Sunday, February 3, 2013

GearPods Survival Pro Review

I love survival kits and have had many in the past. Most are similar: small boxes with the same few items. So when I see something different, I must take it for a spin. I ran across the GearPods Survival Pro and it came in a container unlike anything I've seen.

This container is known as a GearPod and it's basically a modular container system. GearPods offers these separately or packed with various gear- ranging from survival to first aid. They can also be had in a variety of colors (shown here: olive drab).
GearPod Survival Pro shown with connector and extra GearPod capsule
As I said above the container is much different than anything on the market, but for good reason. Its around the same diameter as most sports bottles. But why you ask? This allows the GearPod to be stored in most places bottles are stored such as: bicycle bottle cages or backpack side mesh bottle pockets to name a few. Something I can appreciate being an avid mountain biker. I rarely carry a pack when mountain biking and like the fact the GearPod allows me to carry essential gear. You can purchase a mountain bike cage for this kit here.
As I stated above the GearPod is a modular storage system. GearPods come in different sizes to add additional gear to the pre-made kits like the Survival Pro. This allows the user to customize pre-made kits or assemble their own. Shown above is the Survival Pro with another GearPod attached.



I was blown away by the contents and design of the Survival Pro. All bases are pretty much covered with this kit for a temperate environment. Extreme cold environment may need some supplementation and I'll go into that later.

When first removing the contents one is presented with an anodized aluminum cup with a plastic mouthpiece, survival instructions, and a GearPods' small nylon stuff sack. I might add all are top quality and gave me a good initial impression.

Most all survival kits come with instructions. Many I've read seem to be excerpts copied from the U.S. Army Survival Manual (1950-ish) and are usually impractical. The Survival Pro instructions are well written and would give even the not-so-knowledgeable survivor a good head start.
Starting off with the items in the first stuff sack:

  • Anodized Aluminum Stove
  • 2 Esbit-type cubes (firestarting or to be used with stove)
  • 4 Tinder Quik Tabs
  • GearPods Micro Light with On/Off switch
  • Fox 40 Micro Whistle
  • 25 ft of Braided Nylon Cordage (70lbs test)
All of the above items are of high quality. Tinder Quik tabs are some of my favorite for spark based fire starting. Esbit-type fuel tabs burn smoke free and stay lit for around 8-10 minutes, they can also be split so that the whole cube doesn't have to be used at once.

Audible signaling is sometimes critical when needing to be found. The Survival Pro included the very popular Fox 40 Micro Whistle. These whistles alone typically cost around $7 when purchased separately. Much of the gear included has he GearPods logo etched or imprinted on them. A nice touch that shows attention to detail down to the smallest items. The GearPods Light is of the LED keychain variety, it has an constant ON switch (only a few I'm aware of have that capability on the market). This would be beneficial if you got injured  and need to hold the light in your teeth while working in the late night hours. 
Inside the aluminum cooking pot is a second GearPods stuff sack containing the following items:
Fishing Kit
  • Mini Button Compass (liquid filled)
  • 1 Whirl-Pak water bag 36 oz's
  • Fresnel Magnifying Lens
  • Signal Mirror with retro-reflective aiming hole
  • 8 ft of wire for snares or gear repair
  • 10 NATO Lifeboat Matches with striker (sealed in bag)
  • Small roll of Duct tape
  • 50 ft of 10lbs test thread (also to be used as fishing line)
  • Spark Lite fire starter
  • 6 Water purification tablets
  • Write in the rain paper
  • 1 golf pencil
  • Fishing kit (2 safety pins, 1 heavy duty needle, Split shot, fish hooks, and swivel)
  • Folding Razor Knife
  • Folding Saw
As you can see there was no skimping on quality with these items. All are top quality and there is redundancy where needed. An example being fire starting materials. With one being capable of single handed operation. This is important if your injured and unable to use both hands. Since injuries are common in survival situations and most of the time, they are the reason why you are placed in one.

Water is critical for humans. We won't last too long without it. This kit includes water purification tablets as well as a Whirl-Pak bag to act as the container. I've used Whirl-Pak's in the past and they are durable and can be sealed for ease of transport.

Water purification can also be accomplished by boiling. This kit offers something that I've yet to see in a PSK system- a cooking pot and stove. With the ability to hold 9.5 ounces of fluid. The CookMug is made out of anodized aluminum and comes with a lid similar to commercial coffee cup lids with a sip spout.

Another design feature that anyone could appreciate is the silica band around the top of the CookMug, so one doesn't burn their hands with a hot cup.


Not only does the Survival Pro include a stove and CookMug, it also includes an aluminum windshield with vent holes. This windshield protects the flame and adds to the heating of the pot through convection.

Overall I'm thoroughly impressed with the GearPods Survival Pro to say the least. It's very well thought out and a unique design. Very different from anything out there currently. Like I said above- all bases are covered with this kit, more so than any kit in this size range I've seen before. This particular model does not feature a space blanket or tent. GearPods offers shelter options with some of their other products. Or you could just add a space blanket and call it a day.

If you were to purchase all the items separately this kit would cost you well over $100. The GearPod Survival Pro comes in at $69 and can be purchased here. If you don't have a survival kit this would be a great place to start.

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