We recommend the following at a bare minimum for most trail runs, no matter the time of year:
A smile and a positive attitude
A basic first aid kit including any medication (Insulin, Inhalers, etc; whatever medications you may need away from home)
At least 1 ABC fire extinguisher somewhere easily accessible.
Basic car kit (tire iron, jumper cables, etc)
Tire-Deflator and a means of airing up (Compressor, CO2 bottle, etc)
Food and drink for lunch, and extra food and snacks for the day/night for yourself and any passengers (don’t forget your pets!)
Weather-appropriate clothing, including but not limited to; warm clothes, extra socks, warm and waterproof shoes, extra shoes/boots if possible, hats/beanies, gloves, raincoat, sweatshirt, winter coat (as needed), snow pants (as needed), sunscreen, bug spray, etc.
Flashlight, lantern, headlamps, etc
A warm blanket for you and any passengers
Walkie-talkies with spare batteries and/or charger
A tool kit consisting of basic hand tools (sockets, screwdrivers, wrenches, zip ties, hose clamps, torque wrench, etc)
Tire-repair kit, Colby emergency valve stems, spare cores, starter fluid+lighter for re-beading a tire, etc.
Jack with supporting base if necessary (for lifted Subarus, a couple blocks of wood and the factory scissor jack should suffice in most cases)
A full-size spare tire (same brand, size, and tread wear if at all possible to reduce potential damage to AWD system)
Spare fluids (oil, coolant, power steering fluid/ATF, brake fluid, etc)
Highly Recommended Gear To Add:
72 hr pack with basic survival supplies for yourself and any passengers
Offline maps downloaded to your phone using Avenza Maps or other offline GPS maps app. (Paper maps and a compass are always recommended as well)
Another communication device with charger and/or extra batteries (CB, Ham radio, etc)
Spare parts: At least (1) outer tie rod, at least (1) inner tie rod, (1) front CV axle, (1) rear CV axle, (4+) lug nuts, (4+) wheel studs
Recovery gear suited to your vehicle. This includes at a minimum the following:
A solid recovery point (Receiver hitch with shackle adapter is the easiest and cheapest for most of us for the rear, and using two shackles with a tow or tree strap to bridle the front is the best option for the front. The stock screw-in tow eye if available can work as a last resort, although it is strongly not recommended for hard snatch recoveries.
MaxTrax or other traction boards
20 to 30 ft long tow strap (no stretch) NO METAL HOOKS, loop style straps only
20 to 30 ft long recovery strap (2-3 times the GVWR of your vehicle or ~17k lbs max -- These stretch to reduce the shock load on recovery points and your vehicle)
10 to 15 ft long “tree saver” strap (for bridling between points if necessary)
(4) or more 3/4 inch rated hard shackles and/or (4) or more rated soft shackles