Aside from the obvious phone, keys, and wallet, we all have our own everyday carry (EDC). These are items you take with you virtually every day. Even a watch — or the modern smart watch — can be considered part of your EDC. Although we may have a system that works, there are some items you may be missing that could come in handy and make your life easier. Let’s take a look at some of the gear you should consider carrying.
If you’re legally allowed, you’ll most likely want to carry a firearm. If you’re a frequent visitor of The Shooter’s Log, you likely already have that covered, but it’s worth mentioning just the same. We don’t get to decide when bad things happen to us and having a gun at home does not cover you 100% of the time.
Concealed carry is on the rise in the U.S. and more people now than ever are deciding to take the safety of themself and their family into their own hands. A good handgun and holster are essential, but so is the training you should receive to use them safely and effectively.
A small pistol is easy to carry and provides good insurance in case of a threat. A larger handgun will be easier to shoot, but harder to conceal. There’s a lot to dive into on this, more than I can get into here, but I have already done so in a past article.
Whether it’s an extra magazine or speedloader, you’ll want to consider carrying a spare load for your gun. This is not just in case you run out of ammo in a daring action-movie firefight, it is also useful for clearing malfunctions in semi-auto pistols. Additionally, it will provide a backup in case one magazine gets accidentally dropped or breaks. These can be carried in a mag carrier on the hip or in the pocket. Just be sure to test and train with whichever method you choose.
Like many, I’ve been carrying a pocket knife since I was a kid. I started with a small Swiss Army style knife and have gone to large fixed blades on occassion. My primary reason for carrying a knife is utility. From opening packages to slicing an apple, carrying a knife can come in handy in your day to day life. Depending on the knife, it may have the added benefit of emergency self-defense. I would limit this to larger folding knives with locking blades and medium to large fixed blades, as anything smaller isn’t very effective in this role.
Admittedly, this is something I should carry more often. While you may not need it every day, when you do, a flashlight can really save the day. Dropping your car keys at night, looking through that tangle of cords under your desk, taking the dog out at night, these are just a few times where you may want a small flashlight. Further, if you plan on carrying a firearm, a flashlight or weapon light will help with target identification, should you need to make a shot in the dark.
A quality multi-tool is indispensable for those who tinker with things or work a lot with their hands. Most tools will include a knife blade, various driver heads, pliers, wire cutters, a file, and sometimes a saw. Many will include more accessories. Tossing a multi-tool into your EDC is a great way to cover your bases for a wide range of issues.
If you’re limited on space, you may consider a pry tool instead. Pry tools don’t provide the same number of functions, but they are typically less bulky and can be used in a number of situations depending on their additional functions. Some will even fit on a keychain.
Here’s where things get really creative. Adding in some extra personal items will help you tailor your EDC to your lifestyle. I’m talking about things such as a lighter, pen, hank, or fidget device. This is all based on what works for you. Hygiene supplies are also typical. Chapstick, wet wipes, lotion, sanitizer, toothpicks, mints, etc., may already be a part of your EDC. For instance, I wear glasses and typically carry a lens cloth to keep them clean.
You would also be wise to consider carrying some sort of first aid kit and/or tourniquet. If you’re prepared for a gunfight, you should be ready to deliver first aid to yourself and those around you. Having a gun isn’t enough, you should have the necessary life-saving supplies and training required to use them effectively. I know this is a lot to ask, but even keeping a first aid kit in your car or bag is better than nothing at all. If you can’t use it, there may be someone who can.
My everyday carry gear is a constantly evolving rotation as I test and find things that work and those that don’t. That’s part of the fun, right? If you’re reading this, you likely agree. I think the most important thing to keep in mind is that you can’t carry everything. Don’t overload yourself with stuff you don’t ever need or even use. You’ll burn yourself out and quit carrying everything. Keep your EDC focused on the essentials.