For several weeks I have been traversing the trails of the great Pacific Northwest to test the comforts of the Recon Kit Bag. The Recon Kit Bag is different from a chest rig in that it is smaller, and allows for concealed carry instead of overt. With the Kit Bag I can remain armed and have easy access to my pistol while humping a Mission Load Out and use the advantages of a waist belt. It is common knowledge that carrying a ruck with an enormous load, it is much easier to distribute that load on the hips. Carrying a load on the hips with a waist belt makes it impractical to wear a holster on the belt. This is where the Kit Bag derives a genius inspired by the gods.
Hill People Gear offer several versions of the Kit Bag. The original Kit Bag is 172 cubic inches. There is a smaller design intended for those inclined to trail or urban carry while running. The Runner’s Kit Bag is 86.25 cubic inches. There are also two newer additions to accommodate smaller pistols. The Snubby Kit Bag and Snubby Kit Original Pattern. All Kit Bags are made of rugged 500d Cordura.
Land Navigation is a skill beaten into my soaking, weakened bones from the Star Navigation Course during Special Forces Assessment and Selection (SFAS). SFAS gives you no choice but to Embrace the Suck. I have since grown older and wiser (lazy); I now embrace the motto, ‘work smarter, not harder’. To this end, I have become accustomed to being able to access my map using the Tactical Tailor Admin Pouch Enhanced. Just like when reloading my pistol, I prefer to work in the shooter’s box. The Recon Kit Bag has MOLLE on the front and was perfect for what I envisioned. Pictured is my current setup. The Recon version leaves your setup open to your wildest MOLLE fantasy. Just don’t put too much MOLLE on your MOLLE. For that there is the Heavy Recon Kit Bag.
I tested the rig out on several outings. On most of them I carried a Deuter Kid Comfort II. Crom laughs at you on his mountain. He laughs at you and your Kid Comfort II. While Crom laughs, the Deuter allows me to tote my son when his 3-year-old legs give out. We are working up to his ruck. For some reason coaxing and cajoling with threats of the front leaning rest don’t work quite so well on a toddler. When he is in the pack it sits far away from the back, and the waist belt is essential. Through countless humps toting a mission ruck, the waist belt was verbotten. Not to mention that the ALICE waist strap is pretty worthless. Working smarter not harder, I now try to always rock a waist belt.
The Kit Bag takes everything I would normally wear on a Battle Belt and puts it in easy access on my chest. I can carry my map, compass, knife and GPS. The arms and shoulders can move with ease with any backpacks shoulder straps.
Because no Hill People Gear review is complete without the picture of a mountain, here is one of Mt. Rainier. It was taken on a walk with my son we took while testing out the Recon Kit Bag. Ullr, god of Snow and Winter, has just readied the snows for his fun and enjoyment.,
Featured Image courtesy of hillpeoplegear.com