I’ve been sent a few of the new models from Adventure Medical Kits to review and will be sharing some thoughts on these models the next few weeks. The first one I am covering is the MOLLE Bag Trauma Kit 1.0. Reviewing a first aid kit is a bit of a challenge as a big part of my role as a climbing guide is to avoid and prevent injury before it occurs. However with over 16 years of guiding and volunteer rescue experience I have some opinions of what should be in a first aid kit, so I hope to share some of that experience with you if you are in need of a first aid kit. Let’s start with a pretty solid disclaimer:
The absolute best thing you can do to prepare yourself for a medical emergency in the wilderness is take an actual Wilderness First Aid Course. No first aid kit, book, or self-study, can better prepare you for handling an injury or illness in the mountains than a quality course taught by professionals on the subject. I highly recommend the amazing instructors and staff at the renowned SOLO Schools in Conway NH. They offer courses all over the country so please consider finding one that you can make it so you will be better prepared for the unexpected!
Now for the details of this kit, let’s start with the manufacturer basics and an inventory of what is included:
MOLLE BAG TRAUMA KIT 1.0 Be ready for anything when you’re in the field with the AMK Molle Bag Trauma Kit 1.0, designed to work with your tactical modular bag system and to equip you with the supplies you need to venture 1 – 2 days away from your base. The 2-foot QuikClot dressing included stops life-threatening bleeding fast, while the bandages, dressings, and medications enable you to address other wounds, bleeding, and fractures or sprains, while keeping the patient comfortable as you make your way back to camp or await rescue.
- Stop Bleeding Fast
Control bleeding with QuikClot® hemostatic gauze, which acts on contact to stop bleeding five times faster. The gauze is impregnated with kaolin, a mineral that accelerates your body’s natural clotting process.
- Wilderness & Travel Medicine: A Comprehensive Guide
Know how to provide life-saving medical care. Written by wilderness medicine expert Eric A. Weiss, MD, this book includes over 50 improvised techniques and 100 illustrations for treating outdoor injuries and illnesses.
- Manage Pain and Illness
A wide array of medications to treat pain, inflammation, and common allergies.
- Metal Buttoned Straps
With integrated metal buttoned straps, this kit easily attaches to your favorite gear for easy access.
- Size:7.87 x 5.51 x 3.54
- Weight:.9 lbs
- Group Size:1 Person
- Trip Duration:1 – 2 Days
- 3 – Triple Antibiotic Ointment
- 8 – Antiseptic Wipe
- 3 – After Bite® Wipe
- 4 – Pain Reliever/Fever Reducer (Aspirin 325 mg)
- 2 – Antihistamine (Diphenhydramine 25 mg)
- 4 – Pain Reliever/Fever Reducer (Ibuprofen 200 mg)
- 4 – Pain Reliever/Fever Reducer (Acetaminophen 500 mg)
- 1 – Petrolatum Dressing, 3″” x 3″”
- 1 – Wilderness & Travel Medicine: A Comprehensive Guide
- 1 – QKCLT Z-Fold Gauze 2 Ft
- 2 – Trauma Pad, 5” x 9”, 1 ea.
- 3 – Adhesive Bandage, Fabric, Knuckle
- 5 – Adhesive Bandage, Fabric, 1″” x 3″”
- 2 – Sterile Gauze Dressing, 4″” x 4″”
- 2 – Sterile Gauze Dressing, 2″” x 2″”
- 1 – Sterile Non-Adherent Dressing, 3″” x 4″”
- 1 – Cloth Tape, 1/2″” x 10 Yards
- 2 – Bandage, Butterfly Closure
- 2 – Latex-Free Glove
- 14 – Moleskin, Pre-Cut/Shaped
- 1 – Bandage, Elastic, Cohesive Self Adhering, 2″”
- 1 – Splinter/Tick Remover Forceps
- 3 – Safety Pin
- 1 – EMT Shears, 4″”
Here’s a short video where I open the kit up and go through the contents with some comments:
As mentioned it can be difficult to review a piece of outdoor gear that you hope to not use, and are less likely to use with proper preparation and planning. That said a first aid kit should be part of every outdoor enthusiasts “kit”, and this one is well designed for military and hunting/fishing use. The ballistic nylon is coated and the bag itself feels quite robust and weather resistent. It’s a good baseline in your emergency preparedness plan but there are a couple items I would add. The most obvious for me is a SAM Splint… since the description specifically mentions the contents “address… fractures or sprains” I think a SAM Splint would have been a great addition. Granted, those who have gone through a quality Wilderness First Aid course will learn multiple ways to implement splinting material, and you can easily add one yourself for around $15 from Amazon.
The other addition I’d like to see in most first aid kits is a disposable CPR mask. Granted, you need training to use a CPR mask but these disposable masks cost less that $1 each and I think they belong in every first aid and attached to every set of car keys in the country. If you would like to become certified in CPR you can easily find a course from the Red Cross here.
One of the best things included in this kit is the book, “Wilderness & Travel Medicine: A Comprehensive Guide” by Eric A. Weiss, MD. This updated book is over 200 pages long and is in a great format. I especially like the “Weiss Advice” insets and “When to Worry” side bars… This is a great book to brush up on your skills after a Wilderness First Aid course or to pre-study before you take your course!
Some other opinions around these details:
Size (listed above)… this is a big kit for most hikers/climbers/skiers… this is well suited for military/hunting/fishing or as part of your vehicle/home emergency preparedness plan.
Weight– Less than a pound and can be even lighter if you leave the book at home.
Group Size– Listed as “1 person” this is where I feel AMK is underselling the kit. This is definitely a “group sized” first aid kit in my opinion, suitable for 3-4 people for a few days.
Duration– Same as above, listed as 1-2 days I think this kit is suitable for up to week long trips (especially if you supplement it a little bit with personal first aid items).
This first aid kit is specifically designed to attach to “MOLLE” type packs making it great for those who already use these style of packs (mostly military/law enforcement and some hunting/fishing enthusiasts). It is probably not the right choice for ultra-light hikers, climbers, trail runners, etc (no worries I have a couple other models to review soon more geared to that user-group). There is plenty of extra room in the ballistic pouch to add your own additional items (mine would be SAM Splint, EpiPen, extra headlamp, a couple glow sticks, and a bottle of iodine). If you are already a MOLLE user or looking for a solid kit to add to the “go bag” this is a good place to start!
Purchase: You can find the Adventure Medical Kit’s MOLLE Bag Trauma Kit 1.0 at here at Cabela’s.
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