When shopping for survival kits, settling on one designed by someone who spent their childhood roaming the backcountry of Northern Canada is never a bad idea. From a young age, Todd Weimer, the founder of VSSL, knew the value of space, and the cost of weight, while crafting camping kits for long excursions. He’s since improved on his designs — with the help of field experts in Overlanding and emergency first aid — to produce the VSSL adventure kit: a 16-ounce, 9″ by 2″ waterproof aluminum tube that could save your life. A typical kit houses a collection of replaceable, themed pods, like Russian nesting dolls of outback survivalism, that include: water purifiers, first aid, fishing line, firestarters, cloth, tape, sewing kits, can openers, etc. The kit is held together, literally, by an LED flashlight (with 40 hours of runtime on S.O.S mode) at one end and a compass at the other. Essentially, VSSL is the distilled down version of your neighbor’s apocalypse bunker, minus the canned food.
1. Small Details:
With so much to do in such a small package, little things make or break a survival kit. This is why the VSSL flashlight runs on N-type batteries — because AA and AAA are the first to go in an emergency — and includes 3 LED lights, in case one fails.
2. Military Dependency:
As a training aid, the flagship VSSL is used by the Canadian Armed Forces at their wilderness survival school. The wire saw is the same one used by the British Military. The can opener? Military-grade. The aluminum container? Military-grade. You get the idea.
3. Giving Back:
From the beginning, VSSL has partnered with the non-profit Communitas in order to hire young people with special needs to assemble each VSSL kit. Each kit is designed and assembled in British Columbia, with a defective rate of less than 1% in the 4 years since founding.