Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

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OParnoShoshoi
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Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by OParnoShoshoi »

Meant to type this up on my laptop, but got sidetracked making leather gloves instead. So y'all get the late night mobile post!

I got to thinking, so many people try to carry so much stuff. An item or kit for every occasion. Back in the army I was certainly guilty of it. People would laugh at my 120 lbs rucksack until they needed to borrow my spare boots or a pair of trousers. Luckily there's less gear as a ranger....sort of. But it got me thinking about a specific point. Diversity of skills/gear.

The whole point of moving as a unit is to support each other. Overlap is good, but specialization means that we can carry more gear. For example, if I carry all the cooking gear, you can carry the tent. In this way, we don't both have to carry more weight.

This is a great open opportunity to bring multiple rangers on an outing, or to invite friends to the hobby. With a big enough group, you can carry plenty of provisions.

Otherwise you end up with a belt laden down with a knickknack for every occasion, and a sleeproll stuffed with unused items.

Thoughts?

What's your ideal size of ranger company? What's the biggest you've ever travelled with? Ever had an amusing story where you packed too much and it taught you a lesson?

I have some amusing anecdotes, but I'll let others answer first.
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Erfaron
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by Erfaron »

I have one about packing too much stuff, I tried to show off and ended up bringing a cast iron skillet and an entire sack of potatoes on a backpacking trip, first one I’ve ever actually done. Ended up where I was scouting for firewood and someone tried to move my pack and almost fell over. Went great until I got home and sat down on the couch, then could get up for about a day and a half lol.

My perfect group size, in theory for rangers is 3. You can have a two person shelter with one on watch, rotating of course. It allows one to stay at camp while two others scout or procure resources, it also is small enough not to create too much noise or “footprint”
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Togon
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by Togon »

I think at least 2 would be good. Enough to watch your back. 4 would be better; a team. Then you could split things up like a guy with the tent, one with the poles/pots, one with the food and one with the water. I think it also depends on your mission. Am I holding off Haradrim in Ithillien or am I infiltrating Cirith Ungol? I think mission would dictate the most. "Two is one, one is none."

Funny. Living Anarchronism on youtube has a video about splitting up gear with teammates. I think he's a member here too.
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OParnoShoshoi
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by OParnoShoshoi »

I just started following him, have to give that a look
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Greg
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by Greg »

Most I've ever had on one trip was...5, I believe? Three is more more common, with four on occasion. Splitting up gear makes logical sense, but to be honest...we never do.

Part of a Ranger, for one, is that they largely fare alone, so they need to be self-contained anyway. This is why things like small, personal-sized cookpots are carried; so you can handle your needs independent of the presence of others. We usually DO check to see if one of us has an axe, but it's not a make-or-break kind of thing...I can split wood with my large knife anyway. If you were a part of the Ithillien contingent, which would work cohesively as an organized military group, then yes, absolutely, load-sharing should be a thing. For the northern Dunedain? Expect to fully take care of yourself.
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Eofor
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by Eofor »

Greg wrote: Tue Jun 28, 2022 3:59 pm Most I've ever had on one trip was...5, I believe? Three is more more common, with four on occasion. Splitting up gear makes logical sense, but to be honest...we never do.

Part of a Ranger, for one, is that they largely fare alone, so they need to be self-contained anyway. This is why things like small, personal-sized cookpots are carried; so you can handle your needs independent of the presence of others. We usually DO check to see if one of us has an axe, but it's not a make-or-break kind of thing...I can split wood with my large knife anyway. If you were a part of the Ithillien contingent, which would work cohesively as an organized military group, then yes, absolutely, load-sharing should be a thing. For the northern Dunedain? Expect to fully take care of yourself.
Pretty much this for me. The only times we really gear split is if we are in a larger group (no sense having six axes when two will do)
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Iodo
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by Iodo »

Greg wrote: Tue Jun 28, 2022 3:59 pm Most I've ever had on one trip was...5, I believe? Three is more more common, with four on occasion. Splitting up gear makes logical sense, but to be honest...we never do.

Part of a Ranger, for one, is that they largely fare alone, so they need to be self-contained anyway...

splitting stuff so you carry less weight does seem like the logical thing, it is often done in military units but usually only because military personnel on the move have more equipment to carry (electrical stuff, surveillance, communications etc...) than just the survival basics plus a weapon like a ranger would have, so they each need to carry more than what only they would need. And on group backpacking trips people often opt to carry a 2 person tent and only one gas stove per two people, then they will share the load equally, this principle could work for rangers, however...

...it would require more planning, if one person lost there shelter tarp it would be a problem if that was the only shelter tarp in the group, and I think most importantly what if the group had need to split up to carry important information to different places, or something to that effect? if they all rely on each others gear that becomes impossible

I think Greg is right
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Jack
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by Jack »

Havent been out with a group to do any rangering but just going off of normal hiking, camping, research and hunting trips,
2 is good 3 is ok but 4 makes for a versatile party that can split up a few different ways, ideally 2 teams of 2 that can reconvene at camp at night, or act as a day time watch and a night time watch that still utilizes the buddy system. 5 or more starts to leave a noticeable footprint.

As far as dividing up gear, I think its important to be self sufficient in the event you get separated and thats hard to do if Tom has the shelter, Dick has the food, and Harry has the cooking gear.
Being self contained individually gives the group the ability to split up or scatter at a moments notice and provides much more flexibility in terms of scheduling/organizing the trip.
In any case when we've tried it we find it doesnt save much weight because we're then carrying gear scaled up for the size of the company, best case is it all evens out and worst case scenario youre carrying less stuff but more weight and either way you have to depend on everyone else.

If you think you can make it work go for it, but i still think you should make sure you have at least the bare minimum to get by alone in an emergency.
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Iodo
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Re: Keeping Company with a Company of Rangers

Post by Iodo »

Jack wrote: Wed Jun 29, 2022 6:56 pm In any case when we've tried it we find it doesnt save much weight because we're then carrying gear scaled up for the size of the company
that is a good point, with modern backpacking gear a two person tent can weigh basically the same as a one person one, multiple people can take turns to use something like a camp stove and if your group plans to stay together you will only need one of emergency gear like first-aid kits, but when looking at the ranger gear and setting a shelter for two probably weighs twice as much as a shelter for one, and in case anyone looses anything you would want enough emergency gear for everyone
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