Whether your visits to the gun range are for leisure or for professional practice, there’s no way around one simple fact. The more you get into it, the more gear you end up with, and the harder it gets to carry it all.
At some point, picking out a range bag is no longer an idle dream. It’s a necessity. And when that time comes, it’s important that you pick one that suits your needs.
There are a lot of great range bags on the market this year. Some are relative newcomers, while others are new versions of old standbys that have been helping shooters organize and transport their gear for decades.
Many of these products vary widely, but all the best range bags of 2020 have one thing in common: they make every trip to the range easier.
- #1 Best overall — OSAGE RIVER Tactical Range Bag. Durable, spacious and a great value in its price range, the OSAGE RIVER Tactical Range Bag gets top marks for its tough construction and generous, easily customizable storage space
- Best for pistols — 5.11 Tactical Range Ready Multiple Pistol & Ammo Bag. Separate storage spaces for multiple pistols make this a great pistol bag, and it also has ample storage space for ammo and accessories in its many pockets.
- Best for sporting clays — EXPLORER Tactical Range Ready Bag 18-Inch. With lots of storage space and several pockets that are easy to adjust to your liking, this range bag can easily accommodate all your clay shooting gear and accessories.
- Best for AR 15 — Tactical Performance™ Competition Range Bag. This spacious range bag has plenty of room for your AR-15 ammo, accessories and extra gear, along with just about anything else you might want to pack inside.
Best Range Bags
1. OSAGE RIVER Tactical Range Bag
It’s hard to find a fault in the OSAGE RIVER Tactical Range Bag. The ample dimensions (18″ x 13″ x 7″), rugged 600-denier nylon construction and heavy-duty steel-plated zippers make it a good fit for the range as well as for longer hunting trips.
The roomy main compartment comes with two adjustable padded dividers, which create three protected compartments if you so choose, and the two exterior zippered pockets offer plenty of room for all your magazines, ammunition and accessories.
It comes with reinforced handles as well as padded shoulder strap carry options. You can also choose among a range of colors (yes, pink is one of them) and two sizes, although we tend to favor the larger “Standard” size over the smaller “Light Duty” size.
Another nice feature of this bag is its unassuming design, which doesn’t give it away its contents at a glance.
2. 5.11 Tactical Range Ready Multiple Pistol & Ammo Bag
The 5.11 Tactical Range Ready Multiple Pistol & Ammo Bag gets top marks for functionality, with separate padded storage spaces for multiple pistols.
You can easily get four handguns in there comfortably, with room to spare. It also includes a drop-down front flap that stores eight magazines, and accessory pockets just the right size for optics and ear protection.
If you’re the type who has trouble keeping all your gear organized, this bag might be the answer; it has multiple storage spaces that are all designed simply and intuitively.
The padded, adjustable shoulder strap is built for comfort, and the tough polyester construction and heavy-duty zippers are made to take a beating.
3. BLACKHAWK Sportster Deluxe Range Hunting Bag
The most surprising thing about the BLACKHAWK Sportster Deluxe Range Hunting Bag is how spacious it is.
The main compartment has room for just about everything you would want to bring to the range, and you’ll also find two smaller interior pockets, plus a removable pistol pouch with soft fabric to protect your firearm’s finish.
The bag is made from water-resistant 600 denier polyester, with two rows of locked stitching for durability along the seams.
It’s tough, and can hold a lot of weight. It’s also laid out simply, so it’s easy to find what you’re looking for without rummaging through lots of pockets. We’re also big fans of the lockable zippers.
If this bag has a weak link, it’s the shoulder strap, which could benefit from sturdier hardware than the plastic clasp that comes standard.
4. EXPLORER Tactical Range Ready Bag 18-Inch
The EXPLORER Tactical Range Ready Bag doesn’t look like your typical range bag. At a glance it looks almost like a camera bag, albeit a particularly big one given its 18″ x 14″ x 10″ dimensions.
Regardless, it holds a ton of gear, and has Velcro dividers that give you lots of room for customization. It holds three or four pistols comfortably, and has four enclosed outer pockets, along with another small open-top pocket at each end.
You can choose among several colors too, including Navy digital and woodland camo. Overall it has 14 padded and protected compartments, which is great if you like to keep your bag neat and tidy.
One could argue that it does sacrifice a bit of padding in favor of more storage space—probably a worthy trade-off if you have a lot of gear to haul around.
5. GunMate 1919687 Range Bag
With the GunMate coming in at a significantly lower price point than a lot of comparable range bags, it would be easy to assume it’s a cheap bargain bag that doesn’t really hold up. In reality, it’s anything but.
The design is simple and straightforward, with a spacious main compartment that includes removable hook and loop dividers. The lockable zippered side compartments also include pistol rugs. The thing we really like about the GunMate range bag is its construction.
It’s made of durable nylon that holds its shape even when empty, and has a thick, sturdy base plate that stands up well to wear and tear.
This range bag doesn’t come with a lot of bells and whistles, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s definitely a hard bag to beat in its price range.
6. Allen Company Ruger Range Bag
With a slick black-and-red color scheme and compact design, the Allen Company Ruger Range Bag looks great, and holds a lot more than it might look at first glance.
This bag makes ample use of its compact size, with a surprisingly roomy 11.5″ x 7″ main compartment, two 5″ x 5″ mesh pockets, three rows of MOLLE loops and a removable ammo carrier.
The inclusion of a gun cleaning pad that folds back into the bottom of the bag is also a nice touch, and there’s plenty of storage space for ear protection, headsets and eye protection. It’s a range bag to consider if you like to keep things simple.
7. Tactical Performance™ Competition Range Bag
The best word to describe the Tactical Performance™ Competition Range Bag is “spacious.” This is a seriously big bag, and if you’ve ever had a hard time packing all your gear into one container, this might be the answer you’ve been looking for. Measuring 21″ x 12″ x 10.5”, it seems unlikely that even the most dedicated gearhead will run out of room in this bag.
The material is tough 600-denier nylon, and the design incorporates two easily-removable pistol sleeves, and a dedicated space for accessories, like ammo and holsters. It’s comfortable too, with a padded shoulder strap that makes it easy to carry even when it’s packed to the gills.
Choosing a Range Bag
Choosing a range bag is a lot like choosing a shooting partner—except that it’s a lot easier to return it and get your money back if it doesn’t work out. In any case, you need something reliable that will make your trips to the shooting range easier, not harder.
What exactly that means will be different for everyone, but if you’re going to the range often enough that you’re starting to feel like a range bag is needed, there are a few key qualities to look for:
- Durability — This is a big one. A good range bag needs to be tough enough to take the wear and tear or repeated use, and carry a lot of weight without breaking or tearing.
- Capacity — The ideal capacity for a range bag depends on your specific needs. If you’re more of a hobbyist who only visits the range a few times a year, then you can probably get away with a smaller range bag. But if you’re at the level where you have a lot of gear and accessories, and you’re making the trip to the range on a regular basis, then you need a bag that can hold everything you need and then some.
- Organization — There are countless ways to organize your range bag. Some people like everything to have its proper place, while others honestly like to throw everything in one main compartment and sort it out on the fly. We’re not saying either is wrong, but make sure you get a bag that has the type and number of pockets you need to organize it the way you like.
- Comfort — Range bags can get awfully heavy when they’re loaded up with ammo and accessories. Make sure your bag has a strap and/or handles that allow you to carry it comfortably.
- Appearance — This is arguably the least important consideration, but it still matters. Pick a bag that looks good to you, as long as it also meets the other criteria. Some like the look of a classic range bag, while others prefer a bag that doesn’t necessarily give away what’s inside. If different color options are important to you, then that’s something to consider too.
Range Bag FAQs
When do you need a range bag?
If you’re asking that question, that’s a sign that you might be ready. As a general rule though, if your trips to the gun range are becoming more frequent, and you’ve accumulated more gear than you can comfortably carry without a range bag, then it’s time to consider investing in one.
What should you keep in a range bag?
Your range bag should be able to hold all your range essentials, including pistols if that’s what you’re using it for.
Other gear and accessories you should pack include ammo, extra magazines, eye and ear protection, a knife and multi-tool, basic first-aid kit and water bottle.
Some folks also like to bring targets, a gun mat, masking tape, baby wipes, a sweat towel, flashlight, extra batteries, a notebook, pens and pencils, and all kinds of other extras depending on your preference.
What is the right size range bag?
Choose a range bag that offers enough space for the gear you have, with a little extra if you plan on getting more down the line. You don’t want to get a bag that you’re going to outgrow in a year. When in doubt, err on the side of too big rather than too small. It’s better to have space left over than to have gear that won’t fit.
How do you organize a range bag?
That’s up to you, but it also depends on how your bag is laid out. If you’re someone who has a hard time staying organized, you might want to consider a bag with more pockets and compartments to help keep all your accessories in their proper place.
Whether you’re buying your first range bag or upgrading from an old-worn out bag that’s seen far better days, picking the right range bag for you can be a challenge.
There are a lot of great options out there, and while we firmly believe the OSAGE RIVER Tactical Range Bag is the top pick for 2020, in the end, the choice depends on which bag best aligns with your needs.