What is MOLLE and Why is it Essential?

Military knife laid against MOLLE webbing

Whether you’re looking for lightweight load carrying equipment to add to your collection or your growing interest in tactical gear has you shopping online for tactical vests, backpacks and more, getting familiar with the MOLLE system is essential. 

What exactly is MOLLE? Is MOLLE what makes the best outdoor and combat gear? Let’s take a closer look at this must-have feature when shopping for new goods.

What is MOLLE Gear?

Created to replace All-Purpose Lightweight Individual Carrying Equipment (ALICE) systems from the 20th century, MOLLE is the acronym for Modular Lightweight Load Carrying Equipment. MOLLE is used by various NATO armed forces, including the United States Army.

This versatile mounting system was designed with the intention of making it easier and more accessible to carry a wide load. While originally designated for professional use in combat by military and law enforcement organizations, MOLLE backpacks and other MOLLE compatible gear can be used by the average civilian as well. MOLLE pouches and packs can be used for storing items at the gun range, on a hunting trip, or at a camping excursion.

What is MOLLE webbing?

Molle webbing is the attachment that allows you to hook other accessories and equipment to your bag. This webbing is also known as PALS (Pouch Attachment Ladder System) and can be attached to the side, back, and bottom of your pack. MOLLE and PALS work in tandem together to ensure all of your gear is accessible and accounted for while you’re on the go. With PALS webbing, you can feel confident that you have all of your gear in one place and that it’s readily available.

Close up of MOLLE webbing

How Does MOLLE work?

Think of a backpack with MOLLE attachments as your ticket to convenient and accessible gear. The MOLLE and PALS ladder system allow you to easily attach gear to the exterior of your pack. But how does it work?

The layered rows and columns of webbing are made to be easily functional, enabling you to weave the straps of your accessories directly into the backpack so you can carry more gear without relying solely on your hands. 

Not only does this free up your hands while you’re on the battlefield or hunting game - MOLLE also ensures your gear is more evenly distributed across your body. The PALS ladder system on most backpacks will cover the majority of the exterior, allowing you to tack on more accessories without putting too much weight and pressures on your back, arms and legs.

MOLLE webbing allows you to create a convenient system for all of your gear. Some items you may consider attaching to a MOLLE system include:

  • First aid kit
  • Knife and gun holsters
  • Flashlights
  • Magazine and grenade pouches
  • Canteens and water bottles

Laser Cut MOLLE vs Regular MOLLE

MOLLE was designed to help you carry an easier load, and laser cut MOLLE goes a step further with this intention. The introduction of laser cut MOLLE allowed manufacturers to cut directly into the fabric to eliminate webbing altogether. 

Not only does laser cut molle provide a sleeker look to your pack but it’s even more utilitarian! Laser cut molle helps alleviate the common snag issue that regular molle is known to cause with its traditional webbing.   This strategy also reduces weight - without additional webbing fabric, the laser cut molle strips make for lighter loads when adding accessories to the pack. 

Deciding whether laser cut MOLLE vs normal MOLLE is the right choice for you will be determined by personal preference; both have different design processes but can deliver the same result.

man wearing backpack with MOLLE

Find MOLLE Goods by Highland Tactical

If you’re tired of carrying multiple bags for your combat equipment while you’re on the go, we get it. If you’re searching for a convenient system that’ll keep all of your gear in a compact yet easily accessible position we can help. All of our Highland Tactical’s backpacks are designed with MOLLE webbing to help you store and carry all of your accessories in a sturdy, versatile carrier. 

Gone are the days finding the perfect pack to carry all of your gear. Grab a MOLLE backpack from Highland Tactical today.