What Do Soldiers and Marines Carry in Their Backpacks?


Soldiers in combat, particularly those on the battleground, did not have backpacks many centuries ago. The necessities they required were on a wagon that accompanied them. When guns were invented, soldiers were suddenly required to carry rifles and small arms, as well as ammunition and cleaning supplies. Consequently, there was no longer any need for a wagon to accompany them, especially in hostile and dangerous terrain. As a result, officers started carrying all of their own materials.

Soldiers and police officers carry a variety of items, depending on their mission and the environment in which they will be operating. They are responsible for carrying their own gear, including their backpack. The backpack is used to carry all of the soldier and police gear for survival in the field. This includes food, first aid kit, water, shelter, clothing, and weapons.  It must contain sufficient equipment and supplies to last an entire mission for a soldier. It must, however, be comfortable, easily accessible, and extremely durable.

Why Tactical Backpacks are a Used by Soldiers

You may know that the United States Army has specific weight and height requirements for all new recruits. In the same way, they also have specifications and policies for what backpacks their combatants can carry in regards to size, form, sturdiness, and color.

Except for matching camouflage, US law allows only black tactical backpacks to be used by soldiers in the military. If the backpack isn’t black or if it isn’t the same camouflage pattern as the soldier, it can only be handheld. Also, tactical backpacks are durable and have better compartments for soldiers to carry every necessity.

Items Soldiers and Marines Carry in Their Backpacks

Soldiers going for war or an operation need all the law enforcement gear they can get. Soldiers can be away for weeks or even months, and they need their tactical gear for the whole period. With their complete gear set, they can be prepared for war. They can pack their boots, jackets, water, first aid etc. Here are some of the basic things every soldier needs to be in their backpack.

Tactical Flashlight

On the battlefield, soldiers and marines carry tactical lights to help them get around and see in the dark. They are not necessarily the kind of light that you will find in your house, but they are very similar. For one thing, military flashlights have a beam that can be pointed forward or sideways, which gives soldiers and marines great versatility. 

They can use their flashlights as a weapon, or to illuminate distant areas that they need to see. This is especially helpful when they are conducting a search. They can illuminate small areas without giving away their position by lighting the whole area up. 

It also allows them to be used for tasks such as clearing rooms of people or animals without accidentally killing them..  


The tent is the most important item in a backpack. It will be used as a shelter, a sleeping quarters and a place to store your gear. It’s crucial to purchase a good tent that is light, durable and waterproof. Many of the best tents in the Army and Marine Corps come from Sierra Designs, Marmot and Kelty. The current issue tent for soldiers is the Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight 2-Person Tent. 

It weighs just over three pounds and packs down to about the size of a softball. It has two doors and two vestibules for storing equipment out of the elements. Each soldier is issued two tents so they can have a dry place to sleep even if one gets wet. The Marines use the same tent but call it the Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight 3-Person Tent. Marines also have an optional footprint that can be used to keep the bottom of their tent clean and dry while they’re out on long patrols. 

Kits for First Aid

Aside from the combat medic, every soldier is required to carry a basic medical kit in order to treat moderate to minor wounds. The soldier is expected to know how to control even serious wounds until they can obtain appropriate treatment or aid. The first aid kit also includes any necessary medications and sunscreen. 


This is a necessary tool in the event that a soldier becomes lost. Soldiers are frequently found in the middle of nowhere with few to no trail markings or signs, so they require a compass to guide them in the right direction.

In the absence of a compass, a soldier can use wayfinding skills to identify which direction to go by using a normal watch as a compass or the shadow stick method.

Body Armor 

A soldier does not have to wear body armor all the time. Although each soldier may require different types of body armor at any given time, they must be able to store all parts in their backpack if additional protection is required, whether via MOLLE or directly inside the bag.


A spare set of clothes, particularly socks and undies, is essential for soldiers’ hygiene. When soldiers in WWI did not change their stockings or keep their feet fresh, they formed a condition known as ‘trench foot,’ which is caused by someone’s feet being wet for an extended period of time. Having extra socks to change into is one way to prevent a soldier from developing trench foot during a mission.


A soldier must make sure that they have sufficient food to last for several days after the mission. Whether the operation is one or three days, soldiers must have enough food in case the mission takes longer than expected.


Backpacks are essential for soldiers, police, and marine officers, and every officer ought to have one. The recommended backpack by the US army is the tactical backpack. Tactical backpacks are known for their resilience, size, and convenience. With backpacks, soldiers can carry food, clothing, bed, first aid kit, water, ammunition and body armor. If you are a soldier, or an aspiring soldier, make sure you buty the best tactile backpacks from trusted vendors.

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