Kit Review 2021
Camelbak Motherlode Lite – 37L Review
The Camelbak Motherlode daysack was used by a GPMG gunner in the light role environment, during a 7-day exercise in Estonia with temperatures of -17 degrees Celsius.
Reservoir Set Up:
After an hour on the ground, the reservoir proved unfit for purpose due to the freezing temperatures. However, it was easy to remove from the main unit.
Easy Storage and Access:
The smaller pockets were ideal for storing fiddly items such as HMNVS and ear defence. This separation from the main pouch made them more accessible and protected them from the larger items. Conversely, the 37L main compartment provided ample storage space for numerous, larger items including cold weather clothing sealed in waterproof bags, up to 600 rounds of 7.62mm link and 24hrs rations. A mesh storage area within the main compartment enabled the user to separate items further, giving easy access to a notebook and pen, spare gloves and smaller items of warm kit, such as a beanie hat.
Comfort and Feel:
The user complained that the pack pulled away from the body when fully loaded with ammunition and personal equipment. This was partly due to the VIRTUS body armour, around which the chest strap could not be connected. In general, however, the pack was comfortable and did not sway whilst patrolling in 2ft snow. It was easy to remove, enabling the gunner to adopt a rapid firing position when required. Similarly, the external handheld straps enabled the user to carry the pack without slinging it over his shoulder, which proved useful when bounding forward over short distances.
The Motherload proved to be a functional daysack whilst operating as a GPMG gunner in a Light Role environment. Unfortunately, it was not possible to test the reservoir system, due to the freezing temperatures. The pack was comfortable and robust, whilst operating in extreme cold weather conditions.
CRYE COBRA D-RING MOLLE SHOOTERS BELT REVIEW
Crye Cobra D-Ring MOLLE Shooters Belt was used by a Sharpshooter in the light role environment during a 7-day exercise in Estonia with temperatures of -17 degrees Celsius.
Belt Set Up:
Attached to the belt was two sharpshooter magazine poches, a small first aid pouch and two small utility pouches. The user deemed these were easy to fit and did not shift on the belt.
Comfort and Feel:
The overall fitting of the belt was comfortable throughout. The Velcro adjustment made it simple to adjust to size and did not lessen through the exercise. However, due to the narrowness of the belt, the magazine pouch did tend to rub on the soldier’s thigh whilst patrolling over long distances through deep snow. The quick release buckle proved easy to operate when taking the belt on and off.
The low profile of the belt made it easy for the operator to move around the battlefield. The was especially noticeable when operating in the trenches, built up areas and forests. The lack of storage capability meant that the operator did have to store more of his items in a pack and could not operate from his belt kit alone for a substantial duration of time.
Overall: The Crye Cobra D-Ring MOLLE Shooters Belt was a comfortable and easy to use. It was durable and allowed the operator to fight effectively whilst maintaining a low profile. However, it did prove uncomfortable whilst tabbing for long durations.