Need some help to understand what gear you should consider purchasing?
Want to hear from our local rucking, beatdown, hiking, and general awful situation experts on what gear they recommend to get them through it in comfort and style?
Well look no further, my friend. You have come to just the right place.
GrowRuck Gear Spotlight Edition 1: Rucksack & Plates
Here it is, the moment that’s been keeping the entire gear channel on the edge of their seats…The very first Grow Ruck Gear Spotlight!!Just as a reminder, @Pack Rat and I will be sending out a new gear spotlight every week as we work our way down the individual gear requirements and suggestions lists. This will contain a whole lot of our opinions. Your opinions may vary, and that’s totally cool. Let’s remember that no amount of our hot air will find a perfect solution for you. That’s up to you to try different combinations and find the things that work best for your needs. As you find those things, don’t keep it to yourself, reply to these posts and let us know. This is meant to be an interactive exercise, not a pulpit for us to tell you what to buy.
Without further ado, let’s chat about rucksacks and ruck plates…When talking about rucking in the wild (not a GoRuck or other coordinated event), the ability to find some weight and a bag to put it in is super easy. I was rockin’ the @Ringer college backpack with bricks in it for quite some time logging my first miles. However, the type of bag and weights necessary for GrowRuck are going to be quite different based on the amount of movement, type of movement, and terrain we will encounter. So let’s talk about what I would consider to be the best option…
Why do I consider this particular bag the best option? Good question!
It’s the Rucker model that they currently sell. If it was the 2.0, 4.0, or 127.3, it’d still be the best available option.
It carries the plate that you’ll need perfectly (30lbs if you weigh more than 150 – 20lbs if you’re lighter than that). Perfectly means that it’s high on your back so you’re not accentuating your F3 tramp stamp. It’s secure inside a Velcro closed pocket so it’s not sliding out and smacking into the back of your melon when performing burpees.
It has drain holes already built into the bottom of the bag (you may need those *wink).
It has 4 handles in the North, South, East, and West positions so you can hoist the bag in a multitude of directions lengthways or width ways.
It has molle attachments for the waist belt (needed) and a sternum strap (also needed). The waist belt comes included in the 25L model.
It has a loop and pocket to secure a hydration bladder (definitely needed).
The zippers are easy to operate using gloved hands (important).
It has plenty of zippered storage for everything you’ll need to carry, but not so much that you’ll be dragging a lot of extra bag around with you.
It’s built like a tank…seriously…not sure if mine is even broken in yet!
It has the SCARS warranty through GoRuck. Lifetime. 0 questions asked. Even if you bought it from someone else, no proof of purchase required.
I know you probably clicked that link and got a little sticker shock when you saw the price, I did too. There’s a little relief we get with F3. There’s a discount code @Jalopy gets every month for gear and events (Here is the February code F3_36ZQ8NMMNT6B). Your best bet to find a better deal would be to find a used model on the secondary market via Ebay or Facebook Marketplace etc.
For those of you with piles of cash just laying around waiting for something to spend it on, the GR1 and GR2 will not be as good as the Rucker model for GrowRuck purposes. I wouldn’t make the mistake of thinking they’ll be better for GrowRuck because they’re more expensive. The GR1 is a little bigger but doesn’t carry the necessary plate very securely or high enough on your back, and the GR2 is just too big to be practical for this event. Neither have drainage holes built in. Both are awesome travel packs. I purchased a closeout GR1 to replace a travel backpack I’ve used for years, but I will not be using it for rucking, that is my Rucker’s job.A quick note on sizing. A brief look over the dimensions will tell you the 25L & 20L models are very similar in sizing. I can tell you from experience while rucking with my GR1 26L(while my Rucker was being loaned)that it doesn’t feel too big or unwieldy. If you’re ginormous, and don’t want to look like you’re wearing your 3rd grader’s backpack, maybe size up to the 25L. If you’re a bit more diminutive in stature, maybe the 20L would be best. However, if you think you’d get more use from one size or the other, choose that one.
The ruck plates portion of this spotlight is real easy. If you want or need the plates fast, and you have @Flower Girl’s credit card, order them from GoRuck. They’ll fit and they have a fancy logo/paint job. For the rest of us who have more sense, hit up our homie @Lube. The plates are less than half price. That’ll give you the opportunity to pick up a couple to train heavier if you want. You’ll have to wait a little for a big order to be taken/made/shipped, but well worth the savings. They are the same exact dimensions, and fit my Rucker perfect. I sanded mine a smidge and took a can of Krylon to it. Now she’s the belle of the ball!Anyone who is currently using a different brand/type of rucksack, we’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences on performance/quality/price to serve as comparison. Ultimately, we want everyone to have the equipment that best fits their needs and budget, so mo choices = mo better!