Given the choice of having only 22 survival tools in your bug out bag, what would you bring? Think about it. What would you need to survive after a disaster? Do you think you can make it out alive if you’re lost in the wilderness with only 22 survival tools?
Truth be told, 22 pieces of survival gear seems like a lot but it’s not. Your backpack can only carry so much so you need to be careful in choosing your emergency gear and supplies. Here are 22 top survival tools that will help you prepare for what 2022 may bring.
Why do you need a survival machete? Because it’s an essential survival tool. Preppers call it a must-have survival gear, and so should you! It’s great for hacking down branches, brushes, and vines to make a trail. It’s useful in stripping barks and making kindling for that all-important fire. A machete is also necessary for building emergency shelters and defending yourself from threats.
The Kershaw Camp 18 1074 Machete is considered one of the best survival machetes in the market today. It features an 18-inch full tang blade fashioned from durable 65 Mn steel that’s coated with a black powder coat finish. The 5.08 mm thick hardened blade can take on heavy-duty tasks.
The survival machete weighs only 2.6 lbs, which makes it easier to swing. The contoured handle is made of solid polymer with a textured rubber overmold that ensures a secure and comfortable grip. It also has a built-in guard with a lanyard hole. The Camp 18 machete comes with sturdy double nylon straps and a molded sheath for blade protection and easy carry.
2. Survival Knife
Fixed blade knives are very durable survival tools that are easy to carry. You could easily attach it to your belt or backpack with a sheath. They are also very versatile, as you can use them for survival tasks such as chopping branches, hunting animals, self-defense, and survival cooking.
Compared to folding knives, fixed blade knives are much stronger and more durable. The steel in the blade is much thicker because it does not have to be folded to fit inside a handle. These survival tools are also easier to maintain, as you can wash them off in a stream after use and dry them in a matter of seconds.
The Morakniv Companion M-12494 Fixed Blade Knife is one of the best budget survival knives, according to Outdoor Life, and definitely deserves a spot in this list of 22 top survival tools for 2022.
The Morakniv Companion is both durable and versatile. The 4.1-inch blade is made of easy-to-sharpen high-carbon steel while the non-slip handle features a patterned, high-friction grip for a more secure and comfortable grip, which makes it ideal for survival tasks in any environment.
Another bug out bag must-have, multi-tools should be on the top of the list of the 22 new survival tools you should invest in for this new year. A multi-purpose tool can perform various tasks necessary to increase your chances of survival in the event of an emergency. They come in different shapes and sizes, so choose one that best suits you and your survival needs.
The Leatherman Wave+ is listed as one of the best multi-tools for EDC by Everyday Carry and it’s easy to see why. The Wave+ multi-tool is equipped with 18 useful tools including straight edge and serrated knives, saw, spring-action scissors, needle-nose pliers, replaceable wire cutter, wire stripper, ruler, can opener, bottle opener, files, and a screwdriver with interchangeable bits.
4. Portable Shovel
Since your backpack has limited space, it’d be wise to choose your 22 survival tools wisely. That’s why you should take a good look at survival gear that does more than just one life-saving task.
Take the Stealth Tact Modular Multifunction Entrenchment Tool by Frog & CO, for example. This tool is more than just a portable shovel. It also functions as a hatchet, knife, saw, and hoe. It also comes with a fire starter, glass breaker, Phillips screwdriver, hex wrenches, bottle opener, and fish scaler. Plus, there’s a watertight compartment where you can hide more gear or supplies.
The Stealth Tact Shovel is made of lightweight yet highly durable 440C steel and aircraft aluminum. The 32.5-inch entrenchment tool collapses into modular sections that are only a foot long. The parts are stored in a camp carrying bag, which you can easily pack in your bag or kit. The 12-in-1 survival tool utilizes a thread lock system to lock the modular parts in place. This should ease your worries that the shovel will fall apart while you’re using it.
5. Pocket Chainsaw
Survivalists and outdoor enthusiasts know how important a pocket chainsaw is. Take it from them and include one in your survival gear or emergency kit.
The Pocket Chainsaw by Frog & CO is made of 65nm hardened steel that’s a lot stronger than ordinary steel. The links of the rust-resistant chain are held securely together by aluminum studs.
The bi-directional blades with self-cleaning teeth wrap around the branch or trunk making the sawing process a lot quicker and easier. This is important in a life-and-death situation. If you’re stranded outdoors during the cold season, for example, you need to find or build an emergency shelter and you need it fast. Your pocket chainsaw will cut down branches for your shelter as quickly as possible. Use it to saw off dead branches from trees to use as firewood, too.
The 36-inch pocket chainsaw weighs a mere 6.3 oz and is kept safe in a “stow-and-go” pouch with a belt loop. Its foldable design allows you to easily store the tool when not in use.
6. Camping Lantern
Natural disasters like hurricanes, floods, and earthquakes can render the electrical grid useless. When that happens, a portable lantern will be a necessary survival tool. The same goes when you’re camping out in the open. A camping lantern will provide you with the light necessary to see in the dark and avoid stepping on animal feces. Now that’d be a disaster!
The best camping lantern overall, according to T3, the Princeton Tec Helix Backcountry Rechargeable LED Lantern is one survival tool you definitely need in your bug out bag. It gives off up to 150 lumens of light and has two dimmable light modes, particularly a warm white LED for natural light and a red LED light for better night vision.
The IPX6 water-resistant lantern sports a tripod design that allows you to place it on uneven surfaces or to hang it from a branch or in your tent. Its glow-in-the-dark collapsible globe can be removed and used as a dome light.
7. Tactical Flashlight
Aside from rechargeable lanterns, you should always have a tactical flashlight in each of your emergency kits. These survival tools are necessary when the power goes out or if you find yourself in a dark place. The best tactical flashlights have a super-bright beam, are waterproof, and can run for hours on a single battery.
The Feyachi FL14 Tactical Flashlight produces 1200 lumens of bright light that can reach as far as 656 feet or 200 meters away. It is made of durable aircraft-grade aluminum alloy with a black anodized matte finish. The o-rings and anti-abrasive coating ensure that the survival tool is waterproof and shockproof.
The Feyachi FL14 comes with the lightweight M-Lok Offset Ring Mount, a pressure switch, an Allen wrench, and a battery charger. The 18650 lithium battery can light up the survival tool for as long as 4 hours while charging takes around 3 hours.
A headlamp is another survival tool that you should include in your list of bug out bag essentials. One main benefit of a headlamp is that you can illuminate your surroundings and move around without using any of your hands unlike with a flashlight or a lantern.
The BioLite HeadLamp 330 is acknowledged by REI as one of the best headlamps of 2021. In particular, it’s their preferred headlamp for night runs or hikes but the headlamp will also play a major role during disasters and blackouts. As such, the BioLite HeadLamp 330 is a necessary survival tool.
The HeadLamp 330 provides 5 and 330 lumens of bright light in low and high modes, respectively. Other settings you can choose include dimmable spot, flood, spot+flood, red night vision, and strobe light modes. Its beam can reach a distance of 75 meters, which allows you to see and prepare for obstacles or threats.
9. Fire Starter
Fire starters are one of the items that you shouldn’t exclude from your list of 22 top survival tools for 2022. They are essential to your survival. Plain and simple.
A fire can be your closest ally after a disaster or when you’re in the great outdoors. Aside from using it to cook meals and boil water, fire is also necessary to stay warm and avoid hypothermia. The flames and smoke can also be seen from afar so they’re great for signaling for help.
The Wolf And Grizzly Fire Set was voted the best overall fire starter of 2021 by Gear Junkie. It’s easy to strike the Ferro rod and create strong sparks due to its large surface area. The fire starter can last up to 20,000 strikes so you should have plenty of opportunities to start your life-saving fire. If you can’t start one as fast as you’d like, cut the paracord open and use the jute rope inside as tinder.
10. Portable Stove
A portable stove is an essential survival tool you need to own this year. Even if you’re not a fan of outdoor activities like camping and backpacking, you still need a portable stove in your emergency kit.
This piece of survival gear provides you with an alternative heat source for cooking food and boiling water, which is useful in survival situations where there isn’t another heat source available. Most camping stoves work in any weather condition, which means you can even cook food when it’s raining outside.
The BioLite CampStove 2 maintains a high burn temperature to prevent the formation of smoke. This is made possible with the use of automatic fans with four fan speeds that control the airflow to the fire.
The high temperature also boils water a lot faster, around 4.5 to 5 minutes, compared to heating a pot directly over the campfire. It only requires a fire starter and some twigs or other kinds of tinder to get things going.
Furthermore, the camping burner can also be used to charge small gadgets as it utilizes a thermoelectric generator to convert heat from your fire into reusable power. The LED dashboard allows you to monitor fire intensity, fan speed, and available power. The BioLite CampStove comes with a fire starter, a FlexLight, a USB cord, and a stuff sack.
11. Camping Cook Set
Cooked meals and boiled water are survival necessities. What better way to prepare them than with survival cookware? The survival cook set has taken the outdoorswoman’s needs into mind, coming complete with pots and pans that are lightweight and portable while cutting the cooking time down. These qualities are vital to your survival, especially if you need to be always on the move.
In a zombie apocalypse, for example, you need a lightweight cook set that will not add much weight to your back. You also want camping cookware that can be stacked together to minimize the noise when you’re moving. It should be capable of cooking or boiling fast since you can’t afford to stay in one place for so long.
The lightweight MalloMe Camping Cookware Mess Kit meets all these requirements. The 10-piece set can be packed together and safely kept in a nylon drawstring pouch. It includes an anodized aluminum non-stick pot with a cover, a non-stick pan, a couple of bowls, a folding stainless steel spork, a soup spoon, a wooden spatula, and a cleaning sponge.
12. Portable Water Filter
The fact that humans can’t survive more than three days without drinking water is enough reason to own new survival tools that’ll help keep you from succumbing to dehydration. One such tool is the portable water filter.
The LifeStraw Personal Water Filter is a small device that filters up to 1,000 gallons of water by removing around 99.99% of bacteria, parasites, and fine particles. The portable survival tool measures 8.8 inches long and weighs only 2 ounces so you can easily keep one in your go bag. Better yet, keep a LifeStraw in your everyday carry kit, too, so you can always have clean, drinking water wherever you are.
13. Water Bottle
Water is so essential that you need different methods to procure it during emergency situations. Aside from the LifeStraw or similar products, you should also have something like the Sagan Life Journey Water Purifier Bottle.
The Journey Water Purifier Bottle lets you drink any non-salt water source without having to get down and dirty. Simply fill the bottle with water from the source and drink through the nozzle, which is connected to the filter.
Bring it everywhere you go so you can easily filter water even those served in schools, workplaces, and restaurants. The BPA-free Journey Water Purifier Bottle is also perfect for survivalists, campers, and hikers since it is lightweight yet sturdy.
14. Hydration Bladder
Your bug out bag should also contain ample drinking water that’ll last for at least three days. Water bottles and canteens are great but hydration bladders are more convenient to use when you’re on the go. If you can squeeze in a hydration bladder in your go bag, you should definitely do so.
The Gregory 3D Hydro Reservoir is one of the most durable and easiest to use water bladders in the market, according to Outdoor Gear Lab. It boasts strong walls that won’t give out no matter how you cram it in your pack. The screw-top lid is simple to operate and has an ingenious grip that makes filling easier than before.
It may look like a simple rope but a paracord is one of the most useful and versatile survival tools you need in all your emergency kits. Most paracords are rated at 550 lbs, which is strong enough to tow a car or a boat and to support your weight when climbing up trees or rappelling down buildings and ravines.
A paracord can be used to tie down large objects and to restrain people that are up to no good. You can use it to build an emergency shelter or raft and to make a fishing line or a snare to trap animals. Paracords can also be used as a rescue line, a tourniquet, or as a makeshift belt to keep your pants from falling.
A compass is a vital survival tool as it helps you find your way out of trouble. If you’re out hiking up the mountains or exploring the wilderness, there’s always the risk of getting lost. If this happens, a compass will help you find your way back to safety as long as you know how to use one.
In this day and age, you’d think Google Maps and Siri will be enough to help you but navigational skills and survival tools like a compass will always be valuable, especially when you can’t access your smartphone.
The TurnOnSport Orienteering Compass is one of 22 survival tools that you should purchase by 2022. It’s durable, lightweight, and easy to use so it’s perfect for children, scouts, and other beginners.
The TurnonSport compass provides accurate readings thanks to its 0-35 degree scale and an adjustable declination adjustment. Other features that’ll help you navigate better include the high-speed magnetic needle, magnifying glass maps, horizontal orienteering lines, 1:24000 compass scale, and the 360-degree rotating bezel.
17. Solar Charger and Powerbank
In the event of an emergency, you have to be able to call for help and contact your loved ones. One way to ensure this is to always have a solar charger and powerbank with you at all times.
The QuadraPro Solar Powerbank features a 4-panel system that harnesses the power of the sun to generate 5.5 watts of electricity, which can then be used to charge up to three devices at the same time. Its 6,500 mAh battery can be charged on a wall outlet or under the sun for 12 hours.
The water-resistant QuadraPro comes with two USB ports and a wireless charging feature. It also has a built-in LED flashlight and magnets for attaching to your car or other metal surfaces. The built-in loops and carabiners allow you to hang the powerbank outdoors.
18. Two-Way Radio
An electromagnetic pulse or EMP attack is entirely possible. This will disable all technological devices, including phones and computers. If this happens, your only means to communicate is to through two-way radios, homing pigeons, or the Pony Express.
Since the Pony Express shut down more than 160 years ago and it’ll take some time to train pigeons, your best option is to use two-way radios such as the BaoFeng BF-F8HP. This portable communication tool works even during power outages or when the internet is down so it’s a handy survival tool to have.
The BaoFeng BF-F8HP has a 400 to 520 MHz frequency range and a capacity of 128 channels. It can track two channels at the same time giving you more access to valuable information. The HAM radio is bundled with CHIRP software, a desktop application that provides an easy-to-understand programming process.
19. Hand Crank Radio
Information is vital to survival. When power and wireless connections are down, the survivalist needs an alternative. A crank radio is a great survival tool to have around for just such an occasion. Keep one in your survival pack or bug out bag so that you can be informed of threats and opportunities as they arise. Be sure you know what frequencies to use when trying to listen to emergency broadcasts.
The Kaito KA500 Voyager Solar Radio is just what the doctor ordered when it comes to hand crank radios. This valuable piece of emergency gear can be charged in 5 different ways assuring you of a way to stay up-to-date with news and weather forecasts. The radio can be charged on a wall outlet or a computer via USB input. It also has a port for 3 AA batteries. When these options are unavailable, its 180-degree rotating solar panel will harness energy from the sun and turn it into electricity. And when that fails, the radio can be charged with a few turns of the dynamo crank.
The portable emergency radio measures 8 x 5 inches and weighs only 1.8 lbs. It comes with a built-in LED flashlight, a muted white light, and a blinking red light. Another impressive quality of the Kaito KA500 is its ability to charge other small USB devices like your smartphone.
20. Tent and Bivy
Shelter is one of humankind’s most basic needs. Without proper shelter, you can easily succumb to hypothermia. You don’t want that, right?
Whenever you go camping or backpacking, you should always bring a quality tent or bivy. That’s kind of a no-brainer. As for your bug out bags and other emergency kits, you’ll be thankful you packed these emergency shelters, too. Tents not only keep you warm and safe from the elements, but they also provide some privacy, especially if you’re with fellow evacuees after a disaster.
Truth be told, tents provide better protection and more room than a bivy. Still, it’s a good idea to own both since you’ll need all the protection you can get when it gets dangerously cold.
The Solo Bivy Tent by Frog & CO is a one-person tent made from lightweight material that keeps you warm when it’s cold and cool when it’s hot. At just 2.9 lbs, the Solo Bivy Tent including the two aluminum rods and 14 heavy-duty stakes, won’t take a toll on your back.
The seams of the all-season tent are pre-sealed to protect you and your gear from the elements while the reinforced rain-fly further helps to keep you dry. The mesh netting, meanwhile, keeps the bugs out while letting the wind in.
21. Thermal Blankets
In survival situations, people can still become victims of hypothermia even if their survival shelter is crafted from the latest in survival technology. Even if you’re inside your home, you should take the necessary steps to make sure you won’t succumb to extremely cold weather. One thing you can stock up on to deal with the cold is thermal blankets.
The Heat-Reflecting Space Blanket by Frog & CO will help trap up to 90% of the heat produced by your body and keep you from freezing to death. These lightweight space blankets are made of reflective polyester film.
22. First Aid Kit
Saving your life is just a band-aid away! Well, the truth is a band-aid can only do so much so you need a first aid kit that’s contains everything you’ll need to treat different injuries and ailments.
The Tactical Field Trauma with QuikClot First Aid Kit by Adventure Medical Kits includes 53 medical supplies kept safe in a medical bag. They come with items necessary for cleaning and closing wounds, relieving pain and inflammation, and treating burns, fractures, and sprains. The kit also has the QuikClit Sport sponge, which stops bleeding real fast.
A survival tool is something you carry with you to help increase your chance of survival whenever you’re faced with a life-threatening predicament. Knowing that you can’t pack everything in your bug out bag, you should prioritize survival tools based on their effectiveness and practicality. Don’t limit yourself to this list of 22 survival tools. As long as you can squeeze in more gear without sacrificing your mobility that much, you should feel free to do so. Find out more about survival tools and gear over at Gentleman Pirate Club.