Best Gear to Survive a Zombie Invasion

Best Gear to Survive a Zombie Invasion

It could happen. You could wake up tomorrow and realize Halloween has come early. Except it’s not Halloween. It’s a nation of walking dead.

Sure, the chances of a full-scale zombie outbreak are pretty slim, but that’s not the point – ask any Prepper. If the undead come calling you’ll only have a few minutes to react, pack, and figure out how to survive in a world gone dead with only the tools you have with you. So call in the dog, bolt the door, and get your gear ready to slay some zombie scum. (Now would also be a good time to queue up some nice early-80s Metallica or Slayer…)


Guns are cheating. And they lack…panache. You’ll want to pack tools that can perform multiple functions to keep you alive, as well as bloody the damned earth when the undead come knocking.

Vulture Equipment Works Cholera

 zombie Vulture Equipment Works Cholera

The tool at the center of your kit needs to be a proper survival knife—one ready for digging, boring, hacking, and of course dismembering phlegmy nightwalkers. Enter the Vulture Equipment Works Cholera (the only survival knife to have ever scored a perfect 100 Gear Institute Rating). Designed to dominate during hunting season, the aggressive blade design will allow you to cut and slash with ease, and the false edge on the back of the blade makes it perfect for piercing through tough and stubborn materials—like zombie skulls.

Gerber Downrange Tomahawk

 zombie Geber Downrange Tomahawk

While your neighbors are scrambling to piece together crude weaponry, you’ll know you’ve made the sensible choice with the Gerber Downrange Tomahawk. Featuring a hatchet, hammer, pry bar—and coming in at under two pounds—you’d be hard-pressed to find a tool as portable, versatile, and adept at dispatching both the living dead and deadbolts with ease. It’s so effective it will almost make you feel sorry for the poor things.

Stanley FatMax 30” FuBar

 zombie Stanley FatMax 30 FuBar

Some of those maggoty bastards will just keep coming, so you’ll need to call upon the heavy. The Stanley FatMax 30-inch FuBar will crush skulls as well as any baseball bat and pop padlocks on locked doors all day long. In better days, this steel saber would be your go-to tool for demoing your spare bathroom for a re-model, but for these dark days it will simply be your peace of mind.

Sleepy Creek #6 Griz Bear Trap

 zombie Sleepy Creek 6 Griz Bear Trap

If you use one of these on an animal, you deserve a bitter end. But for zombie defense—have at it! The 16, 1/2-inch steel teeth on the Sleepy Creek #6 Griz Bear Trap will be a godsend when you want to forget about the dead walkers and get some shut-eye at camp. And if the trap takes its rotten leg completely off? At least the sucker will be crawling.  

G-MAX 12″ 40V Cordless Chainsaw

 zombie G-MAX 12- 40V Cordless Chainsaw

When you’re sorely outnumbered and all hope is lost you may want to pull out the G-Max 12” 40V Cordless Chainsaw. It’s highly portable, weighs only 10.2 pounds, and is powered by a rechargeable battery with no power fade or memory loss. You’ll cut your way through the rotting throngs like butter. Just remember to charge up before the grid goes down.

Feast and Swill

The swinging days of Starbucks are over, my friends. Here’s what you’ll want to stay well feed and hydrated in between those rigorous slay sessions.

MSR MiniWork EX Microfilter

 zombie MSR MiniWork EX Microfilter

With fresh water being a fond memory, it’s going to be up to you to maintain an adequate level of hydration for yourself and your hardened brood of survivors. A tool like the MSR MiniWorks EX can be your saving grace. Light, compact, and dependable, the durable ceramic filter is capable of filtering crud down to .2 microns, and requires only a few quick pumps to fill a bottle.

Potable Aqua Tablets

zombie Potable Aqua Tablets 

To keep you ahead of the groaning herds, you’ll need to disinfect water on the run. The chemicals in Potable Aqua Tablets zap viruses and other bugs in 30 minutes. Tabs like these are your best defense against viruses whenever you can’t easily boil all your water in the backcountry, and the post-treatment Portable Aqua Plus pills neutralize the taste of iodine. Scoop up some water, drop in a tab and keep on moving!

GSI Vortex Blender

zombie GSI Vortex Blender 

Given that it’s the apocalypse, you’re going to need something to take your mind off of things. And what’s better than a nice blended fruitarita to do just that. Get your hands on the GSI Vortex Blender, a little bit of looted tequila and some scavenged blackberries. With a few cranks of the handle, you’ll be the hit of the refugee camp.

Grilliput Duo


When the dead decide to walk the earth, hunting and foraging are going to be your main means of getting food. But there’s no reason to cook like a Neanderthal. Bring a Grilliput Duo—a 20-ounce, collapsible grill that disappears into a thin tube in your pack and comes with an endless supply of fuel. Possum burgers, coming right up!

Pat’s Backcountry Beer

 zombie Pats Backcountry Beer

In all seriousness, life among the dead won’t be worth living if there isn’t any beer. Pack light and grab yourself a backpack full of Pat’s Backcountry dehydrated beer for those long days in the woods. It’s lightweight, deliciously beer-like, and won’t clank in your pack as you slink between roaming bands of re-animated corpses. What’s more, the Black Hops comes in at a heady 6.1-percent—so a little will go a long way.

Light My Fire Tinder-On-A-Rope

 zombie Light My Fire Tinder-On-A-Rope

A quick fire in soggy forest hideout? No problem. Shave a little bit of LMF’s Tinder-On-A-Rope off into your twig nest, light it, and viola—instant fire. It’s also a great alternative to pine when whittling in fear on those sleepless nights.

Klean Kanteen Stainless Bottle

zombie Klean Kanteen Stainless Bottle 

Storing, transporting, and boiling water are going to be the key to your survival (assuming a dead thing doesn’t eat your brain). Klean Kanteen’s Stanless Bottles don’t retain flavor, are easy to clean, and can be heated over a fire when you need to boil up. Just make sure to remove the plastic cap before heating.

Gimme Shelter

It would be nice to hold up in your cozy home and wait this thing out, but chances are you’re going to need to relocate.

Eno Doublenest Onelink Sleep System (Rain Fly, Bug Net, Atlas Straps)

 zombie Eno Doublenest Onelink Sleep System

If there’s ever been a time to get up off the ground and out of the way—it’s now. Eno’s Doublenest Onelink Sleep System is an all-in-one hammock rig, featuring a rainfly, bug net, and attachment straps, that keeps you off the ground and safe from those roaming and groaning bastards. Last I checked, they don’t jump!

Grabber All Weather Space Blanket

 zombie Grabber All Weather Space Blanket

Unlike cheapo space blankets, Grabber’s All Weather Space Blanket is made of 4-layers of durable material with reinforced, grommet corners, so it can be used as a ground cover, wind-wall, and even as a shelter without tearing apart. Plus, it reflects 80-percent of body heat when used as a blanket. Why shiver from the cold when you’re already shivering in fear?

Selk’bag Original Sleeping Bag Suit

 zombie Selkbag Original Sleeping Bag Suit

Have you ever tried fighting your way out of a mummy bag in the middle of the night so you could take a leak? Now imagine the struggle when you are awakened by the undead raiding your camp. Thankfully, Selk’bag frees your limbs so you can now hit the ground running and fight like hell without even unzipping your bag.


It would be nice to think that the zombie apocalypse will free us from the digital world. Let’s not kid ourselves.  

Goal Zero Sherpa 50 & Goal Zero Nomad 13

 zombie Selkbag Original Sleeping Bag Suit copy

Once the grid is down, you’ll need to tap the power of the sun with Goal Zero’s Sherpa 50 power pack and Nomad 13 foldable solar panel. Compact and mobile, you’ll be able to keep your GPS and headlamp topped off and keep up with your cheery Facebook status updates.  

Princeton Tec Apex Rechargeable

 zombie Princeton Tec Apex Rechargeable

Night-roaming zombies are scary enough, but with Princeton Tec’s Rechargeable Apex Headlamp you’ll never be caught in the dark again. A full charge gives you a whopping five hours of burn time on the blinding 275-lumen “MaxBright” lamp, and 90 hours on low. Extra long burn time and full-field illumination in a flash will make your long, lonely nights feel a little brighter.  

Problem Solvers

Certain tools are ready to help you out in any pinch—zombie invasion or not.

Leatherman Wave

 zombie Leatherman Wave

You’ve got to pack light if you want to move fast, which means taking one tool to get you out of all scrapes. Our pick? The Leatherman Wave. This classic tool consistently ranks among the very best multitools we test, and it has everything you need to open a can of beans, hotwire an abandoned vehicle, or twist together barbed wire for defense at your make-shift camp. It will be just like if your handyman were still alive to help you.

Pax Portable Vaporizer

 zombie pax

If there has ever been a time for you to self-medicate, it would be now. With the Pax Portable Vaporizer, the smokeless and odorless vapor will keep you incognito and at peace in times of war. Pair with hammock. Legal only in Colorado and Washington, assuming there will still be laws and all.

Adventure Medical Kits UltraLight / Watertight .5 First-Aid Kit

zombie med-kit 

One little zombie scratch can turn gangrenous in a hurry. Adventure Medical’s Ultralight and Watertight .5 First Aid Kit is packed with all of the essentials you’ll need if you get nicked during a death match. This kit is small enough to fit into your pack almost unseen, and its watertight pouch allows you to add and subtract from it to better suit your needs.

And yes…Stickers

 zombie stickers

And finally, nothing says “Die Zombie Scum!” like Gear Institute’s new seasonal sticker, well-placed on your favorite beverage vessel. Email us at [email protected] to order yours today. Now available in pirate grey.

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