Storing Survival Gear for SHTF

Its time for a change how my survival gear is stored. My survival gear is spread out all over a spare bedroom, couple of storage boxes and 2 closets. Its time to round everything up and get things organized.

My wife and I have a spare bedroom that my son uses when he comes to  visit.  Since the room is only used a few times a month, we decided to install some shelves and organize our survival gear stocks.

The shelving unit was bought from a local china-mart. The unit is 6 feet tall, each shelf is 36 inches long, 17 inches wide and there is 15.75 inches between each shelf.

Stockpiling food and ammunition for long term SHTF situation
Stockpiling food and ammunition for long term SHTF situation

To prevent the shelving unit from being pulled over by the grand kids, the support poles of the unit were zip-tied to a set of bunk beds, and the shelves were screwed to the wall with 2 1/2 inch long screws. With small children around, you have to plan on them climbing on everything.

The plan is to have two shelving units side by side, with each unit holding a certain type of survival gear.

Fishing Gear For SHTF

One shelf is going to be dedicated to storing my fishing gear. Currently my fishing gear is being stored in 2 or 3 different places, in the closet, in a tackle box, in a fishing bucket,,,.

A 5 gallon bucket fits perfectly between the shelves, so I should have no problems storing my extra lures, trotline string, extra spools of monofilament line, extra hooks,,,. I need to buy a couple of wire trays to store the smaller items in, such as the spools of trotline string.

Stockpiling Food For SHTF

On the bottom shelves I plan on storing the heavy food, such as cases of MREs, and a few cases of bottles water.

If my math is right, we should be able to fit thirty #10 cans of food single shelf.

On at least 2 other shelves, I plan on getting a shelf reliance Cansolidator Pantry Plus, which holds up to 60 cans. With 2 of the Cansolidator Pantry Plus units, I am hoping to store up to 120 cans between 2 shelves. After the first 2 units are in place, I will decide if a third unit will be installed, for a total capacity of 180 cans.

For my mylar bags, I am hoping on getting some 5 gallon buckets and storing the 5 gallon buckets in the shelving unit.

After looking the shelves, and moving some #10 cans and a 5 gallon bucket around, I should be able to fit a double stack row of #10 cans behind three 5 gallons buckets filled with mylar bags.

Here recently I have been buying some mountain house pro-pak meals.  These meals are freeze dried and have a 7 year shelf life.  Currently, the meals are stored in a box on the bottom shelf.  The problem with storing stuff in cardboard, the cardboard attaches roaches and other undesirables.  I am hoping to get all of the cardboard boxes swapped out for plastic boxes.

Food in Glass Jars

One of the things my wife is worried about, is storing glass jars where the grandkids can get ahold of them. I understand my wifes concern – you do not want a 4 year old pulling a glass jar of pickles off the shelf and dropping it.

To protect glass jars and the grandkids from possible injury, all glass items will be stored on a shelving unit in a closet.

Miscellaneous Gear

I have a lot of small items that needs a place to be stored. This is everything from parachute hammocks, to water bottles, canteens, ammo pouches,,,.

To help organize this small gear, my wife bought some wire baskets. She told me the “technical” name is a wire fruit basket. the baskets may have been designed to store food in the kitchen or in the freezer, but the work well on the shelves.

The water bottles are too large to store in the basket -rather, they take up too much room in the basket.  The water bottles are stood up around the baskets and the other items on the shelves.

Camping Gear

One of the main goals for the shelves is to get my camping gear a little better organized.  Currently my wife and I have a box that most of our stuff is stored in.

I am hoping to take the gear that we use from time to time, extra gear, like an extra coleman stove that I have, and get everything organized.

Emergency Radios and Flashlights

One of things that I “really” need to do, is get my flashlights, lithium batteries and emergency radios in a central location.  I plan on buying a plastic box to store all three items in.

The plan is to get a box to store the flashlights, radio and lithium batteries in, and then put the box on a corner of the shelves.  I would like to be able to walk into the room in pitch black darkness, walk to the shelf, and be able to get a flashlight with zero light.

To make things really easy, I might get an LED flashlight, and hang it from a lanyard from one of the shelves.

Once I find the flashlight in the pitch black dark, I want to be able to get the box open and a radio going in less then 1 minute.

Top Shelf Survival Gear

The only thing I have not figured out, is what do I put on the top shelf?  Whatever is stored on top can not be breakable – something like sleeping bags or sleeping pads for example.

Currently, the sleeping bags are stored in the closet.  I thought about moving the bags from the closet to the top shelf, and then using the closet to store even “more” stuff.


I am hoping to get a follow up of the shelf project posted once my wife and I make some progress.  Right now we have just one shelf in place.  In a couple of weeks we are hoping to get another shelf in place, along with some more #10 cans, 5 gallon buckets and mylar bags.