Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Two is One, One is None

That is the preparedness axiom of always carrying more than one kind of a tool at a time.  Basically it means that if you only have one of something important, you can't count on it, because  no tool is perfect and it WILL eventually break, fail, be lost, or stolen, or otherwise will not perform its required function.  For example, I always carry two knives (oftentimes more) -- that way I'll never be without a trusty blade.   So ‘two is one’ is effectively saying that having two of one thing is sufficient to count as one, while only carrying one of them isn’t really that safe at all.

The "Two is one, one is none" / "One is none, two is one" mantra originated with the Navy Seals.  It's not an excuse to carry extra gear, but rather a practice in redundancy based on the premise that if an item can fail, it will. If you can lose it, it’s lost. If it malfunctions, you won’t have time to fix it. It’s a reminder to help save your life and complete whatever your mission is successfully. 

The "two is one, one is none" maxim applies to a plethora of things, from spare tires, second cars, double computer backups, etc... Today though we are talking about how it applies to the EDC (Every-Day-Carry) world and outdoor lifestyle.

I try to keep my gear as light as possible but there are a few items that I don't sacrifice strength and utility for a little weight savings.  These are the most important items I take with me whenever I go overnight hiking or backpacking:
Do you have redundancies built into your kit? I strongly recommend that you do!