One-Day Get Home Pack Loadout 2024 — Video

  • Post category:Gear and Gadgets
  • Post last modified:January 3, 2024
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  • Reading time:26 mins read
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One-Day Get Home Pack: In this article and video, I go over my get-home bag, go over several options, and talk about why I have chosen the gear to carry inside my get home pack.

Going home is not necessarily a wonderful experience. It always comes with a sense of loss and makes you so conscious of the inexorable passage of time.

W. G. Sebald

Intro / Background

To put my one day get home pack into perspective, I’ll offer a little background to my circumstances. This is an important factor when planning your get-home kit.

If you have a multi-day walk, shelter, and food, become more of a factor. Water resupply and filtering will be more important.

If you are in a rough urban environment, defense must be considered. Although not mentioned, I’m always armed – legally.

If you travel around the country, like I used to, things go beyond what you carry. International travelers? Don’t forget to pack a lot of luck and prayer.

A get-home pack probably isn’t necessary if you work or travel very close to your home. A piece of gum and a cold Snapple might do the trick.

We’re all different with our own circumstances and situations. Plan accordingly.

Here we go:

I’m in my late 50s in reasonably decent shape for a 70-year-old. 😂 I’m a local truck driver.

My job takes me as far as 23 miles from home, so that’s the distance I plan for when outfitting my get-home pack. Google shows that at a walking distance of about ten hours, with three different routes home. I have no plan on sleeping in the woods, starting a fire, cooking a meal, or fighting zombies. I just want to walk home and not die. This is why I carry a one-day get home pack – I should be able to get home within a day’s hike.

I carry an EDC Pack in my truck. Even though there are redundancies between the two packs, there are certain items inside my EDC pack that I MAY want to add to my Get Home Pack before I make the journey home – on foot, bike, or other mode of transportation.

Pro Tip: I have a list I keep inside my Get Home pack of certain items I may want to consider pulling from my EDC pack for the trip home. I can make the decisions then, based on what’s going on. I assume stress will be high. I don’t want to rely on memory in an already stressful situation.

The Pack I Use For My One Day Get Home Bag

Gray-Man – If you watched my EDC Pack video, you know I don’t always subscribe to the gray man mania that’s been flowing across the prepper and survival community for years.

Not always.

Everything is subjective, and blending in doesn’t always mean looking like every other sheep and victim you’re surrounded by. We base our ‘look‘ on many factors: location, surroundings, utility, comfort, and our route home. In another post, I’ll go deeper into my gray man (or woman) opinions. Still, if you live in a hunting and outdoors-focused community, those camo pants aren’t going to cause concern or attention.


When it comes to my get-home packs and bug-out bag, I focus a little more on blending in. My EDC pack does draw attention, and I don’t care. Once a SHTF event occurs, it’s time to pay more attention to how we look to others.

Back Pack v. Sling Bag v. Duffel

This seems obvious, but I’ll bring it up anyway. Since my get-home pack is meant to cover a lot of ground quickly and without killing me, a backpack was the only option. I love sling bags, but for carrying over long distances, a sling bag or a duffel just won’t do.

My Pack – The 5.11 Tactical COVRT18 2.0

I decided to go with the 5.11 Tactical COVRT18 2.0 Tactical & Everyday 32L Backpack[Aff] in Coyote brown. The COVRT18 2.0 covered what I was looking for in a get home bag: Lightweight, a little organization (Without getting heavy from pouches and pockets), sturdy construction that will last, easy and comfortable to carry, and something that can easily blend in with my surroundings.

The 5.11 COVRT18 2.0, while having the great reputation 5.11 enjoys, is just one of any number of options you’re looking for. It’s a personal decision. You need a quality pack, in a size you can carry home in an emergency. Period.

Other backpack options I looked at for my get home bag were the Mystery Ranch District 24[Aff], Carhartt 28L Dual-Compartment Backpack[Aff] (Cheaper option), and the MAXPEDITION Entity 27[Aff]. Because I really like my eBags Slim, I also considered eBags Mother Lode[Aff] (Another cheaper option). There are hundreds of backpacks to choose from.

Remember, the best pack might be the one you already own.

The Gear I Use In My One Day Get Home Pack

One-Day Get Home Pack Gear

Consider every product link from this point on an affiliate link.
There are too many to include [Aff] with every link.

The focus on a get-home pack should be getting home quickly and safely. Everything you pack into the bag adds weight. Having been on many multi-day and solo hikes, I’m well aware of the balance between what you want/need and how much weight you can actually carry long distances.

Weight Must Be Factored In

If you’ve never hiked with a pack ten hours at a time, the amount of weight you can carry is likely far less than you think. Not because of some special skill hikers acquire but from the lessons of failure we’ve experienced from an overloaded pack.

Physical and mental condition plays a role, for sure, but forget about the nonsense people keep regurgitating about 20% of their body weight.

My pack was well over eighty pounds when I was eighteen and in the Army. Today, forty pounds is way too much for me.

Use Common Sense

I watched a video where the guy literally had a large pry bar & breaching tool, an ax, a complete shelter system (Including a tent, tarp, and sleeping bag), several loaded mags, a box of 100 rounds of ammo, three fixed blades, chest rig with armor plates, AND ONE Evergy Bar for food because he wanted to keep the pack’s weight down. Our gear is a personal decision, but we need to reasonably and realistically think things through.

What’s In My One Day Get Home Pack

Food & Water

The amount of food I carry inside my get home pack is minimal. I could stand a little more, considering I’ll be exerting more energy and burning calories I’m not accustomed to. However, I pack a lunch for work daily, with an amount of food that would cause most people concern.

Related Article: Which Survival Water Filter Should I Use – The Sawyer Mini or the LifeStraw?

Clothing/Base Layer:

As I mentioned, I’m already dressed for the weather. Understanding the difference in night and day temps and the difference in walking a couple dozen miles from a casual day at work, there are a couple of items I felt necessary.

Emergency Shelter (For emergency only):

I have no plan to shelter or camp overnight. With that being said, stuff happens. In case I have no choice, I at least want the minimum to help survive an unforeseen situation that forces me to lie low for a few hours.


I know how to get home. I travel these roads daily. I don’t cut through unfamiliar neighborhoods in my car or truck to shorten the distance. I’d hate to walk three blocks through a neighborhood only to discover the subdivision doesn’t have an exit in the direction I need to travel. A dead-end road would cost time and energy that a simple map would have helped avoid.

Miscellaneous Gear

Seasonal Considerations

As I write this article in January, my Get Home Pack is set up for winter. I dress for the cold weather when I leave the house. I’m already wearing the appropriate winter gear (Even on mild days, I carry a coat, hat, and some scarf)

Consider the season when packing your get-home bag, and update it a few times a year. This is a great time to recharge anything, replace batteries, and rotate food. For example, I replaced my bug spray and mosquito head net with heavier wool socks, gloves, and neck cover.

Other Options For Get Home Packs / Bags (That I Didn’t Include)

Since weight is a top priority for my get-home pack, there are gear options I may have liked to include but didn’t. I moved many of these items over to my Extended Get Home Pack (Video coming soon). Some of which I have in my EDC pack. If I decide it is necessary for the trip, I can transfer.

Do a Get Home Pack And An EDC Pack Have To Be Separate Kits?

A common question is whether a get-home pack and an EDC pack have to be separate. In my opinion, they don’t. Just a few years ago, I recorded a video showing a combined EDC/Get Home pack.

In fact, in 2016, I showed that my get-home bag and EDC kit were the same pack. (Really? A knife sharpener, three portable USB chargers, and knot-tying practice rope)?

It’s funny how much we change over the years.

It makes sense in several ways. There are fewer redundancies, fewer packs to carry and worry about, and less cost.

You can even set up a modular system to separate the two within the same pack. Simply remove the EDC gear you won’t need to get home to lighten the load.

I need to stop there before I end up redesigning my entire setup. 🙂

Why do I keep calling it my One-Day Get Home Pack?
Because I also have an Extended Get Home Pack that I carry for longer trips. That video is coming soon, and I want to keep things clear and accurate.

What About Get Home Packs For Those Who Travel Further From Home?

If your walk home is multi-day, you’ll want better shelter, more food, and a way to sleep safely. You may want things like a cook kit, communication, radio, water bladder, and spare clothing.

I will cover this in more detail in my extended get home pack video.

Even Further From Home – What About Then?

I live in Michigan and often travel to Ohio, North Carolina, and sometimes Georgia for vacations. I always drive. If I can help it, I’ll never go through another airport again. So get home packs for further distances is something I prepare for in those instances.

I mentioned a bit ago that long-distance travel would require more than can fit in a pack but preparing the best you can just makes sense.

For those longer trips, I have an extended get-home pack. This will be another video in my Pack Series, but I will quickly touch on it here.

I ALWAYS take my EDC pack and get home pack when I leave the house. This includes a longer trip, such as a weekend getaway or vacation. In those cases, I carry an additional pack (in my vehicle) that includes gear, food, and supplies to help get home from further away.

This is my thought process.
Yours may be completely different:

My wife will be with me. Should something bad enough happen to make us abandon our ride home (Our vehicle), I would take my larger extended get-home pack and fill it with what’s inside my daily get-home pack. I’d also pull whatever I needed from my EDC pack.

Now, those three packs have been combined into two separate backpacks. I’d carry the larger and heavier extended pack, and my wife would carry the smaller pack.

As an example, Ocean Isle, NC, where we often vacation, is a mere 800 miles from home. Google thinks that’s a twelve-day hike, but she seems a little over-optimistic. I’m thinking in terms of weeks if we were walking, which would be the worst-case scenario. You can’t carry enough on your back for a trip like that without skills and resupplying. Nevertheless, we do what we can to be prepared.

Wrapping Up My Get Home Pack Loadout

Thank you for watching and reading my get-home bag loadout piece, the second in my new Pack Series (Also on YouTube).

Take the ideas that make sense for you and ignore the rest.

My packs are a work in progress and continually changing. I’m offering my ideas and showing the gear I chose to carry — for me and my current situation. Your get-home pack will likely look entirely different if you carry one. And that’s how it should be.

We just want to make it home if something goes sideways while away.

Next StepThe Ultimate Maxpedition EDC Pack Setup – Video

Stay safe. Stay prepared.
Hawkins Out.

Brian Hawkins

Father, grandfather, Veteran, animal lover, law-abiding taxpayer, homeowner, trucker, and a United States Citizen. Oh, and I'm also a prepper, survivalist, responsible gun owner, and hiker.

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