It’s often asked how much weight infantry troops carry in Afghanistan, and we have the answer to that question.
Infantry troops carry exactly one buttload of gear, which is a lot. Now combine that unit of measurement with the thin, high-altitude mountain air and you have yourself an awesome recipe for the suck. Embrace the suck.
Different troops carry different gear depending on their current role within the platoon, but understand that nobody is getting off easier than another.
Medics carry all their mission essential gear plus their aid bag.
Squad leaders carry the standard packing list plus a radio, binoculars, GPS, etc…
Grenadiers get to carry an additional weapon system plus more than a dozen 40mm smoke, HE, and flare grenades.
Mortarmen carry a 60mm mortar tube, baseplate, bipod, and rounds… but not all the rounds. The rest of the rounds, weighing about 15 pounds a piece are cross loaded across the rest of the junior enlisted troops so everyone can have fun.