|To gain a more complete understanding of the issues involved in selecting a survival kit and a more full explanation of the evaluations given to specific equipment and supplies included in the personal/pocket size survival kits reviewed here, it is highly recommended that you review the contents of "Basic and Wilderness Survival Equipment Evaluations" on this site before reading these evaluations. Alternatively, links are provided in the text and in the individual kit reviews to some of the specific areas of interest.|
These one-person cargo/large pocket or pouch sized kits allow for more equipment and/or more capable gear than you would typically find in a everyday carry size personal mini-sized kit. Thus, theoretically at least, you would be better prepared if this was all you had available to you. Because of their larger size, these kits are far less likely to be carried at all times, unless perhaps your normal living environment is the wilderness, but they are still primarily oriented towards providing for a single person's survival needs. Some refer to these as "Personal Survival Kits" or PSKs, even though they are not as small as a typical mini- or pocket-sized PSK.
To qualify for our definition of "one-person cargo pocket or pouch size," the kit must be be packaged in a pouch designed to fit comfortably on your belt to be worn at all times during activities, or sized so it could be carried in such a pouch, a large cargo pocket (such as found on BDUs or some cargo pants), or in multiple smaller pockets. This precludes larger kits in fanny packs, which like any pack can be more easily separated from you. It also excludes the small mini-kits that fit into a normal size pocket.
Such a kit may stand entirely on its own or it may be designed to supplement a pocket knife, multi-purpose tool or other items normally carried. The items included should be those which are difficult or impossible to improvise effectively or easily from available materials.
In our opinion, irrespective of what is in this kit, you should always carry a quality pocket knife. In addition,some of us carry a bit more, what we refer to as our "Don't Leave Home Without It" equipment.
While it is entirely possible, and perhaps desirable, to assemble your own personal size survival kit, there are a number of commercially produced kits. We have evaluated a number of these commercially available personal/pocket size survival kits over the years.
Many of these small kits have failings, some pretty significant from our perspective. Depending upon what else you carry on your person, that may or may not be a factor. Still, they are better than nothing, and the better kits are actually pretty darn good. Most of the kits with significant deficiencies, excepting the sealed ones, can be improved without a great deal of effort and at moderate expense, and we'd certainly recommend that anyone buying one seriously consider that option.
By and large, you generally get what you pay for in these small kits. The least expensive of these small kits are often almost worthless. The more expensive, better equipped kits generally represent a good value compared to either assembling one yourself or supplementing a lesser kit. (Some of the kits reviewed here are no longer available, but are included because they sometimes find their way onto E-bay or can serve to further educate the reader on the subject of personal survival kits.)
(NOTE: If you know of a one-person pocket/pouch size survival kit that we missed, please contact us.)
|You can review the entire section by simply clicking on the "next" arrow at the bottom of each page. If you would rather jump to a specific kit, select from the adjoining drop down list or click on the image or links below:|
|"WSI Gold Label Wilderness Survival Kit" from World Survival Institute and Chris Janowsky, this kit is marketed as a "pocket system," an apt description. The kit includes a number of discrete pocket-sized components that combine to offer more capability that you could fit into a mini-kit. Carry it in its plastic zipper-lock pouch in a large cargo pocket or distribute the components among multiple pockets|
|"WSI Mini-Survival Kit" from Survival Sheath Systems. This is the above WSI Gold Label kit put on a diet--less gear, lower price. Carry it in its plastic zipper-lock pouch in a large cargo pocket or distribute the components among multiple pockets|
|"Global Survival Kit" from Adventure Tools - A robust stainless steel container adds considerable weight. Will fit in a large coat or cargo pocket.|
|"Your All Purpose Survival Kit" from Tacoma Mountain Rescue Unit - A staple on the shelves of REI, this inexpensive kit added some bulk a few years ago to the point where is moved up a size category. Requires a very large cargo pocket, more likely a rucksak or fanny pack.|
|"Kodiak Personal Survival Kit" from Northstar Survival, Inc. - A compact belt pouch kit with unique organization.|
|"Master Pro Survival Kit" from Pro Survival Kit Company - A top of the line personal survival kit, fits on a belt or in a large cargo pocket.|
Doug's Mini Survival Kit - Doug Ritter shows how he assembled his personal Mini Survival Kit
Personal Survival Kits assembled by Doug Ritter - A list of the equipment and supplies that Doug Ritter has included in his selection of pocket size survival kits.
On Your Own - "Don't Leave Home Without It" survival gear including a listing and discussion of the equipment that Doug Ritter carries in his pockets.
Basic and Wilderness Survival Equipment - Extensive and in-depth name brand reviews and evaluations of survival equipment and supplies appropriate for inclusion in a personal/pocket size survival kit.
A Survival Primer - Basic, fundamental survival techniques. Essentially, a basic survival manual.
|SELECT AND USE OUTDOORS AND SURVIVAL EQUIPMENT, SUPPLIES AND TECHNIQUES AT YOUR OWN RISK. Please review the full WARNING & DISCLAIMER about information on this site.|
Publisher and Editor: Doug Ritter
Email: Doug Ritter
First Published: June 12, 2002
Revision: 01 April 12, 2003
Email to: email@example.com