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The Overkill fannypack list

Jillian Weems wrote:
> Dear Susan,
> I would appreciate knowing the entire list of what you put into your
> personal survival pack. Do you carry this in a backpack?


2 vet wrap (rotated out regularly so it doesn't congeal)
2 or 3 kotex pads, the big fluffy kind (good pressure bandage)
2 packs of fairly heavy suture material (the needle is already
attached)---I don't think I'd try any serious suturing au naturel, but
my vet suggested this---his horse once tore a flap of skin badly on the
trail and he just threw in a suture or two to keep it in place, keep
dirt out and protect the muscle underneath until he could get back.
2 hemostats and a small pair of surgical scissors
about 10 ml of lidocaine
10 ml of Banamine
2 12 ml syrings with 20 gauge needles, I also carry 2 25 gauge needles
for lidocaine
snake bite kit
I happen to have a little Percodan left over, so what the heck, that's
in there, too
asthma medicine and inhaler
2 big triangular bandages
Sting-Eze (good for anything that itches or burns)
a tube of Preparation H---don't laugh (well, OK, laugh) but it's
basically just a lubricating cream with benzocaine that numbs
everything, so if you crash and burn but need to get up and ride 15
miles home anyway, this goes a long ways towards numbing any raw or
scraped-up parts until you're home.
waterproof matches
2 power bars
2 candles, the little tealight sort
flashlight with an extra battery in a plastic baggie
solar emergency blanket
a signal mirror (a little square of polished steel)
an emergency strobe (a tiny little battery powered thingy, very powerful
blinking light visible a LONG ways off at night and blinks for 3
days)(the battery is also kept separate in a plastic baggie)
50' of thin parachute cord
a wire saw
a Duraflame Firestart (little chunks of a Duraflame log, easy to light
and foolproof kindling for a real fire)
a wool cap with facemask and gloves
a Thermalite turtleneck and long undies---rolled up tight and held with
a rubber band, they're about the size of two fists, and warm even when
water purifier tablets
a compass
identification, a copy of my Blue Cross card, and contact phone numbers
in a baggie (this is for anyone else finding me if I can't tell them
an extra set of keys to the truck and trailer, buried deep
a Platypus bag---I got this at REI, a little plastic water bag tough
enough not to break even if I fall on it and holds a liter of water)

Believe it or not, all this fits into an Eagle Creek fannypack which is
roughly 12" x 7" x 8" with a few little extra pockets on the waistband. 
The waistband is wide so I can really cinch it down so it bounces very
little and it's well-made so it's comfy if you pack the waterbag and
clothing next to your back.  The whole thing only weighs a few pounds. 
I also carry a few other things on the horse, like his sponge, my water
bottles and HRM, but those are things I can do without if I fell off and
he left without me.  I only carry this stuff on conditioning rides, not
during a real endurance ride, when I assume real help is available and
anyway, most ride management would not be amused by finding out you had
equine painkillers with you on the trail, dontcha know.

What I DON'T carry (and this is just my personal choice) is a cell
phone, though I do have one back in the truck.  They never work reliably
around in our local canyons and every year we have stories on the news
about some lost hiker that spent a cold and miserable night out in the
mountains with his nonfunctional cell phone.  I figure I'd rather go out
prepared to survive on my own without technology.

The Rules Written In Stone that keeps my husband happy about me being
out in the boonies alone are:
1) I ALWAYS let someone know the exact trail or area I'll be riding---we
have topo maps of our whole area with my favorite trails highlighted, so
if worse came to worse, David could just hand a map to SAR and say
"she's HERE".
2) NEVER EVER deviate from that trail without letting them know that and
specify exactly where I'm going instead.
3) Let them know what time I expect to be back.  I don't have to be home
on the dot, but my husband also knows if I'm three hours overdue and no
word, it means something's wrong, not that I just stopped off for a
burger.  As soon as I'm back at the trailer, I call home and leave a
message that I'm on my way home.
4)  I always wear a helmet.  I don't force this choice on anyone else,
but them's the rules around here.

So, there it is.  Probably way overkill, but like I said before, I'd
rather be overprepared than underprepared.  Alot of the stuff on this
list was the result of suggestions from an SAR person, military police
or my vet, but I'm always looking for something better.

Well, if this doesn't give you some ideas, nothing should.....:-D

Susan Garlinghouse

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