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The Encounter Collection by Stephen Kenn 
Video by Process Creative

This video "explores the significant act of passing an object on from one generation to the next" which is expressed through a Travel Duffle. This is an example of brilliant story telling and reinforces the statement “buy cheap, buy twice”. This pack may be expensive, but as the video demonstrates it will last through generations.

While this might not be the pack for you, I think we should all consider our purchases carefully. Ask yourself the question, “could I save up a little bit longer and get something that will last a life time?”

Since finding out that we were going to have our first child, and seeing this video, I’ve been considering what things I own, and what of that I’d want to pass on to the next generation.

Video found here

Buy the pack here

To everyone who made an order of our fundraising patch for Team Rubicon, please be aware that, as stated on the original post (and on the store page until it was recently updated), any orders made in July or August were ‘pre-orders’ with the estimated shipping for the patches being by the end of August. The patches shipped out on 27 August and should be arriving soon. Thank you all for your patience.

For the person who messaged me recently about their order please email me on and I’ll be happy to help. Your question was submitted anonymously and without your name or email address so I cannot identify your specific order. Thank you.

Finally there are now only 150 left (out of 500!) so make an order now to avoid missing out.

Fast Pack Friday: Inspired

I’ve chosen a bunch of images from the Triple Aught Design site that include packs and have provoked me, but the real idea behind this post is to inspire an active lifestyle. This is as much a message to myself as it is to you all.

It’s often easy to focus too heavily on our equipment rather than the actual activities we ‘need’ the gear for. My wife (who always brings brilliant and much needed perspective to my life) helped me realise how far my perspective had shifted from the lifestyle to the gear. I’m so grateful for how she sharpens me and I love her to bits because of it.

So to remind myself of this lesson and to pass on what I’ve learned, let me end with this:

Don’t forget only real reason for buying outdoor gear, and get outdoors. I will endeavour to do the same.

Images found on the Triple Aught Design store here

The true colours of a company…


…are not seen when everything is going ok, but when things go wrong.

GORUCK are amazing products, I have several of their bags, but after I noticed a small fault on one of my items they sorted it out ASAP, including paying the postage from the UK before they even had it back and then rushing a replacement out to me including a free patch and sticker.

Top notch products and amazing service to back them up. Thanks guys.

Amazing customer service!

Pack Config Update: Website, Patches and Reviews

Firstly, the Team Rubicon fundraising patches have finally landed at our distribution locations. The response has been overwhelming. I initially thought moving 300 patches would be a massive stretch, but we reached that figure before the pre-order was finished. 500 of these were made and only 179 are still available!

If you would like to make an order before they sell out, please visit our store page or read through our Team Rubicon week for more information.

Secondly, the Reviews and Features sections have been updated with our newly launched branding. I’m also very excited to announce that we have added a Contributors page to recognise David Massey, who has come on board with a fresh perspective, as well as an extensive collection of packs. He’s already reviewed the F-Stop Tilopa and we will be publishing another of his reviews very soon.

Prometheus Design Werx

Back in the beginning of July, Patrick Ma and Chris Whitney launched their San Francisco based store, Prometheus Design Werx. They established their presence with a range of patches, stickers, t-shirts, edge tools, an edc tool, a bead, dog tags and a mini coil lanyard. As a testament to the level of excitement surrounding the release of PDW almost everything completely sold out on launch day. Their store has remained largely out of stock since, which demonstrates the continued high demand for their gear. Despite this demand, the team have obviously been working hard, bringing their fans multiple restocks and a bunch of additional products over the last few weeks.

Their mission page talks on a level that sounds beyond what we’ve currently experienced of PDW, which brings to mind the phrase, “you ain’t seen nothing yet”! I’m glad I managed to pick up a selection of these seriously cool patches, but I’m more excited to see what else we’ll see from PDW. Some amphibious shorts have already been released in Singapore and Korea. Does this mean more apparel? Will they release any pack accessories or a new pack design? Only time will tell. 

I really love a couple of things they’ve done with their patches. Firstly they’ve made detailed descriptions available for each patch design, which is helpful when answering the inevitable, “what does that patch mean?” question. Secondly, a number of their patches have been designed with similar angles that fit together really nicely to create a larger patterned design. Whilst not particularly practical, this is a nice touch, and allows for interesting presentations (see above). This could also be a subtle hint of things to come…

Fast Pack Friday: Submission – Gabriel Hall

Here is a great submission from Gabriel Hall. I really like his patch layouts, the multiple use of iComms across the top webbing of the Fast Pack Litespeed. What particularly stands out is his two clever modifications. Firstly the folding up the Transporter Tail (shown best in the 2nd image) and also his top compression strap clip storage solution (3rd image).

It’s also worth checking out the Haley Strategic Kleen Kanteen Carrier featured in the last two images. I’ve seen this before and thought it looked pretty cool. Here are the details of the configuration, including how he’s folded up the tail:

There are 3 iComms and an OP1 on the front, a single magazine pouch for my iPhone on the left side. A FILO blades Halcron karambit on the right side. 

The tail is rolled under by folding and clipping the top clips together (behind the face of the tail) then rolled down and the bottom clips used to fasten it down. The top pack clips are then fed down the side via the Molle for retention. I have used the top clip retention trick using the special clips from MilSpec Monkey. 

Also, special guest: the Haley Strategic Kleen Kanteen carrier. Solid piece of work. Has room for a couple patches on a pouch that can fit some EDC or regular pocket item (i.e. gym trip: wallet, phone, headphones, gym pass, etc).

2014 close-support sapper, Royal Engineers, Helmand Province

A photographer, Thom Atkinson, has documented 13 military kits in a series called ‘Soldiers Inventories’. I’ve picked a few to share with you guys over a couple of posts so they can be enjoyed individually, in all their glory. It will also show which are the most popular kits. 

By its very nature, war requires a soldier to be prepared for every possible eventuality. The sheer amount of gear that is demanded by this level of preparedness means good pack configuration is a necessity. It is really interesting to see how a soldiers carry has developed over time, so I encourage you all to check out the full set here

Thanks to thenewartemis for their post that reminded me about seeing this in their post here. Below is a breakdown of what is featured above:

  1. Silva compass - used for basic navigation and fire control orders
  2. Karabiner - used for securing kit and equipment to the vehicles
  3. Osprey body armour shoulder and neck attachments - the armour increases protection but can be very restrictive so these parts are detachable depending on the threat assessment
  4. Osprey body armour; can be fitted with pouches to carry everything from ammunition, water, first aid kits and grenade or with plates and protective attachments (as shown)
  5. Notebook
  6. Warm weather hat
  7. Spare clothing including underwear trousers, UBAS (Under body armour Shirt) and normal shirt
  8. Dog tags
  9. A desert issued belt
  10. Beret - used for repatriation ceremonies, vigils and large parades
  11. Shemagh - to soak up sweat and also a dust guard
  12. Gloves
  13. Sandals – issued kit, as soldiers may need to run for cover even while showering
  14. Boots
  15. Multi tool
  16. Washkit
  17. GSR - general service respirator
  18. A housewife – a basic sewing kit; a soldier has to repair his own rips and tears on the ground
  19. Socks, scarf, wristwatch
  20. Camel pack - drinking water pack
  21. Cooker and mug and tea making kit
  22. Rations - quantity will depend on the task but soldiers normally carry about 24 hours worth
  23. First aid kit including the (black) tourniquet and (grey) first field dressing
  24. Ballistic protection - used to protect the groin from IED blast
  25. Knee pads - offer protection to a soldier whilst “taking a knee” from the heat of the ground or rocky areas
  26. Sleeping bag with an inflatable roll mat
  27. Camera, cigarettes
  28. Radio - BOWMAN Radio system (HF, VHF or even SAT Comms), daysack could also be fitted with ECM (Electronic counter measures)
  29. Personal role radio - used for line of sight communications within a small patrol
  30. Magazine
  31. Envelopes
  32. Mine extraction kit fitted with a mine prodder, instruction and mine marking kit
  33. Weapon cleaning kit
  34. Holster
  35. Pistol - used as a second weapon system and in confined spaces or where a “long” weapon is unsuitable. Sig and Glock have mostly replaced the Browning 9mm calibre
  36. Bar mine - anti-tank landmine
  37. Head torch - can be fitted with coloured lenses for more tactical situations
  38. Bayonet and bayonet scabbard
  39. SA80 A2 fitted with a desert hand guard, upgraded flash eliminator and bipod, all issued for Afghanistan and a SUSAT sight system. It is 5.56 calibre and is here issued with 6 magazines which can hold 30 rounds each
  40. Ballistic eye protection - normally goggles or sunglasses
  41. Mk 6 Helmet fitted with Helmet mounted night vision systems
  42. iPad - personal effect for down time
  43. Poncho