Sure, emergency survival kits come in all sizes, from those that require a forklift to transport all the way down to kits made for a family of amoeba trapped under a microscope. However, very few of them in between are designed to be carried with you at all times, sometimes, as in the case of the Woodchuck keychain, without you even having to think about it (provided when the apocalypse comes, you don’t forget your keys).
Wazoo Survival Gear is a weird name, yes, and if you want to get an idea of the company’s sense of humor take a look at their “About Us” page on their website. Their gift cards are burnable. What started as a hobby for Dustin Hogard in Kemah, Texas, turned into a full-time business in 2011 when Wazoo Survival Gear started offering a wide variety of paracord-based survival equipment aimed at those that need useful and well-made devices that aren’t bulky or obvious. What is more subtle than a bracelet packed with 17 different survival tools or a keychain that holds a half-dozen more?
Wazoo offers a wide assortment of products from bracelets to keychains to belts, and even a zombie-themed “Wazombie” (picture a voodoo doll made from paracord) with a pewter head and six included tools. We got the Adventure Paracord Survival Bracelet and the Woodchuck keychain, two of their best sellers.
There are more tools packed in this one bracelet than in most kits three times the size. The buckle itself has an integrated whistle, while the double-wrapped paracord core contains seven feet of cordage. There’s a firesteel and striker blade (which is a non-metallic Zirconia ceramic blade in a sheath), first aid tinder sealed in plastic, fishing gear, ranger bands (four), a mirror, compass, glow light under the compass lid, handcuff key, mirror, and straw in the bracelet’s core.
The Woodchuck is so named because it includes a length of wire to fashion a wire saw for wood cutting or untwist the strands to use for a multitude of things, a piece of firesteel and the nameplate (engravable) to quickly start a fire, all wrapped around a tightly-wound length of paracord.
MSRP: $89.00—Adventure; $25.00—Woodchuck
Editor’s note: A version of this article first appeared in the March 2015 issue of American Survival Guide.