A Real Life Hobo’s Every Day Kit
Over on Reddit, user /u/Huckstah posted a series of pictures on Imgur showing their every day carry (everything they own in a backpack and sleeping bag). This is the distilled result of ten years of trainhopping and hitchhiking across the United States. I think it's worth taking a look at, as its been field-tested. Do note that their kit depends on civilization, electricity, grocery stores, etc.
Images are hosted on Imgur. Almost every picture has a description. Look at the high reliance on fishing (lures, hooks, bait, etc.).
Q&A on Reddit:
This is almost identical to what I consider my "bug out" kit.
Thank-you for sharing this!
Ditto, I've swapped in a couple of ideas from this. Only thought is that the wire cutters seem add serious weight for as little they are used. Anyone have any alternate (lower weight) suggestions for these?
Yes, there are definitely lower weight alternatives. Depending on the gauge of wire you want cut, some multitools have a wire cutting portion on the pliers. I strongly recommend these types, and this is what I do personally. I've cut chain link fence with it, so I know it's good to go there, and I've also stripped wires from an industrial extension cord to swap out a damaged male connector, so they pull double duty. This is using a Leatherman WAVE, though I think that some of the Gerber tools are easier to use and more ergonomic.
Another alternative is carrying a field knife. The Soviets began the practice of including wire cutters on their bayonets years ago, and the U.S. has since followed suit. Both of these offer "dual (or more) purpose" alternatives. You won't be able to cut any locks, or anything, but there are other ways around that, anyway.
I duly noted his emphasis on cordage. This is something I've always kept more than I needed of in my backpack, when I used to take extended wilderness trips. Did paracord before it became "cool". I typically had a spool of 20-25# test nylon fishing line too. Someone pointed out to me a long time ago that it is pretty hard to make cordage out in the field…and since, I've always carried extra. Traps/snares, trout line, securing tents, hanging up food in trees, making trip alarms, binding a splint, whatever.
Ditto, fire. Bic lighters, matches, magnesium starter, some hexamine tabs. I keep these items in the glove box of all my vehicles at all times, The flare is a super idea, I'm going to do that too, now.