Monday, April 7, 2014

S.O.T.A.L.B.V. "SOTA LOAD BEARING VEST"

Tomorrow I head out to assault Mount Mingus.  Its one hell of a bushwhack so I decided to pack as if assaulting a military objective.  I wanted to go light, but carry the essentials required for SOTA and survival.   I pieced together some of the gear I have had lying around in the garage.  

So I present  the Summits On The Air Load Bearing Vest, or S.O.T.A.L.B.V. for short.....



 The vest itself is built around a RAP4 vest and military web belt.  I have had both of these for a while, and they are much like the Molle Assault vests available today for the military and law enforcement crowd.

On the rear of the vest I have a Hazard 4 Forward Observer Molle SLR Camera Bag.  I have found that this little molle pouch will easily fit my KX3 and LifePo4 battery in the main compartment. 
 The zip top of the main compartment also unzips.  This additional compartment has storage for small items such as a BNC connector, Elecraft KXPD3 paddles, and a set of ear buds. 
 I have attached two small Molle pouches to the webbing on the sides of the  Hazard 4.  The first is where I have stowed my compass, my Elecraft MH3 mic, and my Power-pole battery connector for the KX3.

The opposite side pouch is an admin pouch for pens, pencils, a pocket knife, or other small misc items.
 I have added a few support straps that run over the shoulders down to the main pouch.  This helps to distribute the load over the shoulders, and the rubber hose material allows for a little shock resistance. 

I also have a drop leg pouch I use for stowing my antenna components and poncho.  That along with a 2 quart canteen, and a nalgene holder round out the pouches on my waist.  

I have included a bit of survival kit such as basic first aid items, water purification, fire starter "at least 3 ways to make fire", compass, maps, Gerber multi tool, extra HT battery, and a exterior cell battery to extend the life of my cell phone.  

I have adapted my 28 ft Jackite Pole to be used as a walking stick.  On the pole I have attached my favorite "brush killer".  For those long pesky bushwhacks.
Yea I know, overkill.  

I like this setup for those short haul summits.  I used it yesterday on my Waterrock Knob activation and was very happy with it.  It should perform well tomorrow.  

Chase me if you can!

73's and Keep Climbing!!
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