The Not So Heavy Load

There’s that Asian gal with her ruck again!

I’ve gotten a half dozen emails asking about what I carried during the Arkansas trip since I posted the AAR and rather than answer those and future emails individually I’ll post it here.  Keep in mind one thing – I like to travel light.  Here we go:

On me:

  • My AR
  • My multitool (wave)
  • An green micro led light
  • My OST (Oh Shit Tin)
  • I also have 25′ of 550 cord wrapped up in my boonie
  • some MRE TP in a small ziplock
  • a mini-bic wrapped in 90 mph tape (to light shit that goes boom, fuel tabs, and my cigars)

My rig is a molle LBE setup with 1 triple mag holder, 1 single mag holder (I only carried two 30 round mags this trip and 1 20 with tracers.  The rest of the mag pouches had pyro in them), Another pouch with more pyro in it (remember I like shit that goes boom), my BOK built into a max pouch, 2 1 qt canteens (one has a cup other a stove), and a small molle buttpack I got years ago.  Inside the buttpack is extra socks, some bum wipes in a ziplock, a couple of extra batteries, 3 freeze dried entrees, my brew kit in an old decon container, esbit fuel in a ziplock, my messhall fork and spoon (that’s night – no spork for me) and other little odds and ends like water purification tabs.  Normally a 20 round mag of tracers in an old m14 molle pouch is on the outside of it.  I roll my poncho up in small bungie cords and it straps to the top of my buttpack.  I have a cold steel mini tanto (father’s day gift – I love that damn little knife) strapped to the belt as well.  My hosts provided an FRS radio so I hung that on the harness.

My pack is a Max Falcon II.  In and on it are:

  • 3 2 qt canteens
  • 3 extra pairs of socks
  • an extra T-shirt
  • My woobie (Google it)
  • Sleep Shirt & Cap
  • my weapons cleaning kit & spares
  • Hygiene kit (travel soap in a ziplock, washcloth, toothbrush/paste, hand towel)
  • extra TP (squashed)
  • 4 x 25′ lengths of 550 cord
  • squashed roll of 90 mph tape
  • And extra poncho rolled up in some bungie cords
  • A dozen extra AAs in a plastic case
  • Deet in a double zip loc (I keep an eye on that shit – deet likes to eat plastic)
  • An old hand trowel that my grandmother had I use for digging catholes
  • My “training smartbook” which is a small binder with notes, cheat sheets, etc.  When you have to pull training out of your ass something like this is invaluable for the gang to reference while you’re going over it.

My secondary aid kit in a pouch on the outside:

Meds (Benadryl, Immodium, Mobic, anti-histamines, some good old generic aspirin, some vicodin, and some Tetracycline) an emergency dental kit, An ace wrap, Sam splint, Oral IV (the shit works – get some), sunscreen, triple anti-biotic, some Mexican hydrocortisone cream (much stronger than the US stuff – excellent for poison ivy), a roll of 2″ med tape, black sharpie, more 90 mph tape, and a second of everything in my BOK.

Also hung on the outside was my camelback, this little cheap tiny folding stool which was a POS (HH6 bought it for me and there was no way I was getting out of taking it.  It didn’t come home with me – chalk it up to a field loss), and a small whiteboard with some dry erase markers in a pocket (tools of the trainer).

I didn’t weigh it but the bulk of my pack weight was water – probably something like 24 pounds.  I learned a long time ago plan for a quart an hour while awake (more if your highly active) and a quart as soon as you wake up in over 100 degree temps.  My pack was really kind of light this trip – no extra ammo or other odds and sods and the extra stuff I was dragging (stool and whiteboard) were little to no weight at all.

Hopefully this will give you some insight on my mentality – I carry the bare non essential life support stuff.  In winter I’ll add some more snivel gear.  My one luxury?  I have a pocket humidor in my pack that I put some cheap cigars in.  That and a cup of tea in the evening and things go all too easily into perspective 😉

About Treaded

Semi-retired career and contract troop. I own and maintain my own small ranch out here in beautiful rural America.
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15 Responses to The Not So Heavy Load

  1. rolf says:

    Thanks for the info. As to the woobie, you seen the mountain serape from hill people gear?

    • Treaded says:

      I don’t really go looking for a lot of gear unless I have a void that needs filling. My woobie has worked for pretty much my entire adult life so it’s a piece of kit I know and have come to love.

      • rolf says:

        Rog….I been looking at em both, just found a blog comparing them, woobie seems to win. Thx.

  2. K@CSG says:

    I always have the woobie packed in my gear…….that is when my kids have not swiped it. Popular piece of kit around my house. Kifaru makes a nice woobie with a higher insulating factor than the issue one…..spendy though.

  3. HalfElf says:

    I have found that the decon kit containers are an ideal location not only for my brew kit, but to store mass unpleasantness like bug juice. Nothing will ruin a field ex like migrating bug juice in your ruck, get in and on everything, and the military goop will fog a watch crystal, so you don’t want it near your toothbrush or internal medicines.

    • Treaded says:

      Yeah I really need to grab a few more. I checked the prices and damn people want some shiny money for them nowadays.

      • HalfElf says:

        How many do you need, I have several and access to almost unlimited through my unit. PM me to arrange for transfer.

  4. LFMayor says:

    Has anyone tried using a washed out empty peanut butter jar for their deet? Just asking, I use them for all sorts of other stuff, making little survival kits. They’re moderately crush proof, but I’m not sure of how reactive they are with deet. Maybe ziplock the bottle inside the jar?

    • Treaded says:

      It should work but I’d be concerned about the bulk (I hate bulky shit and a bulky pack). I don’t think the deet would eat it but it would frost the hell out of the inside. My sister (hiker extraordinaire) has recommended using the .5 mil vacuum sealing bags with zippers to put it in and I’ve got a new tube of ultrathon so next time out that concept is going to get tested.

  5. Pingback: LF: The Not-So-Heavy Load | Western Rifle Shooters Association

  6. Chef says:

    @LFMAYOR….I use those tupperware-type sandwich containers for stuff like that. They’re flatter, and stow away better, and the best part, you can get them at Dollar General for…you guessed it…a dollar.

  7. alan w. mullenax says:

    My man! Cigars! I don’t do cheap ones, but they are part of the load.

    I carry a lot less than you. Well, except for ammo. And maybe cigars. 😉

  8. Cassandra (of Troy) says:


    Perhaps the solution to the DEET containment problem’s already been figgered out: The metal 2 compartment gun cleaner/oiler can from Europe. And I mean the METAL one, NOT the plastic ChiCom/other ‘modern’ version. Not too big/bulky, not too heavy, almost crushproof, easily leakproofed via gaskets in screw-on metal caps, relatively readily available, & not all that expensive. And if such are still around, there are 2-3 different sizes from the ‘standard’ small one all the way up to a big one I saw approx 4-5″L/3″H/1″T, I’ve seen them in the ‘heart’ shape & flask type.

    Cassandra (of Troy)

  9. aknewbie says:

    Since you’re letting us know about your carry contents (and it is appreciated), can you tell me the contents of your “my BOK built into a max pouch”?

    Just discovered your site and I’m really enjoying the reads and links. You might have documented the BOK elsewhere, but the search only returns this page.

    • Treaded says:

      Sure. My BOK (Blow Out Kit) is based on a Maxpedition H1 I picked up at a flea market last year. I’m partial to this pouch because not only can you adapt it to Molle/Alice but belt mount it as well. On the outside pocket I have a CAT shoved into the pouch. Inside I have a 4″ Izzy bandage, 1 pack of quickclot combat gauze, 1 pack of Z fold gauze, a 28fr airway with lube, a pack of Halo chest seals, and a 14g decomp needle. Those items are vac sealed in a small heavy ply bag (gotta love the foodsaver!) that has a small notch cut and a tear line drawn on the bag in sharpie.

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