Ideally keep your Emergency kit on your person in a small bag, or pocket of your clothing particularly if you don’t yet carry a Personal locater beacon.(PLB)(*1)
I always carry the following items
- Personal shelter: Pocket Survival bag by NZMSC weighing 140g this compressed plastic blue bag opens to 190cm x 80cm for shelter. Blue is a great contrast colour for searching aircraft.
- Long Life food: I usually carry a couple of Back Country Freeze dried meals, and a flameless heater pack, although it can be soaked and eaten cold.
- Fire steel: I like the Swedish fire steel, it is lightweight and reliable source of fire, but also signalling by striking sparks or built in whistle. Always practice using your steel at home, so you have correct technique.
- Tinder: Cotton wool or a tampon (individual sealed from watertight packaging) – pull out the stuffing.
- Pocket knife: A nice wide bladed, sharp folding pocket knife.
- Signalling Mirror: I have a heliograph, which is brilliant for singling, (you can also use a compact disk – aim through the centre hole.)
- Fishing line or Paracord: 15-20m, multiple uses including rigging shelter.
- Tin Foil: Fold up a 30cm square of foil
Remember – NEVER abandon any of your gear, in an emergency even rubbish items can be re purposed to useful.
Its a good idea to make your self familiar with basic shelter and survival techniques, a search of youtube will give you plenty of ideas.
(*1)Carrying a PLB on every hike in a bag independent of my pack I carry my fire steel, tinder, signalling mirror, map and compass with my PLB and the remainder of my emergency kit is in my pack.