As a longtime employee of 5.11 Tactical – and being fond of gear to begin with - there is no shortage of bags in the house. There is always some rotation from one bag to the next and then back to some favorites for my EDC. This hadn’t happened for my recovery gear until now.
Flashback a bit more than a year ago my wife (fiancée at the time) and I were camping out at the American Adventurist SoCal Mountain Rendezvous. American Adventurist hosts a number of local Rendezvous events that are group camp outs in support of a local cause, often in a remote location with dispersed camping.
While we were at this event, I attended a Recovery Gear clinic put on by Adam Wood of Step 22 Gear. Adam went through details on load ratings, different materials and more. Afterward I looked through my recovery gear with this new information in mind and realized what I thought was good was mostly crap. A few weeks later I had upgraded most of my kit, not surprisingly with Step 22 Gear and a few other of Adam’s recommendations like the green pin hard shackles.
This correct recovery gear was substantially bulkier than its weak predecessors and required dedicated storage. I had been using a Wingman Patrol Bag to hold all of this gear, it worked OK and kept nearly everything in one place, but wasn’t ideal. A “Patrol Bag” is ubiquitous in Public Safety circles and is used by officers to carry their shift gear, especially when using random vehicles from a shared motorpool.
Then this fall, 5.11 released the new Range Master bag series, prior to their official release we had them out on a few action photoshoots and the duffel became a favorite gear hauler, not just for range gear but also for camera equipment and more. It was only natural to see how well it would do to replace the patrol bag as a dedicated recovery gear bag.
What’s in the bag now?
Dynamic recovery strap, static recovery strap, tree saver, two soft shackles, three hard “Green Pin” d-shackles, snatchblock, folding shovel, flashlight and gloves.
Primary Recovery Gear
Step 22 static strap and anchor strap (tree saver) and Bubba Rope dynamic strap.
Folding shovel and Snatchblock
Loaded in a medium Range Master medium pouch. Note we often carry a larger shovel when we’re camping, but this little fellow is always in the truck.
Load it Up
Step 22 straps loaded into the bottom of the bag.
Bubba Rope and pouches with shovel, snatchblock and shackles on top.
All loaded up. With luck it won’t be needed.
Snug as a bedbug, the bag sits on top of a small hard case that contains components of a hi-lift jack. The bag and hard case are lashed (individually) to a Goose Gear platform in the back of the Land Cruiser.
Sidenote: I always get asked about the "RECOVERY" or "SHACKLES" tags. The pouches and bag itself have loop-sided holders for nametapes, 5.11 has these handy “WriteBar” pieces that have a hook-back. With a silver or white enamel marker you can easily add your name or the bag’s contents.
Until next time ...