Survival trailers come in all shapes and sizes.
They also come in a wide range of prices.
From the budget-friendly DIY survival trailers to the “top of the line” budget destroyers (and everything in between).
So in this article, let’s start off looking at some badass bugout trailer rigs.
Yes, I realize these survival trailers are outside of many of our realistic price ranges, but they’re:
- Awesome to look at
- Can inspire your own DIY build
Then we’ll shift gears and cover a few budget-friendly survival trailer options as well.
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Best Bug Out Survival Trailers Money Can Buy
1. The Patriot Campers
If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line rig look no further than the Patriot Campers. In 2020 The Patriot Camper won Australia’s Camper Trailer of the Year Award. And has won this award several times throughout the years!
This well-designed drag behind is made to go anywhere your bug-out vehicle can go. This is an important aspect of survival trailers because you never want your trailer to hold you back, that would be a shame.
The following video does a much better job of sharing all the functions and features of this beast, so you should definitely watch the entire video.
Live In Luxury – 2022 X3 Walkaround – Patriot Campers
It gives you an idea of how incredible this rig would be as your survival trailer.
So as you just watched, this trailer rig is smartly designed with all the extras you could ever want. But all those extras come at a price and a hefty one at that.
We Still Call Australia Home – Patriot Campers
2. XOC – Extreme Overland Camper
Here’s a compact little trailer that can go damn near anywhere. The Extreme Overland Camper was built for survival and bugging out in mind.
This rig is tough as hell with excellent ground clearance. Take a look at this small but mighty beast yourself:
XOC – The Ultimate Prepper Bugout Trailer
3. Xventure Off-Road Trailer
What if you want a trailer and don’t care about a tent going with it? What if instead you just wanted to focus on maximum durability and storage space?
If this sounds like you, then check out the XVENTURE Offroad Trailer. This setup provides maximum durability at a reasonable price point.
X-Venture SV-3 Severe Duty Overland Trailer
While these are just three out of thousands of possible options, I believe these 3 trailers cover the basics of what you can purchase for your survival trailer needs.
But what if you don’t want to fork out tens of thousands for a bug out trailer? Or what if you would like to build your own trailer and customize it to perfectly suit your needs?
That is exactly what we’ll cover next.
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Different Types of DIY Survival Trailers
Honestly, anything that carries survival equipment and tows behind a vehicle can be considered a survival trailer.
If you’re mechanically inclined and have the means to do so, there’s no reason you can’t build your own survival trailer.
However, if you’re not mechanically inclined, then this isn’t a build you’ll want to cut your teeth on.
Otherwise, you may end up with an ugly, unreliable Frankentrailer.
The most straightforward DIY survival trailer build is one that replicates the camper survival trailers covered in the previous section.
4. The Camper Trailer
When it comes to DIY, it’s always best to do a bunch of research first. So I want to share with you a few sites and videos to help with your own DIY research.
This first video is about a guy who spent 6 months building his survival trailer. Spending a couple of hours working on it each day.
DIY homemade off-road camper trailer
As you may have noticed in the video, this guy has an entire site dedicated to showing you, step by step how to build a badass survival trailer yourself.
The site is https://www.diycamper.com.au/ and is worth checking out.
It’s got all the information you need including schematics and Q/A in the comment sections. The site is an absolute DIY gem.
Here’s another well-documented DIY Survival Trailer build that’s worth watching:
DIY Off Road CAmper // Full Build Video
5. Compact Horse Trailers
A horse trailer conversion setup is more on the budget side of things, but still a solid option for anyone looking for a quick getaway.
They are not originally intended for human occupancy. As the name implies, these trailers carry horses, so don’t expect a luxury RV.
With that said, it’s impressive what this guy was able to do with his old horse trailer.
Horse Trailer Conversion
This setup took some serious time and skills, but it just goes to show what’s possible.
6. Moving Trailers
Similar to a horse trailer, a moving trailer takes some work to make it feel like home.
Here’s a prime example of how you can turn a simple cargo trailer into a legit bug-out trailer.
Cargo Trailer Camper 5X8
What makes this setup so sweet is the off-grid capabilities, gear storage, and a bed. Now the downside is this trailer won’t survive the harshest off-road environments.
But if you have a bug out location in mind, and it doesn’t include rock crawling, then you may be able to get away with this simple budget-friendly rig.
Customizing Your Survival Trailer/Vehicle
The best part about owning your own survival trailer is, you can do whatever you want to it. You can paint it whatever color you like, and fill it with what you feel is necessary.
But before you go adding flame decals and installing external speaker systems, let’s talk about your custom survival trailer options:
This is the first thing anyone buying a trailer for survival purposes should consider. Most trailers come in cream, white, or metallic colors that don’t really blend into the natural environment very well.
I’m not suggesting that you should paint it in camouflage colors and patterns as soon as you get it.
But definitely consider a coat of something dark, or earth-toned.
Forest green, black, gray, brown – anything but bright colors and patterns that stick out.
Another great option is to get some good camouflage netting.
This stuff really helps your rig blend in with the surroundings in most forest settings.
Do not be afraid to put shelves where you want, and add bunks or cots, storage boxes, or even windows in your trailer. However, don’t go so far that you compromise the structural integrity of your trailer; otherwise, have at it.
Make your survival trailer the perfect storage/shelter facility for you.
If you have equipment that requires custom storage, plan it out and build it. If things really get bad, this trailer may become your permanent home, so make it ideal for you.
Color, as mentioned above, is a top priority. But you can also add materials to the outside of your trailer to make it more durable and adaptable.
For instance, homemade frames can be built to support a tent on top of the trailer or to hold hammocks or string up tarps for a makeshift survival shelter.
Or you can attach metal diamond plating to the exterior walls to increase durability (although the added weight will undoubtedly decrease gas mileage).
Beefing up the axle, adding off-road tires, off-road shocks, and even a lift kit is possible with some research, skill, and creativity.
These additions are highly desirable when you’re escaping a city and taking refuge in the deep wilderness.
Packing Your Survival Trailer
Obviously one of the most important things about the trailer is what’s inside it. Hopefully, you have time to plan and pack your trailer at home before a disaster ever strikes.
The longer you spend mulling over what you are going to fill your survival trailer with, the better prepared you will be. Guaranteed.
This list is not absolutely comprehensive, but it is a good start to packing any survival trailer with the supplies and equipment you’ll need during a real bug out.
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The Absolute Necessities
Always start with the supplies that you can’t survive without. The survival necessities. Make sure that you are totally prepared on this front before moving on to more superfluous items.
Water & water purification system/method –
Human beings can go a relatively long time without calories. That’s why water is easily the most important item on a survival packing list, above food.
Make sure that you have an adequate supply of fresh water and a LifeSafer JerryCan Water System for collecting and purifying the water you find in nature.
Everyone loves food.
But unfortunately, you are not going to be able to keep a fresh stock of organic veggies and farm-fresh eggs in your trailer.
The rations you are going to want to pack in your trailer are almost all going to come in a can, bag, or tube form.
Non-perishable foods are your best friend when it comes to surviving a disaster. They are usually packed with protein and vitamins and kept for very, very long periods of time.
So stock up on a large variety of freeze-dried foods that don’t easily spoil and you will thank yourself later on.
Here’s a detailed review of our highly recommended survival food supplier; Valley Food Storage.
Guns, ammo, weapons
It is safe to say that any serious survivalist is going to want guns and ammunition when shit hits the fan. And it is going to be way too late for a stop by the local gun store on your way out of town.
Think ahead, plan ahead, and grab some extra ammo every week to add to your ammo stockpile.
Keep at least a survival handgun and ideally a survival rifle inside the trailer at all times. If you have a means of locking them up with a gun safe, do it. Anyone who can get their hands on your firearms will definitely try.
Disaster situations do strange things to people, they make them desperate, and savage. Protect your weapons at all costs or they may be used against you
And the same goes for swords, axes, maces, flails, bayonets, chainsaws, clubs, crossbows, blowguns, and throwing stars. You don’t need a full armory in your trailer, but I highly recommend adding a few key self-defense weapons.
This is a vital piece of gear that everyone should own. You can build your own or buy a pre-made one. Here is a really awesome article on building/buying tactical medical kits.
Doctors are rarely present in emergency situations, and you will likely have a need for medical supplies and medical attention at some point.
Owning a thorough medical kit is like having good insurance – you don’t need it until you really freaking need it. And it will likely save your life in such a case.
It is never certain what kind of circumstances you might have to pack up and flee with your trailer under.
For all intents and purposes, it is safe to assume that stopping at the gas station for a quick top-off won’t always be an option.
There might be huge lines, or the stations may not be working at all.
So keep some fuel stored in fuel-safe containers in your trailer so that you can just pull off and fill up anywhere should you need to.
Extra fuel is one of the best things to keep stored with any survival vehicle or cache.
When you’re driving your vehicle over rough terrain and carrying all of your valuable survival equipment and supplies, a spare tire is a must.
You don’t want to be left for dead in the middle of nowhere just because of a mundane flat tire. Keep at least one and ideally two or three spare tires with you at all times.
Nice Items to Have
They may not all be necessary, and honestly, you may never even get the chance to use all of these supplies. But it grants you peace of mind to prepare on all fronts, and should the need actually arise, you may owe your life to one or more of these items.
Obviously, you will not need these every day, but it seems likely that at some point or another, tools will be a very useful item to have stored in a survival trailer. Be it for mechanical reasons or otherwise, hand tools always come in handy.
Whether you are hunting or launching an offensive attack on an enemy, binoculars are an excellent survival asset to own.
On top of ammo and guns for hunting, keep a bit of fishing line, bait, lures, flies, and extra poles stored in the survival trailer.
non-perishable food is great, but when you are miles from civilization and have not eaten something fresh in a few weeks, catching and grilling a fat freshwater trout can be one of the most rewarding experiences in the world.
Cookware, plates/bowls, silverware
Not a necessity by any means, but very nice to have. Eating straight out of cans and bags will get old after a while. And collapsible bowls and sporks are affordable and take up very little space.
Camp stoves are relatively affordable and come in all shapes and sizes. You can get an old-fashion white gas stove, a jet boil, or a propane stove.
No matter what kind of fuel it burns or what shape and size it is, the ability to cook food and boil water with the twist of a switch is a fantastic amenity when you are in the wild and away from home.
Needless to say, fresh clothes won’t be in high supply should you have to ditch town and take refuge off-grid in your survival trailer. So make sure you bring spare undies, socks, t-shirts, and pants. You’ll thank yourself, I promise.
Survival isn’t all about keeping your physical body healthy and out of harm’s way. It also involves keeping your mind healthy, and unbroken. A life without any sort of entertainment can drive one crazy (“All work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy…”).
Make sure to store a few of the better survival books, a deck of survival playing cards, and a board game in with your survival gear. Entertainment can be as valuable as food and water in a world gone mad with chaos.
Hear me out, in any survival supply list, vices are very useful to have. Cigarettes, coffee, cannabis, beer, liquor, whatever!
Not just for personal use (although that is a bonus), but because in a world that has potentially lost its economy to violence and destruction, cash and coin will be about as useful as dirt.
Trust me, vices will be rare and highly sought after.
I promise such supplies are cheaper now than they will be after IT hits the fan, so stock up while supplies last.
Even if you don’t partake in any of these habits, I would still recommend buying some and keeping them in your survival trailer. They will assuredly come in more useful than you can imagine.
Maybe the economy crashes, maybe it doesn’t. Be prepared for either circumstance and keep both non-monetary items for trade stockpiled, as well as a little bit of extra cash.
Just make sure that it is well hidden and/or locked up in the trailer.
Seeds and gardening tools
Remember when I said you were going to get sick of non-perishable food really fast? Well, here’s your solution.
If your survival trailer becomes your main place of residence you may have the opportunity to settle down in one place long enough to put down roots. Literally.
Planting a garden can yield a surprising amount of extra food, and all it costs is extra elbow grease. Here’s an excellent survival seed vault we recommend adding to your survival trailer.
Bikes and boats
They can be bug out bikes, road bikes, dirt bikes, or even motorcycles. They can be canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, or rafts.
No matter what type of boat or bike, you can attach it to your trailer or store it inside, it’s extremely useful to have multiple modes of transportation.
Bikes are agile and small and quick, boats allow you to access places that might otherwise be unreachable.
Having the ability to leave the trailer hidden somewhere and go out on your own in a smaller, less visible, more efficient manner is highly appealing and would undoubtedly prove useful.
Locks and chain
Locking and securing your belongings is essential.
People will try to steal your equipment, given the chance, so invest in tough locks and chains to keep your trailer closed uptight and your equipment secure.
You can never do too much when it comes to theft prevention.
Maps and atlases
It is a really good idea to store a library of maps and atlases to guide you on any journey you might take in your survival trailer.
Store lots of maps of your local area, and of places you travel to often, but also keep maps of the rest of the US, roadmaps, and topos to help you navigate both the roads and the landscape.
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The Final Word
There are too many benefits to having a survival trailer to list in a single article. If it’s within your power to do so, I would highly encourage every survivalist out there to buy and stock up on one of their very own.
It is no small project and, as mentioned earlier, it isn’t necessarily cheap. But a survival trailer not only lends itself to a mobile shelter that you can drive and park anywhere, but it also doubles as a mobile survival cache.
Survival trailers are like a gigantic Bug Out Bag that you can live in! They streamline any survival plan and offer space to bring family and friends in the event of a true bug out scenario.
In a disaster, when you and everyone are preparing to flee, you want to be the very first one out of harm’s way because you owned a trailer, stocked full of gear, supplies, and equipment.
With no packing to do, besides last-minute items, survival trailers enable you to escape with speed and clarity. If you are looking for your next survival project/investment, make it a survival trailer.
It will put you miles ahead of the game…
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