Emergency preparedness from a Counterintelligence Agent

Everyday carry (EDC) gear – what I carry

So what do you really need to carry every day? How do you figure out what should go on your EDC gear list? Here's what Graywolf from Graywolf Survival carries and why, as well as some suggestions on how to plan your EDC kit. - Graywolf Survival's EDC kit https://graywolfsurvival.com/2551/what-should-you-have-in-your-everyday-carry-edc-gear/

A snapshot of what I actually wore today

One of the topics of discussion with preppers has always been about what you should carry with you every day – in other words, your EDC gear. As I’ve said many times, the best gear in the world is useless if you don’t have it with you when you need it. For example, a $9 pocket knife is a much more effective weapon than an AK-47 in your gun safe at home. The problem is that you can’t carry everything, so you need to prioritize. This is a lot easier, and more difficult, than you may think.

There is a big difference between a bugout bag (this is my bug out bag, if you’re interested) and an EDC kit. A bugout bag is something that you keep ready to grab, whether it’s in your house, car or office. The good thing about them is that you can carry quite a bit of stuff in them. The bad thing is that you have to remember to keep it nearby every time you leave, and you may get caught off guard without it some time. Your EDC gear is on you at all times. Pretty much no matter where I go, I always have it. That’s why things like a tent aren’t part of your EDC, unless you actually do wear a backpack at all times, which I don’t. If you came here already knowing what you’re looking for, you can go ahead and jump to the Graywolf Survival EDC Gear Webstore and read this later.

For my EDC gear, I have a core group of items that I carry pretty much every day, no matter where I’m going or what I’m gonna be doing. I also have a few extended EDC kits that I’ll tack on if I’m going to be going to certain places or wearing certain clothes. More on that later.

By the way, if you ever post pics of your EDC kit including your keys, you should cover up the keys. It’s possible to make a real copy of them from just a photo, so all someone would have to do is locate your home or car then and boom! there goes your playboy collection.

So what kinda stuff goes into an everyday carry kit?

Essentially, your EDC equipment is just a group of tools. The tools you need depend on the circumstances that you find yourself in and what problems you’re trying to solve. The key is to predict situations that you may find yourself in first, and then find tools that will solve the problem. Some people carry only the basic necessities, and some like to carry a fancy edc knife with matching leather goodies.

My EDC gear changes as I find new things that I want to carry or change my pattern of life – as well as what outfit I’m wearing that day. Your EDC kit isn’t your bug out bag. I have a very thorough post on what goes in bug out bags that you should read though. In case you’re interested, I have an article on the kit I keep on my Desert Warrior Harley as well.

Convenient and useful items only

The key to the EDC part of it is that you need to find things that are compact and effective, or you won’t carry them every day. A good example of this is my flashlight. I have some great flashlights at home that I’ve either bought or received from the Army for deployments. The one I use by far the most though is my Fenix LD10. Why? because it fits into my pocket, and rarely am I wearing something that doesn’t have a pocket.

Things you’ll use several times each day

One of the reasons you’ll put something in your EDC gear is just out of pure convenience. I could easily pull out my iPhone if I wanted to check the time or maybe ask someone but it’s a lot easier to just glance down at my wrist. A watch has other uses as well but that’s a bonus.

Things that you’ll use on occasion but are handy to have around

Some items, like a leatherman, are really nice to have around when you’re trying to tinker under a car to get it running or find a loose bolt on your son’s bicycle (or in my case, his Harley). It’s just about convenience. This group is harder to decide because you only have so many pockets.

Things that you’ll hopefully never need to use but if you found yourself in a situation needing one, you won’t have the time or ability to go get one if it’s not on you.

My pistol is a great example of this category. I’ve known people who’ve found themselves in situations in their life that they’ve needed a weapon and were glad they had one. I’ve also seen many times where people could have at least had the choice to save their family or kids if they had a weapon available but they didn’t and it didn’t turn out so well. This happens in every decent-sized city pretty much every day to someone. Weapons certainly aren’t the only thing in this category but they’re certainly the most controversial. If you don’t have the training to carry a gun safely or live in a place where you’re more afraid of getting arrested for having it, you can always opt for a knife but you should really get some training on it.

If you’re the kind who’d rather call someone with a gun when you run into trouble instead of having one in case you need it, then just skip the pistol. Maybe keep a copy of How to Win Friends and Influence People on you so you can talk your way out of something.

Things you may want to carry in this category could be items to:

defend yourself
start a fire
repair things
reference for contact info
reference how to do things
filter water
escape from a kidnapping or illegal detention
get into your home or locker if you lose your keys
use for backup in case anything else in your EDC fails or gets lost

Unfortunately some locales don’t allow you to carry certain items so you’re gonna have to check into whether you can carry any particular item. Just remember that in a lot of cases, it’s the intent of what you’re planning on using something that may determine if you get charged so if you want to carry something, do some forward planning and find something that you intend to use it for that would make it legal.

So what do I carry?

Here’s the list of my primary EDC gear that I have with me pretty much every day.


Marathon GSAR US Government issue. I carry this because not only is it a badass watch – it was the watch my son wore when we were deployed to Afghanistan last year. It has tritium lighting so I can see it deep into the night without having to recharge the glow with a flashlight, it’s waterproof, and it has a sapphire crystal so it doesn’t scratch. I’ve owned a LOT of watches over the years but end up throwing them away after they get too scratched up to see or they break. I learned from my Movado that having a good (really good) watch is actually better than just buying a $20 one.

Because it’s an analog watch, I can also use it to find North. It’s not too difficult but a video’s prolly the easiest way to show you:


As I mentioned, I carry a Fenix LD10 light. I carried a Surefire for many years and in many crazy places but it required a CR123 battery. I love the power of those but unless I carry them or I’m near an Army unit, I’m shit outta luck when the battery dies because they’re not found very easily, and found myself without my primary light for a while in Northern Uganda. I switched to an AA battery-powered light now because I can find AA batteries in any store and in any home with a remote control or wall clock. I also switched to using rechargable AA batteries because my bugout bag has a solar panel and battery charger so I can go for years without even having to find a watch. This light has 100 lumens out and lasts for quite a while on one battery.

Unless there’s some really good reason that I can’t, I always wear a hat. Not only does it shade your eyes from the sun, you can hide a few items in it that people usually overlook.

Keychain items:

Aurora 440C Firestarter:
Aurora sent me one of these to do a review and it worked so well, I decided to keep it on my keyring. It makes a much better spark than any other striker I’ve tried. It’s larger than I’d prefer but it fits on the keychain for now.



I was carrying one of those awesome CREE 7w flashlights because they’re great – and ridiculously cheap, but I recently stepped up and got a Zebralight SC52w. Not only is it really bright, it’s in neutral light like sunlight instead of white light, which is weird that it has the ‘w’ on it but whatever.

Keychain Light:
Fenix LD01. I just got this light but it seems pretty good. It runs off a single AAA battery. I’m using a rechargeable AAA battery that I charge in my solar AA battery charger with an AAA to AA adapter.



Handcuff Key:
Streamlight 63001 Cuffmate 3-1/4-Inch Flashlight, Dual LED, Black: I work with the local Sheriff’s Office on occasion so this comes in handy to have around at night. It also is a backup to the backup light.



Badass Rayban wayfarer sunglasses:
Because they’re badass.



Colt 1911 .45 pistol:
I can carry pretty much everywhere but I prefer to carry concealed 99.9% of the time. The only time I don’t wear concealed is if I’m wearning a uniform. When I’m carrying my own weapon, I almost always carry my .45 caliber 1911. The 1911 isn’t a tiny weapon but it’s pretty freaking awesome and mine was made in 1919. I’ve carried concealed for a lot of years and have had training in how to detect weapons so I can carry it pretty easily now. The previous owner was a Navy match shooter and had all the insides upgraded to match-grade so it works great. I still haven’t gotten around to changing the match sites to nightsites yet but that’s coming at some point.

Bianchi Paddlelok Holster:
I love this holster. It fits my 1911, my Vertec 92FS, and my Army issued M9, and can sit on my side or flipped around to the small of my back. The paddle lock mechanism allows me to draw as fast as if there’s nothing holding it in but keeps the weapon in the holster from other people trying to get it out or it just falling out.

Boker Plus Subcom:
I just ordered this knife after a pretty extensive search. I’ve been carrying the Gerber 06 S30V drop point that I was issued on my last Afghanistan deployment (after my CRKT M16 knife stopped working well) but it’s too big to fit in my pocket. I don’t really like having things hang from my belt. Great knife for a deployment but not so great for Starbucks because it doesn’t fit in my pocket with the keychain things I carry. Also, I have to keep the safety on if I do carry it in my pocket because it pops open if the button gets popped, which pretty much negates the super-fast assisted opening it has. Hopefully the Boker will work out.

Set of dogtags with allergy tag:
It’s a unit requirement and gives me something to hang a couple things around my neck.

P38 can opener:
This isn’t something I really need very often but it always hangs on my dogtags. Old habit.

Buck 0860BKS-B Hartsook Fixed Blade Neck Knife:
Not the best knife in the world but it’s one of the most compact ones that’ll actually cut something.

Thumb drive:
I keep copies of a few hundred survival- and homesteading-related pdf’s as well as reference Field Manuals etc on this. I also have copies of all of my orders and other things in case I need them and a spreadsheet with contact information and addresses etc. Obviously having it encrypted is important. I’m using an old 8GB one right now but I’m considering getting a new one because there are smaller ones out now with more room. I do like that the usb connection is retractable though. I hate losing those freaking caps.

Fisher space pen:
I love this thing. Always with me and always writes. Much better than a normal pen because it fits in my pocket.

I sometimes carry a Schrade survival/tactical pen if I have an easy way to carry it. It has a built-in survival whistle, a ferro rod/striker, and can be used as an improvised weapon.

Rite in the rain memo book:
Works even if it gets wet. You should always have something to write with and on. Never know when you’ll come across something you need to jot down such as a license plate of a hit-and-run idiot or the description of a person. Or someone’s phone number.

Bobby pins:
I keep a couple of well-hidden bobby pins on me in case I find myself in the unfortunate position of ever being handcuffed and searched by some bad guy. Hopefully they’re not my handcuffs holding me but either way, it’s not too difficult to get yourself out of handcuffs with one of these if you practice quite a bit, especially if you’re allowed to own cutaway handcuffs that show you how the inner things are working as you’re moving stuff around inside. MUUUUCH more difficult to get out of if you’re handcuffed properly. Easier to just break them in that case.

Challenge coin:
You never know when you’re gonna be coin-checked so I always have one with me.

My iPhone, loaded with several survival pdf’s.

Survival pocket credit card knife tool thingy:
It was cheap and fits in my wallet. Who knows if I’ll ever actually use it.

550 cord is another thing I carry, depending on what I’m wearing but I need to figure out a better way than just shoving some in my pocket somewhere or just on the bracelet my friend made me. This bracelet actually has a hidden handcuff key, fire starter fishing kit and snare wire traps so I’m probably gonna pick one of these up. Trading your bootstring for it is a great option but my civilian boots don’t take string and neither do my sandals.

Here’s a list of some of the things I’ll add to my primary EDC gear (my secondary EDC kit) if I have room or think I may need them. You might call this a secondary EDC or auxiliary EDC kit. You might also call it TOSICS (The Other Stuff I Carry Sometimes):

  • Single Bianchi magazine holder and 1911 magazine:
    • I don’t always carry an extra magazine because it’s a lot harder to conceal it and the pistol. I sometimes put one in the front pocket of my tactical pants if the ones I’m wearing have a magazine pocket.
  • Tourni-Kwik 4 (TK4) Tourniquet:
    • I got this on a deployment several years ago and really like it. I have several tourniquets but this one’s very compact and I can put it on myself with one hand if I really needed to. I don’t always carry it but I do if I have cargo pockets.
  • Spare AA battery
  • Spare AAA battery

My EDC tin:

Graywolf Survival's Altoid EDC tin

This is an EDC kit in itself and is pretty much a little survival kit that’s primarily carried in case I somehow find myself out in the middle of no where and need to survive for a couple of days. I’m constantly changing the items inside but here’s what I have in it at the moment:

  • 1.76oz Altoids tin:
  • This is just the tin itself. I don’t particularly care for altoids so I just took them out but their tins are freaking awesome.
  • Ranger bands:
    • I use a couple of these on the outside of the tin to keep it together in my pocket. You can buy them as ranger bands if you’d like but just do what I did and go to a local bicycle shop and ask if they have any flat bicycle inner tubes in the trash that you could have. Just cut them to whatever width you want. I keep an additional bit on the inside of the tin that I can cut up into smaller bits later if I need to. It’s also great stuff to extend your fire starting tinder. Once you get it lit, it’ll burn for several minutes.
  • Stainless steel wire saw:
    • This is one of those things I’d usually keep in my bugout bag but since I have the room in my EDC tin, I keep it in there for now. I may end up moving it if I come across something that would be smarter for the space.
  • Tinder Quik fire tabs:
    • I keep a couple of fire wicks or some cotton in a small ziplock bag in case I need tinder. I live in the desert so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find something but it’s monsoon season so having something dry could be convenient.
  • 3×5″ card:
    • I keep one of these folded up to be used to write a note or as additional tinder.
  • Folded sheet of aluminum foil:
    • Foil has lots of uses such as allowing you to use an AAA battery in an AA slot, temporary fuse bypass, a field-expedient cooking pan, a scrub brush, and a lot more. You can also take a thin piece and connect each end to the output of a battery (or a couple of batteries if necessary) and it’ll glow and burn to start a fire if you’re quick.
  • Backup flint and magnesium:
    • This isn’t nearly as good as the Aurora one on my keychain but it’s a LOT smaller. The magnesium is kind of a must but it’s possible to start a fire without it. This particular one has them glued together.
  • Brass mini lighter I stopped carrying this because it won’t hold fluid but it is pretty cool.
    • The easiest way to start a fire is with a lighter. I like this one because it’s brass, which makes it cool. Brass is cool. It’s refillable and it’s smaller than a pack of gum. Got it off ebay but I don’t know where you could get the exact same one anywhere.
    • I replaced this lighter with a cool little miniature keyring lighter instead. It keeps the fluid longer because of the o-ring but I already lost one of those. Luckily my next-door neighbor is an avid paintball guy so I got a paintball gun o-ring from him that works dandy.
  • Packs of Bacitracin antibiotic
  • Size 10 rib-back surgical blade
  • Several paper clips
  • Several safety pins
  • One safety pin wrapped with several yards of dental floss and encased in some aluminum foil
  • A hacksaw cut into 3 pieces, one of which is sharpened as a knife on one end
  • Several bobby pins
  • An Exacto blade
  • Several fish hooks
  • A few lead fishing weights

BTW, here’s a pic of the awesome brass lighter I picked up (and don’t carry any longer). It’s pretty cool looking but not actually all that practical because all the fire juice evaporates too quickly. I need to find a way to seal it. And yes, I was at Starbucks when I took this:

Brass EDC lighter

If I’m going out camping or on assignment with either the Sheriff’s Office or the military, I’ll also add a few things in my extended EDC kit such as a combat knife, normal carry gear or whatever. It’s still EDC at those times but just for a specific purpose.

One thing I always have on me, no matter what is my bracelet. Captain Ben Sklaver and I were good friends while we were both in Uganda in 2006. He was the Civil Affairs Commander and I was a security advisor for the US Embassy. He started the Clearwater Initiative to bring clean drinking water to people in remote areas once he got back from Africa. Ben died in Afghanistan 2 October 2009.

KIA Bracelet

Here’s what I carried in Afghanistan as my EDC. As you can see, different circumstances and scenarios require different gear:

Combat EDC

So let’s look at how to figure out what you need to put on your EDC gear list.

How much room do you have?

What you need to do first is look at how much room you have to carry what you’re gonna carry. You may end up changing a bit, depending on what you have. If you have a purse or a briefcase that you always have with you then you may have a lot more room to work with. If you wear clothes with very few pockets, you’ll have less. By choosing certain multi-purpose items, you may be able to double up on utility but you’ll still be limited.

What do you currently carry every day?

You probably have a watch and cell phone, as well as some way to carry your keys. Take a look at what things you could either replace with something else to suit your needs (such as a firestarter instead of a gnome key fob) or just get rid of altogether.

What do you need to have with you every day?

The kind of work you do will probably have the biggest effect on what you’re gonna carry every day. If you’re a first responder or live/work out in the wild, you’ll need much different items than if you work at a bank.

What situations do you run into regularly that you’d like to deal with more efficiently?

Personally, I find that I need a knife at least once a day to open things and a flashlight sometimes several times after the sun goes down to find things. That’s why I always have them on me.

I don’t need a pen and paper every day but I probably use them once a week. I’d rather write something down than make a note to myself on my phone. For some of you, your bugout or patrol bag may actually be part of your EDC kit.

What situations can you foresee that may happen that you want to be ready for?

This doesn’t have to be something you expect to happen. It could be something that will most likely not happen but could be dealt with much easier by carrying something very small with you at all times. My hidden bobby pins are a good example of that, as well as pretty much everything in my EDC tin. I’ll probably never need to use any of that stuff (although I find I’ve used my lighter a few times already) but it’s there if I need it. If I ever get detained illegally by handcuffs or zip ties, I’ll most likely be able to get out. If I ever find myself in the middle of the wilderness and need to start a fire or build a shelter, I’ll be ready.

Imagine different scenarios and how you’d deal with them. What happens if your car dies halfway home and the cell towers are down. Would you have to walk several miles to get to help? What if you were driving across country in a friend’s car and it broke down. What do you think you’d have to have with you to survive or make things more comfortable if you had to spend a couple nights out there?

What ideas can you get from other people?

Once you’ve looked at all this stuff, take a look through the internet and look at what other people have put in their EDC kits. Remember that just because you see a lot of people carrying something, that doesn’t mean that you really need to also.

How can you downsize your kit?

After you get a decent list of the things you need and want, look at different ways that you can double up and not take up too much more room. I wrapped the handle of the sawblade knife I made with some electrical tape, for example. Hardly any more room than without it but I now have tape if I need it. Same thing with the dental floss I have wrapped around the safety pin I had anyway. Because I carry an iPhone anyway, I decided to load several hundred survival books in it. Doesn’t take any more room than it does without them, other than the memory space. Also look at getting smaller versions of items  if they’ll still work just as well.

Prioritize your EDC

You’ll probably find that there are several items that you’d really like to have with you at all times but you actually won’t end up carrying them. My spare magazine is an example. I keep these items handy as an extended EDC kit and wear them as my expected day changes or clothing allows. You may decide to have several EDC kits such as one for work, one for weekends, one for travel, etc. One thing that REALLY BUGS ME about travel as far as my EDC goes, by the way, is the fact that I can’t carry a freaking knife or anything sharp on the plane. If it goes down in the wilderness (as they sometimes do), I won’t have a knife available unless I can somehow get one out of someone’s checked baggage. Not cool. In these cases, I have to adjust my primary EDC until I get there. From what I understand, you’re allowed to carry a pair of scissors as long as the blade is under 4″ so I’m now on the hunt for one of those, which I’ll just modify a bit.

So as you can see, coming up with a good everyday carry kit is both simple and complex – as complex as you want to make it. Just think it through, make a plan, and execute. Then go back on occasion and revisit your plan and re-prioritize what you carry. Simple.

Feel free to post your EDC kit below. Someone else may learn something from what you’ve figured out.

About graywolfsurvival.com

I am a former federal agent and military veteran who has deployed to combat theaters in Africa, Iraq and Afghanistan and have almost three decades of military and military contracting experience.

My goal is to help families to understand how to intelligently protect their family and their way of life against real threats, without all the end-of-the-world doomsday crap.


  1. Gary Guyer says

    What’s in your EDC?

    Of all the posts and articles out there on prepping, EDC’s are a
    good place to start for the beginner. Every Day Carry items can be
    what’s in your pockets, purse, briefcase, gym bag, etc…, EDC’s should be
    the basis of preps.

    EDC’s should consist of the 3 following items:

    Something to cut. A pocket knife, buck knife, multi-tool, whatever.
    It is always in your pocket everyday. It can be used for self defense,
    making other weapons, cutting up rope, clothes, seat belts, etc… I carry
    a pocket knife and a multi-tool.

    Something to start fire. A lighter, book of waterproof matches,
    key-chain flint. It is always in your pocket everyday. Making heat and
    light are primitive instincts when it gets dark and cold. I carry a Bic
    lighter and a wind proof, water proof lighter.

    Something to tie. Good old 550 Paracord. Many, many uses. Whether you
    are bundling things, tying a knife to a stick, making a shelter. Learn
    how to tie a Cobra knot and make a survival bracelet so you are always
    carrying 10 feet of it with you. (Or I can sell you one for $10. Takes
    me about 10 minutes to make. What color would you like?)

    The point is: Cut, Fire and Tie are the barest of barest essentials.

    • graywolfsurvival says

      Yup. EDC should just be the basics. Otherwise you’ll find that you don’t actually have it every moment all day. Anything more should go in a bugout bag or something similar.

      • I had a couple thoughts about your EDC kit… 1.) Carrying extra para-cord, fish line, tape etc; wrap it around a laminated card, wrap the tape, then cording, then small threads/lines *don’t forget to have dental floss here and maybe even some fuse material, you could cut a strip out of the tape to cover an added piece of sand paper space on this card as a striker for matches, and add extra cards that hold the needles / fish-hooks and other small items and if you design it to be thin, (by switching the paracord carrying method) it would be compact enough to store in the can lid… 2.) trace a knife blade pattern into the lid of the altoids can that you could cut out with your multi-tool; even if you can’t take a knife with you, it’s a handy makeshift blade that would help… even if you could only take the can/kit on the plane?… 3.) Using 550 paracord there is a pattern to make a case for altoids cans (found it on pinterest); I would add a couple loops to attach things like a pill canister, keys, pen/pencil and extra paper, whistle, etc… Plus it can be unwoven to have the rope you would need for most emergency situations…I carry extra quarters, miswak instead of a whole bunch of extra hygiene tools, a pencil sharpener, bandanas and garbage bags (folded up like a paper finger football)…I’m kinda new at all this survival stuff but these are a few ideas that came to mind…. P.s. I would like to be on mailing lists that don’t flood my email with too many messages, if you have a reasonable amount I would like to be added, if not please do not add me to the list but know that I am following your posts….

        • I rarely send out newsletters. Usually only a few times a month just to let you know when I’ve written a new article (which isn’t often) or have some important news (which has only been done a couple times).

  2. I carry a sling camera bag with about 8 lbs of gear. Small first aid kit with the usual and a few extras. Polysporin, tweezers,toe nail clippers, safety pins, CPR Kit, surgical masks and various meds, lip balm, hand sanitizer, sunscreen, Peptobismal tabs, sucrets. Gravol, Tylenol, Advil, visine, scope mini toothbrushes and a 3 day supply of my own meds. In the tool section I have a, leatherman charge with drive adaptor and bits, mirror, magnifying glass, whistle, compass, mini markers, notebook, mini tape measure, eye glass repair kit, gift card with 6 feet of gorilla tape wrapped around it, 6 ft of paracord, mini Lysol spray, Tide Stain Remover Stick, 2 LED flashlights with spare batteries, 3 mini bic lighters, mini roll of Coleman’s toilet paper, 2 12 hr light sticks, 36 hr emergency candle, mini dog spray (pepper spray), small lock blade knive, mini deep woods bug spray, 2 hand & foot warmers, spare reading glasses, compact camera, 2 kitchen garbage bags, large emergency blanket, large rain poncho, work gloves, a couple of beef jerky snacks and a large water bottle. On my paracord key chain, I have a RescuMe window puch/seatbelt cutter, mini gerber tool, mini flashlight. This kit is always in my vehicle, in my office, motel room, soccer field with the kids. It may seem like overkill but I use this kit everyday or someone else will need something from it. When you get into the habit of carrying this you feel naked without it!

    • graywolfsurvival says

      lol. how do you carry all that stuff on you at every moment? I think my back would hurt. Good stuff to have with you though.

    • Doesn’t sound like over kill to me. I have a Bug Out Bag in my car at home and made one for my Mother, I also made sure she had a razor sharp machete.
      Since we live in the South we are trained to move fast and get everything in a car or trucker whatever and get the hell out of Dodge (or stay in place).

    • I think this is more of a Bug Out Bag, is it not?

  3. Ephraim Lowe says

    I would throw in a mini first aid kit. I do not think that one of the items I would include in my EDC kit would be a handgun, it is not something that I want on me all the time, so I would just keep that in my bug-out-bag.

    • graywolfsurvival says

      I keep mine on me all the time so I don’t have to go digging through my bag if I need it. Plus, I don’t always have a bugout bag within arm’s reach.

    • About the mini first aid kit, I put the band-aids and small packs of topical ointments in the foldout picture spaces of my wallet (Including burn cream)… I also have an embroidery thread card with a small sewing kit in another picture slot… and emergency plans, extra paper, and tutorial guides in another… It’s always a good idea to carry pictures of family and pets with written details on the back… last but not least, a medical card with first aid “need to know” info + medication location for someone else having to administer it… You can make your items smaller by using a vacuum sealer to make packets for the first aid stuff and restock it from a home supply as it’s used.

  4. April SpringBlossom Lent says

    About the EDC kit..I am making one up to carry in my purse. Women, or men, can use a vinyl make-up case/bag instead of the altoids tin. Oh, you can still use the tin, to place the smaller items, such as the pins, paper clips, etc. I also have a small wooden cylinder that I use to put needles and pins in. Perfect to add to kit. A women uses a lot of things in her purse that could be used for emergency situations everyday. So, this is something I wanted to pass along to you.

  5. graywolfsurvival says

    Nice! Interesting combination of old-fashion and new-fangled keys.

  6. Elan Timmons says

    I would recommend adding a KeyZ to that! I just ordered one off Kickstarter and can’t wait to add it to my kit!


  7. Josh Hallenbeck says

    Lots of Questions:
    1) What model Glock is that?
    2) Is that an aftermarket slide?
    3) What kind of part is on the end of the slide?
    4) What kind of watch is that?

    • graywolfsurvival says

      Hi Josh. It’s a 1911 and a Marathon GSAR. Everything is detailed in the article.

      • Josh Hallenbeck says

        Greywolf. Thanks for the quick reply! However, I was referring to James Bond’s picture. Btw, it goes without saying your 1911 is badass

  8. “you should cover up the keys”

    Doing all that work is for chumps. All I have to do is locate your home and bump your back-door lock. Or use a coat-hanger on your garage door. Or use my skeleton brick to pop a window in the back of your house.

    …and B&E is for chumps. Corporate crime nets the best return and least risk.

    • mother prepper says

      If you did any of those things you would meet my double barreled shotgun. Maybe not such a good survival tactic on your part

      • Billy Williamson says

        Not to sound rude but he has a point in the fact you might not be home to stop him. Though if you are I like your solution.

  9. black Bear says

    Hey Grey Wolf could you maybe give me a list if the pdfs you have i have a few and afew videos but I want to have more info that I can intake and carry.
    My email is jmichelin@live

  10. Wendell Watson says

    the way ive learned to keep the fluid in my lighter longer is put a ranger band around the seam of the lighter. I carry my zippo all the time and i dont use anywhere near the fluid as i did before the ranger band idea.

  11. Mrs. Mom of 6 says

    I am a mother of 6. I am often pregnant or have a new baby. Typically I prefer to travel light, without a purse or diaper bag whenever possible. I do not have many clothes with pockets, and can’t stand to fill them up even if I do have them. Any thoughts on how I could be more prepared? Currently I carry, a mini first aid kit (as in, neosporin and a few bandaids), credit cards, a cell phone (not much memory available on there) and keys. The “purse” I carry is about as big as two cigarette packs back to back, cube like. I own a 3″ blade knife with serrate, and used to carry that… I am considering carrying it again.
    We live in the sub tropics of the US. I drive a large van, but am not out of the house very often.

    • graywolfsurvival says

      Well, the simplest answer is to get a bigger purse and/or augment it with a belt pack. You might also put a pouch somewhere on your strollers etc and definitely have something in your van. You can also get a small backpack for your older kids.

      • I have a llbean book bag I bought 15 years ago. I carry it everywhere, good pockets for all essentials except my firearm…. Still working that out. It’s lightweight and has lifetime guarantee. Currently modifying with edc stuff besides my everyday basics to make it more useful in emergency aside from getting together a get home bag.

  12. My EDC is all about getting me back to my go bag. I always carry a sharp knife, lighter (or two), cordage (550 cord and dental floss), jacket, and bicycle repair kit. I ride my bicycle everywhere. Bicycle repair kit has flat repair stuffs, extra tube, multi-tool. There is no reason to carry anything extra if I can easily get back to my go bag.

  13. In reguards to your carrying a knife on a plane, leatherman makes a “TSA approved” multitool. I have yet to attempt getting on a plane with it but, i think with a little research you could find whether or not anyone has successfully.

  14. Chamele0n says

    We are a large family. My EDC is different from the rest of my family’s. I work in a public leadership position that does not allow weapons in my office. I can have them in my vehicle. My vehicle has a folding .40 carbine rifle, .45 Sig p220, 12″ buck knife, LEO equipment, food, water, multiple LEO and public services coms, critical maps, pre-planned family emergency plans, extra cash, LEO identifying artifacts, and any tools that may be needed on the road. I work 7 miles from home. I can walk home easily in SHTF. My wife is 20 miles from home. Her Bag has more food, water, weapons, and concealment items. My kids all have letters to present to their school administration if an event occurs. They are in different buildings. The oldest walks to me for most scenarios. I leave work to get the others for most. There are some scenarios where they all go underground in my designated areas for a few days. Older kid bags have food, letters for school, and coms. I have taught older kids to think for themselves under most situations. I have first hand experience that most school personnel don’t know what to do in an emergency. As a public school administrator, my kids have specific directions regardless of what their teachers/admin tells them. They all have different EDC/improvision training. Do what you can with what you have and make sure you have everything you need!

  15. ArmoredCav says

    Just curious what unit the challenge coin is from?

  16. at my work I have flash light m tool lighter on me all the time, truck is full of tools etc. can not carry my sig at work it is under my seat. can be home in 5 mins.
    when we go any where over 5 mile one bag is in the car or truck

  17. For the lighter evaporong I used rolled up tire inner tube on my zippo. Works great, although it is a bit fought to get open.

  18. James Long says

    Gerber also makes a bladeless multi tool you can carry anywhere. i have one on me right now. 😉

  19. I just discovered your site and have really loved combing through old articles. One thing that regularly comes up is the magic of storing how-to info on e-readers and thumb drives. I’m an avid backpacker, but I’ve never incorporated anything in the way of electronics into my gear, but after reading your articles, I’d like to start. My question is, is there a good resource for PDFs that you mention having on your thumb drive? I saw the section on prepper books, which was great, but if there’s any central source(s) for smaller, but useful files for a thumb drive, I’d appreciate the recommendation.

    • This site has a TON of downloads available but you have to filter through all the crap to get to the good ones. http://ps-survival.com/PS/

      I don’t have a list anywhere of what’s good but it’d depend on what your priorities are.

      I’d at least get some a couple good medical reference books and some plant identification stuff since there’s so much there, and then some military survival manuals.

  20. Excellent Article on EDC and Bug out bag. The only thing I would add and this is easier said then done,prepare your mind to endure. You can not adapt if your mental state is weak. You can not overcome if you panic and can not control your fear by breathing correctly. There are more points to make,but I believe you all get it. I served in southeast asia having survived two tours. Unfortunately,I was immature and the government talked me into doing contract work. Let’s leave it at that. I saw many so called ads kickers curl up into balls with fear. Lastly, get in shape You can’t fight or escape if your out of breath.

    Stephen Lopez
    75th Ranger Brigade ,75 Ranger Battalion 31st group. Pray for our country. We must over come what is coming.

  21. Sorry about the obvious typos.

  22. The Dude Abides says

    1911? Check.
    Marathon GSAR? Check.
    Beard? Check.

    I like yer style dude.

  23. Thank you.

    Working in a new environment, that is outside my normal has opened my mind to an awareness for needing this type of information as well as planning and training. Thanks so much for helping me begin.

  24. Martin (Dutch) says

    First congratulations on your good website, if was nice reading it. What I have in my EDC is a trauma bandage by heka fix. It is more or less similar to the Iseaelian bandage but whitout the plastic brace. Its flat, a bit bigger than a pack off cards. It can replace almost al of the bandages in a tipical first aid kit. A nice extra is that it’s vacuum packed in plastic what makea it water proof.

  25. Graywolf, thanks for putting this helpful info together! We need to take seriously the threats coming out of Syria today, esp. given the Paris attacks. I read Ted Koppel’s book, “Lights Out” and think this scenario is a possibility we can’t overlook. Good thing he’s a respected elder. Maybe it’ll give more credence to his arguments that the US has no plan for an EMP strike. As a former MP living in the SF Bay Area, sometimes I feel like I’m the only one who’s preparing for stuff.

    • You aren’t the only one preparing for stuff. I live between SF and San Jose and have always been a regular Cali girl, but I’m preparing too. I’m just keeping it quiet so my friends who are busy visiting psychics to resolve the problems of their past lives and chanting in front of candles to manifest their dreams into reality or wearing crystal and stone amulets while attending “cuddle seminars” don’t think I’m too weird.

  26. Just getting into all of this EDC bag and survival needs. I have bought backpacks and filled them full. I have bought a 22 rifle and small hand gun with ammunition. Not much but a start. Everyone I tell about being prepared, tell me this has been going on for hundreds of yrs and will always be predicted. Telling me I’m being silly . I feel like I’m in this on my own but I’m preparing everyday!

    • Pamela good americans are always prepare. I know you are on the right track you made it to this site of Graywoffs read it well then read it again. Its hard to find good prepeppers out there. a 22 is a fine weapon and food getter. dont get any more then you can carry. buy the best not the cheapest. learn skills they are free. start useing the stuff at home and the job or where ever. when it happens it will be just another day that you prepare for and it will be easyer and thats what this site is all about.

    • I’m in this on my own too but I have much better peace of mind since I’ve actively started preparing. It’s been on my mind for a long time and whether I ever need this kind of knowledge and equipment or not, I’m pretty glad I’ve started acting on a long standing conviction that we’re headed for SHTF time. If nothing ever happens, I have great party stories to tell about my adventures in learning how not to start campfires. I do feel a little strange since no one else around me seems to be concerned to prepare for anything, but I’m not sorry I’m doing it and I even feel like I waited too long to start.

    • your not silly you being smart!

  27. I have a Maxpedition Sitka gearslinger that I use for my edc. It doesn’t necessarily go on my back everywhere but it is ALWAYS never further away than where I parked. It carries my emergency stuff like flashlight w/ extra battery, pistol (Glock. 40 w/ extra mag) knife, cordage, small 1st aid kit etc. but also just my normal stuff like a book and my tablet plush chargers for it and my cell phone. Very handy and durable. Depending on what I’m doing or where I’m going (camping, church etc.) I just change stuff out.

  28. As a little ole ladie retired in Fl. I have had to adjust since my two dogs are with me constantly so I have added lots of bottled H2O. Since I carry a fairly heavy .357 and to 7 round speed loaders I only carry a lite load. My knife and fire starter are combine. I don’t carry a big med bag. I’m retired ICU/ER nurse and keep a small amount of medical supplies. Iodine, beta dine, can be mixed with water to clean any wounds. Seal for lung wounds and wrapped Kotex pads, since the original use was for WWII. A thimble with a few safety pins and group of Bobby pins. Since the grocery and doc are under 20 miles I don’t carry to much. Need to have hands free, I seem to be a prime target for hoods. 5ft little old lady they all want to take my purse, until I have to pull security. I can’t imagine what would happen if we had a EMP. Thanks for your information living in the boone docks we have to be prepped, bad storms can knock out power for days so we learned when we came here. Thanks again!

  29. Hi Graywolf,
    Haven’t been on here for a while, but sounds like things are going well for you. By any chance do you have a watch recommendation for women? Most of what I see are absolutely huge, or completely impossible for a woman to wear. I want either wind-up or automatic with a visible dial/ hands at the very least. Any thoughts or suggestions would be much appreciated.

  30. Great site you have. I am also new to this lifestyle, and hope to learn and be able to help others as you do. Great job.

  31. Billy Williamson says

    I found this post and well I was thinking about your problem bring paracord with you. A few week ago a friend told me about a catapillar knot. I haven’t learned how to tie it but it has about 3 ft of paracord and its on like an inch long she keeps it on her key chain and I never though anything of it. Honestly stick a few of those in your pocket or on your keychain and voilà parachord.

  32. Like your idea to load a ton of survival books and related material onto/into a thumb drive. But, how does one do that? I can download the LDS manual from the net, but many of the other publications appear to be for sale as hard copy and not available in handy .pdf downloadable format. How did you do it?

  33. Phyllis Coppolino says

    Unfortunately, that keychain flashlight is no longer available on Amazon. What I’m looking for, aside from having someone as prepared as you be with my daughters and granddaughters 24/7, are essential self-defense items for a keychain. I was thinking about pepper spray, flashlight, Swiss army knife, alarm, whistle, and a long piece if hard plastic. Yes, I just watched a video. I don’t know if I can talk anyone into carrying these things. I also realized that most, if not all, are probably not allowed in school, on planes, maybe not even at work. Any suggestions?

  34. DavetteB says

    Check with the TSA right before you travel as they change the rules all of the time and without notice. They took my mini tool off of my keychain and the blade was barely an inch long. Even though it was allowed on the trip to another city in my state, it wasn’t allowed on the return trip the same day.
    BTW, I have a small EDC for me Keychain and purse, and my rolling walker has its own backpack that stays on it. Someone suggested that at a preparedness expo and it has come in handy, even if only for bandages and spare t.p.

  35. I am falling in love with your practical advice. Since I am just starting this, I am trying to prioritize things that are “worth doing right” (ie costly but worth it). You said a really good watch is worth it. I am a nurse and sadly don’t wear a watch bc there are so many around me and “good” watches are usually easily snagged on bedding (or can clip someone’s head!). Another woman asked if you can recommend any quality watches that are made for a woman to wear as much as a man (although I would be fine with pinning a good one to me also). The one you recommended is quite expensive. For someone who has rarely worn a watch is there a quality one to start with? Maybe work up to something that nice considering someone who is looking to start go bags and bug out bags etc, resources have to be spread out for maximum effect as well as to best priorities.
    With some of your more expensive recommendations could you offer up some cheaper options (better to have a cheap one than saving up for a great one when catastrophic events occur in the meantime)

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