SUL® Ruckstrap initial review
Well it’s safe to say we are outdoors guys who like a good yomp!
If you’ve ever seen me carrying in Peli cases at a trade show or on a range you will undoubtedly have heard me say one of my motos “I’m not very smart but I’m good at lifting stuff!”
I was introduced to shooting as a deerstalker, not on the range, my progress into shooting was backwards to most. At the time I was working heavily in the public sector, fetching and carrying and using a 50/50 split of brains and braun. All this meant I had become an expert at ‘brute force and ignorance!’
A successful days hunting meant carrying a deer carcass back to the cabin, half-tracks are for amateurs.
The more successful a hunt the heavier the roe-sack. Any experienced hunter knows this pain! Bitter-sweet pain of lugging a heavy load!
I’m not gonna lie, I’m quite a clever chap, I come up with the occasional good idea but I’d never really applied my mind to solve this age old problem.
Fast forwards a good many years and it appears that someone has had a really good go at solving it, and boy have they come up with the goods.
We recently became aware of the Ruckstrap from SUL® Outdoors and the fact it was in prototype phase. A buddy in the States had picked up on it and pointed us their way. We spoke to the team at SUL® and hit it off with them straight away, with them sharing many of our views on what kit needs to be, do and how best to fit it into a very competitive market!
They very kindly sent us out a set of Ruckstraps to try so it would have been rude not to head out into the middle of nowhere and give them some stick.
We see several applications for this item. An aid to carrying roe-sacks and hunting kit is the main one for us. Then the benefits are clear for us using them to help us carry our larger rifles and rifle bags when moving into hard-going terrain for long range target shooting.
Lastly we see them in the yomp to camp, or the woods where the pack isn’t as big but the going is hard, afterall who’d want to camp anywhere near any form of civilisation?
So, we headed out today, strapping the Ruckstraps onto our trusty 5.11 Rapid Origin 25L pack. This is my go-to short camping or Bushcraft bag and is as solid as a rock.
The Ruckstraps went on a doddle, taking only a minute or so to attach and were anchored solidly onto the top grab-handle.
The pack was full and heavy and did not have the benefit of a waist band/strap to spread the load out. As such everything is on the shoulders!
We went out for a decent yomp, up and down hill and it was clear to see that the Ruckstraps will make a massive difference to the fatigue you’d expect to feel carrying a pack like that over rugged terrain!
Either with hands down in front or out to the side, the difference was clear! I imagine on a 3 day hike this could have a significant impact.
We stopped for a break and found that the Ruckstraps stowed neatly into the back (bladder) pocket on the pack, so if you were using it in a confined space, getting the bus or similar they wouldn’t get snagged up!
The build quality of these things is rock solid and they are so simple you quite simply can’t use them incorrectly, even if you put the straps on upside down they will still work fine.
On initial review we like these things a lot! What’s next for us? We’re gonna take them out when Red deer season opens in a few weeks and put them through their paces. Equally we are gonna attach them to one of our heavy Eberlestock range bags and see what they do!
The webbing and buckles are solid and the handles comfortable. Build quality isn’t an issue here!
Keep an eye out for our progress with these, we’ll be doing some further updates, and thanks once again to Jason and the team at SUL® for letting us have a play with this great bit of kit! We think they are on to a winner!