Arc’ Teryx Khard 45
We have been lucky enough at Ronin Safety and Rescue to use some of the best gear in the world for our rescue work. So when Arc’ Teryx introduced the Khard, we had to pick one up to give it a whirl.
Some disclaimers to start. We sell gear (not Arc’ Teryx) and our GRIMP Team is sponsored by Arc’ Teryx. We have used Conterra, CamelBak, TAD and other high-end packs for rescue. We have however never shied away from telling “it as it is” when it comes to our gear. As our teams have worked around the world (including conflict zones) and in very remote locations (the most Northern civilian settlement in Canada for instance) our moto for gear is “It absolutely must work!”
The Khard 45 is a 45 litre, 2 pound pack designed in Arc’ Teryx’s LEAF line. It has Velcro inside the pack to add an assortment of gear pouches and opens fully to allow for easy retrieval of equipment. It has the usual chest and waist straps that are common to all packs.
When I first grabbed the pack – I was concerned. The webbing loops and fastex buckles were smaller then the rescue bags I am used to using. The shoulder straps were thinner. I assumed smaller equaled lesser quality or at least lesser durability. I was wrong! The pack was designed with weight in mind. All “extra” size and bulk was removed to lighten the pack. That they have done. My TAD Fast Pack Lightspeed weights 3.5 pounds (21L pack) and my CamelBak BFM comes in at 6.1 pounds (both good packs as well – more on them in the next blogs). While this may not seem like much, I pack a lot in my bags. To start with 4 pounds less is a bonus.
As stated we use our packs for rescue. My Khard carries:
- 200’ of 11mm static rope, a rope tarp
- Two edge protection sleeves
- One SMC rope tracker
- One edge bot
- One MP
- One ASAP
- One Kong Back up
- Four prussic
- Thirty feet of 8mm cordage
- Six pulleys
- Ten carabineers
- Two rigging plates
- An Absorbica
- Two soft anchor slings
- A cable anchor sling
All of this adds up to approximately 40 pounds of gear.
The Khard carries this load well. I am not just talking about carrying this load on my back for wilderness rescue (although the Khard does that well). I often clip onto the handle on the bag and strap it via a sling to my harness so it hangs between my legs while I climb tower cranes. These cranes are between 150’ – 300’ high. The bag bounces off of and catches on ladder edges, platforms and grating. It has not torn or ripped apart. Then the bag gets tossed on dirty, greasy platforms while I open it up in the pouring rain and pull gear out.
The other industrial settings I have used this bag in include concrete manufacturing plants, confined spaces and coal plants. Really quite nasty environments on gear. So far it has held up exceptionally well. So well in fact we are buying two more for our GRIMP Team to use this year (an update will be added to the blog after GRIMP). The pack is also stylish enough that I can leave my rescue gear in lock up and use it as a travel pack around town.
Oh, and just a FYI – apparently the Khard 60 will be out soon.