Whether you’re packing a suitcase for a weekend trip or prepping your bug out bag for an emergency, using pack space efficiently is a must. It’s common sense not to haul around a bulky pack full of disorganized gear. Also, it’s important to make the most of the space you have, and consolidate related items into grab-and-go kits. This way, when you need a certain set of gear quickly, you won’t end up rummaging for loose items.

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Pack organization is crucial. Without it, you’ll waste valuable time hunting for gear during an emergency.

Packing a first-aid kit or cooking kit is easy enough, but what about clothing? The traditional packing method is to fold apparel flat, but this doesn’t provide much organization, and leaves individual items loose. Grabbing an entire change of clothes requires hunting for a separate shirt, underwear, and two socks.

Over the years, members of the military have devised a more efficient method for packing clothing. It’s called the skivvy roll or grunt roll, and it combines a shirt, underwear, and socks into a single compact bundle. If you learn this method, you can compress these items and save space in your backpack or suitcase. It’s also easy to grab when you need a fresh set of clothes. Here’s how to make a skivvy roll, step by step:

Start with a T-shirt, a pair of underwear or PT shorts, and a pair of socks.

Start with a T-shirt, a pair of underwear or PT shorts, and a pair of socks.

Lay the shirt flat. Fold the shorts or underwear in half, and place them in the center.

Lay the shirt flat. Fold the shorts or underwear in half, and place them in the center.

Fold the edges of the shirt over the center. Fold carefully to avoid wrinkles.

Fold the edges of the shirt over the center. Fold carefully to avoid wrinkles.

Fold the other side of the shirt across the center.

Fold the other side of the shirt across the center.

Place a pair of socks as shown, with the open ends facing left and right.

Place a pair of socks as shown, with the open ends facing left and right.

Tightly roll the shirt around the socks, starting at the neck.

Tightly roll the shirt around the socks, starting at the neck.

Here's how the rolled shirt should end up looking.

Here’s how the rolled shirt should end up looking.

Invert the socks, and stretch them tightly over the rolled shirt.

Invert the socks, and stretch them tightly over the rolled shirt.

The finished product resembles a clothing burrito.

The finished product resembles a clothing burrito.

The skivvy roll technique is great for camping, backpacking, or bug-out bag preparation. Next time you’re packing fresh clothes, remember this method. P.S. – We’d like to give a shout-out to Duckworth for providing the excellent Lightweight Crew socks seen in these photos. They’re made in the USA from Montana-grown merino wool, and they’re super comfy.
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