The first step to make a 72-Hour Kit in 12 steps is the bedding you will need to keep you warm while you sleep. It may surprise you to see that I put the container you store your supplies in towards the bottom of the shopping list. That’s because you could end up buying the wrong size, so I suggest you wait until you’ve gathered your supplies. For now, put your items in a box, bag, or tote. Keep items small, lightweight, and compact. Let’s start with bedding.
Step 1: Bedding
Blanket – I like fleece blankets because they are warm, cheap, and available everywhere. But some people recommend wool blankets. Find a blanket you would imagine using on a camping trip as you sit around a campfire. Make sure it fits around your body and legs. You probably have one in your house right now. Even though it won’t fit in a backpack, it could be rolled and attached to your backpack.
Emergency Reflective Blanket – These are lightweight and compact, and fit perfectly inside a kit. They use your own body heat to keep you warm. These are easy to find at Walmart, hardware stores, or online.
Sleeping bag – Consider the cold temperatures in your area before purchasing. Most sleeping bags have a temperature rating to help you. If you are lucky, yours will come with a bag. If not, you can put it in a kitchen trash bag to keep it dry.
If you already own a sleeping bag, don’t worry about buying a new one. Keep it stored near your 72-hour kit even if you use it periodically on camping trips. If you can’t afford a new one now for everyone in your family, gather a few at-a-time as they come on sale. You usually can share a sleeping bag.
You may want to add an inflatable pillow to your kit as well, or just use some of your clothes for a pillow.
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