Saturday, June 30, 2012


Level II Survival Kit Purpose:  Supplement to EDC / Local Search And Rescue, hiking,  hunting

This Level II survival kit is based on what has been most useful to have in a second line of gear outside of “pocket gear”.   With experience, no one knows what’s best for your kit than you.  This outline is a good general place to start though if you’re looking for suggestions.

Level II gear all laid out

The idea of the level II kit is to have a few more items that are highly useful, but in a small pack, so that you will be more likely to have it on you when you're in the wild or far from home.  Some people like to use fanny packs, some like satchels or other things.  This particular pack, attaches to a larger ruck (the level III Survival Kit).  This small pack is part of the U.S.M.C. ILBE load carrying equipment.

 We’ve found most useful, that a small pack with a canteen pouch and first aid pouch attached to the outside, fills the role of a level II kit very nicely.  It can be carried all day and hardly realize you have a pack on your back.

Level II Components:

Level II container:  Small ILBE detachable pack, with military canteen pouch and first aid kit pouch.
ILBE day pack - great for Level II small pack

Poncho:  If I have a survival vest on, my poncho is in my kidney pouch.  If I didn’t have anything but cargo pants . . . my poncho would be in the cargo pocket.  Poncho’s are great for shelter, collecting water, and keeping dry.  There are literally bunches of things to use a poncho for.  You’d be hard pressed to find anyone from GLSC without their poncho in the wild.  Old stock rubberized ponchos are tough and don’t leak.  German surplus models are just about as good as the USGI models that are getting scarce.

Canteen Cup:  This is my drinking cup, my frying pan and my cereal bowl.  It’s light weight and can hold a lot of items when not in use.  There are more light weight options out there, but these old USGI models give you the best bang for your buck.

Canteen Cup & Canteen Stove (fits right over bottom of cup)

Canteen Cup Stove:  This stove fits right over the bottom of my canteen cup, and both tuck neatly in my level II canteen pouch.  It was purchased from the .

Insect Repellent / Insect head net:  A little bottle fits right on the side pouch of the canteen cup pouch.  (best to keep 100% deet away from the inside container that you drink and cook from).

Bug Juice

Tube of Peanut Butter:  Unless you’re allergic, peanut butter offers a great source of protein, fat and salt.  In a pinch, it’s easy to get yourself some calories for energy.  Most importantly it never seems to go bad, and it’s compact.

Peanut Butter Tubes

Bullion Cubes:  If you need to harvest wild game, you’ll be happy you had something to season it with.

Professional Game Snares:  Professional game snares are worth their weight in gold.  The locking kind sure beat using paracord to make your game traps with.

Small Game Snares

IFAK:  (Individual First Aid Kit.)  Band-Aids, Pain Relief, Burn Gel, Anti-Bacterial Ointment, Electrolyte Tabs, Alcohol wipes, etc in a smaller kit.  Great Lake Survival makes a handy little packet to throw in your level II kit.  Again, it’s easy enough to make yourself if you want a more simple kit.  Probably the most important items are the Israeli Battle Dressing and Tourniquet  for major bleeding.  The “IBD” and TK4 tourniquet put compression on the wound and can be applied by the person wounded if necessary.
*** Also, we recommend some sun screen.  Being sun burnt anytime is bad, but being sun burnt when you're far from home just plain stinks.

GLSC Level 1 - Individual First Aid Kit

Water Filter: We like the Sawyer .10 Absolute Micron water filter.  Where most water filters only do .20 absolute microns, the Sawyer line of handheld filters double the filtration effort.  Not only that, they come with a 1,000,000 gallon guarantee.  If you have something you like though . . . use it!  You know what you like, and if you’re experienced, you know what works.  The best thing is to have a filter that fits in this kit.  You can go a long time without food, but not so long without clean water.

Sawyer .10 Squeeze Water Filter

Gloves & Socks:  There should be a pair of socks in the level II kit, but another couple pairs don’t take up space and dry socks are a life saver.  A good pair of gloves does wonders for keeping the hands from getting cuts and infections.  Anything is better than nothing in this category.  There are better wicking socks out there, it’s all in what you want.

Boonie Hat and Balaclava:  If it gets chilly, you have to cover your neck and your head.  With a brimmed hat and a balaclava to keep your face and neck warm, you might just be a little bit more comfortable in bad weather.  The boonie hat is a must though, it keeps the rain and sun out of one’s eyes.

Boonie Hat & Balaclava

Distress Strobe:  If you plan on, or could be ever assisting in the rescue of a person, or be rescued yourself, you might have one of these little guys with you.  It too can fit inside your level II pouch if it’s compact enough.

Coffee or Tea Bags:  You have a stove, you have canteen cup . . . a couple of coffee or tea bags are next to nothing as far as weight and size.  Imagine being part of  a search for a missing child in the wilderness, driving rain and sleet for the last 12 hours . . .  The ability to make a warm cup of coffee and continue on the search might not be a bad thing.

Life without Coffee isn't worth living . . .

Paracord: 20 – 50 ft of paracord.  There’s not much bush craft that doesn’t have a use for paracord.


Hygiene Kit: Kept in a Nalgene collapsible bladder there is Camp suds, mineral salt deodorant, dental floss, tooth brush, a shaving razor, tooth paste and whatever other small items you need to keep clean, of high morale and free from infection.
Hygiene Kit

Each level kit, builds on the lower level.  For instance, I have items in my level II kit that should be in my level III kit.  If I can easily attach the level II kit to the outside of my large ruck, I’m less likely to have redundant items in my next higher kit, which will lighten the load.  Lighter loads tend to have more of a chance of being taken with you, than left back at camp because “I’m just going up and over this hill for a few minutes . . .”

The purpose of the level I kit obviously is to have an everyday carry.  Yes you might not have all the “pocket items” or a BIG KNIFE while you’re at work.  But we can all carry a credit card sized survival kit.

Any place from short hiking trips in the local wilderness to more remote areas.  You might be able to get away with leaving your large ruck in the vehicle if only a mile away, while taking your smaller pack.  With the items above, a person can survive in the wild for quite a while. 

The important thing is that each level kit has its place and its practicality.

Level I and Level II kits side by side

Again, it seems that the smaller and lighter the kit, the more likely that you will have it on you.

Thanks for reading,

-          GLSC Team

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