Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Northern Alberta
A few additional points to add:
1) Know the game type, style and venue before you even consider packing your bag. Do your homework, ask around if necessary. There is nothing worse that carrying 40lbs. of kit unnecessarily, or 20lbs. of useless items.
2) Plan your pack for the gear you use in-game. Things like night vision, helmet, radio gear, consumables (gas, BBs, batteries, etc.). They may need to be carried in your pack when not in active use, or when you are needing to ditch them for a variety of reasons.
3) Sleep systems are customized for each person. How you sleep (back, side or stomach) will determine what type of pad to buy. And your first time out with it should NOT be game day. A poorly chosen system will leave you with a poor sleep (tired and cranky) at best or virtually crippled (back pain) at worst. It can cut your game short. You may have to try a couple until you find the one that works for you. Never buy the lightest or smallest or best-rated because of those attributes, buy the one that is most comfortable and not going to gank up your back, light and small is a bonus.
4) Money. Lightweight, high-tech gear is expensive. Prices are seemingly unlimited. I could write a book on high-end gear, since 10% of my gear is more than 90% of ASC spends on all their airsoft stuff, I am no stranger to retarded buying. That being said, there are some fabulous deals out there on kit with military-type uses that can be found on the commercial/civillian market. Look for those. But, if/when the time comes, and you need to buy that $200 sleeping pad or $300 sleeping bag or $300 tent, you might just have to suck it up and do it. I absolutely can not overstate the enthusiasm or morale killing effect of having to spend a cold and wet night on the ground, or be hungry, thirsty or delerious on the field, or become a casuality from the elements. These situations can force other players to have to look after your sorry ass because you thought a ponch liner, some granola bars and a 500ml of water would get you through the day. That is unfair to others.
5) Plan, test, revise. The week before the game is NOT the time to start buying, or testing, your setup. A 40lb. pack sounds OK, until you actually have to carry it. Ounces equal pounds, and pounds equals pain. Keep it light, as light as possible. Buy good, buy once. You have only two choices, your gear will take it out of your body or your wallet. Wallets recover much, much faster than your body.
6) Know your limits. Not everyone is made to make a long-duration game, and there is absolutely no shame in trying and having the conditions beat you.
7) There are good suggestions listed here. For me, I don't follow 95% of them though, for various reasons. I have built up my own repertoire that I like, at great cost and effort that is not for everyone. Some of my friends have helped me greatly in this regard, being guinea pigs for gear and steering into great gear or away from costly mistakes. I have tried many sleeping pads, many bags, several tents, pillows, etc.. Don't be discouraged, some camping stores like MEC have good return policies.
8) Toilet paper and a shovel. No further explanation needed.
9) When possible, try to have items with multiple functions or uses. For example, if you carry a shovel with hammer option, like the Gerber available for about $28 at WSS, etc., go that route. Or the Gerber Downrange Tomahawk ($375USD list, but much cheaper if you shop around), that has axe, hammer and breaching pry bar and demo hook, all in one low-profile tool. Axe is dull from factory, but sharp is not always needed.
10) Knife. You always need a knife. Where I live, man is nowhere near the top of the food chain, and there are many predators out there that have man on the menu. Perhaps in PEI large bears or cats are not a problem. Often, game rules prohibit knives with blades longer than 4", but like hell I am going out there with just a multi-tool. Know your area. When not airsofting, my go-to gun is a .45-70. For good reason. I heard last Zulu 1 game had a bit of a bear problem.
11) Further to the predator angle, police your food waste, or plan it to have little to no waste, and plan to carry it with you. Keeps the game area clean, and reduces your scent signature to minimize contact with Smokey. Cans of food is kinda retarded.
Age verifier Northern Alberta
Democracy is two wolves and a sheep discussing what's for dinner.
Freedom is the wolves limping away while the sheep reloads.
Never confuse freedom with democracy.
Last edited by mcguyver; February 5th, 2016 at 01:30..