The Ultimate Urban Survival Kit (TUUSK) is a project that we undertook with the team at Ready To Go Survival. We set out to build a bug out bag that was optimized for urban survival.
The Ultimate Urban Survival Kit will enable you to:
- Breach doors, windows, walls, containers, and other manmade or natural obstacles in your way
- Protect your hands, eyes, ears, and lungs from debris and dust
- Defend yourself against unfriendly survivors
- Perform basic first aid
- Purify and carry water
- Start a fire for warmth, cooking, or signaling
- Communicate with your bug out team
- Receive radio updates on the evolving disaster
- Shelter yourself from the elements
- Have survival supplies for at least 72 hours
- Stay mobile all day long, if need be, as it weighs under 15 pounds
- And much, much more
Together, we tested dozens of items to see what would be best suited to help us survive an urban disaster. This testing was carried out in real world conditions in the heart of New York City and left no doubt in our mind that the final TUUSK loadout is ideally suited to keep you surviving and moving towards safety when time is critical.
With the TUUSK, you’ll never get caught unprepared.
TUUSK Packing List
For The Ultimate Urban Survival Kit, we combined our survival experience to create a kit that’s worthy of being in every city dwellers home or apartment. Here’s a rundown of the components.
One of the biggest challenges when building a custom bug out bag is making sure the survival gear you are choosing is reliable and tough enough to bet your life on. This is one of the primary questions we focused on when developing the TUUSK.
The backpack we chose for the TUUSK is a Rothco Medium Transport Pack that is perfectly suited for carrying our survival gear plus personal items like spare clothes and important documents. It is MOLLE compatible for easy customization and has 4 compartments of varying sizes for simple organization of our gear.
Also, the Medium Transport Pack is durable and well-built making it perfect to endure the harsh urban survival landscape.
Breaching and Self-Defense
Breaching is an essential asset in an urban survival scenario. We may need to force open a door, break a building or car window, or open a container full of essential supplies.
The concentrated population of an urban center also increases the possibility of having to discourage unfriendly advances from other survivors. Having a self-defense tool at hand is important to tip this sort of situation in your favor.
To help us accomplish this, we are including two dual-purpose tools in the TUUSK:
- Ontario SPAX Tool – The SPAX is a highly versatile breaching tool that is perfectly suited for the urban environment and can double as a self-defense weapon. The SPAX still held an edge after being used to break cinder blocks, pierce sheet metal, chop wood, and break glass.
- Smith & Wesson Extreme Ops Knife – The Extreme Ops is capable of easily slicing through light to medium materials using either its main blade or seat belt cutter. The knife also integrates a glass breaker for escape or search and rescue purposes. It’s lightweight and compact yet tough enough to function as a full-sized knife.
To enable us to keep warm, generate light, signal for help, boil water, cook, and more we are including the following fire starting tools in TUUSK:
- UCO Stormproof Matches in Waterproof Container
- Cigarette Lighters x 2
The lighters should provide enough fuel to last for months and are a great barter item as well. In our testing the UCO Stormproof Matches kept lit after having water poured directly on them and having me blow as hard as I can onto the lit match. Even the most inexperienced urban dweller should have no problem getting a fire going with these tools at hand.
Food & Water
To stay hydrated and keep moving while bugging out it is recommended that you consume between 2-3 liters of water per day, depending on levels of fitness and exertion. To meet this requirement, we are including gear to both carry and purify water in the TUUSK:
- Datrex Emergency Ration Bars x 12 – These 12 ration bars contain 2400 calories and should be enough for at least a day’s hard travel.
- Camelbak 2.0 Liter Antidote Hydration Reservoir – Efficiently carry the bulk of your water in the Medium Transport Pack
- Chlor-Floc Water Purification Packets – Each one treats up to 1 liter of water for Giardia, bacteria, and other viruses
- Water Bottle – Store additional water, scavenged water can also be boiled in this container
The urban environment can quickly become hazardous and toxic in the aftermath of a disaster. To protect ourselves from all manner of environmental threats we are including a set of safety equipment in TUUSK including:
- Eye Protection – UVEX Stealth OTG Safety Goggles
- Ear Protection – MSA Safety Works Foam Ear Plugs (4 sets)
- Lung Protection – 3M N95 Particulate Respirator Masks (4 masks)
- Hand Protection – Mechanix M-Pact Gloves
This gear is lightweight, compact, and easy to use. In our testing, we were able to pull it all out of the bag and have every item deployed in about 10 seconds.
Although the urban environment provides ample shelter opportunities, we wanted to equip ourselves with enough basic shelter building gear that we would be able to build a shelter from found materials, repair a partial shelter, and keep dry in the unlikely event that shelter could not be found in time.
To meet these needs we tested and debated a variety of shelter building materials. Ultimately, we settled on the items below. We felt that this set would give the most bang for the buck, as well as for their efficient weight and size:
- Coghlan’s Tube Tent
- SOL Emergency Blanket
- Rothco Ripstop Poncho
- Paracord – 50 feet
- Duct Tape – 50 feet
- 10 Large Zip Ties
Communication is a vital part of any survival situation. Keeping up to date with changing events allows us to make the best decision possible when life is on the line.
We chose the Eton FRX2 Emergency Radio to make sure we would always be kept in the loop as it is American Red Cross certified, powered by solar or hand crank, and can even charge your USB devices such as an iPhone.
In addition to getting communication from external sources, we also want to be able to communicate with each other and be able to signal rescue parties and other people we may encounter from afar, and we found that the Storm Emergency Whistle was perfectly suited to this task.
A survival kit isn’t complete without First Aid supplies. So, along with a traditional First Aid kit, we’ve included two additional supplies that will expand the kit’s scope.
- All-purpose First Aid Kit from First Aid Only – A 205-piece First Aid kit that has all the basics you’d need for minor injuries.
- ThyroSafe Potassium Iodine Tablets – These are used to protect you from radiation damage from a dirty bomb or other radiological attacks.
- Ammonia Inhalants – Used to wake someone up who has passed out, we decided these would be good to have to keep our bug out team moving after an injury had occurred.
In addition to all the purpose-specific gear listed above, we also chose to include some basic tools that can make life easier when on the move.
- Nebo 220 Lumen Redline LED Flashlight – Flashlights are an essential item for any bug out bag. This flashlight is bright enough to be used for signaling or to temporarily blind an aggressive person. Additionally, the 5 usage modes (high, medium, low, SOS, strobe) give the Redline the flexibility to be useful in any survival or emergency situation.
- Gerber Compact Multi-Plier – A multitool with nearly limitless applications. The Compact Multi-Plier has all the basic tools one would expect from this type of tool including one-handed opening pliers, screwdrivers, a small blade, scissors, and a can opener. Again, every bug out bag should have a multitool of this style.
- Folding Eating Utensils – This is one of those comfort items that remind you that you are a human being after a day of hiking under grueling conditions. The urban landscape should be filled with scavenging opportunities, and utensils will help us consume what we find.
- 6 AA and 6 AAA batteries – The AAAs can be used as replacements on the Redline flashlight. The AAs can be used to power other personal devices. Batteries are also immensely valuable bartering items. No one wants to waste time in the aftermath of a disaster foraging for batteries. Pack a few extra and reap the benefits.
Video Walkthrough of the TUUSK
From the very inception of the TUUSK project, we committed to testing all the gear instead of relying on YouTube reviews or speculation. We field tested the equipment in a real-world urban environment.
And what could be a better place for urban survival than in the heart of New York City?
I traveled to NYC to meet with Roman and Fabian, the founders of Ready To Go Survival to put the TUUSK to the test.
We met at an abandoned factory in Queens, slipped through the fence, and got to work.
For some highlights of the TUUSK items in action, check out this video:
Why Not Build the TUUSK Yourself?
You definitely can. I have shared all the information you need to build your own TUUSK.
However, if you are interested in maximizing your urban preparedness faster while saving money, buying an assembled kit guarantees:
- Every item has been price matched against Amazon – you cannot get all this gear from ANYWHERE cheaper than here
- The assembled kit will arrive much faster than buying everything individually
- The bag will come packed and ready to go
- The convenience of a quick and effective solution for urban survival
Ordering Your TUUSK
The TUUSK is now available for order directly from our friends at Ready To Go Survival.
With the TUUSK, you’ll never get caught unprepared.