First off. Self assessment….. If you don’t know how long you can walk with a pack on your back of the specific weight you will have with you, I’m will to bet you will be in for a hard time.

Condition your body and mind first and know your limits. You don’t want to learn them when running from a real threat.

We are al different. Solutions need to be personalized and specific to your needs.

We are going to be moving in between 3 urban areas, we need to learn what looks out-of-place in these spaces. How can we do this remotely? The internet offers us the opportunity to research a town or city by going on Google earth or maps and doing a street view virtual walk trough of where you are going (Take not of the time of year the images were taken). This is part of out Endemics Notebook I tell students to create.

Specifically when researching the images, take note of the color palettes used by the locals, the brand names you can spot and see if you can find people wearing backpacks. If you find more than one in the images on street view you can get a clearer idea of what to look for in a pack esthetically to make it blend in. It may be something as subtle as the color or the proliferation of a specific brand in some places like Adidas over Nike.

Also, research if it’s a place where backpacking is common. Is it a place where a lot of travelers move trough and where are these travelers mostly from. This could provide you with a secondary backdrop to blend in other than the locals.

You will also need to know what weather is like in the space you will be moving trough. Rain gear and water proof capabilities need to be kept in mind but not if they sacrifice space, weight and discretion. You will need to come to this conclusion your self and see if you can find something that can fit the environment and the possible weather in the area. Again, do your Endemics and look at the forecast.

We also need to have an idea of what resources are around us? What can’t we get from the area that is essential to us, or what can I procure on site? Why carry MRE’s when you can just stop in to a store on your way?

Discretion might make one think of avoiding all interactions, but sometimes the simplest solution is to carry cash or bartering items to get what you need instead of carrying it around with you.

– Simple and light equals freedom, agility and mobility.-

Let’s start our mental exercise by doing some research trough Google maps street view, social media and any other sources you can think of as far as the color palettes of clothing and backpacks in Tijuana, Rosarito and Ensenada. Let’s pick a color and see what we can expect to find resource wise on our trip.


Author – Ed is a security specialist and combatives instructor with over 10 years experience in public safety along the northern border area of Mexico. He runs seminars and private training specific to anti-abduction, escapology, free hand and unconventional edged weapons work. He is also director of Libre Fighting Systems in Mexico.

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