Build The Perfect Bug Out Bag by Creek Stewart
This review has been a long time coming! We owe a lot of thanks to Creek Stewart for giving us our initial direction several years ago when we got started with our own Emergency Kits, which over time turned into this website and community of BOB Builders. This was one of the first books we read on the subject way back in 2012 and has been a source of inspiration ever since. Lets dig into it and see what's so great about it.
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TONS o' Photos
First and most important to me: pictures. This book has TONS of photographs, which is a very pleasant change from so many other books I've read on survival subjects (I'm looking at you Bushcraft 101) and which is critical to proper comprehension on a complicated subject. You can tell that Creek spent a lot of time taking and organizing all the photos in the book so that it was crystal clear what type of items he was talking about. Since this book will be treated by many as a reference guide, the photos also serve as landmarks for quickly finding the place and subject you want to get back to after your initial read-through.
Out of respect to the copyright of the book I won't include photos of the pages inside but you can see a sampling of the book layout on it's page on Amazon. It's fair to say there are at least 2 -3 photos on nearly every page of this book.
Creek couldn't have done a better job of laying out the topics of this book in a more concise and easy to understand way. He has specific chapters relating to: Food, Water, Clothing, Shelter, etc and gives detailed product lists and different options for each category to help the reader figure out what works best. But my favorite part of the book lies in the end, where Creek smartly included several Organizational Supply Checklists which gives the reader a real tool for helping to assemble packs for an individual or a family and is what we still use as a reference when doing our BOB checkups.
Here's a big one - Build the Perfect Bug Out Bag actually gets it right. 99% of what's is this book is spot on. You could nit-pick an idea or two depending on what your personal preferences are, but you can't argue the fundamentals outlined in the book unless your idea of the definition of "Bug Out Bag" is radically different than Stewarts. And if that's the case then its an argument of semantics, not substance.
C'mon, how cool is Creek Stewart! The guy's just darn likeable and his writing style is entertaining and easy to read. The book isn't confusing or delve too deep into overly specific topics, it stays light and paces well. You could probably finish the book on a first read within a week, but you will want to go back and review certain sections as you start to put your Bug Out Bags together and it will be a resource for years to come.
If you havent figured it out yet, we think this book is a must-read for anyone interested in the topic of emergency planning. So what are you still reading this for? Go get your copy already :)