If you plan on being prepared for a disaster scenario there are certain things that you need to make sure you have.

This is a fairly lengthy list, but I wanted to make sure I covered as many bases as possible. It may be that you need each of these items, or just a few in each category.

1. Water Purification

It’s extremely important to have clean water to drink. This first thing you should do is procure a clean drinking water source in the chance of a disaster situation. There are some very effective water purification systems on the market and I’ll be going over those in detail in future posts.

  • Bottled Water
  • Canteen/Camelback
  • Rain Barrel
  • Water Bottle with Filter
  • Water Purification Tablets
  • Pool Shock/Bleach
  • Kettle w/ Lid for Boiling Water
  • Propane Stove
  • Matches/Fire Starter
  • Charcoal and Sand
  • Mosquito Netting
  • Coffee Filters

2. Shelf Stable Foods

Your second major need is going to be food. Having a stable supply to last for a time will make your chance for survival much better. I can’t tell you how much food you need, I’m sure we’ll go into that in detail later but here are some shelf stable foods you can stock up in your preppers pantry.

  • Wheat
  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Beans
  • Dry Milk
  • Honey
  • Sugar
  • Vinegar
  • Lemon Juice
  • Cooking Oil
  • Coffee/Tea
  • Canned Goods
  • Spices
  • Condiments
  • Water Enhancers
  • Baking Essentials (Yeast, Salt, etc.)
  • Sprouting Seeds
  • Non-hybrid Garden Seeds

3. Hygiene Supplies

Some hygiene is more important than others. If you don’t take care of your hygiene it could lead to much larger problems down the road. Such as cavities, fungal infections and sores.

  • Soap
  • Toothpaste
  • Toothbrushes
  • Dental Floss
  • Feminine Hygiene Products
  • Shaving Supplies
  • Baby Wipes
  • Toilet paper
  • Insect Spray
  • Sunblock
  • Lotion/Lip Balm
  • Manicure Set (Nail Clippers, Nail Brush, File)

4. First-Aid

Make sure to have a healthy supply of first aid items because they will most likely become short supply quickly during an event. This is an area that I don’t skimp in at all. Having extra is never enough as far as I’m concerned.

  • First-Aid Kit
  • Extra Band-Aids
  • Dental Kit
  • Wound Care
  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Listerine Mouth Rinse
  • Antibiotic Ointment
  • Snake Bite Kit
  • Respirator Masks
  • Latex Gloves
  • Scissors

5. Medications

This is an area where I get a lot of concerned questions because our pharmaceutical system keeps such a tight control on many of the medications which we depend on. If you rely on prescriptions you can ask your doctor for multiple prescriptions for a larger supply. Then you could fill them at different pharmacies without using your insurance.

Some medications this will not be possible with, and you can possibly get in trouble doing this. Talk to your doctor about your choices if you want to stockpile medications. The over the counter medications are great to have on hand. Especially anything in the foot care area. You never know how much you may wind up needing to walk in a survival event.

  • Prescription Medication
  • Birth Control
  • Foot Care Products
  • Pain Reliever (Tylenol, Aleve, Aspirin, etc.)
  • Cold Medicine
  • Diarrhea/Constipation Medications
  • Antacid
  • Antibiotics
  • Allergy Medication
  • Vitamins/Supplements
  • EmergenC

6. Cleaning Supplies

It’s important to keep the environment that you live in fairly clean. This will help keep out rodent and other pests that carry disease. I recommend bleach with no other additives or ingredients. Just pure chlorine. You can use it to disinfect drinking water as well as to clean.

  • Bleach/Pool Shock
  • Comet
  • Baking Soda
  • Washing Soda
  • Borax
  • Bar Soap (Fels Naptha)
  • Vinegar
  • Mop and Bucket
  • Broom and Dust Pan
  • Scrub Brushes
  • Dish Pan
  • Trash Bags
  • Trash Cans
  • Burn Barrel

7. Cooking and Food Preservation

These are just some things that can make food preparation easier if you don’t have all the modern conveniences. Practicing your food preparation before an event happens can mean the difference between life and death. The longer your food can be stored without it going bad, the better survival chances you’ll have.

  • Solar Oven
  • Camping Stove
  • Barbeque Grill
  • Grain Grinder
  • Meat Grinder
  • Solar Dehydrator
  • Cast Iron Cookware
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Non Electric Can Opener
  • Non Electric Coffee Maker
  • Water Bath Canner
  • Pressure Canner
  • Jars and Lids
  • Extra 5 Gallon Buckets
  • Plastic Plates & Bowls

8. Lighting

Flashlights are only useful as long as you have batteries. The solar charging and hand crank flashlights are great to have but can also be problematic due to poor manufacturing and underdeveloped technology. Make sure to have the “old reliable” on hand. Oil lanterns can use almost and fuel that you can find. Be careful of the volatility of the fuel you are using, and depending on the fuel to have adequate ventilation. For example: Diesel fuel with ventilation will work, Gasoline equals a high probability of disaster.

  • Oil Lantern
  • Extra Wicks & Mantles
  • Matches/Lighters
  • Solar Lights
  • Light Sticks
  • Candles
  • Flashlights
  • Head Lamp

9. Self Protection & Hunting

It’s important to be able to protect yourself from people who are less noble than you are and want to take what you have. You’ll also need to be able to hunt for fresh meat to supplement your diets. If you don’t want to hunt and clean animals, you can eat bugs to get your protein.

WARNING!!!!! Please, please, please, get some damn training when it comes to the handling of firearms, and other self-preservation and hunting tools. They can be dangerous to you and those around you. I recommend hunters safety education and then advanced classes with a professional at your local gun range. This is definitely life and death and is not a subject to be taken lightly. (It doesn’t work how it does in the movies!)

  • Knifes
  • Machete
  • Shotgun
  • Rifle
  • Handgun
  • Ammo
  • Compound Bow
  • Extra Arrows
  • Sling Shot
  • Snare Wire
  • Steel Cage Trap

10. Clothing

You’ll need to be able to protect yourself from the elements. Rain, wind, snow, sleet, sun, humidity – exposure kills more people in a survival situation than almost any other way. Remember to layer, and to do your research on how to survive the elements. Minimize sweating in cold weather, and keep yourself in breathable clothes in the heat. Protect your skin from the sun and just use your common sense. Leave the designer dress clothes at home!

  • T-shirts
  • Underwear
  • Bras
  • Socks
  • Thermals
  • Jeans
  • Belt
  • Work Shirts
  • Boots
  • Extra Laces
  • Flip Flops/Crocs
  • Tennis Shoes
  • Fleece
  • Jacket
  • Raingear
  • Work Gloves
  • Bandana
  • Wide-Brimmed Hat
  • Mosquito Head Gear
  • Extra Prescription Glasses
  • Eye Glass Repair Kit
  • Sun Glasses

11. Household Items

These are some recommendations that weren’t covered in some of the other categories.

  • Sheets/Blankets
  • Bath Towels
  • Solar Shower
  • Kitchen Towels
  • Clothesline
  • Clothespins
  • Sewing Kit
  • Washboard and Buckets
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Ziplock Bags
  • Portable Toilet / Chemical Toilet
  • Lime
  • Lye
  • Pest and Insect Control (Mouse Traps, Diatomaceous Earth)
  • Extra Keys (Home, Shop and Vehicles)

12. Alternative Energy Source

You’ll need some kind of energy source eventually. Whether it’s to provide electric to your communication gear or tools, cook your food, or it’s to keep you warm from the cold.

  • Generator
  • Extension Cords
  • Solar Panels
  • Rechargeable Batteries
  • Solar Recharger
  • Charcoal
  • Propane
  • Gasoline
  • Fuel Stabilizer
  • Lamp Oil
  • Seasoned Fire Wood

13. Tools and Gear

Used tools are plentiful and affordable and I wouldn’t skimp in this category. You’ll need tools to maintain and build any structures that you may need for storage or even shelter. And being able to garden and grow your own food will help keep your diets healthy.

  • Gardening Tools (Shovel, Axe, Rake)
  • Fishing Gear (Poles, Tackle, Nets)
  • Shut Off Wrench for Gas/Water
  • Multi-tool
  • Binoculars
  • Basic Construction Tools
  • Hardware (Nails, Screws)
  • Lumber
  • Tarps
  • Tie Down/Rope/Para-cord/Bungee Cord
  • Duct Tape
  • Siphon/Funnel
  • Extra Gas Cans
  • Sharpening Stone/Honing Oil
  • Gun Cleaning Kit & Supplies
  • Wire and Wire Cutters
  • Window Screen Repair Kit
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Plastic Garbage Containers w/ Lid
  • Crowbar
  • Chain and Padlocks
  • Weather Instruments

14. Communications

Communication is important because what is happening around you can really effect your ability to survive. You can listen to the radio for important updates, call for help, and have warning if something bad is coming your way.

  • Two-way Radio
  • Weather Radio
  • Ham Radio
  • Mirror
  • Whistle
  • Flares

15. Money

So if the world goes to pot do you think your debit card is going to do you any good? It’s good to have enough cash on hand, but it’s likely that cash will only hold value for a short period of time. Precious metals and tradable goods will most likely become the new currency. You will also most likely be able to trade services for goods or other services.

  • Cash
  • Gold/Silver
  • Tradable Skills

16. Barter Goods

Here are some ideas of things that you can stock extra of that you can barter for other goods. If there is no one to trade with you’ll eventually use them, and most will last a long time.

  • Candy
  • Coffee
  • Sugar
  • Ammo
  • Batteries
  • Matches/Lighter
  • Toilet Paper
  • Soap

17. Maps and Guides

I like to have a healthy reference library of maps and other books that can help me survive in the case of an event. I have books on vehicle repair, living of the land, small farming, animal raising, atlases, maps, topical maps, water supply maps, survival books, natural plant books, building without power tools, and many, many others.

  • Detailed Map of Local Area
  • Survival Guide
  • Field Guide/Eatable Plant Guide
  • First Aid Manual
  • Books on Valuable Subjects

18. Identification and Documentation

Keep these safe. A good fire resistant safe is important. You’ll want to keep your photo id and contact info on you at all times. The other stuff needs to be stored in a safe, secure location that you can easily get to.

  • Photo ID/Passport
  • Birth Certificate
  • Social Security Card
  • Medical Records
  • Banking Documents
  • Insurance Documents
  • Marriage License
  • Contact Information

19. Entertainment/Sanity

I’m sure there will always be work to be done, but it’s important to kick back and find something to enjoy. Humans have a primal need for entertainment, often a bored overworked mind becomes cruel and angry.

  • Cards
  • Games
  • Dice
  • Musical Instruments
  • Paper, Pens, Sketchbook
  • Bible
  • Books

20. Pets

One of the toughest things in a survival situation is taking care of others who depend upon you. Make sure you have everything you need to take care of your dependents so that you can take care of yourself as well. Have a contingency plan to “take care” of your pets if you can’t take care of them.

It is cruel to your pets, as well as other people trying to survive, to turn them loose. Especially your dogs. They’ll start starving and then do whatever they have to do to find food. Often they turn wild and violent quickly in large packs and are known to attack humans! Be a big boy and handle your situation. This is no time to be a tree hugging pansy. Would you feel worse about putting down an animal you can’t feed, or your loved pet ripping the throat out of a toddler?

  • Food
  • Water
  • Proof of Vaccination
  • Medications/Ointments

You can collect gear forever and probably not have everything you can think of or everything you could want and need. The gear that is most important is what will ensure your survival and help you adapt to any situations that arise. There will most likely be ways to obtain things that you didn’t previously think about.

Just remember to stock plenty of the vital necessities and to adapt your needs.