by Ronnie Charrier
If you’re anything like me, you’ve definitely had a couple of those days where the mere thought of having to spend all day in an office or classroom, while the sun is shining and the mountains are only a short drive a way, is just too much to handle. Most of the time I, and probably most of you, just suck it up and do what you have to do. But every now and then, I think it’s good for the soul to call in sick, or skip that 9 AM class, and take a day, or weekend, to reset. Blame it on biology if you will, but sometimes the "flight" portion of "fight or flight" has to win. And when it does, that’s when it’s a good idea to have a pre-packed G.O.O.D. bag, or the Get Out Of Dodge bag.
Don’t have one? That’s what I’m here for. The best way to think about the G.O.O.D. Bag is as the answer to the question, “What do I need to survive (literally) for 72 hours?” While how to cook and sleep are a big part of the bag, it also needs a bit of fun and relaxation as well, since we did just talk about this being good for the soul. Every person’s bag is going to be a little bit different, as we are all, but I wanted to show you what I’m packing in mine for those days when I just need to get the heck out.
Here's what I did:
I started with my Blaze Pack from our good friends at Granite Gear.
And then the fun of picking out my favorite travel gear began. Here are the 9 essential items I have to have in my G.O.O.D. bag...
- Ibex Merino Wool Highlands Pant: When it comes to my G.O.O.D. bag, I need clothes that can be used for multiple activities. Merino Wool is one of my favorite materials because you can wear it hiking all day, throw it in your bag, and pull it out the next day wrinkle and smell free. Ibex's Highlands Pants are absolutely a necessity no matter where I'm going.
- Ibex Merino Wool All In Shirt: Like my pants, this short-sleeve, button-up shirt from Ibex is the perfect shirt for any trip. It looks good enough that you can wear it to the office, and has the durability that 4 hours later when you're on the mountains, it still holds up.
- Tasc Performance Bamboo Viscose Core 1/4 Zip: You're probably wondering what the heck bamboo viscose is, and I don't blame you. You can read all about how Tasc takes the Moso timber bamboo plant and reduces it to a cellulose level before regenerating into Viscose here, but the short version is that it's unbelievably comfortable, and provides UPF 50+, moisture-wicking, and anti-odor protection.
- Vasque Talus Trek Ultradry Hiking Boots: Waterproof, comfortable, and durable; need I say more? I've used my Vasque boots on Summer hikes and in snow, and they just keep going.
- VSSL Supplies: Compass? Check. Flashlight? Check. Waterproof matches, water purification tablets, flint, first aid kit, check, check, check, and check. In one easy to carry canister, VSSL has managed to put together just about everything you will need for survival.
- Apache Pine Zebra Wood Bush Knife: I did say "just about" above, right? While the VSSL Supply does have a small saw included, I prefer to make sure I have my stainless steel bush knife with me as well.
- Kammok Roo Hammock: True story, my fiance and I once spent 5 nights in Greece sleeping in one of these, and it was damn comfortable! The fact that it packs up to the size of a grapefruit makes it the perfect companion for any ultralight camper.
- Enlightened Equipment Revelation Quilt: If you're in Greece in July, a quilt isn't necessary. But since you probably won't always find yourself on an island in the Mediterranean, I would suggest this amazing quilt from Enlightened Equipment, that packs down to 6"x12" and has a temperature rating down to 0.
- PowerPractical Power Pot 5 & Lithium 4400: And lastly, my 1.2 L cooking pot from PowerPractical that also has a USB chord that will charge your device (like your iPhone in case you need to make an emergency call) while it cooks your meal.
So there you have it, my Get Out Of Dodge Bag and the items I can't live without. What's your favorite items to bring? Let us know in the comments!