Best Survival Playing Cards For Your Survival Pack
Yet, I always make room for a deck of playing cards.
That might sound surprising.
I mean, at first thought, silly games may not seem essential, right?
But the truth is, they play an important role in survival by keeping morale high.
A group with no morale has no will to survive.
But games don’t have to weigh you down.
Many camping games work well in a bug out bag because they require little or no equipment.
And survival playing cards are at the top of my list because they only weigh about 3 and a half ounces, yet you can do so much with them.
The obvious games are poker, solitaire, garbage, gin rummy, and many others.
↓ My Top 10 Games That Use Standard Playing Cards ↓
But there is more you can do with a deck of cards outside of the typical card games:
- Build a card house
- Card throwing
- Practice blackjack card counting
- Card magic tricks
You get the idea.
But I don’t pack just any deck of cards.
Like a good survivalist, I prefer each piece of gear to serve multiple purposes.
Because of that, I’m a big fan of survival playing cards, both informational and playing cards.
So here are my favorite survival playing cards for your survival pack.
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Best Survival Playing Cards
The Freedom of the Hills Deck from The Mountaineers is focused on wilderness travel in the high mountains.
It has a special place in my heart because its content comes from the excellent book that got me started in backpacking, Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills, by Steven M. Cox.
- Half the deck covers mountain and climbing skills, like self-arresting with an ice ax, performing avalanche rescue, building an emergency snow shelter, and setting up for belaying and rappeling.
- A quarter of the deck covers mountain wilderness skills, like avoiding lighting and dealing with bears. It contains almost nothing about shelter, water, or food.
- A quarter of the deck is first-aid skills specific to the mountains. It covers things like hypothermia, frostbite, and altitude sickness.
The cards are especially thick. Because of that, this deck is a bit thicker and heavier than most playing cards. It weighs in at 115 grams and is 25 mm thick, compared to 98 grams and 19 mm for the Discover Wilderness Survival deck.
Best Survival Playing Card Features To Look For
First off, durability is non-negotiable.
Look for cards made from waterproof and tear-resistant materials.
Mother Nature doesn’t always play nice, and you don’t want your survival deck falling apart after a little rain or rough handling.
A quality set should withstand the elements and stand up to the wear and tear of survival scenarios.
Next, utility is the name of the game.
Seek out decks that offer more than just numbers and suits.
Look for decks that include survival tips, emergency signals, navigation aids, and even edible plant identification.
Every card should be a mini information hub, ready to assist you in a pinch.
Versatility is another key factor.
The best survival playing cards should serve multiple functions.
A set that can be used as a signaling mirror, makeshift knife, or even fire-starting material can be a true lifesaver.
It’s like having a multi-tool in your pocket, ready to tackle various challenges that may come your way.
Portability is crucial as well.
Your survival deck should be compact and lightweight, easily fitting into your pocket, backpack, or emergency kit.
Space and weight are precious commodities in survival situations, so the last thing you need is a bulky set of cards weighing you down.
Lastly, educational value is a major bonus.
Opt for a deck that not only provide practical survival information but also help you learn new skills.
A deck that offers illustrated guides on building shelters, tying knots, and administering first aid can transform your downtime into productive learning sessions.
You need a little fun, even in a survival situation.
A deck of cards is cheap, small, lightweight, and versatile.
It’s especially versatile when you have a multi-purpose survival deck.
Not only can it bolster your morale and give you the will to survive, but it can also give you the knowledge to survive as well.
I challenge you to take action today: Add a deck of playing cards to your go bag essentials list.
Get a few decks that you like.
Put one in your go bag. Put one in your bug out bag.
One in your camping pack, one in your glove box, etc..…
I guarantee they will get used one way or another – hopefully just for fun and games.
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