10 Awesome Options Available when Choosing Your BOB

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There are a vast array of bags and packs out there that you could use as a bug-out bag.  All of these bags have a million options available to them.

Many people worry that they will choose the wrong one.  Many don’t even think it is important.

It IS IMPORTANT, but it IS EASY to choose the correct bag with all the correct options.

BOB Utilities and Options to make a great experience   

You will need to decide what is best for you when it comes to the different options on your Bug-out Bag.  The following are some typical options on many bags available.

  1. Hip Straps and Hip Padding
  2. Wide Shoulder Straps
  3. Compression Straps
  4. Hydration Bladders
  5. Airflow
  6. Daisy Chain
  7. Pole Loops
  8. Rain Hood
  9. MOLLE Compatibility
  10. Front Straps

Hip straps and hip padding


When you walk for miles and hours, you will be thankful to have hip straps to disperse the weight onto your hips.  But basic hip straps can be uncomfortable without hip padding.

Wide shoulder straps

wide shoulder straps

This one is very important.  Wider straps will make it much more comfortable, and tire your shoulders out much less.  If you have narrow shoulder straps, it will dig into your skin and you will have to keep readjusting.

You will probably get blisters, and at the end of the day, your shoulder muscles will barely be able to move.

Compression Straps are Extremely Beneficial

compression straps

The main purpose of compression straps is to allow you to pack easily, and THEN synch down on your bag to tighten onto the gear.  You pack a larger pack, and make it smaller with the straps.

These are a vital item on bags, because they keep the weight of your pack on your spine better, allowing better stability and less stress.

There is also an unintended benefit of these straps.  I use them to help lash items down on the side of my packs.

Hydration Bladders keep the thirst away

hydration bladders

Water is your heaviest and most inconvenient item in your pack.  It is also the most important.  Bladders allow you to drink on the move, so you don’t have to keep stopping for a drink.

They usually hold 2-3 liters of water, which is more than just a small bottle of water.

Bladders are usually on your back, keeping the heaviest items close to it as well.

Airflow channels or webbing makes a world of difference

airflow channels

If you are hiking with a sweaty back, it gets increasingly more uncomfortable through the day.  You will get chaffed and even sweatier.

Your shirt will bunch up and hurt your raw skin.

Good packs have air flow channels, or a mesh webbing that allows your back to breath as it sweats, reducing this problem.

Daisy Chains are a nice extra feature

daisy chains

They are the “handles” on the front of your bag with multiple small hook spots on it.  The handle is well built and is great for carrying the bag.  The small loops are perfect for attaching stuff with carabiners.

Pole Loops allow hands-free movement

pole loops

The biggest problem with hiking poles is the inability to get rid of them when you don’t want to use them.  Use the pole loops on your pack to hang them.

I don’t use hiking poles, so I use these for attaching or stabilizing other gear.

Rain Hoods Keep your gear dry

If your pack has a rain hood, it will be tucked away in a Velcro compartment.  If you have one of these, it will allow you to pull it over your pack so water doesn’t soak into it.

MOLLE compatibility is a God-Send for attaching gear

molle compatibility

MOLLE stands for Modular, Lightweight, Load-Carrying Equipment.  It is like having a bunch of straps on your pack.

  • Modular
  • Lightweight
  • Load-Carrying
  • Equipment

The following items are just a few MOLLE compatible items that you can get.

  • Tool sheaths
  • Pouches
  • Med kits

Front Straps are on every pack anyways, make use of them

I always think of items I will need while hiking or orienteering.  The items that I know I will have to get to, I will lash to the straps on my chest and shoulders.

Items Like:

  • A Compass
  • GPS
  • A Whistle
  • Small or medium sized survival knife

Know Your Pack, Save Your Life

Knowing your options is a world of difference when you have to carry lifesaving equipment in such a small area, like a pack.  If you have to lose one function to gain another, at least now you know what you will give up.

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Ken is addicted to fitness and mountain biking. He is such a thrill seeker, people are starting to be concerned!He enjoys MTBing, Hiking, Climbing, Geocaching, Orienteering, Weight Lifting, and Wilderness Survival.

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