Field Gear

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List of ideas for personal & vehicle gear to carry with you in the field and/or in your vehicle (depending on environment, weight/space restrictions, purpose for being in the field and also duration).


  • Backpack (30 - 50L)
  • Vest
  • Utility Belt
  • Radio Chest Pack
  • Quick Dry Clothing
  • Good Boots (comfortable/waterproof/good tread)
  • Pants/Jacket (Gortex or similar)
  • Change of Clothes
  • Dry Bag(s)
  • Coveralls
  • High Vis


  • Sat Phone
  • Mobile VHF/UHF Vehicle Radio
  • Handheld VHF/UHF Radio
  • Smart phone w/ bluetooth or USB Cable (Capable internet tethering to laptop for mobile net access.

Useful to have at least one phone for each major cell service provider in area. Also see the sections 'Software' and 'Smartphone Bookmarks' on this page.)

  • Extra Cell Phone Batteries
  • Cell Charger (Car and Wall)
  • Laptop (See 'Software' section on this page)
  • Vehicle Cell Phone Booster


  • GPS w/ base layers loaded (Good way to rig up your device: Mapping_techniques#Physically_Securing_Your_Device )
  • USB GPS Connection Cable (For connecting to laptop computer to upload/download data.)
  • Paper Maps of Area (2 or more copies)
  • Large Clear Ziplock Bags (To put protect paper maps from elements. Alternatively can print maps

on waterproof/tear proof poly coated paper)

Satellite Tracker/Messenger Device


  • Small Pelican Cases for Sat Phone, Smart Phone and Camera
  • Digital Camera + Card Cable or Card Reader
  • Extra AA an AAA Batteries
  • Rope/Cord/Lanyards
  • TP
  • Sunscreen
  • Soap/Shampoo (Small)
  • Deodorant
  • Micro Towel
  • Travel Toothbrush & Paste (Small)
  • Electrical Tape
  • Candle
  • Compact Tarp (Shelter and use as makeshift stretcher)
  • Garbage Bags
  • Beaners (for attaching gear to self, various sizes)
  • Field Notebook w/ Poly coated paper grid paper (For instance: )
    • List of Important Emergency Contacts/Addresses/Coordinates
    • List of Radio Channels
  • Pencil, Pen and Marker
  • Insect Repellent


(Useful Office/Field Software)

Smartphone Bookmarks

  • OSM-Emergencies - (test by clicking into the water for Haiti Symbolic Project, and entering

your message)


  • Stainless Steel Water Canisters (2 - 5 L total for day depending on temperature. Also can be used to boil water/cook on a propane stove)
  • Compressed High Calorie Rations
    • Powerbars can be a good survival kit food
  • Salt Tablets
  • Cooking\Boiling Supplies (Backpacking Stove & Fuel Bottle(s) )
  • Chlorine\Iodine
  • Camelback
  • Vitamin/Mineral Tablets

Misc Items/Tools

  • Multitool
  • Watch
  • Pocket Knife
  • Binoculars (small, compact)
  • Laptop Chargers (Car and Wall)
  • Extra Laptop Battery
  • USB Stick
  • Extra SD cards
  • Lighters
  • Money (Cash)
  • Credit Card
  • Identification
  • Thermarest Mat
  • Sleeping bag
  • Bivouac (Bivy) Sack
  • Firesteel
  • Compact Thermometer
  • Portable AED (in vehicle)

PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)

  • Helmet
  • Hat (Gortex or similar)
  • Safety Glasses (Clear and Polarized)
  • Safety Glasses Cases
  • Particle Masks
  • Surgical Gloves (extra pairs)
  • Whistle (Clip to shoulder so if pinned, you can still activate it without using your hands)
  • Ear Plugs (useful in and around helicopters)
  • Work Gloves
  • Sun Protectiona

First Aid/Survival Kit

  • Pressure Bandages
  • Triangle Bandages
  • Sterile Gauze Pads
  • Sterile Roll of Gauze
  • Elastic Roller Bandage
  • Petroleum Jelly
  • Scissors (strong enough to cut a penny)
  • Duct Tape
  • Sugar Packets or Hard Candies and Honey
  • Gloves
  • Steri Strips
  • Super Glue
  • Pocket CPR Mask
  • Liquid Antiseptic/Disinfectant
  • Antibiotic Cream or Ointment
  • Aspirin
  • Squeeze Bottles (wound flushing)
  • Finger Bandages
  • Baby Benadryl
  • Epinephrine Pen
  • Anti-Diarrhea Tablets
  • Disposal Bags
  • Tweezers
  • Safety Pins (Assorted Sizes)
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Tums
  • Chemical Cold Packs

Gear Reviews & Feedback

Misc Tips

  • Good to have items that have multiple uses eg. a 'Spork' (spoon that has small fork prongs)