given to me as a present by my daughter some years ago.

Contents of the Bum-Bag -

The large central compartment has in it - 

  • A small tarp.
  • A Poncho for when it rains or to use to build a shelter.
One side-compartment has in it -

  • Various pieces of paracord and cordage, as well as a piece of fat wood for fire-lighting.
The other side-compartment has in it -

  • A lock-knife.
The Bum-Bag contains enough to make a quick shelter using a tarp and bivvy and the cordage for a ridge-line and guy-lines.

The Survival Bag - 

This is carried over the opposite shoulder to the Water-Carrier, and is a bit heavier than the Bum-Bag.

Contents of the Shoulder Bag -

  • Survival Knife with Ferro-Rod and Sharpener.
  • Gas Canister & Fire-Lighting Kit inside canister cover.
  • A waterproof bivvy-bag which is non-breathable and thus used to store kit in to keep dry or for an emergency bivvy-shelter; this could even be cut into half in an extreme emergency and made into a single 'tarp'. 
These go into the main compartment with a collapsable dog-bowl for water for the dog.

  • Tent Pegs.
  • Survival Bag (*).
  • Bic Lighter.
  • Blow-pipe (for fire-starting).
(*) I bought a set of two of these for £1.00 from Poundland some years ago and they both held up well to use. Buying from other sources at dearer prices these, and the DPM ones tend to tear too easily, so this is carried only because it may serve some purpose, perhaps as a cover on a fire-reflector.

These go into the smaller front compartment.

  • Compass.
  • Tampons (fire-lighting as cotton-wool).
  • Batteries (for Garmin GPS on outside of the pack).
  • Fishing-hooks in container.
These go into one of the side-compartments.

  • A camping stove.

This goes into the other side compartment.

On the outside of the pack are two pieces of fat-wood, and a Garmin GPS Tracker, simple but very good in use. The compass is also necessary since GPS needs batteries.

This set-up means that any one, two or all of these can be carried depending upon the needs of the time. The use of a gas-stove is because at certain times of the year it is quite dangerous to light a fire to boil water or cook and have to leave it and move on. It is also quicker and cleaner to use a gas-stove, and does not rely upon dry wood for a fire. Best on the move.

Some tips -

The gas-canister that I use is a very small one, here a Coleman Extreme 2.0 (I00gm) which is propane-butane and thus burns in lower temperatures, useful in the colder months of the year. These are available for £16.00 from or for £4.00 from Milletts or Blacks - which would you choose? On the right of the canister is a cheap adapter (cheap on Amazon) which not only adapts a non-screw canister to a screw-canister, but also transfers gas from one canister to another. The larger cans of Coleman Propane (300gm) can be bought as a set of 6 for about £4.00 each, and thus 3 small cans (100gm) could be filled from one 300gm canister - a good saving. These would be propane and not propane-butane, but would still work, though not so efficiently in cold weather. The process could be dangerous so ensure you know what you are doing! 

I use this set-up when I take the dog for a walk, and thus have the means to take a break to make tea/coffee, and to shelter from the rain if necessary. Again, getting out and about is essential for us as a Nature-Religion. The idea of Body-Mind-Spirit in a harmonious working depends upon physical fitness and a healthy body for the spirit to work through. This is even more essential in a time of potential illness. I have collected my kit over many, many years, and also some of it is from kit I bought for the kids when they were young, and which I use myself rather than throw it out. But anyone can make up a simple and cheap kit from second-hand stuff if necessary. 

Note of Caution - Here in England (as usual) it is illegal to carry a 'weapon' in public, and although our kit is made up of 'tools' they can easily make out that a knife or axe is a 'weapon'. It is thus safest to carry such items at the bottom of any pack or bag where it is not easily got out. In the car these should be carried in the boot of the car or in a compartment at the back of an SUV - not next to you in the glove-compartment or on the passenger seat! 

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