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Published Sep. 23, 2021

Shooters, before you approach the firing line on your own time, ask yourself if all that gear is as squared away as it could be. Are you packed and ready to hit the range at sun-up, or are you going to unleash a car full of mismatched cases, loose ammunition boxes, and a cleaning kit in the flimsy packaging it came in? If the latter sounds familiar, something has to change. That kind of range-day setup is making life way harder than it needs to be, and it honestly doesn’t make the rest of us look that great. We are supposed to be professional shooters above all else, remember. Step one is getting a legitimate range bag. By keeping your gear organized, you’ll never show up without something you need, or have to make multiple trips to the car for stray items.

Whether you want a comprehensive range bag or something tactical that keeps you mobile, there’s an option for you. The range bags we picked for this list represent all budgets and intended uses to help you cut to the chase. Hoist that red flag, because the range just went hot.

Here are five range bags the U.S. military veterans of Task & Purpose love, plus a few more honorable mentions that caught my eye for good measure. While we haven’t tested the honorable mentions ourselves, our experience suggests they’re worth a look. Ladies and gentlemen, meet your contestants:

The Eberlestock Bang Bang range bag earned high marks during our hands-on test, even if it does have a goofy name. There are several colors to choose from at the $200 mark, or you can pay $30 extra for camouflage. Bringing a case of ammo for you and your friends? Weight is no issue. Want to pack body armor to train like you fight (or pose like an operator on Instagram)? There’s room for that too because this bag isn’t far from a hockey duffel with MOLLE. The main compartment has adjustable soft dividers to keep everything organized. Oversized end compartments are great for an IFAK or other large items. Underneath, there is a padded area big enough to store midsize weapons like disassembled AR pistols. Getting to that bottom compartment can be tricky when the rest of the bag is loaded to the gills, but that’s just about the Bang Bang’s only problem. Except for the name. (Matt Sampson)

This list wouldn’t be complete without representation from 5.11, one of the most popular manufacturers of tactical gear. The Range Master duffel isn’t what I’d call inexpensive, with a price of $165, but there’s so much packed into this bag that it earned the best value spot on our list. For starters, the main bag is well-built and large enough to store large items like helmets, extensive cleaning kits, and weapons as big as disassembled AR pistols. There’s MOLLE inside and out. The underside of the lid has elastic retainers for four rifle magazines and eight pistol magazines, and two zippered pouches for loose items like earplugs and small tools. It comes with two separate bags that are great for keeping ammunition organized, plus a pistol case with a padded divider to keep two handguns protected, and storage for five more magazines. If you want to experience high-end gear without paying exorbitant prices, this is the way to do it. (Scott Murdock)

The Vertx COF doesn’t look like your typical range bag, and that might just be its biggest asset. Rather than announcing its presence with MOLLE panels and tactical-themed styling, the COF flies under the radar like a small piece of carry-on luggage. That makes it ideal for shooters who frequent urban indoor ranges and don’t want to draw attention during the walk from the parking lot. Inside, it’s got a hard shelf that separates upper and lower compartments, organizational pouches, and a removable pouch for six pistol magazines. At nearly $200, the heavy version of the COF range bag is definitely a premium item. That price––and its empty weight of six pounds––might be a bit much for casual shooters, but regulars will appreciate the build quality and attention to detail. (Joel Mason)

For those of you who prefer a hands-free range bag (and I don’t blame you), this backpack from GPS could be just the ticket. Durability comes front and center with this range bag. Thick, 1,000-denier polyester stands up incredibly well to scrapes, gouges, and extreme temperatures. Dedicated compartments for three pistol cases, ammunition, and all your extra gear keep things organized. There are even labels for things like ear and eye protection, targets, a stapler, and your keys. There’s no room for anything larger than most pistols, but having both hands free allows you to carry long guns separately without too much hassle. The asking price of $140 isn’t cheap, but it gets you a quality item that’s built tough––and tough to beat. Added bonus: this range bag looks enough like an assault pack that you could probably get away with using it for annual qualification. (Drew Shapiro)

It’s easy to get carried away with all kinds of range-day gear, but Orca Tactical hasn’t forgotten about shooters who like to stick to the basics. This range bag is sized more like an EMT kit or a camera bag than a seabag, making it a great choice for shooters who want to train with one or two pistols, a few boxes of ammo, and proper ear and eye protection. Plenty of pouches and compartments help organize your gear, and padded walls add a nice layer of protection. The outer shell is surprisingly water-resistant, too. It wouldn’t be my choice for all-day rifle shooting, but it’ll get you through a few hours of training and can definitely be your go-to for pistol work. At $85, it can even help you save some money while you’re at it. (Travis Pike)

Finding a range bag that’s big enough to carry long guns isn’t easy, but the Savior Equipment American Classic is up to the task. Usually, rifle shooters have to have a separate case and range bag or settle for stuffing a few extra magazines in their rifle case. The American classic includes room for two rifles or shotguns with a padded divider, a main compartment with two pistol pouches and places for extra gear, and three large pockets for bulky items like rifle magazines and over-the-ear hearing protection. On top of that, there are two large MOLLE sections to add extra attachments. The bag can be carried like a duffel or worn like a backpack. Sizes range from 36 to 55 inches, so even full-size rifles fit easily. Pricing depends on which size and color you want, but this range bag is a great deal in any configuration.

Honorable Mention

Neat freaks and penny-pinchers will love the organizing power of the Allen Company Competitor range bag. This little guy is the least expensive option on our list, and it still packs in enough compartments and features to keep all your gear squared away and ready for action. The lockable main compartment is big enough for pistol cases and plenty of ammunition, with a removable liner that’s perfect for collecting all your spent brass. There’s no MOLLE for extra attachments, but external pouches provide a fair amount of space for safety equipment and a few odds and ends. Semi-rigid lids aren’t burglar-proof, but they do help the bag hold its shape when the cargo gets heavy. Elastic retainers for choke tubes suggest that this bag is primarily for shotguns, but I wouldn’t hesitate to use it at the rifle or pistol range, either.

Honorable Mention

If schlepping a bunch of bulky gear and heavy weapon cases sounds like a drag to you, take the labor out of shooting with the Explorer RR29 rolling range bag. This bag is the size of a standard carry-on suitcase, with similar wheels and a telescoping handle. You’ll appreciate that if you load this thing to full capacity because this much gear can get heavy in a hurry. The main compartment is large enough for several smaller bags, pistol cases, and even larger weapons (outer dimensions measure 21 inches long, 16 inches wide, and 12 inches deep; that should be big enough for a disassembled AR but we haven’t gotten our hands on one to be sure). Loads of pockets and magazine pouches keep the main compartment organized, while the rest of your gear can be stored in the outer compartments. That’s all well and good, but let’s be honest; they had us at “rolling.”

Why you should trust us

The U.S. military veterans and active-duty service members who review gear here at Task & Purpose test products at home and in the field. We have years of experience living and working with the tools we recommend. We don’t get paid by the manufacturers and have editorial independence. Our editor leaves it to us to recommend and prints what we write. All of this enables us to provide you, our valued readers, with our unvarnished, honest opinions on the recommendations we make.

Types of range bags

You wouldn’t bring a rifle to shoot skeet and you wouldn’t draw a pistol from the 500-yard line, so don’t bother with the wrong type of range bag, either. Every range bag is designed for a specific type of shooting, so make sure you buy one that’s right for you.

  • Soft cases: The most accessible range bags are essentially soft pistol cases with dedicated storage for small items like magazines, earplugs, and maybe a very compact cleaning kit. They’re great for a pistol session at a range where targets are provided, but fall short when you start adding multiple firearms and larger items like staplers and spotting scopes.
  • Backpacks: We’ve used backpacks since grade school, so why not keep the tradition alive? This type of range bag is practical, offers generous amounts of space, and keeps our hands free. They’re great for situations where you have separate cases for your firearms or are moving between dispersed firing positions.
  • Duffel bags: These are the one-stop-shop of range bags. Throw your ammunition, cleaning gear, ear and eye protection, targets, stapler, extra magazines, range book, and even pistol cases in a duffel, and be on your way. Some even have room for disassembled long guns. If you want to make one purchase and be done with it, this is the style of range bag for you.

Key features of range bags

  • Size: We all know someone who’s prepared for everything. Forget your eye pro? Don’t worry, they have extra. Their car is a Mary Poppins special filled with targets, staplers, safety equipment, snacks, and ammo for guns they don’t even own. There are also shooters who seem to be content showing up with a rifle in a gun sock and a pocket full of live rounds. There’s a range bag for each of them––and everyone in between.
  • Style of carry: This one goes hand-in-hand with size. If you want to bring everything but the kitchen sink, you’re probably looking at duffel bags. This style of range bag can be carried with one hand or over the shoulder with a sling. Backpacks allow hands-free carry but are typically midsize in terms of capacity. The smallest cases, which are usually designed for pistols, can only carry the bare essentials and are about the size of a lunchbox.
  • Intended Use: Do you set up shop and do all your work from one firing position, or does your style of shooting involve lots of movement across varied terrain? The answer to that question will narrow down your search for the perfect range bag. Odds are, it’s on this list.
  • Features: Range bags are all about purposeful organization. Some use MOLLE to let you Bob Ross your way to firing line nirvana with whatever happy little attachments and friendly pouches suit your fancy. Others keep things slick with built-in pouches and dividers. Other features include padding, weather-resistant materials, and styling.

Benefits of range bags

If you’ve ever been accused of being a gear bomb, some organization might be in order. If your gear is properly stowed but spread across several bags and cases, there’s still room for improvement. Protect your investment by choosing a range bag or case that keeps all your gear safely tucked away for storage and transportation. No more digging through a backpack of loose magazines, or realizing that a loose bottle of CLP has turned your trunk into a miniature Exxon Valdez. Trust us, you’ll enjoy your time at the range more when you can focus more on your shooting than tracking down lost gear.

Range bag pricing

Regardless of how much money you have to feed your shooting habit, there are range bags out there for you. Budget-friendly bags start as low as $25. These might just be soft cases with a few elastic bands and a pocket or two, but they’ll get you where you need to go with a few earplugs and magazines to spare. Most of the good stuff falls between $150 and $200. That’s where you’ll get adjustable dividers, ample padding, MOLLE for all your tactical gear, and durable components that can take a beating. 

How we chose our top picks

All of the range bags recommended in this buyer’s guide, with the exception of a few honorable mentions, were field-tested your trusty Task & Purpose gear reviewers. We take our time to get to know the strengths and weaknesses of each piece of gear and also check out the reviews of other experts just to make sure we’re not missing anything. 

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Scott Murdock is a Marine Corps veteran and contributor to Task & Purpose. He’s selflessly committed himself to experiencing the best gear, gadgets, stories, and alcoholic beverages in the service of you, the reader.

Task & Purpose and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links. We independently evaluate gear by putting products in the hands of subject matter experts. The products we test may be purchased by Task & Purpose, our staff, or provided for review by a manufacturer. No matter the source, our testing procedures and our assessments remain free from third-party influence. Learn more about our product review process.