Bug Out Bag Flashlight

When disaster strikes, in whatever form, it usually won’t happen at 9:00 am on a Saturday morning when the weather is perfect and you have no plans for the day. Unfortunately, when the time comes that you need to grab your bug out bag and go, the circumstances probably won’t be ideal for traveling. The weather may be bad, it could be storming or snowing, depending on where you live. It may also be nighttime, and you may not be able to use your vehicle. In this case you will want to make sure that you have a dependable bug out bag flashlight with somewhat fresh batteries.

What You Don’t Want In A Bug Out Bag Flashlight

There are hundreds of different brands and hundreds of different designs of flashlights. That being said, obviously there is no “one, perfect bug out bag flashlight.” However, there are some flashlights that you will want to try to avoid. A rechargeable flashlight is one that you will not want in your bug out bag. If you do have one, that means that you will also have to pack the charger, which is added weight and space. Not to mention, if you are buggin’ out, where do you intend to plug it in and recharge it?

Streamlight LED Flashlight

“Lantern” Style Streamlight LED Flashlight

Another type of flashlight that you want to avoid is the “lantern style” flashlights. These are the types of lights with handles on them. The lantern style flashlight is the kind that is usually found on fire trucks and other emergency response vehicles. In most cases, these are normally rechargeable style flashlights too. You can find them powered by alkaline battery, although their light output is not as strong. They have big ergonomic handles that make holding them easy, even for a firefighter who is wearing thick gloves. Even with a convenient handle, they still get heavy after just a few minutes. Although their light output is awesome, and it seems like the beam can reach the moon, these too are also big and bulky. These kinds of lights do not make a good bug out bag flashlight.

What Is A Good Bug Out Bag Flashlight?

As I mentioned before, there is no such thing as the “one, perfect bug out bag flashlight.” There are always different situations where you will need different solutions. Personally, I stick with only one brand of flashlight. I will only buy a Streamlight LED flashlight. I was a volunteer fireman for a few years, and had one mounted on my helmet. That light never failed me. The worst thing that happened to it was some of the rubber around the lens melted, and some of the plastic lens also melted, but that is because it got a little warm in a few houses I was in. My first Streamlight LED flashlight is still with me. Additionally, the Streamlight company stands behind their products, which is hard to find these days.

Bug Out Bag Flashlight

Bug Out Bag Flashlight by Streamlight

One of my favorite flashlights, which is also my main bug out bag flashlight, is the Streamlight 2AA ProPolymer LED flashlight. This flashlight is small, its just a little over 6 inches long. It also has a little belt clip to it so when you are not using it you can just clip it on your belt, or I like to slip mine in my pocket. Its small enough that you hardly even notice that its in there. This Streamlight LED flashlight also has the rubber coating around the lens to make it shock and impact resistant. I have owned the Mini Mag Lights with the LED bulb in the past, and have dropped them before, and had to get a new light because it couldn’t be dropped. I have dropped this flashlight numerous times, and it has never hurt it a bit. Another thing that I really like about these flashlights is that the on/off switch is in the tail cap. This makes signaling very easy. If you need to flash your light quickly to get someone’s attention, this feature makes signaling easy. The specs on this light from Streamlight says that this light on 2 “AA” batteries is rated for 18 continuous hours. You should not need to pack spare batteries for this bug out bag flashlight.

Is There Any Other Kinds of Bug Out Bag Flashlight I Should Consider?

Bug Out Bag Flashlight

Bug Out Bag Flashlight Headlamp

I believe that you can never have too many flashlights. I was stationed on a submarine when I was in the Navy, and when there are no lights, it is really dark since there are no windows. Since then, I almost always carry a flashlight with me, and I like to have a spare close by. One of my spares that I carry in my bug out bag is a headlamp type flashlight. The one that I have is the Streamlight Argo HP C4 LED headmount flashlight. It is nice to have a light mounted on my head so that I can have both of my hands free. I have not needed to use it in an emergency situation, such as starting a fire, but I have used it before while working on my car at night. The guys over at Streamlight have made these “C4” LED flashlights so that they have the battery usage of an LED light, but have the range and brightness of a xenon bulb. These flashlights also last up to 30 hours on low mode, which is about 25% output, for 30 hours. No need to pack spare batteries for this light either.

Streamlight LED Flashlight

Streamlight LED Flashlight KeyMate

I also have one other redundancy on my bug out bag. Notice I said on, and not in. I keep three of these little Streamlight KeyMates on the zippers of my bug out bag. They are small, just over 2 inches long, and they are lightweight. I like these because they have the little keychain lanyard attached to the tail of them. They are small enough that they never get in the way, but I have an extra light or two if I need them in a pinch. The ones that I have also came with red and green light filters that I can put on them. I don’t use the green filter, but I do like the red filter at night so that my eyes don’t have to readjust to the dark after looking at something through the red lens. The reason that I can carry these lights on the outside of my bug out bag is that they are designed to withstand the weather. Although they are small, these lights are o-ring sealed so that it keeps any water out. The batteries for these little 1 ounce lights are rated for up to 96 hours run time, so you should not need to pack spare batteries for these lights either.

There are many options in selecting your bug out bag flashlight. Ultimately, you will have to decide what is right for you as far as size, weight, and dependability. I choose Streamlight because the company stands behind their product, 100%. I also choose Streamlight because the prices on their products are not outrageous. There are many flashlights, in my opinion, that are lower quality, but cost more than Streamlight flashlights.