Becker Patrol Pack Mark II - Free Shipping!!!
Becker Patrol Pack Mark II - Free Shipping!!!
BECKER PATROL PACK - THE AUTHORIZED VERSION!
ETHAN BECKER ENDORSED AND APPROVED!
The Becker Patrol Pack Mark II (Mk II) was developed in coordination with the original designer, Mr. Ethan Becker, and it is an approved and authorized version produced under license.
*Canadian customers please note that Customs, in spite of the Free Trade Agreement, is tacking on an import tax of approximately $135 CAD.
The Becker Patrol Pack is a very robust and functional top-loading pack. It was originally designed by Mr. Becker in the early 1980s (after being bugged about it by some of his Vietnam War veteran LRRP friends) and it was intended for rugged off-trail use while comfortably carrying loads of up to about fifty (50) pounds. Purpose-built pockets and pouches were incorporated inside and out for organization, and its profile was kept slim and compact for going off the trail and doing real "bush busting," which is quite different than normal hiking, as anyone who has done it knows. The goal was to carry enough stuff - "beans, bullets, and water" - for three days out in the boonies. The outside pouches and interior pockets were designed for quick access and compartmentalization and to aid finding things in the dark without the use of artificial light, which can be quite important in certain circumstances. The pack also needed to be "comfortable enough to live in" (sleep with it on should the circumstances dictate). The lid had a "cat eye" reflective strip with cover in the lower center for use during night ops, small buckle-closed pouches on each side of this reflective strip for quick access to navigation and first aid items, and a lid "map pocket". Some of the outside pouches incorporated pass-through tunnels for carrying longer items such as machetes, skis, antenna segments, poles, etc. The pack had a built-in carrying handle at the center top - now standard on almost every pack, but not so back then - and the waist belt was removable. LCE-type webbing was attached at various places on the pack, and also on the belt for attaching gear with "ALICE clips" and other methods. The outside front pouches were designed to carry several M16 magazines and the side pouches for carrying canteens. The pack was quite innovative when originally introduced and it quickly found acceptance by, and praise from, those who used it. It saw considerable use with with certain Special Forces and other military personnel as well as outdoorsmen and people from other walks of life.
That’s the basic background of the design and it laid the foundation for a pack that quickly became a legend. However, as the years passed, some of its features became outdated and the pack was in need of revision. The good news is the basic design is such that, with a bit of upgrading and modernization, it would be - and now is - as relevant and useful today as it was back then. It's that good! With this in mind, we approached Mr. Becker and worked out an agreement to modernize, upgrade, and market the pack.
*Note that, with the exception of the Black and Orange color packs, all of our packs now come with our excellent and super comfortable Shoulder Harness (vs. two individual shoulder straps).
Here's what we did. We took the basic foundation of the original design as described above and upgraded and revised it with the following:
-Added a bit of height and girth to the outside pouches. The side pouches are now tall enough and wide enough to accept many after-market water bottles such as the 1.5-liter Hydrapak Flux.
-Incorporated pass-through tunnels on all outside pouches.
-Replaced the old-style LCE-style webbing with PALS webbing.
-Added cinch straps to the two front pouches.
-Added an internal frame sheet pocket and an internal frame sheet with aluminum stave.
-Added a zippered admin pouch on the lid immediately above the two original pouches.
-Main compartment has a storm collar with drawstring closure.
-Added side straps above and below the two side pouches for cinching down items and partial loads.
-Added integral padded back panels.
-Upgraded the suspension system.
1) The original Becker Patrol Pack had sewn-in shoulder straps. Comfort was okay, but not great, and the straps were not replaceable should they sustain damage. We did a complete redesign to address these shortcomings. The Mk II comes with our popular and very comfortable shoulder harness. The exceptions to this are the black and orange packs, which come with our excellent shoulder straps. Our harness and straps designs allow them to be interchangeable, and the user can easily replace the harness and straps. The straps are ALICE compatible and can be use on ALICE packs. (We also offer an ALICE compatible shoulder harness - sold separately.) Conversely, the MK II will accept most all ALICE type shoulder straps as well as the excellent Hill People Gear shoulder harness.
2) We also developed a very comfortable, removable lumbar pad and removable padded waist belt. The waist belt has pull-forward-to-tighten functionality and two rows of PALS webbing on each side.
-Incorporated multiple rows of PALS webbing on the bottom for securely attaching additional pouches and gear.
-Added an internal hydration bladder pocket with bladder hanger loop.
-Incorporated a hydration tube pass-through port at the center on the back to allow feeding the tube to either side from a central location.
-Incorporated laser-cut drain holes instead of the easily damaged and totally open old-style metal grommets.
-Added elastic strap keepers and, also, VELCRO® Brand ONE-WRAP® to the longer strap ends so the excess can be secured.
-Added "Daisy Chain" vertically along each side of the side pouches.
-Added a strip of Velcro loop in-between the two lid pouches for placement and quick changing of morale patches, reflective strips, etc.
-Utilized high visibility orange fabric on the inside pockets to help with seeing things on the inside. In an emergency, the pack can be turned inside-out and used as a marker strip. All inside pockets have laser-cut drain holes.
-Moved the bag-to-lid web straps attach points from the bottom front to the bottom rear. This routes the two straps across the bottom of the pack which has certain advantages.
So, where are the packs made? Well, over the course of the past several years we investigated multiple companies in the U.S.A. as well as several companies in other countries as candidates to manufacture our packs. In the end, we determined the best value for us and our customers - while still retaining all the features and meeting our demanding quality and ethics standards - was to have our packs made in Colombia, South America by a company that, for at least three decades, has been making high-quality packs and other gear for the military and police there. We have personally been using their packs and some of their other gear since 2003 and it has held up very well under use and abuse in Colombia and other places even though it spent a lot of time outdoors in the sun, heat, and rain. It's good stuff!
What hardware is used? The side-release buckles, loops and ladderlocks, etc. are made in Colombia by Jordao, a Colombian company that has been manufacturing high-quality plastic hardware for over two decades. The zipper is a product of EKA Zippers, also made in Colombia. Good stuff all.
What's the fabric? This version of the pack utilizes the excellent Lafayette Reebag* polyester fabric. In the Amazon rain forest, where it's hot, humid, and wet much of the time, high-quality polyester has proven to hold up better than nylon, and, unlike nylon, it doesn't absorb water or stretch when wet. It's the fabric of choice when extended exposure outdoors is the norm.
*"Lafayette Reebag polyester fabric with "Lafgard" boasts a fluid repellency of 90%. Complies with AAMI PB70 Level 3. Reebag weighs 8.4 oz/sq yd (equivalent to 500 denier (500D) )."
Please note that the packs in Multicam are made with 1000D Cordura nylon and consequently weigh approximately 1 lb (16 oz) more than the others.
What do they weigh? The average weight of the packs is 5 lb. 14 oz. This includes the waist belt and internal frame sheet with an aluminum stave. This weight is comparable to other well-known high-quality packs in this class. (Note: The frame with aluminum stave averages 9.0 oz. and the waist belt 8.0 oz.)
What are the pack's dimensions? The approximate dimensions of the pack are: (W x H x D) Main Compartment: 11.0" x 19.5" x 7.5" = 1,535 cu in (28.0 cm x 49.5 cm x 19.0 cm = 26.3 L), Buckle Close Lid Pouches: 3" x 8" x 2" = 48 cu in (7.62 cm x 20.32 cm x 5.08 cm = 0.79 L x 2 = 1.58 L), Zipper Close Lid Pouch: 8.0" x 6.0" x 1.5" (20.32 cm x 15.24 cm x 3.81 = 1.18 L), Front Pouches: 5" x 9" x 4" = 180 cu in (12.7 cm x 22.86 cm x 10.16 cm= 2.95 L x 2 = 5.9 L), Side Pouches: 6" x 10.5" x 3" = 189 cu in (15.24 cm x 26.67 cm x 7.62 cm = 3.1 L x 2 = 6.2 L). The pack measurements differ slightly from the original with the Mk II being 1.0" wider, 1.5" deeper front-to-back, and 1.0" taller. Not much difference, really. Total Capacity is right at 41.2L
NOTE: We had people from about 5’6” and 150 pounds up to 6’1” and 230ish lbs test the packs for fit and comfort out on hikes and weekend backpacking trips and all reported that, with a bit of adjustment, the packs fit great.