Many climbers, hikers, joggers, and other outdoor types will benefit from the efficient use of space offered by MOLLE products. These are products which use the Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment system favored by the military and law enforcement agencies. First designed to meet the rigorous demands of the US army for a convenient and highly useable way to carry loads safely and easily, and now growing in popularity with the British army,
MOLLE products are some of the best in their field. Firstly, what is MOLLE? It is a modular system of heavy-duty nylon webbing used to cover backpacks, belts, harnesses and more. This webbing forms a pouch attachment system of loops to which numerous pouches and accessories can be fixed. This is a way to maximize space and efficiency, while keeping everything at hand and accessible within seconds. It frees up space, giving you more space in your bag, or even allowing you to travel without a bag if this is what you need or wish to do.
Many belts are available that use the MOLLE / PALS system of webbing. Climbers and mountaineers may find such belts very useful for attaching ropes, cams, gears, karabiners, gri-gris, chalk bags and other equipment. With some MOLLE belts, there may be the possibility of integrating them within a climbing harness, but this is not a certainty and will depend entirely on the product. Since climbing is such a high-risk activity, it cannot be recommended strongly enough that climbers check with the manufacturers and investigate extremely thoroughly before using the MOLLE belt for climbing.
Certainly, a MOLLE belt can be a great asset to a hiker. When people are enjoying very light, low-risk short hikes in well-populated, safe areas, there may be occasions in which a belt is far preferable to a bag. In some instances, hikers and walkers wish to carry only the minimum amount of personal items such as a small water bottle, cell phone, money, keys and so on. At times, a bag can be an encumbrance. In the height of summer, for example, it can be a relief to do away with the burden of a bag, preventing aching shoulders and sweat-soaked backs.
A MOLLE belt can be a very welcome alternative. Many belts come with one or two rows of webbing to which many various pouches, pockets and other solutions can be fixed. Just some of the available options are a phone pouch, a radio pouch, a larger waist pack, a small sheet pack for a flashlight, and a pouch for a compass or a GPS device. Wearing these items on a belt rather than in a bag offers a feeling of freedom and lightness. Hikers concerned about their safety in areas containing bears, may attach a holster containing bear spray to repel an attack without permanently harming the animal.
A MOLLE belt can also be used when running or jogging. It is essential to carry water when exercising in order to prevent dehydration. A cell phone and money is also helpful. These can easily be attached to the belt using special pouches. Many people would consider this stable option preferable to a bag bouncing up and down.