Camelbak Quantico Backpack Review

Who it suits - The tactical style bag lover who wants a great way to carry all of their EDC items plus tech in a way that stands out from the normal backpack. 

Who it doesn't - Anyone who needs a large EDC backpack or anyone who plans on using this back on long hikes. 

Camelbak recently released a new urban EDC line with a tactical look. The larger of the two being the Quantico (23L) which I purchased and the smaller being the Coronado. The Olive and Stone colors are both made with T30D X T600D polyester while the Black multicam option is made with 500D Cordura. 

I originally found these packs on Carryology's coverage post of the Outdoor retailer Summer 2015 and ever since I have been checking in with Camelbak to keep up with their release. I purchased my Quantico from Amazon sold by Camelbak. After opening the package and inspecting the pack, I could feel the quality that I have come to expect from Camelbak. I have had many hydration packs throughout the years from Camelbak but never a dedicated backpack until now. I feel that I am partially drawn toward this pack because it resembles a Goruck GR1, which is not a bad pack to share looks with. When purchasing this product I was under the impression that all of the color options were made of 500D Cordura however, that is not the case. The stone color is made from T30D and T600D Polyester. Upon learning this, I was very disappointed as all of the bags in my lineup are either made of 500D Cordura or 1000D Cordura. Seeing that Amazon has a great return policy I may be exchanging for the Multicam version of the pack. 

“Mollee webbing for external attachments”

Other then the lack of the Cordura this backpack is a serious new contender in the quick growing military style EDC backpack market. As mentioned above the Quantico takes queue’s from Goruck’s GR1 lineup. On the front of the backpack, there is a full panel of Mollee webbing for attaching compatible pouches and accessories. Behind this Mollee panel, there is a front stash pocket that has no way of closing. However, I found this pocket to be extremely useful for grabbing items quickly while on the go. 

Above the open stash ocket, there is a fleece line tech or sunglass pocket that is large enough to fit my iPhone, keys, and wallet. 

" A pocket for every piece of your kit"

On the bottom of the backpack, there is a smaller pocket that holds my Esee 4 and a rain cover. Upon carrying this bag over the past few weeks, I have noticed that there is a dedicated pocket for everything you could think of, which is a nice feature compared to Gorucks line of products or other similar style bags. 

If you open the next zippered pocket before the main cargo space you will be greeted with a highly organized panel. This pocket has room for all of your pens/pencils along with slots for business cards and a large zippered pocket that runs across the bag. This pocket is great for chargers, external hard drives, and other tech. There is also room at the bottom to store any other items. 

Next is the main compartment of the Quantico. This room is where I keep my DSLR in a GR2 field pocket, a journal, and other large items like a jacket, or gloves and a hat. This pocket can easily fit everything needed for a full day at school or the office. There is one smaller zippered mesh pocket that can house smaller items you don't want getting lost inside. On the back panel of the ag, there is a sleeve for documents or binders.  

 “One of the best laptop sleeves in a tactical style backpack”

The Quantico has a fully padded laptop sleeve that will allow storage of a 15-inch laptop and an Ipad. I recently bought a Tom Bihn Synapse 25 that I have been using for about a month now and absolutely love. It has turned into my EDC bag in every aspect. However, it does lack a fully padded laptop sleeve and therefore when I do carry my Macbook pro in it I can't help but think twice. The laptop sleeve is really where the Quantico shines and separates itself from the tactical bag norm. I can confidently say you will have no worries when carrying a laptop and an iPad in this sleeve. 

The shoulder straps are nothing short of perfect. They have just the right amount of padding and form to make carrying the bag a breeze. The back panel is also padded and made with mesh to help with breathability. The shoulder straps come with a sternum strap to help with heavier loads. 

On the right side of the pack, there is a deployable water bottle sleeve that can hold a Nalgene. The sleeve does a great job at staying low profile when not in use. On the opposite side of the Quantico, there is a smaller water bottle slot that can store smaller items as well.  

The bottom of the backpack is very padded and pairs well with the thick grab handle at the top of the bag. The Quantico does a good job at holdings its form even when not loaded out and even more so when fully packed up. I have had 25lbs in the pack and the shoulder straps and back panel did a great job. 

 

  • Very reasonable price tag 
  • Padded laptop sleeve
  • Molle webbing for attachments
  • Great organization
  • Padded shoulder straps and back panel
  • Plenty of pockets for all your gear
  • Camelbak Got your back Guarantee 

 

  •  Stone and Olive should be made with 500D Cordura 
  • Hard time standing up alone due to slanted bottom
  • Zippers are on the smaller side

Verdict 

The Camelbak Quantico is great EDC or school bag that excels in carrying your laptop or Ipad in a Military/Tactical form. It comes in at a very reasonable price of $160 with a lifetime guarantee.  

GoRuck 15L Bullet Ruck

I was lucky enough to have purchased my first Goruck hydration bullet about a month ago at the Denver Colorado GoRuck Kill That 5K. It paid off getting to the “Beer and Gear” early to get my hands on this 15L and also the 10L Coyote, which I will be doing on review on later. I got this ruck for $90 which is a little under retail at $120 on the GoRuck website. 

The first thing I noticed about this ruck was that the material felt a lot “thinner” then that of my GR1 or even the Coyote 10L I had bought. This is because the newer hydration rucks are being made of the 500D Cordura instead of the normal 1000D Cordura, which the GR series of rucks is made out of. At first this made me uneasy and feel that I was not getting the normal quality that I had come to except from GoRuck, however this was not the case at all. After a few days with the 15L I learned why the company had decided to change the material it is made of. I used this pack mainly as a hydration bladder pack and extra gear backpack for my biking trips and for my hiking/climbing adventures while I was back in my home-state of Colorado. The pack was noticeability lighter then even the 10L Bullet I bought that had the 1000D Cordura construction. Anyone who bikes/climbs or uses a smaller backpack for any action adventure activity knows that the lighter the pack means more endurance and less effort. I had always been looking for light packs to bike with but they always came with the compromise of quality and reliability I could count on. On the other hand, anyone who knows the GoRuck company knows that their products and quality that their products are built to is second to none. Having this mix of lightweight 500D Cordura and toughness and water resistant Cordura felt like the perfect combination. Cordura aside, the ruck also comes with the same kickass YKK zippers, 2x3 velcro patch, and padded straps that are featured on the higher end GoRuck packs. 

As I said before, I used this ruck mostly while biking throughout Colorado. The lightweight but sturdy construction of the pack made it feel like I had nothing on my back. In the main compartment on my excursions I would bring along a rain jacket, pelican case for my phone and wallet, a bike case storing tire patches and other simple things. Then my Lowepro GoPro case/GR1 Field pocket for my Sony A3000. Everything fit perfectly and still the bag had a slim profile when on my back. 

 On the inside of the front panel, like every other GoRuck bag there is two zipper pockets. The larger of the two is mesh and on the bottom. This pocket is very handy for anything you want separate from the main compartment that you may need to see or quickly grab while on the trail. The top pocket is perfect for smaller items like gum or snacks.

On the front of the bag there is a horizontal zipper pocket that reaches the bottom of the ruck. This compartment is where I would leave smaller and thinner objects during my rides. Keys, headphones, and my knife.

The last pocket of this bag is the hydration pocket for the bladder. On this ride I only brought along my 2L Camelback bladder and it slide right in without any problems. I had also used my 3L Osprey bladder in this pack and that too fit perfectly. The back of the bag has enough padding to support the bladder and keep it upright but not too much so that the bag feels bulky. 

 

On the front of the bag as like most GoRuck products there are four rows of Mollee webbing. I not only love the look this addition gives GoRucks bags but it can be used to attach multiple other “pockets” GoRuck sells and pictured below can be used as a great way to attach a helmet or anything else you can think of. 

Now I know that most of these packs are used for rucking but this was just a quick review to show the different ways one could use the 15L Bullet. Below is a picture of six duct taped bricks in the main compartment of the 15L Bullet. I use this pack on light rucks when I don't feel like lugging around my GR1. I can fit the six bricks in the main comparment and a 20 pound GoRuck weight in the hydration compartment to give me some pretty decent weight in such a small pack.


    All in all I can safely say that the GoRuck 15L Hydration Bullet Ruck is one of my favorite biking bags that I've had. It not only is built of the best materials, water resistant, and super streamlined, but the pack looks great and lets me showcase the patches I have earned while doing something other then rucking.  

GoRuck GR0 Review and Highlights

  The search for the perfect EDC, Range, Hiking, Biking, do it all backpack is thought to be an impossible one. Up until about a month ago I was also a non-believer in the myth of a perfect all-around backpack. The collection of backpacks I have acquired throughout the years ranges from Osprey, Ogio, Camelback, 5.11, Nike, and many others. I've had a pack for everything that I enjoy doing. I had my various Camelbaks and Osprey packs for my biking/hiking and camping adventures. My 5.11 and more tactical bags were my companions when I went to the range or needed a quick "EDC" bag. And finally my Nike bags traveled with me when I decided to go to the gym. If you are reading this then you already know that having this many bags can put a major dent in your wallet. On the other hand, you also know the almost addicting nature certain types of well made bags can have on you. 

  A little over a month ago I was in the market for a new bag I could take hiking as my Osprey backpack which was already on its last leg, decided to tear in the bottom of the main compartment. The Osprey was a great backpack for what I had used it for over the years. Mostly hiking, biking, camping, and a few day carries.  Even though the Osprey was a great and reliable pack it was always missing something. Missing that grit and toughness I was longing for that would make carrying the pack not only practical but admirable.  Having said this I was always keeping my eye open for the perfect backpack. Through my various searches on google and popular you-tubers I stumbled across the seemingly overpriced GoRuck GR0. 

Enter the Goruck GR0

  I’m sure if you are reading this post you are already familiar with the GR0 and the GoRuck company but if for some reason you aren't yet here is the quick overview.  - GoRuck was founded in January of 2008 by ex Green Beret Jason McCarthy.  GoRucks mission statement is “Challenge Excellence and Do Right By People.” There are no other better words to describe GoRuck as a company. The company strives for excellence wether it is through their GoRuck events, superior products, or the people they hire for their company. GoRuck hands down provides the best. The company started out by trying to “bridge” the relationship between the military and civilian worlds and it started with the production of their first ruck the GR1. Shortly after Goruck’s initial product Jason wanted someway to “test” the product before sending it overseas to friends and customers. He came up the Goruck events just to do so. This also became the key focus of Goruck as a company. In their words, “People became our focus, rucking together became our focus, building better americans became our focus.” Not only does Goruck produce great gear, hold hundreds of amazing events nationwide, but they also employ combat Veterans of Special Operations. These “Cadres” run their Goruck events and by doing so make it a very unique experience and help America by “Building Better Americans.” 

  Now that I have properly introduced you to GoGuck as a company I will really bring in the GR0. The GR0 is Goruck’s smaller brother to their best selling and most versatile product the GR1. The main intention of this product was initially to create a versatile “rucksack” capable of almost anything under the horizon, and they came pretty close. With Goruck’s ever-expanding customer base they needed to expand as a company. This evolution sparked the making of the proportionally smaller GR0. The GR0 sits at 11.5”W x 18.0”H x 5.5”D and holds 21L. 

  

  The ruck from head to toe feels amazingly well built. At the top of the ruck there is a a handle, like most backpacks. The difference between Goruck’s handle and those of any other brand is the reinforced stitching. This feature is not only home to the handle of the ruck but the every contact point of the backpack itself. 

  

  The handle of the backpack is rated up to 400 pounds, Ill let that speak for itself. 

  Moving down the ruck to the shoulder straps. Everyone who has owned a backpack knows how uncomfortable thin/narrow straps can be with any kind of substantial weight in the pack. Not only do the extra padded and double stitched should straps on the backpack last forever and add extra padding but they also help disperse the weight and make the ruck feel lighter then it really is. I have had other similar styled backpacks like the 5.11 Rush 12 where the shoulder straps are also very padded and wide. Unlike the 5.11 Rush 12 the straps on the GR0 without weight in the pack feel normal and not overkill. No matter the weight in my ruck the straps stay true to form and function as intended. The straps also connect in a unique way which lets the user flip them over to the front of the pack and access the laptop/hydration bladder compartment.   

 

  The GR0 has 21L of space which is exactly 5L less then the 26L GR1 although, with the amount of storage and pockets I found to be more then enough room for my EDC gear or a day to the range. On the back of the pack there is a padded “bombproof” laptop or hydration bladder compartment. I found this compartment to hold my 13 inch Macbook pro comfortably and with room to spare. When I loaded the pack up for a bike ride or hike and used the hydration bladder I felt the say way. There was plenty of room to not make the bladder feel “squished” to my back like I have had happen in countless other packs. The bottom of the ruck also has some padding for those less polite set-downs with the laptop in the pocket. 

  I found the pocket configuration on the GR0 to be perfect. There were not too many pockets that I had absolutely no clue what to put in them and force myself to overpack, but just enough to hold all of my smaller items without hassle and keep the ruck streamlined. The main large compartment is where I store my 6 bricks and yoga brick while rucking or using to workout with. If I am using for EDC/School I keep my binder, calculator, notepad, a few books and my iPad neatly tucked in. For a day at the range I keep my pistol case, a few hundred 9mm rounds, earphones, field notepad and my gun cleaning kit. 

  On the inside of the front flap you will find two pockets, the upper one solid 1000d and the bottom mesh. In the upper one while on a normal day I can usually fit all of my  chargers/wallet, keys and other smaller accessories. The larger lower mesh compartment holds about 2x more then the one above. I normally throw in extra layers or larger light items. 

  On the outside of the front flap there is another larger pocket. When I have the ruck packed completely full this pocket can be a slight struggle to reach into. I find this pocket day after day to be my “go to” pocket. On a normal day this is where you will find my headphones, Copenhagen, and few pens, meds etc. This pocket actually is much larger then the picture shows and reaches to almost the whole length of the pack itself.

  Goruck has included Molle webbing on the sides/front and inside the ruck which adds a more tactical look without screaming military or guns. I found this feature to be extremely important as I wanted this backpack for multiple loadouts. 

  The Molle webbing can be used to attach many things ranging from carabineers to a mountain bike helmet. Goruck also sells additional “Field Pockets” correlating to the size of the ruck you own. These can be attached either externally of internally depending on your preference or situation. Having wanted to use this pack not only for EDC and school but also for hunting and range days I found this feature to be a huge selling point.  

  Like every GoRuck product the GR0 is built with a 2x3 hook and loop spot on the front. Personally this is my favorite feature of the pack which really adds a simple and customizable option to the GR0. GoRuck sells various 2x3 patches on their site including the one you saw earlier with their reverse flag logo. Not only does GoRuck sell patches but they also give them as a one time reward for completing one of their challenges. Now, not only does completing one of their challenges give you a sense of accomplishment and “badassattiude” but distinguishes you from others while welcoming you to the Goruck family. 

  Lastly but certain not least, a feature that is overlooked by countless major backpack retailers is the zippers that GoRuck stamped onto the GR0. These zippers are “YKK” zippers are known to be some of the best zippers in the world and are self healing. Which means if for some reason your zipper does fail to close you can rip it back and go over it again to seal the gap. Truthfully very few people should ever get this pumped up about zippers but when you use a backpack for rucking, hunter, lifting, hiking, camping they are a crucial part of the system. Not only do these zipper kick ass but they are “glove friendly with heat shrinked paracord.” You will be using these a lot like every other pack. The difference is you will never have to worry about them, or hear them.

The GoRuck GR0 and GR1 currently come in Wolf Grey, Coyote, and Black. They have a price tag of $295 for the GR1 and $265 for the GR0.  Now I know many of you despite my above review will probably think that is completely overpriced for a backpack. I argue otherwise, not only does the GR0 have everything that I pointed out and showed above but GoRuck also backs their rucks with the “Scars” lifetime guarantee. This guarantee pretty much covers anything short of bullet holes, and burns. I know for a fact that I have spent well over $1,000 on backpacks and gym/range bags over the last few years, most of these bags I use the shit out of and end up failing somewhere along the line. Leading me to buy a new and usually, more expensive bag.

 I have no doubt that this ruck will last me for no less then the next 10 years.  Everything GoRuck produces is of the highest standards and not only do I back their products but I back their company as a whole. Ruck On!