At what point can you stop and say a backpack is better than all the others? Possibly when it’s a GoRuck.
You see, this is the preferred backpack (or ruck), for the United States Army and Special Forces. Proof of that is the included MOLLE (Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment) system, which are those stripes that you may be familiar seeing in video games like Battlefield and Call of Duty, or on actual soldiers. It allows the user to attach addition field packs to store more on the backpack, while maintaining raw strength.
Price as Reviewed: $265 at GoRuck
Speaking of strength, let’s talk about how tough the Radio Ruck is — it sports 1000D military-grade Cordura, which is a tough as nails fabric resistant to water, scuffs, dirt, water, and anything else except fire and acid (probably). The whole bag is also handmade, adding to its character. The zippers, defined as the weakest point of any backpack (that’s true, actually), are the highest quality that GoRuck can get their hands on. The result is not only some really smooth zippers, but nearly silent when opened slowly. Same goes for the straps, which are a mixture of both soft and hard padding, which make the GoRuck feel comfortable when loaded with heavy gear, and like a feather when there’s nothing at all.
As for design? It may not win a beauty pageant for backpacks, but it is actually very much of character: it looks sharp, strict, and ready for anything (like a special forces soldier?). The stone/khaki color that GoRuck sent us sits alongside a black version, as well as military-spec multicam. Oddly, the Radio actually looks better with the more items added to it, because it retains a fuller, more uniform shape and look. *Insert slow clap here.* In the gallery below, you’ll see how much empty space there is.
GoRuck Radio Ruck Gallery
As for storage, there’s nearly a space or pocket for anything and everything (it can hold up to 6 bricks, or a volume of 24 liters). It opens wide open, and has an ingenious storage area for a laptop, where it becomes part of the padding. And while it may only be their “medium ruck” — larger models, the GR1 and GR2 exist — the Radio Ruck can hold a few days worth of clothes, a laptop, K-30 DSLR with zoom lens, and some extra stuff without even bulging much. Carrying the GoRuck for long periods of time is no problem; I had this particular one on my back for at least 8 hours while in New York City.
If it’s not obvious already, GoRuck has designed a winner here in the Radio Ruck. We love everything about it, even though it has a very high price. But what you’re paying for is downright hardcore. Get this bag if you’re looking for something really, really worthy of yourself — a GoRuck.