What a crazy five months it’s been; from lockdowns to social distancing and masks to travel bans, the world has transformed us into hermits. But, unless you live in a state where even outdoor recreation is restricted, exploring nature has been one of the best ways to maintain sanity. Our friends at 5.11 Tactical air dropped some relief packages early on in the year to help with our adventures, and for the last five months, I’ve been putting them through their paces. Let’s take a look at some 5.11 bags, packs and boots that have helped me to escape the viral madness.
Summer Solitude: Gearing Up With 5.11 Bags, Packs And Boots
I’m a sucker for ballistic nylon – gun cases, backpacks, gear bags, range bags you name it, I have multiples stashed away. I have packs that have lasted 20 years that have traveled the world and are still in great shape, and I have packs that I purchased (from large, “respected” manufacturers) that have failed zippers and straps.
The quality of clothing and gear coming out of 5.11 is impressive and also a bit surprising – up until three or four years ago I lumped them in with all those third-tier manufacturers you see advertised on Amazon for $19.99. What probably pushed me over the edge was purchasing a pair of Norris Sneakers after James Reeves gallivanted around Europe like a twenty something summer exchange student. They are my most comfortable and practical shoes.
The AMP12 has traveled with me on everything from kayaks to planes. I have multiple hikes with this bag, most of which included a few thousand feet of elevation gain. All the seams, zippers and straps are intact. It’s comfortable and has plenty of useful pockets.
- Longest hike: 14 miles
- Most elevation gain: About 4,000 feet
Set your course and move out – the AMP12™ backpack is built for durability, flexibility and comfort. Compact and efficient, it features 5.11’s innovative HEXGRID® load bearing system, which offers unprecedented options for mounting or attaching gear. The AMP12™ has two compartments, including a full-loop platform and webbing loops for internal Gear Set™ placement. The thermoformed ergonomic back panel forms to your body for total support, and the CCW pocket adds total peace of mind. Explore the AMP collection.
- 20″ H x 11″ L x 5.5″D
- Total Capacity – 1525 cubic inch / 25 liter
- Weight – 2.9 lbs
- Fits up to a 15″ laptop
Whether you’re headed out on a callout, training, or to the range, this carryall sized Gear Set™ keeps you locked and loaded in any situation. Three compartments can hold two AR magazines, a CCW and all of your essential EDC items.
- 8.5″ x 9″L x 3.75″D
- 305 cubic inch / 5-liter total capacity
One of the simplest pieces of gear manufactured by 5.11 is also the most useful. The Load Ready Utility Bag is like a reusable grocery sack on steroids. The top has a zippered mesh netting that keeps everything in place and breathable. The bottom is ruggedized and water resistant. We used it to haul sediment from creek beds to pan for gold.
- Heaviest load to date: 87 pounds (no gold ore found)
Stack up the 19 liter Load Ready Utility MD bag with your camping gear, vehicle winter gear or off-road recovery equipment. This utility bag features side grab handles, a stowable heavy duty mesh lid, a stackable design and dual layered webbing lashing loops to keep your vehicle organized and your gear in place.
- Main Compartment – 12″ H x 11″ L x 9″D
- Total Capacity – 1159 cubic inch / 19 liter
If the Norris Sneaker is the street-legal roadster of shoes, the A.T.L.A.S. boot is the lifted Jeep with BFG AT KOs. Light and breathable, my pair has seven months of wear on the clock. My normal size is a 12 and these are 12’s so you should be right on the money for sizing charts. Comfortable and sturdy.
- Longest hike: two (2) 13-mile trail rucks.
- Miles on the odometer: 300+
The 8 in. 5.11 A.T.L.A.S. is a performance boot built from the sole up to increase performance. The All Terrain Load Assistance System is a force multiplier for those who carry heavy weight on long shifts. These boots were developed to work with your “work weight”. This boot is constructed of nylon with high abrasion air mesh, a water resistant suede upper. Additional features locking ankle eyelet, and a high traction outsole so you can take those corners in a foot pursuit or run headlong into whatever challenge you’re up against.
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