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PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2010 11:18 pm 
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Hi,

I searched and found several threads discussing the merits of particular packs that have some sort of rifle scabbard as well as many features you'd look for in a camping/hunting or "tactical" pack. For example the Eberlestock G2 "Gunslinger II" Pack.

My question isn't which is best, but what could be the expected utility of humping a rifle and ammunition?

While it is hard for me to imagine bugging out in many disaster scenarios on foot without a rifle near to hand I think its expected utility may actually be quite low. I can *legally* concealed carry a handgun which would be effective at most ranges in which I'd likely need to do defend myself. Yes a rifle would be *more* effective in most cases but it would take longer to get to especially if the scabbard is covered. Also carrying a concealed rifle is illegal and carrying it openly might attract the wrong attention (this would really depend on the situation).

I think in the initial rush out of the cities there will be little organized crime and thats why I think a good full-sized pistol is adequate self defense. If I want a rifle for hunting I'm probably best off with a 10/22 and a brick or two.

It seems the best reason to have a combat rifle is to be able to defend a bug out position after I've linked up with some kind of retreat group. Of course I have to live long enough to get there and with all the things we need in our bug-out bags to stay alive apart from the threats of zombies and critters I'm not sure even a relatively lightweight carbine pays for its weight, especially when you consider ammunition.

I'm sort of stuck in analysis paralysis over this for sometime and so I don't have a good bugout bag. If it helps, I would not ever use the bag except for bugging out or maybe a practice bugout / camp-out. Although I did some camping as a kid and teenager I'm not really into it anymore and I do not hunt so there is no reason to consider these type of ancillary activities in selection of a bug-out bag. Anyway I appreciate anyone's thoughts as always.

Regards,

J.C.

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PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2010 9:18 am 
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Well, you have to keep in mind that the bags you're referencing weren't necessarily designed around "bug out" use. Eberlestock, for instance, designs their hunting packs for overnight/several day hunts, in which you have to hump in your rifle and all your camping gear, and hump out a rifle, camping gear, and potentially a large hunk of meat. Their military line was designed to be used by military scout/sniper teams, who have to carry all of their gear on their backs along with a precision rifle and usually a standard battle rifle. In those two cases, a way to comfortably carry a rifle, in a way that is protected from the elements, makes sense.

You also have to remember that the majority of discussions on this site revolve around a fictional "zombie apocalypse", in which most people envision loading themselves up with weapons like Rambo and taking on hordes of the undead. In that case, strapping a rifle to your pack might be a necessity. But realistically, in the majority of conceivable "real world" bugout or evacuation scenarios, a rifle would not be towards the top of my list of stuff to take.


Some of these style packs have removable scabbards, such as my Eberlestock Skycrane. (Most of the other scabbard packs at least offer the option of tucking the scabbard inside the pack, to keep it out of the way when not in use.) If you want the scabbard you can add it in, but when I'm just camping I tend to leave it off. Something like that seems like a better idea for you, since it sounds like you want the option of lugging a rifle in some situations, but in most cases wouldn't.

Or, there's nothing that says that the scabbard has to be used for a rifle. The Eberlestock website talks about people using the scabbards for everything from firearms to fishing/trekking/ski poles to laptops. Buy the pack for the features and bombproof construction, not for the ability to lug around a rifle all sneaky-like.

Your final option is to buy the pack of your choice, and then add in one of the MOLLE scabbard that Eberlestock offers. They can be attached to the side of any pack with side PALS webbing. So you could take something like the Eberlestock Halftrack, which is a Phantom without the scabbard, and still have the option of strapping a rifle or shotgun scabbard to the side if the undead rise after all.


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PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2010 9:49 am 
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Mystery Ranch has an internal gun pouched pack now as well but its pricey:

You can also pick up A Gunbearer from Kifaru to attach a rifle to the outside of a pack for carry.

Here the MR pack:

Image

Here's the kifaru gunbearer/auxiliary holster:

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offcamber's INCH Bag thread


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PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2010 12:31 pm 
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Quote:
what could be the expected utility of humping a rifle and ammunition?


Depends upon the rifle and the ammo as well as what you envision being the issue. Generally for most purposes a shotgun is more useful and versatile than a rifle. Properly loaded a shotgun can be used for self defense much more powerful than a handgun, hunting/ defending against any animal that walks, crawls, slithers or flies (up to 100 meters), signaling with flares and a bunch of other uses. If you are going to take a long gun, go with a shotgun.

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PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2010 1:52 pm 
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It's all about location. If you live in a city near bear country and Need to bug out, a high powered gun at the ready is a safe bet. Bugging out may have you out and in the wilderness for days and if that's the case then give me a higher caliber rifle with enough follow up shots to drop whatever I need to. When it comes to me, I am morally against being out gunned and consider it my duty to stay well enough prepared to take care of me and mine. No matter the situation I fall into. And I'm not trusting that weight solely on a hand gun.

Also, when considering zombies as a possible threat. If you can mentally and physically (both self and materials) prepare yourself for an unending horde of flesh eating monsters that don't sleep, don't stop and only die via headshot, while assuming you and imidiate company are the only ones left alive. What the fuck do you honestly have left to fear.


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PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2010 2:50 am 
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Well Rogue you got me looking at the Skycrane, which is quite an adventure.

One thing I realized is I don't really have a good idea for capacity that I need; I think I need to first nail down the different content load-outs I want and then find a pack that best fits all that kit.

In any case though it looks like you are right there are lots of good options for optional deployment of scabbards.

Thanks again for the thoughtful comments everyone.

_________________
squinty wrote:
Birds gotta fly, fish gotta swim, zombies gotta shuffle around and eatcher brains. Why do sharks eat divers? Why not swim around and starve to death?
Why do tornadoes zero in on trailer parks? Why not just blow around harmlessly? It's the way of the world, man.


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PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2010 7:18 am 
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J.C. wrote:
One thing I realized is I don't really have a good idea for capacity that I need; I think I need to first nail down the different content load-outs I want and then find a pack that best fits all that kit.


This is an absolutely critical first step and is closely related to "How far do I need to be able to go to get to safety and under what weather conditions?"

After you figure out what to carry you need to rent or borrow a pack and actually carry it a short distance to get a feel for the weight - you will need to adjust your loadout (tendency is to overload), and you will get ideas about how to pack your load, not to mention what kind of ruck to buy.

Next you need to commit to a conditioning regime to carrying the load. This is way more important than the actual bag you buy.

An unconditioned man who buys that awesome (and expensive) 6500+ cu in Mystery Ranch ruck and loads it with 120lbs of unnecessary gear is going to get a nasty surprise when it comes to moving that rig... So will the guy who has not planned for living out doors and crossing terrain during a winter in most of North America.

My guess is you want a 3500-4000 cu in pack or larger for a BOB for 2-5 days give or take - winter or longer treks will require a lot more thought (larger bag? bike with panniers? skis/snowshoes with pulk? Kayak? canoe?).

One other thought: if your plan includes coping with a disaster where you might actually have to be evacuated on a bus or aircraft, you probably are not going to be able to carry much more than a 4000 cu inch pack and that might be pushing it.

To avoid attention, can you break down your long gun or get a folding stock?


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PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2010 7:32 am 
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Yes I do have a WASR-10 with a folding stock that trims down nicely - I'd wanted to leave open the option to carry my battle rifle (HK G3 clone with magpul stock & scope) but thinking more on that its probably pretty silly.

Thanks for the advice on actually carrying the pack - this sounds obvious but I hadn't thought much about that yet - not from the standpoint of conditioning myself to carry it just like our soldiers have to do.

_________________
squinty wrote:
Birds gotta fly, fish gotta swim, zombies gotta shuffle around and eatcher brains. Why do sharks eat divers? Why not swim around and starve to death?
Why do tornadoes zero in on trailer parks? Why not just blow around harmlessly? It's the way of the world, man.


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PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2010 8:26 pm 
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J.C. wrote:
Yes I do have a WASR-10 with a folding stock that trims down nicely - I'd wanted to leave open the option to carry my battle rifle (HK G3 clone with magpul stock & scope) but thinking more on that its probably pretty silly.

I know the G3 has a collapsible stock, but you may run into legal issues with the length. Shotguns will definitely have issues once you break barrel length or overall length rules. There are legal ways to own these weapons, but you need to research this very carefully.

Starting out your first day in the PAW from a jail cell would be very bad. Living in the real world with a felony firearms conviction on your record; not to mention pulling time in jail is far worse.

J.C. wrote:
Thanks for the advice on actually carrying the pack - this sounds obvious but I hadn't thought much about that yet - not from the standpoint of conditioning myself to carry it just like our soldiers have to do.

Just being fit is not good enough - carrying a pack puts different stresses on your body from almost every other sport.

Carrying a pack requires conditioning both mental and physical, and you need to properly break in your footwear and pack too.

Make sure you have good boots and socks, really look after your feet (trim your toe nails!). Learn how your ruck is supposed to be set up.

Start with very light weight and slowly increase weight and distance.


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PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 8:17 am 
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+1, I totally agree. Due to work I don't get to the wilderness much and I can tell you that not being conditioned for it really takes it out of you. I am armed to the teeth but will honestly admit that I would be screwed on foot in the paw. Just another thing to add to the groing list of improvements I need.


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PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 4:50 pm 
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TheOrder45 wrote:
I am armed to the teeth but will honestly admit that I would be screwed on foot in the paw. Just another thing to add to the groing list of improvements I need.


Do you have a plan for something that is still SHTF, but not a ragging full on zombie PAW?

If it is less than PAW, do you need to be armed to the teeth to deal with the scenario(s)?

If you carried less weaponry, would you be better off?


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