Four Years Wearing the Khard

Khard Packs

Four years ago Arc Teryx provided our GRIMP Team 7 Khard packs for use during the competition (and after).  As we have just completed the fourth year of competition I thought it would be an ideal time to update how the pack has worked for us.

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Equipment Review: Traverse 540 Rescue Belay

Traverse 540 Belay

In this video, Pat discusses the Traverse 540 Rescue Belay.

Overview of the device as well as demonstrations for rigging.

What do you think of the Traverse 540?

Let us know in the comments!

Check out the Traverse 540 Belay Device at the manufacturer’s website:


Equipment Review: Sparrow 200

sparrow 200 equipment review

In this video, Pat discusses the Sparrow 200; another self-braking descender for rescue purposes.

Overview of the device as well as demonstrations for rigging.

What do you think of the Sparrow 200?

Let us know in the comments!

Check out the Sparrow 200 Decent Device at the manufacturer’s website:


Equipment Review: Petzl ID

PETZL ID review

In this video, Pat discusses the Petzl I’D; a self-braking descender for rescue.

Overview of the device as well as demonstrations for rigging.

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Metro Vancouver GRIMP Day Kit

Metro Van Grimp Kit

For the past three years 6 firefighters from Metro Vancouver Canada fire departments and a BC Ambulance Paramedic have competed in the GRIMP Day ( competition in Namur, Belgium. The team is sponsored by Arc Teryx (, PMI ( and Ronin Rescue ( This does influence some of the gear used, however all gear was picked by the team prior to deployment and the providers were sourced out, not the other way around.

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Ronin Quick Response Pack

Ronin Quick Response Pack

Ronin teams deploy with what we term as a “quick response pack”. This bag is designed to be worn by the rescuer or tossed into a confined space. The bag contains items for immediate medical intervention and extrication of a patient.

Ronin Quick Response Pack

Quick Response Pack Contents

  • 1 X Conterra LongBow Emergency Operations Pack
  • 2 X Tourniquet
  • 1 X PVM
  • 3 X airways (3 average sized)
  • 2 X Speed straps
  • Misc Gauze and dressings
  • 3 X pressure dressings
  • 1 X Scissors
  • 1 X Esmarch
  • Misc sets nitrile gloves
  • 2 X triangular bandages
  • 1 X box band aids
  • Misc Telfa dressing
  • 2 X roller gauze
  • 1 X SAM Splint
  • 1 X Blanket
  • 1 X Rescue Knife
  • Rolls of Tape (2 or 3)
  • 1 X Patient extrication harness (primarily PMI Hasty Harness)
  • 1 X Spider Straps (I know this seems odd but we seem to lose these when attached directly to the spine board
  • 1 X Hard collar

Standby Logistics: How Hard Can it Be?

Rescue Standby Logistics

From an employee who is assigned a job as a confined space technician, the process of getting a job lined up and getting staff to the job site with all the right equipment can be a mystery and probably taken for granted. For the Project Manager, getting the ok from a client to proceed with the job may be the easiest part of the project, its the logistics that can be the headache.

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Arc’ Teryx Khard 45 – Update

Ronin Safety and Rescue utilized four Khard 45 and two Khard 60 packs for GRIMP day this year. First off, a big thank you to Arc’ Teryx and LEAF for loaning us the not yet released Khard 60’s.

For some background – GRIMP day is a one-day international technical rope rescue competition held in Namur, Belgium. You can read more about GRIMP Day 2014 on our blog here.

For GRIMP Day each pack contained:

  • 300’ of 11.1mm rope
  • 1 X knot-passing pulley
  • 1 X MPD

The Khard 60’s also carried miscellaneous anchoring material, messenger cord, patient harnesses and water in addition to the standard kit list above.

Each pack weighed in at a minimum of 22 pounds (loaded), with the 60’s into the 30-pound range. These packs were carried for 9 hours by the team during the day. The packs were emptied at times to load medical supplies into for certain scenarios. Team members also climbed trees, rappelled and crawled through catwalks while wearing the packs.

The packs performed excellently. Despite use around scaffolding, catwalks and concrete environs, not one pack tore or was significantly damaged. The straps remained comfortable under load and while being worn over class three rescue harnesses. The full-length zippers on the pack allowed for easy removal of gear and re-loading of supplies. The semi-sturdy back pad made the pack easy to load rope into (in a bucket fashion). Rope played out of the packs in a similarly easy fashion. The pack stayed tight to the back for use in confined areas and while rappelling.

Our only observation for change (and this was not a 100% consensus) would be for water drains (grommets) to be added into the bottom of the pack. As we were operating around water for some scenarios, our ropes did get wet. It would have been ideal to have drain holes at the bottom to allow water to run out of the pack. The addition of drain holes is not a team consensus however. Some members do not feel the drains holes are required, other members do.

The new Khard 60’s are very similar to the 45’s – just larger. They do have a feature not found on the 45’s though. There is a flap that expands out of the bottom of the pack enabling the wearer to carry a long cylindrical object. LEAF likely envisioned this as a weapon carrier (specialty long arm). We feel it would work for carrying tripod legs (such as Vortex or Terradaptor legs). Tripods were not part of the scenarios at GRIMP and as such we did not get to test our theory. I would like to think we will get a chance to soon enough however…. One other item for a future blog – Ronin may be jumping with the Khard 45 soon. More to follow on that as well…..

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.

Arc' Teryx Khard 45

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.