Letter Re: The Practical Application of Tactical Gear, Load and Weight Considerations


I’ve been reading the MAX V articles about practical application of tactical gear, et cetera. This spurred me to add my .02 cents. During a 2014 deployment to Kandahar with the Air Force Reserve, I had an ankle injury that wasn’t serious enough to send me home but serious enough to slow me down for my entire tour. I had brought with me a Tactical Tailor H-harness and belt set, which I set up to wear under my armor. (Once the armor was on, I never felt it.) I kept one magazine pouch and a small admin pouch, used for power bars and band-ades, on the armor. Everything else was on the H-harness/belt.

Loading up the carrier with ammo pouches and extra crap looked high-speed for the younger troops, but I felt was additional weight to try to get on and off in a hurry. Also, with my age related ankle injury, I decided that should I have to ditch my armor to trade for speed, that keeping the ammo, canteen, and admin pouch with CLIF bars separate was the way to go and something to consider for the “old warriors” in the readership. Keeping in mind that during an emergency here when a person needs to ditch 30 lbs of armor to run an important message, or simply E&E an overwhelming foe, might be something to consider.

Mid-crisis is not the time to strip your plate carrier to reconfigure for weight saving. Pulling and caching the plates might work as well but would still require time that could be better utilized creating distance. – T.G.

One Comment

  1. This was my point in response to part 1 of the article. For the military with all kinds of support and resupply and their mission demands a heavy load of essential tactical gear makes sense. For an individual or small group without all the expensive support structure and without the huge mission demands there needs to be some common sense changes. I liken this to the stories we have all read about immigrants going West carrying all their household goods in their wagon only to incapacitate their animals and force them to dump their goods along side the road.
    A better way is to look at what American Indians carried on a hunt or to war and to also use the high tech ultra light gear that is available. Create a tactical gear load that is closer to 20 lbs than it is to the 55lb to 90lb military gear load.
    Not saying it is easy or doesn’t require tough choices but it is necessary. If you are a big strapping 18-20 something guy a gear load of 55+ lbs doesn’t seem like a big deal. If you are 50 or 60 the load you carry makes the difference between arriving at your destination or not. IMHO there are two kinds of outdoor folks. Those who think they can carry everything they need and those who learned the hard way that they cannot.

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