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7/3/2016 8:17 AM

During my travels, particularly the overseas ones, I like having the ability to quickly and efficiently undock whichever belt I'm running on my main pack (either Prairie or Recon) and then run a belt kit or a belt docked to a Tarahumara. This works out really well for me when I end up doing side treks from a basecamp, but want to be able to have essentials and contingency items along. We all know that the Prairie and Recon Belts are great for quick detach to run a belt kit, but when I decide I want to also carry a Tara, I usually prefer to dock them together and run it as a package, belt and small pack together. I have just carried the Tara with my belt kit detached from one another, and that's fine....but I do prefer them docked when carrying the combo. It just feels more comfortable to me...kind of like the LBE and LBV set-ups I ran when I was a soldier.

I figured I would post some photos and explanation of the method I have found best for me. It's really pretty simple, but several folks in the past have asked how I am doing it, so why not share the technique. I used to do this same technique using Grimlocks, but I realized those aren't as good for this method because they are larger and don't provide the nice low-profile and close attachment as the Slik Clips do. Using this technique, I simply keep the Slik Clips permanently attached to the back of whichever belt I am using.

In the case of the Recon Belt, I fashioned a pair of short straps to weave through the Pals grid on the back and act as the interface with the bottom tabs on my Tara. I then use the Delta straps from the Tara down to the belt to tie everything into place. If I am running some larger sustainment pouches on the belt, like the SKD Tac BUPs on my Multicam rig in the photos below, I then add two more Slik Clips to the Molle webbing on the back of the pouch and attach those to the side tabs of the Tara, right where the bottoms of the shoulder straps attach....which works really well.

If I roll with belt-only kit, I then just weave the Molle straps on the back of each pouch to the back of the Recon Belt. If the large sustainment pouches are on a Prairie Belt, I use the Slik Clips to attach right to the pouch to secure them. All in all, very simple, but plenty secure. I have yet to see a Slik Clip fail or break, as long as it is closed and not loaded beyond reasonable capacity.

Hope this provides some good options for other HPG Forum folks to use during your own backcountry endeavors! As always, comments and questions are welcome. Have a happy and safe Independence Day!


Ken sends.

In the photo below are a pair of Slik Clips attached to the bottom of the Prairie Belt on my qui-Ya. Ready to attach to the Highlander I'll usually run on the pack. I reckon this could be used with a Palspocket or Tarapocket, too....but that might be completely unnecessary for a little pack like that. It might work well with a Recon Harness to create a neat belt and suspenders style set-up, but I haven't tried that....I'll need to get myself a Recon Harness someday and give it a shot. I like the way the belt and pack can interface to morph it into a mission-specific profile, like side treks or patrols.

Once the Slik Clips are attached, they fold up behind the belt and lumbar pad...out of the way, but there when needed.

Here are another pair attached to my Recon Belt, via two straps I rigged up to weave through the Pals grid on the back of the belt. They are then attached to the bottom tabs on my Tarahumara, which can be seen at the bottom of the photo.

By incorporating the Delta straps that run from the sides of the Tara down to the belt, everything stays in place just fine, providing additional load support and keeping the Tara nice and tight into my lumbar. Using the pack docked to my belt allows me to run the Shoulder Harness fairly loose and gives me lots of freedom of movement. It's really great that HPG supplies the Prairie and Recon Belts complete with the Delta straps and spare repair-style adjustable buckles, so that one can easily attach the buckles to the side tabs on a pack like the Tarahumara.

Complete Tarahumara and Recon Belt rig. Into basecamp, the Tara and Recon Belt will both ride docked to my Umlindi, which will carry in the big load of my sleep system, food, stove, extra water, spare clothing, etc. I have it set up this way for an upcoming trip back to the jungle in Peru and a trip to Paraguay right after that. For tasks around camp, I can run around in belt-only kit, with everything I need (water, knife, survival kit, IFAK, comms, etc.). The Umlindi can hang from a tree with a waterproof pack cover next to my hammock. I then can keep my spare clothes, socks, food, and other basecamp kit dry and away from bugs and critters. When we head out on side treks for navigation or water procurement, I can quickly attach the Tara to my belt kit and have enough to sustain me throughout the day, including rain gear, rope & high angle kit, machete, training aids for students, water purifier, etc. I have an almost identical set up rigged for a return trip to South Africa, which will happen only about a week after I return from Peru & Paraguay. For South Africa, a whole other coyote Tara is docked to my coyote C20M with a Prairie Belt...and pouches all ready for the Bushveld. That way, I can come back from one trip, throw the dirty stuff from the jungle in my garage, grab the pack I've rigged for African bush...and then ready to jump on a plane again for another adventure!

Hill People Gear Coureurs des Bois (Brand Ambassador). Victoria faveat paratam. De Oppresso Liber.
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