Having fire-starter in your survival kit or bug-out bag is essential. With fire, not only do you have warmth, but you also have security and a means to cook food.
Nonetheless, a good blanket or two is also something that you should consider including in your kit. Yes, they do take up some space, but most blankets that you will be using fold up very compactly or can fit inside a small bag. A blanket will come in handy if you can’t build a fire during the winter, and also will provide extra warmth when you do have a fire.
Let’s examine your options:
1. Cotton blankets. This is not the best blanket to put in your kit, especially during the fall or winter months. Cotton blankets are very lightweight but shrink quickly when they get wet. The major benefit to cotton blankets is that beyond shrinking, they do last a very long time. You can put a lightweight cotton blanket in your bag if you wish, but you need to take a look at the next options first.
2. Emergency blankets. Emergency blankets are very cheap, very small, and designed to reflect the heat back to you. They can be purchased for just a couple of dollars per blanket and are quite compact. You can easily store several of these in your kit. However, when they are unfolded, they are still rather small and you will need more than one. And since they are cheap, they also tear quite easily. Some can only be used once or twice before becoming little more than trash items. But despite the shortcomings, the emergency blanket is still a fine way to have a one-time, cheap-and-easy means of providing warmth.
3. Space blankets. True space blankets are similar to emergency blankets in that they reflect heat back to you, but they cost more, are much larger and more durable, and are designed for more than just a one- or two-time use. They also can double as a shelter-provider; some have grommets in the corners.
4. Sleeping bag. This is definitely the most bulky option on the list, but you have to consider sleeping bags as another option. Some sleeping bags are designed to be rolled up very compact. These smaller bags have also been designed to insulate the body even in extreme temperatures. The benefit of a sleeping bag is that it should keep you warm regardless of what weather or temperatures you are in, and it also is much more cozy and comforting then a simple blanket.
5. Wool blankets. Wool blankets are extremely durable, will last you a long time, and are relatively cost-efficient. They will also keep you warm when you are wet and they won’t shrink; this is due to the fibers in the blankets that allow the blanket to maintain its shape. Many wool blankets are also resistant to flames, so you can sit down wrapped up close to the warm fire without any worries. If there is one notable downside to wool blankets, though, it is that they get dirty very easily. Clean them rigorously after each use.
Which survival blanket do you prefer? Leave your tips and suggestion in the section below: