AB2NM's recommendations This page contains suggestions for your Go Bag from Don Dunn, AB2NM.Some ideas to consider:
- Nest the bags such that the smaller bags will fit into larger bags
- If your back is in good shape, consider a small to mid-sized backpack
- Label the bags (personal, radio, tools) so that you can literally 'grab and go', stowing smaller bags into larger
- Start an inventory list for each bag. Keep the lists on your computer so you can modify them easily. Print one copy of each list and put it on or in each bag. As you add/delete items, write the changes in the field (on the hardcopy) and - as soon as you are home - change the list. In about 5 revisions you'll have a good set of lists borne of experience.
- Every drill, SET, or actual deployment is an opportunity to refine and revise the lists and bag contents
- Additionally, every Field Day or portable operation from the park becomes an instant opportunity to play radio and tweak the kit ... and gain experience ... and meet lots of interesting folks in parks.
- One item - worth its weight in solid gold - is a cheap pair of padded headphones.
- Duct tape and electrical tape - priceless!
- Velcro - very good
- I recommend getting an LED light. Very efficient.
- A very small sewing kit (like hotels have for guests)
- Matches (waterproof)
- A cigar or two - great for driving away mosquitoes (and other undesirable characters ...)
- Small spool of high-test fishing line. Wind 100 feet on a small empty plastic pill bottle or wooden thread spool. I've used this to hang an end of a dipole. Add a couple of 1 oz. sinkers and a few hooks - also handy for anchoring antennas ... or for fishing if the bands close.
- Get a magnifying glass. It's a great way to light a fire if you don't have matches. (Of course it has to be daylight)