Military Style Rucksack and Packing List
Army Rucksack is Usually Heavily Packed with All Necessary Items.

A rucksack can hold a lot of items for a trip into the great outdoors if you understand how to pack it correctly. Knowing how to pack a MOLLE rucksack army style can help you get the most out of your backpacking experience. The MOLLE has the advantage of being modular in design so that soldiers can use both the inside and outside of the backpack to carry their items.

To pack the rucksack correctly, you’ll need to utilize all of the MOLLE which includes the plastic frame, padded waistband, and the shoulder straps which are adjustable for comfort.

Related: Differences between MOLLE and ALICE!

Create an Army Rucksack Packing List

First and foremost, you’ll need to know what you are going to carry in a tactical rucksack, so go ahead and make a list. Do not worry if it’s a lot of items because you can par them down later if needed.

Separate Items

Next, separate all of your items into groups that are similar. This means putting clothes with clothes, toiletries in one place, and so forth. You’ll want to put the appropriate items in plastic or waterproof bags with all the air squeezed out before you seal them.

Pack Rucksack Horizontally

Put your rucksack on the ground and pack it horizontally. If you try to pack it while it’s standing up or vertically, it will offset the balance of the items inside. This means that you could be risking back pain on your hike or even just carrying it a short distance.

Heavy Items on the Bottom

Always place the heaviest items at the bottom of your rucksack and line them up against the frame. This means if you are carrying entrenching tools, plates, boots, or other bulky items be sure that they sit at the bottom of your rucksack where they will cause the least amount of pressure to your back. By carrying these items higher up in the rucksack, you are putting your back in danger of undue stress and pain. Plus, take the lightest of your heavy items towards the opening of the rucksack for better balance.

Against the Frame

Be sure that the heaviest items are against the plastic frame of your rucksack for maximum support. This will mean that the lightest things will go up against the cloth shell which will maximize support for your back and minimize any stress to the spine and muscles.

Go Heavy to Light

Start packing your rucksack with the heaviest items first and work your way to the lighter items. So, you are stacking items from the heaviest to the lightest in your rucksack in a horizontal fashion while it is on the ground. At the top of the rucksack should be socks, underwear, and other very light items.

Pull the Drawstrings

Now that you have everything packed, you can pull the drawstrings closed. Be sure to tuck inside the remaining drawstring, take the cover flap and stretch it over the opening while snapping the closures into their proper place.

The best way to pack a rucksack army style is going from bottom to top, heavy to light while the backpack is on the ground.


My name is John Winger, I was born and raised in Virginia. I spent a good part of my early adult life in the US military, namely the Army and served in Iraq. I saw my fair share of combat missions and thanks to that experience I have a better understanding and appreciate for what my country means to me and the world.

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