A humble garbage bag is one of those things that is very inexpensive and believe it or not, has literally dozens of survival uses. Not only are garbage bags affordable, but they are also versatile and lightweight and don’t take much space in survival kits and bug out bags. A regular 1mm thick garbage bag from your kitchen will do if that’s all you have available. We recommend a heavy duty, preferably 3 mm thick “contractor grade” or council bin size bag. You can get these in clear, black and white. Black is good for most tasks but clear is recommended for best results for use as a transpiration bag.
Here are just 7 uses for a garbage bag:
- Rain poncho – simply cut a hole at the bottom and one on each side for your arms
- Water collector – use it to line a small depression in the ground and secure using small rocks
- Groundsheet or tarp – cut along the bottom and one side – the corners can be tied down with paracord or hootchie cord
- Improvised sleeping bag or mat – fill with leaves and grass for padding
- Transpiration bag – tie around a tree branch under direct sunlight, if done right you should get at least a cup of water in 4 hrs.
- Solar still – place over a container with water requiring distillation inside, depress it a little in the center and weigh it down with a rock and for carrying items – you just never know if you need a bag to carry bush tucker (aka wild edibles) that you gather or something to put misc gear in to keep them dry.