Everyday Carry is nothing more than what you carry everyday, and like most things, this can vary widely from person to person. There are thousands of people out there who really are into everyday carry, and lots of them willingly take photos of their carry to show it off, give others ideas on stuff they could carry and receive comments and suggestions. I don’t think that I’ve ever seen two everyday carry bag dumps that were identical. Some are pretty close to another, but each are individual for the person’s needs, wants and lifestyles.
As I look at the various dumps everyday (it’s kind of like window shopping for me, LOL), I notice that there are varying levels of everyday carry within the community, and I’ve kind of classified the levels into 4 groups.
Minimalists / Bare Necessities
Credit: Andrew Mapes
Generally you’ll see a ton of these dumps. They usually involve a phone, keys a wallet and watch. While the dump items might vary, usually there’s only three to six items making for an extremely lean everyday carry.
These guys and gals like to run with a light carry, and don’t want to be burdened with items that you might only reach for once in a while.
Well Equipped Day Carries
The well equipped everyday carry dumps will often have a things that most people wouldn’t carry. These are the ones that might use a medium or large pouch or ziplock bag to carry many of the items they might need in.
You’ll often find nail clippers, P38/P51 Can Openers, keychain tools and/or multitools and SAKs, Space Pens (even if not needed for their advanced writing ability), waterproof notebooks (have you ever noticed a lot of the notebooks dont look like they’re carried every day? Mine’s pretty wrinkled and curled from being used daily) These also are the dumps that have creature comforts like phone chargers, earbuds and the occasional tablet here and there.
Most everyday carriers will fall into this category, and use most everything in their pack on a regular basis.
“But I Might Need It” Bags
Credit: Mr. Storm
The “might need it” bag dumps will have things like three or four of everything… you know, having backups in case the first fails. These bag dumps also will often have stuff like 100 feet of paracord, excessive numbers of carabiners and steel camping cups. More often than not, there are a number of items that you wouldn’t necessarily need to have with you, but they carry them just in case.
These souls are often laughed at for what they carry. Many “normal” people mistake these individuals as preppers or survivalists even though their carry doesn’t actually have a lot of stuff that is meant for a disaster. It’s the fact that these guys will carry first aid, medications and snack food that give others the idea that they’re survivalists.
Prepper / Survival Ready
Approaching the bug out bag or the 3 day survival pack, these guys take an everyday carry that’s nothing short of a bugout bag. They have everything one could ever hope for that includes food, major first aid, tools galore and more medication than the pharmacist stocks. If you need something, these guys have it, but chances are it will take them an hour to unpack the bag, find it and get it to you — twice the time it’d take to run up to a drugstore and get it yourself. On the bright side, these guys do have everything you might need should there actually be a zombie apocalypse or natural catasthrophe.
Many of these bag dumps may have more firepower than a Navy Seal would normally carry, tons of ammo, a camping stove, water purifiers and a folding wood saw. Sadly, these most well prepared individuals are also the butt end of many survivalist jokes… until the disaster strikes.
Oh, and when these guys carry a Fisher space pen, they use it like it was meant to be used.
Everyday Carry is Your Personal Choice
I am not in any way saying that any everyday carry style is wrong. The carry has to fit the individual. It has to work with your life style and daily needs.
Having what you need right there when you need it is very convenient. Most people don’t realize how great it is to be able to pull out a nail clipper and trim off that broken nail that’s bugging you, or that 5 hour energy drink when you need a quick pick up.
There’s those that think you’re getting ready for world war 3 with all the “crap” you take with you every day, but in the end, when they need the butterfly bandaids you’ve got in your bag because they slashed themselves with the friggin’ bagel knife, not a single one of them laugh at you then. None of them. Likewise, I’ve never had anyone laugh when they’re asking me if I have Advil for their migrane headaches either.
For me, I fall into the “Might Need It” category. I have a few ways to make fire in my bag, more than a couple pens, four flashlights total, a rain poncho, mylar emergency blanket and a nice first aid pack. My friends and coworkers regularly comment about me being a survivalist, but at the same time, they all have a healthy respect for the guy that has what they need too.
So, to end a long post, what kind of Everyday Carry individual are you? Do you only have keys and a wallet, or do you have your three day survival pack in the car?