Range Bag

Allen Company Recon Tactical Backpack

Allen Company Tactical Recon Backpack

Technically, all backpacks could be considered tactical. After all, tactical means "of or relating to a maneuver or plan of action designed as an expedient toward gaining a desired end or temporary advantage." Having an efficient storage solution that can easily be carried on one's person is a pretty distinct advantage over say, a plastic grocery bag or just your pant pockets. Heck, even a bindle (picture the classic cartoon hobo with a sack tied to a stick) is a human invention that could be considered a distinct advantage for carrying your stuff. What I'm getting at, is when a product is marketed as "tactical" I try to focus on what it does that provides a distinct advantage over the other products in it's category. 

Allen Company Tactical Recon Backpack

There are plenty of "tactical" backpacks out there, and typically the quality and capacity improves the higher the price point. If you are looking for a dependable bug-out bag or EDC bag that will outlast the zombie apocalypse (heavy sarcasm) then you may be in the $200+ range. There are some of us who are just looking for a fairly inexpensive bag that has expanded useful features, as well as looks cool. After all, the first rule of Tactical is if you aren't looking cool, you are doing it wrong. Or so I've been told! In shopping for an inexpensive tactical backpack that would serve well during day outings or travel, I found the Allen Company Recon Tactical Backpack. For only $25 it seemed like a decent pack that was casual but looked the part. Black: check. MOLLE webbing: check. Hook & Loop panel for the sweet PVC morale patches from Patriot Patch Co.: check!

Allen Company Tactical Recon Backpack

It has 3 zippered compartments ranging in size. The largest main compartment has a partition sleeve that holds either a laptop or tablet device,  textbook or magazines (the reading kind) or even a hydration bladder, with a covered port in the top where the bladder's drinking tube can come through and then be secured to the strap. Outside of the aforementioned sleeve theres room for loosely putting anything else, a small jacket or several ham sandwiches. There was clearly room to accommodate more pouches, pockets or an interior MOLLE system but Allen left is pretty minimalistic and bare here, which I guess is why it's under thirty bucks.

Allen Company Tactical Recon Backpack

The second compartment has more to offer as far as utility, and short leashed keyring, admin/paper pocket, and some smaller stitched pockets for pens or smaller items. The third forward most zippered pocket located directly behind the front MOLLE webbing is completely bare, just  big enough for a small book or two magazines (the shooting kind). Once again, pretty bare minimum and really not useful as a range bag, bugout bag, or survival bag.

Allen Company Tactical Recon Backpack

The exterior has MOLLE webbing on the front, sides, and sling of the pack so you can expand the pack with your own tactical accessories. A dump pouch or admin pouch would go along with the whole traveling student role. You could be "that guy" and put pistol mag pouches on the sling and sides, but it wouldn't earn you many credibility points at the gun show. There is a synch-able net pouch for a water bottle on the wearer's right side, and a slim, narrow zippered pocket on the left that will hold a couple energy bars.

Allen Company Tactical Recon Backpack

The comfort of the Recon Tactical Backpack is what's the real hero of its price point, as the back panel and the single sling are padded as well as slightly aerated for reducing sweat spots after wearing it all day. It is a single sling design like a messenger bag / backpack hybrid, so if you weigh it down with heavy contents (ie: dozens of manufacturer catalogs from SHOT Show) you will definitely feel it in your left shoulder after awhile. The downside to hybrid single strap bags like this is the inability to switch shoulders to reduce that fatigue if your pack is too heavy. There is a smaller strap with plastic M-buckle  on the right side which snaps into the main shoulder strap to keep the bag from shifting around, and that helps stabilize the load.

Allen Company Tactical Recon Backpack

In all honesty, I bought this bag from a local gun shop the week before SHOT Show 2015 because I didn't have the time or budget for a more expensive and comprehensive backpack, and I thought a more minimal pack would be useful with all the other camera and recording equipment slung over my shoulder. I quickly found out how overloading the pack with heavy magazines and catalogs lead to pain at the end of a whole day spent on the showroom floor, and I really wished I had anted up for a more conventional double shoulder strap bag with better use of its interior space. If it had better use of internal space with more pockets or pouches on the inside, you wouldn't need to snap on more MOLLE pouches on the outside. Admitting all that, I would still vouch for the Recon Tactical Backpack for a student or just someone on the go looking to travel light but still have some "tactical" features. If you are looking for a full capacity backpack with more features and double straps like a 5.11 pack but more affordable, don't hesitate to check out Allen Company's other tactical backpacks.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The Recon Tactical Pack is ready for the field, the range, or duty use. The single should sling is nicely padded for comfort, while the interior pockets and exterior MOLLE loops allow for easy organization and the ability to add MOLLE compatible accessories.

Target Market:  Day-trippers, Casual Hikers, Students

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • 600D cosntruction
  • Single, padded shoulder strap
  • Exterior MOLLE web system
  • Interior organization compartments
  • Water bottle pocket, plus hydration bladder sleeve
  • Air mesh padded back
  • Hook and loop patch for adding name tape or logo patches
  • Padded compartment for laptop
  • Dimensions: 17.5" x 11" x 7.5"

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black only

What others are saying?: "The Recon Tactical Pack is ready for the field, the range, or duty use. The single shoulder sling is nicely padded for comfort, while the interior pockets and exterior MOLLE loops allow for easy organization and the ability to add MOLLE compatible accessories." Geekdotcom.com

Price point:

I need it now! Availability: Amazon

Our Rating:


  • Minimal price, minimal footprint
  • Hydration bladder compartment and hole
  • MOLLE webbing for expandable capacity
  • Stitching holds up for light - medium use
  • Strap and back panel are padded and comfortable
  • Price Point is low for minimal features


  • Lack of internal pouches / pockets
  • Design limits carry to left shoulder only
  • Did not include hydration bladder

Score: 5.5 Mediocre



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MidwayUSA Competition Range Bag


I was searching for a good range bag a while back, as my old duffle bag had given up on me. So, I went searching the web for something that would meet my criteria. What I found was the MidwayUSA Competition Range bag. During my search, I ran into a number of range bags, but most if them were too small for my taste. The Midway bag had almost everything I wanted. It is very large, which allows me to keep all my range goodies in one spot. It comes with a removable padded carrying strap. It has lots of different zippered compartments, 8 of different sizes plus 1 main compartment. Some of the larger ones even contain pockets inside of them. In the large side pocket, there are holders for 8 pistol magazines and 12 elastic holders for pens, cleaning rods, etc. Now, for the really good stuff. Inside the vast main double zippered compartment is a handled carry bag, which has its own zippered storage and padded hook & loop separators. You can use this handy little bag for ammo and supplies. It, basically, gives you the ability to leave the heavy bag in your vehicle and just carry what you really need for the shooting session. I use this little bag for carrying ammo and magazines at matches where I have to go from stage to stage. The other nice feature about the range bag is that it comes with a matching bag to put brass in. It also comes with 2 padded pistol pouches. These pouches are quite large, also, and can fit full size handguns without any problems.

The only thing I don't like about the pistol rugs is that they are fairly flimsy and not padded enough.  The zippers are double stitched, and some of them have a round zipper pull to aid in using them. Overall, I am very pleased with this range bag. It stores all of my range goodies, plus an extra kitchen sink.


Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Pointsrangebag2

Claim to Fame:  Large Range Bag with lots of storage pockets

Target Market: Anyone looking for a good range bag

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Length: 22"
  • Width: 15"
  • Height: 10"
  • Main Compartment: 17" x 10" x 10"2 removable padded pistol rugs with zippers 8-½" H x 12" W fit most large frame semi-auto pistols and revolvers with barrels up to 6"
  • Removable stage bag/ammunition carrier with carrying handles for portability 15" L x 5" W x7-½"H
  • Front: 2 Padded zippered pockets (8" L x 2" W x 8" H)
  • Rear: 8" x 2" x 16"8 magazine pouchesInternal padded pocket 8" x 15.5"
  • Shoulder Carry Strap: 2" W x 52" L removable carrying strap with shoulder pad
  • Carry Handles: Wraparound with hook & loop closure
  • Removable stage bag/ammunition carrier features:2 Padded zippered pockets (7-½" H x 15" L)2 Padded moveable hook and loop equiped compartment walls2 Chrome plated steel D-rings for quick attachment of the carry strapFull wrap-around nylon handles2 removable padded pistol rugs features:8.5" x 12" will fit most large frame semi-auto pistols and revolvers with barrels up to 6"
  • 9 Pockets
  • Material: PVC Coated Polyester
  • Capacity: 2404 C.I.


What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, Grey, Coyote, and Olive Drab (MultiCam not available anymore)

What others are saying?: 

  • From MidwayUSA: by Terry in Mount Sterling, KY.  5 out 5 stars:  Roomy, nice compartments, lots of storage, sturdy, practical, not sure what else you would want in a range bag.
  • From Thetruthaboutguns.com: by Nathan Shonts.  4 or 5 out 5 stars:  Useability: * * * * Flexible, practical design with more pockets than I know what to do with.   Value: * * * * * At its $45 sale price, this well-made bag is a fantastic bargain. At its “normal” price of $80, it’s still nice.      Overall: * * * *(*)  At $45 it’s a great value and gets all five stars. At the $80 full price, still a solid four stars. Either way, you won’t regret it.

Price point: 

I need it now! Availability:  MidwayUSA

Our Rating: 


  • Number of pockets (9)
  • Comes with 2 pistol pouches
  • Removable ammunition/storage bag
  • Double stitching on zippers
  • Brass bag
  • Padded Carry strap
  • Built in magazine pouches


  • Flimsy pistol pouches
  • Heavy, especially when loaded with all your stuff

Score: 8.0 Great80



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Concealed Carrie Leather Compact Carrie Review

Concealed Carrie Leather Compact Carrie

Concealed Carry is such a beautiful concept. The market for vessels to carry a concealed handgun is exploding as more manufacturers expand their product line, offering an equal opportunity for both men and women to get quality products that fit their lifestyle.  Concealment products are usually unisex, with holsters typically designed for either men or women.  When it comes to outside the body / external carry, there is a rapidly growing market for purses, totes, and handbags designed for concealed carry.  In fact I would no longer considered them niché as how popular pocket sized pistols have become, and how many bag crafters have started incorporated 'concealed pockets' into their products. While some prefer the security of having a pistol holstered on their body, there are times when a female might be unable to conceal on her body as the dress for the occasion may make it impossible.

To clear the air right off the start, yes I have an X and Y chromosome and I am reviewing a product with a female target demographic. It shouldn't matter as being objective and having experience as a concealed carrier should be all the qualification I need. I did however get plenty of perspective and help from my partner, who also carries and knows a thing or two about purses!

Compact Carrie

Concealed Carrie (best brand name ever!) specializes in purses, totes, handbags, and clutches that allow for secure and conceal carry of a compact or subcompact firearms. Their "Compact Carrie" is a compact clutch that has two compartments, one for a firearms mounted with included velcro holster, and the other for your cash, phone, ID and other necessities. The quality of materials of the Compact Carrie are really high, the leather is bright red and the stitching is very well done. It comes with a tassel zipper pull and a keychain as well as a leather wrist strap, which you can choose to use or remove with simple clasps. My partner gave it a thorough look over and found it had plenty of organizing pockets for what she typically has in her standard pocketbook.

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As for the firearm carrying capability we found that with both our compact sized carry pistols (a Glock 26 and M&Pc) the Concealed Carrie Leather Compact Carrie had some extra added bulging. The Glock 26 in the included holster seems to cause printing, which was somewhat noticeable from a close distance that there was something large and heavy in the bag. While it's not enough to prevent the zippers from closing, it was something we both picked up on right away. However if your compact pistol of choice is a single stack with a slimmer profile, say a S&W Shield, Glock 42, Ruger LCP, etc. it will stow in the Compact much easier. Weight also becomes a bit of concern, as a fully loaded 10+1 gunplus another loaded magazine makes the Compact feel hefty to carry via the wrist strap or in the bare hand, and we both agreed stepping up to a purse or tote from Concealed Carrie would be to way to go if your carry gun is anything wider than a subcompact, .85" slide width model.

If you are looking for a stylish way to conceal your pistol on the go, I would say Concealed Carrie is the best way to go, both for the value and craftsmanship you really will be impressed (and more importantly, so will she)

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: The Compact Carrie is perfect for carrying in style to the range or using as a gun bag and wallet

Target Market: Concealed Carrying Women

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Double sided design acts as a wallet on one side while keeping your firearm separate on other side.
  • Zippered main compartment is full of dividers for cash, ID, credit cards and personal items.
  • Firearm compartment is double zippered and velcro-lined (universal holster included)
  • Carry by either the removable wrist strap or simply, grab it and go.
  • Fits any compact or sub-compact handgun will including Glock 19/23, Glock 23/27 or similar size handgun.
What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Red Leather or Cool Blue Leather

What others are saying?:

"Finding your site has brightened my day!  I've been looking for a concealed carry bags for YEARS, but most of them are so ugly and so poorly constructed that they must have been designed by men.  Even other high end lines are just now getting up to speed on quality and design although they still don't equal Concealed Carrie."  ~Susan D.

“Just received this bag as an early Christmas gift from my husband and am absolutely over the moon! It is more beautiful than Photographs can show and so very worth the money. I can conceal any one of my weapons with ease and also get to it with ease. Ever since I started carrying, I’ve been waiting for a fashionable handbag and this is it. I am a Bag Harlot so I own just about every purse made… Louis vuitton, coach, kate spade, even stunning bags from Italy. This bag is as good as or better than those bags I own. It is so well-made and fits right in with my fashion queen persona. just today, I had ten people compliment the bag and ask me where I got it. They don’t even know, which is the way it should be. Thanks!" ~Karla F.

Price Point:

I need it now! Availability: Readily available at concealedcarrie.com or Amazon.com

Our Rating:

+-Holster is double sided with 'loop' velcro of ambidextrous mounting.-per +-Stiching and zippers are good quality and seem to be durable to last. +-Tons of pockets for cards, checkbook, cash, change

--Bag begins to bulge when carrying a double stack pistol, design and profile better suited for a single stack like Ruger LCP or S&W Shield. --With weight of loaded pistol (glock 26 w 10+1 rounds) its really heavy to carry via wrist strap, needs a shoulder strap especially if carrying and extra mag.-

Score: 8.0 Great


Fox Tactical Advanced Tactical Hipster Review




51398You read correctly, I bought a Fox Tactical Advanced Tactical Hipster. No its not a bushy bearded, shmegah & skinny-jean wearing, Pabst Blue Ribbon sipping bodyguard that follows me everywhere I go (that would be hilarious though!) It's actually a messenger/shoulder bag thats quoted as being "designed for law enforcement use but works just as well for everyone." You could call it a very tactical man purse, and I'd be hard pressed to argue with you. This bag consists of everything from a concealed weapon compartment, to MOLLE straps for attaching additional pouches, to multiple storage pockets to use for your everyday items you carry around with you on a regular basis. This back of the bag is padded with mesh cushion backing and an adjustable padded shoulder strap to provide all day comfort.

The key features include one main compartment with a large flap with quick release buckle, one large dump pouch with mesh pocket, one 'concealed' velcro-lined pocket with zippered closure, one mesh pocket for radio or flashlight storage and one accessory pouch on side. There's a place for everything, and also places for nothing. What I mean, is it probably has more compartments than your mother's purse.

I picked this bag up for only $30 locally on a whim, knowing that with summer travel and warmer weather concealed carry will be a bit of a challenge with my preferred firearms. I don't like pocket guns, and wanted to be able to stow a full-size pistol, extra mags, water, sunglasses, cellphone, and really anything that won't fit in my speedo. So far my only real complaint is the 'holster compartment' only has two strips of velcro and a very rudimentary velcro / strap / loop thats mean to hold your barrel. It's sloppy and not ideal for keeping foreign objects out of the triggerguard as it's completely exposed. Something like a velcro-backed holster chassis or pocket holster that can be secured to the inside of the pocket would be ideal for keeping the gun oriented correctly after running/shifting the bag. Crossbreed makes velcro backed holsters that would work well in this application. Unless that's too mainstream for the Advanced Tactical Hipster.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: Keep everything within easy reach for the mission with pockets galore.

Target Market:  Tactical Hipsters (Law Enforcement and Civilian)

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Constructed Of Rugged Tactical Polyester
  • One Main Compartment With Large Strap Secured With Quick Release Buckle Containment
  • One Large Dump Pouch With Mesh Pocket
  • One Concealed Holster Pocket With Zippered Closure
  • One Mesh Pocket For Radio Or Flashlight Storage
  • One Accessory Pouch On Side
  • Cell Phone Pocket
  • Extra Attachment Points For Adding Other Modular Accessories

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black, Coyote, Olive Drab, Red, Safety Orange, Digital Woodland, Multicam, and Terrain Digital

What others are saying?: “Had one of these bags (black) for over two years now. Bought it to replace my fanny pack which I used to haul family stuff when we're out and about or as a field bag. Quite comfortable to carry all day as long as you don't over load it. Description says the mesh pocket is for a radio or flashlight. I use it to carry a 20 OZ water bottle. It's fairly water resistant, but I tuck a couple of half gallon ziplock bags for additional waterproofing in heavier rains. Much handier then the butt pack it replaced. After two years of hard use there is no discernible wear to the bag." Kelly Keefe - Amazon Review Price Point:

  • MSRP = 56.95
  • Retail = $40.95

I need it now! Availability: Fox Outdoors, Amazon, Optics Planet, eBay, Military/Tac shops

Our Rating: + Main dump pouch has synch to secure loose items + Seams and plastic buckles seem well made/secure + Velco strip on outside to stick all those elite operator moral patches, sweet! + Shoulder Strap and Backing mesh pads are comfortable and breathable

- Personally do not like tiny mesh netting, prone to stretching and eventually holes - Included 'holster' is actually just looped velcro strap for barrel - No MOLLE webbing on inside or enough velcro to insert an actual holster - Screams "I may have a gun" with all the unnecessary tactical outer webbing, would be nice if instead of extra pouches with MOLLE webbing, pouches themselves were removable from entire bag to minimize pockets

Score: 7.0 Good


Blackhawk Sportster Deluxe Pistol Range Bag

Blackhawk RangeNot every trip to the range requires you to carry every thing under the sun.  Some times you just need a convenient way to carry around your essentials.  However its not always about convenience, you also need durability and protection.  That was exactly what I was looking for when I had first purchased this range bag.  The 600 denier polyester is extremely durable.  I'm not sure if it's Blackhawk Range bag 2waterproof, but I've never had any issues when it was carried through the rain.  On each outer side of the bag are zippered pockets which contain the removable gun rugs.  The gun rugs are envelope in shape and offer great protection to your firearm.  Also to mention about the outer pockets, the zippers are interlocking so you can lock up your firearms for safer traveling.  The center compartment of the range bag contains 2 Velcro dividers.  Here is where you can get creative and personalize your inner compartment for your hearing/eye protection, ammo, mags, etc..  My only negative to the center compartment is the lack of ability to lock up this section.  Not that this bag leaves my side unattended, but it still would of been nice like the outer pockets.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame: A convenient and extremely durable bag to transport your handguns to the range.

Target Market: Pistol range goers.  Blackhawk Range bag 3

FNB's:  (Features and Benefits of this product)

  • 2 interior slash pockets
  • 2 flannel lined rugs
  • Interior pocket has a dual-slider opening
  • MOLLE webbing on exterior
  • 600 denier polyester with thick PVC laminate
  • Dual-density foam incorporates open-cell foam next to gun for protection and closed-cell foam on the outside to protect against impact

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?:  Black is the only color option that this bag is offered in.

What others are saying?: Blackhawk does it right !  Overall: 4.8/5 stars.

Price point:

  • MSRP = No longer sold on Blackhawk's website
  • Retail = $ 21.49
  • Retail = $ 25.39

I need it now! Availability: Readily available online at stores like Optics Planet and or Amazon.

Our Rating:

+ Dual-density foam firearm protection + 600 denier polyester + Quality + Durability + Inexpensive + Locking zippered firearm compartments

- Interior dividers are flimsy

Score: 9.0 Amazing90

Jared prefers Simon Peter Sport Company for all his FFL needs.

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