The Practical Application of Tactical Gear, Load and Weight Considerations
The Practical Application of Tactical Gear, Load and Weight Considerations by Max – Survival Blog
The intent of this post is to tie in the related, practical application concepts of tactical gear, fitness, teamwork, logistics, and tactical loading, in order to present a realistic and logical way to approach the subject. There are a number of related factors at play here.
We often utilize the military terminology of “METT-TC” in order to analyze our mission and thus apply it to the gear that we may carry. Factors such as weather, duration, and the specific mission that you are conducting play into considerations of what to carry. We must be realistic in what we plan and train for now, and thus pack for. Base it around what we think we realistically might be doing in a collapse situation. I put it to you that most people will be engaged in local defense and security patrolling. They may also deal with presence/ground domination activity (GDA). People will be patrolling in and around their homestead and perhaps local community. They will thus not be engaging in multi-day ruck-missions out into the boondocks. This has relevance as we examine the other factors.
However much you pack, you will ultimately need a resupply. Many people with a “prepper” mindset want to pack too much “just in case” they need it. I would advise a different approach. I recommend you plan for that resupply and set up a logistics chain. If it allows you the ability to maneuver under fire, it would be better to have to temporarily make do without something than carry a huge load. Thus, you could consider something along the lines of planning to utilize existing vehicles. Trucks, ATVs/UTVs, and even perhaps horses or mules can support any mission that you plan that you suspect will go beyond one day’s rations. This would be one first line ammunition scale (i.e. what is realistically carried on the person as part of a deployed load-out).
This also ties in very well with casualty evacuation. I tell people at class that the hardest thing they will do is evacuate a casualty under fire. It is so much the case that I propose that with today’s typical weight of person measured against poor levels of physical fitness, factoring in the exhaustion of being under fire, many casualties will not be evacuated. Or, they at least will not be evacuated far. Thus, in a break contact drill, this means they will be left. The team may be forced to strongpoint, in order to call for QRF/casualty evacuation. For this, you need communications, an actual QRF (trained and rehearsed team), and suitable transport for them to deploy to you and extract you.
You should only carry what you can fight in. By this I mean what you can maneuver under fire. Much has been said about 55 pounds being the maximum that a person can carry into combat. However, we must remember that:
- The person must be fit and robust in the first place to manage this, and
- This refers to weight that can be carried in on an approach march, not actually fought in.
In order for the individual to be able to maneuver tactically under fire, this load must be reduced. For example, I would consider 35lbs. as a much more practical load weight that 55lbs. This, however, may not include the weight of the rifle. Your mileage may vary. This goes directly against carrying all that stuff that you want to carry because “two is one and one is none”. And it relates to the concept of logistics. An individual should not be loaded out with, for example, 16 magazines on the person, plus whatever else. They should be loaded with something more like 6-8 mags. Depending on the mission, a support team can move resupply up in an ATV. “No man is an island.” And you cannot fight everyone forever on your own. You can only carry a limited amount and still remain effective, and then you need resupply.