Urban Survival: The Vulture Tool Kit / SHTF Gear

When we discuss survival, it typically revolves around wilderness skill sets. There are thousands of blog posts and videos covering the different ways to build shelters, make fire, signal for rescue and live off the land. Building these skills is critical to being a well rounded survivalist, however we tend to neglect the urban aspect of survival.

Sure there are more than a few topics on Every Day Carry gear and Get Home bags, but that’s about it. When I noticed this, I started to consider what it truly takes to survive in city, beyond having some high end backpacks and fire starters. True survival is all about resources and being able to access and collect those resources. Things like wood for fire or shelter. Water for cooking and drinking and the list goes on.

This inspired me to create the Vulture Tool Kit. A baseline, a foundation of tools that will give anyone the ability to breach and access secure building, siphon gasoline and collect resources in a total SHTF situation. Taking into account that over 80% of Americans live in or near major urban centers, having the tools on hand for survival makes good sense.

I started this kit build with my trusty USMC issue ILBE assault pack. This was my first pack way back in 2007, picked up from a Marine for only $25. The assault pack is very simple in design with a large zippered compartment in the front and one main compartment. Perfect for carrying large tools such as bolt cutters, a tomahawk and items that don’t need micro organization.

USMC ILBE Assault Pack - Vulture Tool Kit

Intel And Navigation

Any mission in a hostile environment has to include the following set of items, designed for observation, intelligence collection and navigation:

Steiner Safari UltraSharp: http://amzn.to/21VX6v1
Petzl – TIKKA Headlamp: http://amzn.to/1ZEyxRg
Map & Waterproof Case: http://amzn.to/21VXBoK
Notepad Pouch: http://amzn.to/1OniMs0

Intel & Navigation - Vulture Tool Kit


Paracord and heavy duty zip ties are two items I can’t live without when it comes to resource collection. In order to help keep my paracord organized and easy to use, I added a spool that includes a mini Bic lighter.

Paracord: http://amzn.to/1Wpl4zc
Paracord Spool: 
Zip Ties: 

Cordage - Vulture Tool Kit

Breaching Tools

Abandoned structures are gold mines full of resources. They can also serve as shelter sites and cache locations, but if you can’t gain access to the site, they’re pretty much worthless. This set of tools provides multiple options for breaching and discrete entry.

Coldsteel Rifleman’s Hawk: http://amzn.to/1UShLPm
Soutord Lock Pick Set: http://www.southord.com/Lock-Pick-Tools/Lock-Pick-Set-5-Piece-PXS-05L.html
Vaughan SuperBar: http://amzn.to/1USi9NR
Tekton Bolt Cutters: http://amzn.to/1Onkc5O

Breaching - Vulture Tool Kit

Cutting Tools

Collecting resources means having the ability to process and cut them down to size for transport.  In the future, I’ll most likely add a multi tool like the Gerber Diesel and a crescent wrench.

Wire Cutters: http://amzn.to/1USiPmn
Bahco Laplander: http://amzn.to/1ZECwgK
Stanley Hack Saw: http://amzn.to/1ZECAwU

Cutting Tools - Vulture Tool Kit

Fuel Collection

Abandoned vehicles are perfect source for gasoline in a post collapse environment. Addition of a fuel container and siphon kit makes perfect sense.

Laken Fuel Bottle: http://amzn.to/1OnkUQt
GasTapper Gravity: http://amzn.to/21W2aiM

Fuel Collection - Vulture Tool Kit

Foraging Bags

Nobody wants to stop and drop the pack every time they find useful items. The dump pouch allows me to collect wild edibles and small items on the go. The large trashbags can be used to line the dump pouch or store larger items.

Condor Dump  Pouch: http://amzn.to/21W2FJS
55 Gallon Trash Bags: http://amzn.to/1Nqo6Qv

Foraging Bags - Vulture Tool Kit

Water Collection

H2O is essential to human survival. This set of containers and related tools provides the ability to get water from local streams and access water outlets on commercial businesses in the city.

Canteen & Cup: http://amzn.to/1Nqoi2e
MSR 2L DromLite: http://amzn.to/21W3K4o
Sillcock Key: 


We are a community of survivalists and preppers who ready ourselves for the unexpected. Taking this into consideration, we must prepare to survive in the area we live in. For the majority of Americans and for that matter, the world, we live in or near major urban centers. We must have a plan for survival in that environment. Shifting some focus from wilderness to urban survival will serve us well in an uncertain future.

The Vulture Tool Kit is a great start towards that goal and if you can think of any additions to my gear, please add them below!

If you liked this post, feel free to add your input in the comments section. The Survival Outpost can also be found on Youtube, Facebook and Twitter.

13 Comments on “Urban Survival: The Vulture Tool Kit / SHTF Gear

    • Reply

      I really wanted to add that, but alas it’s too big for my pack unless I strap it on the side. My goal for this first build was to fit everything in the pack.

  1. Reply

    I Like the idea of your urban vulture kit. I believe it would come in vary handy if SHTF and could save someone life. With that being said and because I’m ex law enforcement I just thought I would mention that having all these tools together in one pack like you have is actually eligal in a lot of states. (Know as burglary tools). I wood advise that they not be carryed around unless during a SHTF situation. You may have already been aware of this but thought as a fellow prepper/survivalist I would mention it just in case.

    • Reply

      Thanks for the input as former law enforcement. Which tools constitute burglary tools? I’ve gotten rid of the lock picks…so I’m assumed the pry bar could be considered as such?

  2. Reply

    Under California law any and all of your listed Breaching and Cutting tools would be “Burglary tools”. Two factors however, was the search of your car legal AND was your “intent” to use the tools to illegally enter a building or vehicle. Legal or illegal search is either/ or ….proving “intent” is key to the crime. Probably pack your kit and leave it home until you need it during SHTF.

    • Reply

      Everything is illegal in Cali 🙂 But seriously, yes there is no need to keep this in your vehicle full time. I would only use this if absolutely necessary.

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