View Full Version : How to pack

08-28-2004, 08:57 AM
I was wondering how you guys pack because i put my sleeping bag in the field pack and takes up all the room. In my webbing i put my raincoat and that is all space gone.

Do you guys have any tips on packing (like how to make things smaller)
and what do you keep in your webbing and your pack(not ammo please we all carry this)?

Thank you :D

08-28-2004, 09:42 AM
First off, what are you doing and how long are you doing it? This will determine what you need. I really dont take a sleeping bag with me ever. My sleep gear usually consists of a Goretex bivy bag and a poncho liner. I also take extra warm clothing in case it does get cold at night.

When you pack anything into a ruck, put the soft items near your back and the hard items near the outside. Also pack in terms of importance. You wouldnt want to put your sleeping gear on the top of your pack because you wont need it until you bed down. Put your items that you will be using most at the top of the pack.

What kind of pack are you using?

08-28-2004, 11:39 AM
I tried to keep stuff I would have to get out the most in the outside pouches, stuff like water and rations. I had extra pouches attached so I could fit more on the exterior.
I had a interior divider so my sleeping gear was seperate at the bottom, which kept it compact and easy and quiet to get at.
Our rain jackets were so poor that I didn't bother to carry it. When we got decent gortex it was too hot to wear it so I still didn't carry it.
Your webbing should be for important things anyway. Water, bullets, grenades, NVG, GPS, cleaning kit, emergency rations, cam kit. Maps, codes and compass should be on your body.

08-28-2004, 11:45 AM
Get a compression bag for your sleeping bag if you really need it.


08-28-2004, 02:24 PM
If you really need to carry half the stuff your talking about get bungee cords (or whatever you want) and start attaching stuff that way (preferrably rain gear, ponchos, etc) have to make sure its really tight or else bounces around alot or comes off easy

08-28-2004, 04:11 PM
get with a buddy when it's time to pack. even an old sleeping back can still be packed down to the size of a large shoebox if you work at it. if that doesnt work, find an alternative...a poncho/liner makes a good sleeping bag if its not going to be terribly cold. beyond that i pack as little as possible. socks, t shirts, food, rain gear, toiletries and stuff needed for whatever the job is, no frills. less you pack, the less it'll weigh

08-28-2004, 05:45 PM
rolling your clothes is probably the best way of saving space. of course, fatter and bulkier clothes dont work as well. even when full, you can always manage to squeeze something in, if you roll it up.

08-29-2004, 04:57 AM
Thank you for the replys keep them coming. The pack I use is the Australian Old Field Pack (very small)


08-29-2004, 06:46 AM
Whats the climate/weather like ? - I'm thinking your an Aussie, but I dont know where in Oz, so bear with me. :)
Brew kit and one meal on your person so that you dont have to open the bergan/rucksac to eat.
waterproofs rolled up tightly and securely bungied to your webbing or the top of the bergan - choice is yours, if it pisses, you want to be able to get to them quickly. Spare clothing rolled up an in a plastic bag in the ruc. Basha kit in side pockets or strapped to bergan. I've got a small sleeping bag that doesnt occupy much space and I place it to one side of the rucsac so I can stick the clothing and other stuff next to it - side by side - reason is that it avoids having to take something out to get at it. If its on top of my spare kit, I've got to move it to get at spare kit, if its underneath my spare kit, I got to move that lot before I can get me bag out. The sleeping bag is already in its bivvybag so I have one item to get out/locate not two -and it keeps it dry. kipmat - I got a dinky fold up German one - not thick, but she'll do and thats tucked under the lid of the bergan. some blokes have roll up kip mats and they stick the basha\kit in the centre of the roll.
hope this helps.

09-04-2004, 12:53 AM
sleeping bag? nah, thats pog junk, just take some wet weather gear to keep the wind off you, polypro at most...

09-04-2004, 01:16 AM
rolling your clothes is probably the best way of saving space. of course, fatter and bulkier clothes dont work as well. even when full, you can always manage to squeeze something in, if you roll it up.

Amen. Don't take any extra clothes beyond socks. Always take care of your feet.

09-04-2004, 01:23 AM
All you need is a knife and socks

09-04-2004, 07:01 AM
I try and put my heavier items at the top of my ruck, to include both 2qt canteens. Try and drink them first if you must. Other than that, maybe try and get some general use pouches for your snugpak or whatever you're using.

Keep it high keep it dry.


09-04-2004, 07:04 AM
I've seen scout book..Thy said heavy things up light down...

09-05-2004, 06:00 AM
Use some webbing straps or 550 cord to lash your sleeping bag on the bottom of your ruck. If your ruck has no lashing points at the bottom, then attach the straps from the sleeping bag to the bottom of the shoulder straps of the pack.
To put your sleeping gear in the main compartment of the ruck would be considered bad packing.
It wastes all sorts of space in your ruck!

Does this ruck have a frame? If not, that sleep bag probably makes the load feel lopsided.
Put the sleep bag in a waterproof bag and THEN strap it to the bottom of the ruck.
I use a simple tie top ALICE liner bag. It's just nylon on top of rubber.
I put the sleeping bag in a compression sack, then put it in the ALICE liner bag and cinch it tight with a few straps. Then use 2 more straps going the opposite of the first 2, pull real tight, then strap it to the ruck.

I prefer the same thing for my poncho/liner.
I usually attach the ranger roll made of the poncho/liner to the side of my ruck, the sleeping bag at the bottom (when I DO carry it), or else I lash a length of static line where the sleeping bag goes when not carrying a sleep bag.
On the other side of the ruck I interchange things.
Sometimes I have a machete on the right, ranger roll to the left. Sometimes it's just my Ka-bar on the right, sometimes a bivvy tent.
I've even gone out with my sawed off single shot 12 strapped to the right of my ruck. Of course, that's not a normal occurence, I only do it when called for.

A good old single shot 12 is a VERY handy tool to have on hand.

I can't imagine keeping the sleeping bag inside the main ruck compartment.
It's kit blasphemy!

09-05-2004, 11:37 PM
If you got the cash, just get a Kifaru.
You'll be glad you did!

BTW, the CFP90 is a POS.
But so is the ALICE, so if looking for a new pack, get an aftermarket pack.

09-06-2004, 11:01 AM
Here's a few tips:

Food and Water:
-Keep daily rations to hand in a side pouch or top of your bergen.
-Rations in your webbing should be emergency only (pack them small and include high energy food, carry enough to last at least 24hrs)
-The rest of your rations should go in the main compartment of your bergan out of the way.
-keep water to hand, plus some spare in your bergen.
-Get some solid fuel tablets (Hexiblocks) and wrap four or so of them up tightly, along with some windproof matches, in plastic. Put them with your emergency rations in your webbing.
-use a metal mug that fits under your webbing waterbottle.
-pack your stove/cooker and mess tins (if you use them) in a bergen side pouch

-Keep your compass, knife, pentorch and whistle in your clothing. Lanyard them to yourself so you don't lose them
-keep a basic med kit in your webbing/jacket and a bigger one (dependant on your task) in your bergen (pack an assortment of plasters, dressings, antiseptic wipes, ibuprofen, paracetamol, loperamide (anti-diarrhoea), dioralyte (oral rehydration), sun cream, anti histamine (if you suffer from allergies) and anything that will make you more comfortable...lip salve etc)

Clothing and Sleeping kit:
-keep a 'wet' set of clothes that you wear while walking/patrolling/whatever and a dry set to sleep in. A pair of lightweight trousers and a warm shirt will suffice as spare clothes. KEEP THESE DRY! Change into them at the end of the day and sleep in them...'dry' your wet clothes in a plastic bag inside your sleeping bag through the night, but put these on again in the morning, even if they are still wet, as they would soon become wet again anyway.
-Pack your sleeping bag at the bottom of your bergen inside its bivvy bag (if you use one)
-pack your poncho in one of the side pouches.
-pack your goretex in the top of the bergen or in an outside pouch to hand.
-take a pair of lightweight 'beach shoes' that will let your feet air once you've finished wearing boots, but will protect them as well. These can also be used for river crossings.
-Most importantly...keep wet and dry items separate. I use 'ortlieb' dry bags to waterproof my kit. any wet goretex or basha gets packed outside of this so the rest of my kit stays dry.
-finally, take some anti-fungal foot powder to look after your feet. keep this in a zip-lock freezer bag and dip your feet into it after the days hike/activities.