At JTT, we love the Marker Panel, Individual, Lightweight (MPIL) from Battle Systems LLC. They are just so simple to use, so compact and lightweight, and so functional that you can’t help but love them.
Battle Systems told me a few months ago that they were working on a new version of the MPIL that would have only one high visibility side while the other side would be camouflaged. This new version was being made specifically for the needs of some military users who may need to signal within visual range of the enemy. I don’t really have to worry about such things so, at the time, I wondered if the Multicam MPIL would be as useful to me as a non-military user. After actually having one in hand for a while, I think I might actually like it better than the original – at least for some uses.
The original MPIL stays true to its bulkier, heavier predecessor, the VS-17 signal panel, in that it has an orange side and a pink side. The Multicam MPIL replaces the pink side with Multicam. For the military user, this means that they can flash the orange side quickly and then lower their visual signature immediately with the Multicam side. Its uses for the civilian user were less apparent to me until I actually had one in hand. Once I was able to use one, I found one use that I liked it for so much, that I might like it even more than the standard MPIL…
I knew from past experience with the MPIL that it could be lashed to just about any pack easily with the Poli Binas that can be purchased with the MPIL. However, with the original MPIL, you could only choose to cover your pack with a high visibility color. Now, with the Multicam MPIL, you can cover your pack with either a high visibility color or camouflage. This ability has application for the hiker and hunter alike.
The hunter can camouflage just about any civilian pack no matter how loud the color of the pack is. This means you can turn your favorite hiking pack into your favorite camouflaged hunting pack in seconds. Basically, every pack is a hunting pack with the Multicam MPIL.
If you are like me, you don’t like to stand out in the woods, even when you are just hiking or camping. The Multicam MPIL lets me start at the trail head with a normal looking backpack and then attach the MPIL as a camo cover once I am in the woods. I just keep the Poli Binas positioned on my pack so I can quickly clip the MPIL in place.
If you get into trouble and need to be seen or if you need some additional blaze orange coverage while you are hunting, you can simply flip the MPIL over to expose the orange side. It turns your pack into a passive signalling system. You will be visible even if you can’t move. You could do this same thing with the original MPIL but you couldn’t “turn it off” without stowing the panel. The Multicam MPIL lets you keep the MPIL staged on your pack either actively concealing you or actively raising your visual signature.
The new Multicam MPIL might be the best MPIL yet. A tweak as simple as replacing a high visibility color with a camo pattern has really added some great functionality. I still prefer the original MPIL for some uses like in a vehicle emergency kit or a cold weather kit but if I am headed into the woods, I reach for the Multicam MPIL.
Check out the Multicam and standard MPIL on BattleSystemsLLC.com.