REVIEW: 5.11 Tactical Rush 72 Backpack

The 5.11 Rush 72 bag was developed for multi-day use, based around the concept of carrying what you need for up to 72 hours. The bag was designed to provide plenty of storage, plus includes features like a wrap-around MOLLE system, shoulder and adjustable sternum straps, and a water-resistant hydration pocket.

This 5.11 multi-day pack was not only designed as a bug out bag, but for other uses such as recreation and travel. Thanks to its admin organization section, dual zippered front and main compartments, and plenty of extra storage pouches around the entire pack itself, the 5.11 Tactical Rush 72 Backpack is extremely versatile. Not only designed for the military warfighter, it’s a great choice for the traveler or business person for multi day trips.

About 5.11 Tactical

5.11 Tactical is a company that lives and breathes by their motto, Always Be Ready. They provide a huge selection of products for law enforcement and the tactical community, and have both men’s and women’s lines. Their designers work with professionals from every form of protective services and the military to ensure their gear works to its max ability, while providing comfort and appeal. By taking pride in their products and ensuring they truly meet the customer’s needs, 5.11 has a well deserved reputation as one of the industry’s favorite brands.

About the 5.11 Tactical Rush 72 Backpack

The Tactical Rush 72 pack has a rugged design that will withstand normal wear and tear due to its sturdy construction. With its military-themed look, this pack looks as tough as it is.

  • Size: When actually packed with gear, the overall size of the pack is manageable. Not being an overly enormous pack, while still having plenty of space to carry necessities, it’s an easy, on-the-go pack that can quickly be worn with ease. The also allows for easy storage of multiple items, and the ability to quickly load and unload the pack from the carry position.
  • Appearance: The pack has a clean, military look – there are no huge pouches on the side or front that cause it to stick out or look bulky. When packed, it sits nicely and has a great appearance when worn. Even the “stuff pouch” on the front is able to be cinched down. It’s available in a variety of standard tactical colors.
  • Durability/Quality: The pack at first glance appears rugged with hardy stitching and tough materials. A closer look found no loose seams or frayed stitching, no weak spots, and the zipper function presenting no challenges. They have also included two heavy duty hydration hose ports that will resist the normal wear and tear that usually occurs from inserting and removing water hoses. After reading through reviews on the 5.11 site, there were no red-flags around durability challenges with this pack.
  • Design: The design of the bag meets the description: a 72 hour backpack. There is enough space to fit what you need for three days on the move, but not overly massive to weigh you down. The stuff sack gives users the option of carrying raincoats or miscellaneous items found along the way. The side pouches are great to have your frequently-needed items accessible, and the hydration pouch with exterior access on the top of the pack is very handy. The organization of the admin section is another unique advantage (keep reading for details!).

Features of the 5.11 Tactical Rush Bag

There are some unique features on this pack that set it apart from others. Some things to consider when you’re shopping for a new bugout bag:

    • Hydration drinking hose access: The hydration hose access points on the top of the pack are well built to resist wear and tear. With drinking hoses that get caught and pull quite a bit, having a heavy duty port is a plus.
    • Stuff pouch: The stuff pouch on the front of the pack is extremely useful and allows quick access.
    • Organization of Pouches: The layout of the admin compartment and inside of the pack is outstanding. The pack can be expertly laid out with different items that need to stay in place, and others for easy access when needed. Instead of digging through multiple items into a side pouch, the inside compartments are designed for a smooth layout and ease of accessibility.

  • Sunglasses Holder: The sunglass holder is a unique feature, but I found it difficult to get my glasses in and out of the pack when fully loaded. There was also the fear that they may get broken when using the pack, which caused me to continuously check on them to see how they were holding up. There were no issues, but I would be careful when using this feature.
  • Water resistance: Although not claiming to be waterproof, the bag does keep out light moisture and condensation. The water resistance does repel slightly, but not enough to fight of the upcoming rain storms when on the go. There would be a benefit to adding a built in rain cover.

How Did the Bag Perform?

The performance was reviewed on a five day trip from Virginia to the Tennessee Mountains. The pack held up nicely and showcased several advantages.

    • Fit: The pack fit nicely, and when packed correctly, it did not cause any rubs or sore spots. The breathability of the pack was fine, particularly in the shoulder strap area since the top of the pack is slightly off the back due to not being able to tighten the straps.

    • Shoulder Straps: Without having the ability to tighten the shoulder straps, the top of the pack was slightly loose, even with the sternum strap tightened. This did not cause any discomfort, and allows for airflow.
    • Water Resistance: This is a water resistant pack, and did meet expectations. Although there are reviews complaining the pack is not waterproof, there does not appear to be a claim anywhere on the 5.11 site that it is. With it being water resistant, the bit of moisture in the air did not penetrate the pack and cause a massive amount of water soakage in the pack. However, having a built-in rain cover would be beneficial, and I advise you to bring one if you’re going to be outdoors with this pack.

  • Durability: In the military, there is a lot of throwing packs around in and out of trucks on deployments, especially Quick Reaction Forces that need go bags always prepared and ready to grab at a moment’s notice. With this in mind, this pack was tossed in and out of a Jeep to see how it handles to the constant onslaught. The pack held up nicely, with minimal wear and tear. However, if you plan on using the pack that way, be aware of how you pack. Don’t put any fragile items inside the main pack compartment, as the front pouch section of the pack receives the most damage. Having a phone in the front compartment would be disastrous for this type of abuse.

Who Should Buy the 5.11 Tactical Rush 72-Hour Pack

Obviously, the law enforcement and military community would benefit from this pack and its unique features. However, after using it myself, I feel that those who travel frequently would find this bag very useful. The number of reviews from traveling businessmen and women who use this pack is vast. Anyone who goes on 2-3 days trips can find great use out of this particular pack.

Value for the Money

The MSRP of this pack is $179.99, which in my opinion is well worth it. There are many packs in local exchanges and military bases that cost far more, with less room and fewer features. The overall function of the pack, with its average size, and above average compartment sizes is well worth the MSRP.

The Bottom Line: The pack is highly functional and well designed, with the ability to be slightly enhanced with greater water resistance and better eyewear protection.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.

Jeffrey Sabins

Jeff is an experienced operations manager with a background serving in the USMC as a infantry unit leader. His education includes a Certificate in Fitness and Nutrition, Bachelor of Arts in Terrorism Intelligence, and is currently working through his Masters in Organizational Leadership. He currently writes articles, short stories, product reviews, and assists companies with curriculum management and CPI processes.
Jeffrey Sabins

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