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Published Apr. 15, 2022

Range bags simplify your shooting experience by transporting all your gear in a convenient carrier. Each trip to the range involves a pile of guns, ammo, spare mags, eye protection, ear protection, markers, targets, a stapler, first aid kit, a knife, gloves, and more. Instead of cramming all this stuff into an old duffel, stashing it in a purpose-made bag can make transporting, and finding, your gear much easier.

A good range bag is the unsung hero of gun range equipment. If you’ve got a good one, you probably hardly think about it. If, however, your range bag leaves something to be desired, you spend more time than you’d prefer thinking about it and how it keeps letting you down. So, let’s fix that once and for all. Here are the best range bags on the market to keep your gear organized and ready to go.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Range Bag

You might be thinking that a bag is a bag is a bag, right? Does it really matter what one I use? Well, the answer is yes. There’s a reason that purpose-built range bags exist! Obviously, the final decision is up to you, but here are some of the things you should think about before buying a range bag:

Storage Needs

What do you normally take to the range with you? Is it generally the same amount of stuff each time you go, or does it tend to vary widely? Do you pack and unpack most of the contents before and after each trip? These are all questions about your storage needs that should be considered before answering the next question.

Size and Weight

Are you a packing minimalist, or do you tend to pack everything but the kitchen sink? Do you need extra room for your friends’ gear from time to time? Are you going to have to carry the bag for a long distance to get from your vehicle to the range? Obviously, bigger bags hold more stuff, but they’ll also weigh a lot more, too. Being prepared is a good thing, but you might not need four pairs of shooting muffs and three staplers in that bag!

Price

Money is always on everyone’s mind. It’s important to remember, though, that a higher price doesn’t always equal higher quality—some of the best range bags wear low price tags. Obviously, the size of the range bag and its storage options can play a big role in its cost, so be sure you know what your storage needs are before committing to a purchase.

Don’t hit the range without the right safety gear. Check out our recommendations for the best shooting glasses and hearing protection. Looking for a safe place to shoot? Use the National Shooting Sports Foundation range finder to locate one near you. You can also review the basics of gun safety before you head out.

Best Backpack: GPS Tactical Range Backpack

G.P.S.

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Why It Made the Cut

The GPS Tactical Range Backpack lets you carry all your handguns and other small gear on your back, keeping your hands free for other purposes.

Key Features 

  • Freestanding design
  • Visual I.D. storage system
  • Entire front is MOLLE-compatible webbing

Pros

  • Chest strap and waist belt for extra load stability
  • Comes with 3 pistol cases that can hold 4 mags each
  • Has a waterproof cover for bad weather days at the outdoor range

Cons

  • So much storage space that you’ll probably end up putting things in it that you don’t really need to bring to the range

We’ve all had trips to the range where we’ve got more things to carry than we have arms, and there’s definitely no way we’re going to make more than one trip, so we struggle to juggle it all. With the GPS Tactical Range Backpack, you can shift most of your stuff to your back and keep your hands free for other important things, like rifle cases or door handles.

Since the backpack is freestanding, you can set it down, open it up, and keep everything you need within easy reach while remaining organized. Instead of putting things in pockets and forgetting what went where, you can store and then find things easily with the clearly marked pockets for ear plugs, shooting safety glasses, shooting targets, earmuffs, tools, and more.

Best Large: 5.11 Tactical Range Ready Bag

5.11 Tactical

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Why It Made the Cut

If you’re looking for the biggest and the best, the 5.11 Tactical Range Ready Bag provides a name and quality you can trust with a massive storage capacity.

Key Features 

  • 43L of storage capacity
  • Removable ammo and gear totes
  • Constructed of 600D polyester

Pros

  • Flip down front holds 8 magazines and a pistol
  • Cavernous back and side pockets
  • Separate padded gun storage

Cons

  • It’s big. Like, really big. Perhaps bigger than you need

The 5.11 Tactical Range Ready Bag is big enough that you actually could probably fit the kitchen sink in it if you tried hard enough. Made of durable, all-weather 600D polyester, this range bag is designed to be multiple bags within a bag. An ammo and gear caddy fits into the main compartment so that you can stock it with essentials and pull it out at a moment’s notice.

An empty brass pouch is included for the reloaders out there, and there’s plenty of other large side and back zippered pockets for any and all manner of gear you need at the range. The front flip down section holds a handgun and 8 magazines, and there’s still more separate padded storage room for other guns.

Best Compact: Osage River Light Duty Tactical Range Bag

OSAGE RIVER

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Why It Made the Cut

The Osage River Light Duty Tactical Range Bag has plenty of storage space and more than 4,200 positive reviews on Amazon.

Key Features 

  • Comes with two removable pistol pouches
  • Built-in magazine storage
  • Constructed of 600D ballistic nylon

Pros

  • Available in multiple colors
  • Nine different storage compartments

Cons

  • Geared toward handgunners

Range bags from Osage River are some of the best-rated and reviewed bags found on the internet. Thousands of people can’t be wrong! This Light Duty size bag is the smaller version of their standard size bag, but at 13.5”x10.5”x7.5”, it still has a bunch of storage space. Geared toward handgunners, there’s two removable pistol pouches included as well as built-in handgun magazine storage for a dozen mags — more if you’re creative!

Speaking of creative: this bag is available in multiple different colors so that you don’t have to be like everyone else who brings a plain black bag to the range. Each one is built using 600D ballistic nylon, so they will hold up no matter which color you choose.

Best Made in USA: Vertx COF Heavy Range Bag

Why It Made the Cut

It’s more important now than ever before to buy products that are made in the USA, and the Vertx COF Heavy Range Bag is a quality product brimming with red, white, and blue pride.

Key Features 

  • Has a built-in security cable for extra protection
  • Removable ammo caddies and mag holders included
  • Available in two sizes: Heavy and Light

Pros

  • 15L of storage capacity
  • Tons of configurable storage space

Cons

  • It’s definitely not inexpensive
  • Weighs 6.25 pounds empty

When a day at the range literally means an entire day at the range, you need a bag that will go the distance. The COF (Course of Fire) Heavy Range Bag is up to the task of long, hard days at the range. It’s got lots of zippered pockets, internal hard dividers, and padded panels as well as removable ammo caddies and magazine carriers so that you can arrange the bag to fit your needs from one range trip to the next.

The front access panel even doubles as a cleaning/maintenance mat for any work you may need to do while away from your home workbench. To top it all off, there’s a ton of hook-and-loop panels inside and out for all kinds of other accessories, patches, etc.

Best Value: Gunmate Shooting Range Bag

GUNMATE

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Why It Made the Cut

Sometimes you just need a no-frills range bag that will get the job done, and the Gunmate Shooting Range Bag fits that bill perfectly.

Key Features 

  • Large main storage compartment
  • Removable hoop-and-loop dividers
  • Includes padded pistol rug

Pros

  • Won’t break the bank
  • Side compartments are very roomy
  • Zippers can be locked to prevent access

Cons

  • No purpose-built storage features

When your goal is to spend less money on your range bag so that you can spend more money on guns and ammo, Gunmate has what you need. Sometimes you’re just taking one or two guns and some ammo to the range, and if that’s the case, you don’t need to lug around 10 pounds of extra gear. With the Gunmate Shooting Range Bag, you get just the right amount of storage for a couple handguns, some ammo, eye and ear protection, and a few small accessories.

This bag is cheap, but only in monetary terms. It’s still a well-built, sturdy bag that has good padding and a little bit of personalized storage configuration. The 16” x 8” x 7″ size easily stashes behind a seat or in the trunk. As a bonus, this bag includes a padded pistol rug.  

How I Made My Picks

I’ve had at least a dozen different range bags that I’ve used over the years. Some worked exactly as I expected; others fell short, either as a result of my poor planning or their poor construction. I’ve also got tons of shooting friends and I don’t think I’ve seen anyone who has the same bag. So, it’s always easy to see new product options and hear why this particular model was chosen over another. When it comes down to picking which one is right for me, I evaluate products using the following criteria:

  • Build Quality: Is this bag well-built enough that it’s going to provide me with years of use? Or is it poorly made and will need to be replaced in a year or two?
  • Storage Capacity: Am I looking to transport a minimal amount of stuff for a quick range trip, or am I looking to pack the range bag so that any and every item I could possibly need is in there?
  • Cost: Are the features and benefits of this range bag in line with the price?

FAQs

Q: Can I use a regular backpack as a range bag?

Sure, you can use a regular backpack as a range bag. But with all of the purpose-built bags on the market, I don’t see why you would want to use a regular backpack. It’s just so much easier and more convenient to use something that was designed for range use than to try and retrofit something that wasn’t designed to carry guns, ammo, and other shooting gear. It’s kind of like using a bunch of milsurp .50-caliber ammo cano instead of one of the MTM 4-Can Ammo Crates. Work smarter, not harder.

Q: How much do range bags cost?

The cost of a range bag varies widely depending on who made it, how big it is, different design features, etc. In general, range bags can cost anywhere from less than $50 to more than $300.

Q: How big are range bags?

Range bags come in a wide variety of sizes. Some are small enough to be slung over your shoulder and can fit just enough stuff for a normal trip to the range. Others are large enough that you can pack anything and everything into it that you could ever dream of needing at the range.

Final Thoughts

A range bag can be a highly personal thing. We’ve all got different needs and wants when it comes to storage. Some people are highly organized and want a place for everything and everything in its place. Others would prefer to chuck it all into a portable cavern and sort it out later. One way isn’t really any better than the other (though the organized person would probably argue otherwise.) How ever you feel, you can’t go wrong with any of the ones mentioned here.

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