The most important part of a survival gear is the stuff that will keep you alive in the short-term should you become lost. High-energy food such as granola, candy and energy bars is a must, since it will give you the calories you need to keep going. You will also need a means to make fire. Get a camp stove designed to burn both fuel pellets and wood along with enough fuel pellets for a couple days and a reliable fire starter. Water purification tablets are useful for making water potable and for avoiding water-borne illnesses.
Bring extra clothing. Focus on warm, durable clothing such as thermal underwear, a jacket or parka, a warm sweaters, a winter hats and gloves. Clothing is quite bulky, so select items that will keep you comfy toasty in the worst weather you are likely to face rather than trying to bring a range of different items.
Basic medical supplies should be a part of any survival kit. Pack any prescription medication you need as well as gauze, bandages, antiseptics, medical tape and aspirin. Finally, bring signaling devices to get help. An emergency whistle will work well to help you attract attention.
Navigation gear and Information
When it comes to navigation gear, balance both high-tech and low-tech solutions. A GPS system and a GPS beacon are both good investments, but you should also have a compass and at least two maps of the area you are in. Learn to navigate with a map and compass. GPS depends on an extensive and complex network of satellites. If a part of that system fails, you will find yourself without any means of navigating.
Bring a NOAA weather radio along, preferably one that can be recharged by a crank. This will keep you updated about weather hazards should you be in a survival situation.
If you do end up stranded for any length of time, you will need some basic tools to build a shelter, traps and fires. A basic hatchet and a wilderness survival knife along with some cord will help you build nearly any primitive structure you need to. A solar blanket is also a useful tool, since it can be used to keep you warm, as a roof or flooring for a shelter and as a signaling device to reflect the sun. A small trench shovel may also serve you well in building snow caves and burying waste. Bring cord to help build shelters, hang food out of the range of scavengers and make traps for game. Finally, bring a few pots and pans. Not only can you use them to cook food, but you can also boil your water to purify it after your tablets run out.