Is your standard issue daypack just not cutting it? Don’t worry I feel your pain. I learned my lesson after my first deployment. I needed a pack that not only did the job I wanted but was comfortable to wear. Especially on long patrols or 3 day missions.
I’ve tried many assault packs over the years and talked with many of my veteran brothers to compile this tactical assault buyers guide for you. My mission is to make buying your next assault pack painless and arm you with enough information to make an informed buying decision.
Quality, Comfort, and Functionality Matter
No matter how you plan to use your tactical assault pack, you want the best. You need quality and durability, and you may also want a pack that looks great or that you feel the most comfortable with. In order to find the right assault pack, there are a lot of things to consider.
The purpose of it, what to consider when buying it, what you’ll use it for, and the best ways to use it all matter. If you don’t consider them before you buy, you may end up with regrets later.
To get the best tactical assault pack, consider comfort first. You’re going to be carrying it. A lot. The padding, hip, and shoulder straps should fit your body properly. If they don’t, you’re never going to be comfortable with the assault pack, and won’t use it the way you intended.
Also, consider how easily you can reach everything. Gear you use often should be accessible all the time, but even things you don’t use a lot shouldn’t be hard to get to. With too many compartments and zippers, finding something quickly can become frustrating. Making your job in the field much more difficult.
Fortunately, we’ve got the list you need to choose the right tactical assault pack with confidence.
Best Tactical Assault Pack
After analyzing countless assault packs we feel confident that the Maxpedition Falcon II is the best tactical assault pack. This is a great backpack for anyone looking for a medium-sized option that still has plenty of room. It holds 25 liters (or 1,520 cubic inches) and is extremely versatile. You’ll be amazed how much gear you can get into this pack, and still not have something that’s too big and awkward to handle easily. This is great for when you’re on patrols or 3-day missions.
The layered design lets you stack everything up just the way you need to, and provides three storage compartments. each compartment has a mesh pocket inside, and there’s also space for a hydration bladder (but the bladder itself isn’t included).
Since it fits under the seat of a full-size airplane, it’s a great choice for travel so you don’t have to check bags. It’s also an excellent daypack when you plan to explore the outdoors, and if you need it for schooling, you can get textbooks and a 15-inch laptop into it with no problem. The versatility it offers is really something to appreciate, but that’s not the only thing you’re getting by buying this particular tactical assault pack. You’re also getting impressive strength and quality, so you don’t have to worry about rips, tears, and other problems.
The 1050-Denier nylon material the pack is constructed from is wear and tear resistant, and there’s a Teflon coating to repel stains and reduce the risk of water damage. In everything but the digital foliage camo option, the bottom is also abrasion-resistant, so moving the pack around while it’s sitting on the ground won’t be damaging. It’s stiff when you first buy it but doesn’t take long to soften up, and at only 2.5 pounds it’s a lightweight pack you can really enjoy no matter what kinds of plans you have for it.
The Teflon coating will eventually become wet in the rain, but you can use the pack for several hours before that happens. After that point, you’ll need a rain cover to protect it. There aren’t any drain holes in it, either, so setting it down in a puddle won’t do damage to anything you’ve put inside it. The shoulder straps are padded and made of a breathable material, and they have loops on them where you can clip more items to take with you. Even in heavy loads, you can enjoy the comfort of the ergonomic design, too, and you won’t get much pressure at all on your shoulders.
Once the pack is full, you’re not out of options yet. The PALS webbing gives you the opportunity to attach a lot more gear. Tents, shovels, knives, and more can all be hooked there, and you can put your jacket in the Y-strap at the top. You can use the side straps to compress or expand the storage compartments, so the pack stays rectangular and protects everything you need to put into it. Getting creative with everything that can go in this pack is fun and easy, and the pack will hold up to nearly anything you want to put it through.
Another great benefit of the Maxpedition Falcon II is the way it can be moved around and carried on the chest, so you have room to carry something else on your back. Even when strapped to the chest, you can move your head and arms without it getting in the way. That’s a big plus for people who want (or need) to carry a lot of gear, and another excellent reason to go with a mid-sized pack like this one.
Best 3 Day Assault Pack for the Money
5.11 Rush 72
For the money, the 5.11 Rush 72 Assault Pack is very hard to beat. It works well as a 3-day pack, but you can also use it as an all-around, everyday carrying pack, a bug out bag, or a travel pack. It meets most airline requirements, so you can avoid checking bags and just carry it on the majority of full-sized airplanes. There is a roomy main compartment and a front compartment in this bag, along with two big side pockets, a top pocket, and a number of smaller pockets – both external and internal. A big benefit to the front pocket is being able to loosen it from the straps.
When you do that, it expands enough you can even carry a helmet, climbing gear, or other large objects that you need to have close at hand but may have trouble storing otherwise. Both zippered and meshed inside pockets in the main compartment and side pockets make it easy to carry both big and small items without them becoming just an inconvenient jumble in the bottom of the bag. There’s also an admin panel in the front of the bag, so you can store maps, pens, and documents. If you like to fish, it also works well for bait and tackle.
You can get to everything in the main compartment fast with the clam-shell opening style, so you won’t be stuck fumbling for things through an opening that really isn’t large enough to accommodate quick retrieval of anything you might store in the pack. Your cell phone, sunglasses, or other relatively delicate object will be safe in the pocket on top, which is lined with fleece to help protect anything you want to store in there. A hydration compartment is ready for a bladder, although the bladder is not included. The top handle has ports on either side for the water tube.
With 1-inch thick webbing that covers the sides and front, the 5.11 Rush 72 Assault Pack is MOLLE/PALS compatible. Pouches of all different shapes and sizes can be easily added that way, transforming how much you’re able to carry with you when you own this pack. Four attachment points on the bottom of the pack so you can carry something underneath, as well, like a tent or a sleeping bag. That adds another layer of convenience and value to an already versatile and impressive pack.
Made of 1000D nylon with good stitching and sturdy zippers, the bag is also water-repellant. If you’re going to be out in the rain for a long time, though, you’ll want a rain cover, as the bag will eventually take on water. The yoke takes some getting used to, but once you adjust to it, you’ll find it very comfortable and easy to put on. Buckles on the chest and waist help transfer the weight to the hips, so it’s not putting a lot of pressure on your shoulders. In an emergency, the shoulder straps have clips to remove them quickly, too.
While most people carry around 45 pounds or less in this pack, it can easily take up to 60 pounds without any trouble. Knowing you can carry more than you regularly plan to can help you trust the capabilities of your backpack, and you know you can load it down heavier when necessary. With a sleek shape and side pockets that don’t protrude, you can also take this pack into the city without looking like you’re going camping. This plastic backplate also adjusts to the profile of your back, so you can carry the pack comfortably for a long time.back to menu ↑
Best Assault Pack Under $100
Condor 3-day Assault Pack
The Condor 3-day Assault Pack is another good choice to consider. It’s high-quality and well made, with a robust look and plenty of storage space. Holding up to 50 liters, it’s a large pack that might be too big for some users. Still, if you plan to carry a lot of gear and want to do it in the best and easiest way possible, this is a great way to do so. There is a total of seven compartments on this pack, so you can have space and the organization you need. With plenty of pockets and pouches, you can easily stash everything you need, but you can still get to things easily, too.
The 1000D nylon this pack is made from is water-resistant, so you can be out in the rain for a while without a lot of risk to the items you’re carrying. If you’re going to be in heavy rain, especially for very long, it’s a much better idea to use a rain cover, but light to moderate rain for short periods aren’t any problem for this great pack. It’s also double stitched nearly everywhere, to make sure it can hold up to anything you want to do with it, and it won’t wear out from a lot of use like some of the less expensive, lower quality packs will.
You can rely on the pack’s strong zippers to stay closed and protect your gear, and they have cover flaps to diver the rain and keep it from getting inside. There are three main compartments, divided to help you store everything conveniently. There’s even a space for hydration bladders, but you’ll need to buy the actual bladders separately. With three outer straps used like tie-downs, you can compress the pack to a good size and keep the contents inside from shifting, protecting it from potential damage.
Comfort is very important in survival situations, and this pack really delivers in that area. The shoulder and hip straps are both very comfortable, and the pack conforms to the contours of the wearer’s back. The back is also padded, and designed to allow for airflow, so you won’t get uncomfortable from sweating. You can adjust both the hip and shoulder straps, so the pack can fit nearly anyone, and the hip belt fits waists from 26 to 54 inches. The pack also offers a sternum strap that can be adjusted horizontally and vertically to provide maximize security and comfort for the user.
One of the biggest benefits of the Condor 3-day Assault Pack is being able to attach even more gear to it, thanks to the MOLLE webbing that’s all over the front and also on the back on the shoulder straps. Four ballistic nylon straps are located on the bottom, too, in case you need even more room for gear. Having so many options and so much space means you can take everything you need with you, carry it all, and still have a pack that’s comfortable and easy to manage. That’s a huge benefit whether you’re on a tactical mission or you’re going camping for the weekend.
With a design that has clearly been thought out well, durable materials and careful attention to the quality of the craftsmanship, this pack is extremely versatile. It also fits body sizes from 5’2″ to 6’6″, so it’s customizable enough to be very comfortable even when it’s fully loaded down with gear. Dozens of pockets and all the webbing and straps for additional gear make it one of the best 3-day packs you can get.
“This is one of my go-to packs for just about anything I do. Whether it’s a mission, traveling, hiking, or camping. I’ve done hundreds of training exercises and missions with this pack. If you can’t decide, I would defiantly pick this assault pack. It’s also great for radio operators” – SGT P
Another Good Assault Pack Under $100
Paratus 3 Day Operator’s Pack
The Paratus 3-day Operator’s Pack is also a good option for those considering an assault pack. It’s very rugged, with tough material that will hold up to a lot of adventure. It’s also very comfortable. The shoulder and hip straps are padded and ergonomically designed, as is the EVA foam backing found throughout the pack. While you want your pack to look good and hold your gear, at the end of the day it really has to be comfortable. You’ll get all of that with this pack, as it has a lot to offer. The modular design is highly versatile and is like having three different packs, all in one.
It’s made of weather resistant 600D nylon to protect it – and your gear – from the elements. The detachable deployment pack has both a waist and a shoulder strap and is a great way to have access to some of the main necessities you’re carrying with you. Another benefit to the deployment pack is that it’s completely MOLLE compatible. It will attach to any vest, pack, or other gear that uses the MOLLE system, so you can transfer it from one place to another with ease. That’s an excellent choice if you have more than one pack, or you have other MOLLE compatible gear you use from time to time.
The deployment pack is compact, but yet it holds a lot of gear, making it a great combination of size and functionality. You can carry with the concealed waist belt, or use the convenience of the grab handle. It’s the perfect choice when you want to carry climbing gear, ammo, a first aid kit, a survival kit, or even a video camera that you can quickly grab and take with you while leaving the main pack in a secure location. The versatility of that option isn’t found in that many packs, and it’s something a lot of people can really use, especially if they’re camping, or they’re going to be traveling for a while.
You can take the Paratus 3-day Operator’s Pack on most full-size airlines, as the dimensions don’t exceed the maximum allowable for a carry-on. It’s convenient, and also gives you plenty of organized space for everything you need to carry along. There’s a main compartment, a top front compartment, and two large MOLLE pouches on the sides. You’ll also find D-rings for added gear storage, and double zipper pulls so you have easy and quick access to the main compartment. It’s double-stiched, to provide durability no matter what plans you have for it. Hiking, camping, fishing, and other activities are easier when you have this pack at your disposal.
The main compartment has a pouch for a hydration bladder, which is not sold with the pack. The tube opening is located right below the middle carry handle, in a convenient location that’s easy to get to but yet won’t be in the way. The straps can easily hold a sleeping bag attached to the top, and can be adjusted to fit users of varying heights and weight. You can also use the compression straps to keep your gear from shifting and to make sure you can get the bag down to a compact size that’s easy to carry and store.
No matter which of the packs you choose, you’ll be getting a high-quality pack that can hold plenty of gear and be adjusted to fit you comfortably. Comfort should come first, since you may be wearing the pack a lot, but you also have to carefully consider how much gear you’ll be carrying and under what conditions, so you can select the pack that best fits your needs.
Best Assault Pack Under $50
Mil-Tec Patrol Pack
If you’re looking for an assault pack that’s inexpensive but can still get the job done right, then the Mil-Tec Patrol Pack one you’ve been searching for. It’s heavy-duty and water-resistant, and can hold up to 36 liters. That gives you a lot of space to store all your gear and still get to everything quickly. There are two large, main compartments that have zippers and mesh in them to make plenty of smaller pockets. You’ll also find two smaller front pockets – one of which has an organizer – and a built-in pocket for a hydro pack.
The 2-way zippers keep all the compartments tightly closed when you’re not accessing them, so you don’t have to worry about losing anything valuable. The shoulder straps are padded and ergonomically designed for comfort. While the design of the pack helps keep the weight off your shoulders, you still want your straps to be comfortable and fit easily. These straps are 5cm wide, and they can be adjusted for length, to fit both taller and shorter users. The padded back and adjustable waist strap make the pack more comfortable overall, and both open with a clip for ease of use.
Lateral compression straps help with volume control and let the pack keep its shape while still providing plenty of space. The MOLLE straps all around also mean you can attach a lot of other gear to the outside of the pack, so you can take what you need with you all the time. There are loops and D-rings on the straps for additional storage, as well, making this pack an excellent choice even if you have a lot of gear you want to be able to access quickly.
It’s the perfect choice for military maneuvers, and also works well for both hiking and camping. Made from 600D polyester and PVC coated, this bag is ready to handle what you need. It’s also water resistant, so you can use it in the rain and won’t get your things ruined if it gets into a puddle. It’s not water-proof, though, so for long-term use in the rain, you’ll want a rain cover to protect your things. It weighs in at just 2.9 pounds, too, so it’s a good choice for anyone who wants a lightweight pack with a lot of space that’s going to last for a long time.
This pack can easily hold a 15″ laptop computer, books, and other items. It also works well for a carry-on for the airline, and will be accepted on most full-sized airplanes. Whether you want to use it to camp, or you’re looking for a way to tote your clothes on an adventurous trip, it’s a great pack with a lot to offer, and will work well in nearly every weather condition. The durability of this pack is impressive, especially for the price. It can be difficult to find packs under $100, and to find a good one in that price range is especially significant.
Best Assault Pack for Carrying A Radio
Kelty Tactical Raven 2500 Backpack
An important thing to consider when buying an assault back is whether or not you will be responsible for carrying a radio. This is especially important for Radio Operators. From my own experience, most assault packs aren’t optimized for carrying comm gear. Especially the Harris PRC 119, Foxtrots and other Satellite radios.
If you’re primary MOS or job is a radio operator then this assault pack is a no brainer. After much testing and research we came across the Kelty Tactical Raven 2500 Backpack. This assault pack was designed for Comm guys that go on missions and spend a lot of time in the field.
One of the great features of this pack is the removable radio holder, which comes with the pack. It allows you to easily insert and secure your comm gear inside your pack. One major problem I faced in the past is my radio would bounce around while on missions. With the Kelty Tactical Raven 2500, you won’t have this issue. Also when you purchase this pack you get extra pouches to carry batteries.
There is also a clear KDU window on the top of the pack. This is great for when you need to change your frequency and access all the radio’s controls.
It’s important to note that if you are using a slimmer radio like the PRC-117G then you will need to take extra precautions to ensure your radio stays snug in the removable radio holder. One solution is to zip tie the metal bars of the radio into the internal frame.
Another great feature of this pack is that it has a single vertical compression strap that can accommodate pretty much any antenna you plan on using with your radio.
This pack also has MOLLE webbing on the front and sides. This is great if you need to attach extra pouches to carry batteries, CYZ-10, or other important gear needed for your mission.
If you’re a Comm guy who needs a tactical pack look no further. The Kelty Tactical Raven 2500 Backpack is the best solution you will ever find. While it’s a little more expensive than traditional assault packs it’s well worth the price. You and your back can thank me later.
Important Note: If you know for a fact that you won’t have to carry one of these radios or any comm gear at all then you won’t need this pack. If you know your unit or squad will be issued AN/PRC 148’s or AN/PRC 152’s then you also won’t need this setup.
I hope this buyer guide helps you find the best tactical assault pack for your needs.
Here are the different Assault Packs we tested and reviewed.
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I highly recommend you check them out on Amazon and read the reviews. Let me know your experience and what assault packs you recommend in the comments section below.
Final Note: If you are deploying soon. Do yourself a big favor and invest in a quality assault pack. It will make your deployment much better. Trust me I know!
SGT P Out!