Are you looking for a backpack that is both versatile and durable? Look no further than the 5.11 Rush 24 2.0 Backpack. This pack is ideal for both the urban and backcountry setting. It is my go to pack! Bought about a year ago, we have “got to know one another” well enough that it’s time to give it the review it deserves. But as we do that, we’ll also cover what to look for in a pack.
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- Extreme Durability of the 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack
- How Many Litres is the 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack?
- Some Interesting Concepts
- 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack Specifications
- What is MOLLE?
- 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack Accessories
- What Can You Use the 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack For?
- Purchase the Items in This Post
Extreme Durability of the 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack
Whether I am hiking, camping, riding an ATV or just going for a drive, the 5.11 Rush 24 2.0 Backpack DOES NOT leave my side. That’s because my pack always carries all the survival items you could ever ask for. So let’s start with durability as none of the packs features really matter if it falls apart.
It’s so easy for any reviewer to toss out words like quality or to say that something is “durable”. Stop and think about that for a second, what does it really take for something to qualify as durable. I’ve loaded this pack to the max, loosely strapped it to my ATV and went repeatedly down the nastiest, narliest trails I could find. Over, and over, and over again! This loaded up pack bounced around hour after hour, day after day on the trails. Even in the rain, the dirt and the mud.
It is exhausting to have a pack flop around on an ATV. It makes you wonder when your precious gear will go bouncing off into the nether. So now we bungee the heck out of it which goes from one extreme to another by sort of crushing the pack. After all this, there is not one puncture, not even a pinhole on it – now that’s impressive. I’m almost afraid to say this as I don’t intend to set the bar too high, but the pack almost looks new.
Old school in the backpack department means canvas packs with a couple pockets and a drawstring. Prior to the 5.11 Rush 24, my packs were always genuine military. That means a main compartment, a front compartment and one small inner pocket. It also means contents are secure thanks to zippers and the pack can be expanded with MOLLE attachments which we’ll cover below. However, all the little things need to go into “kits” like fire, navigation, signalling and so on just to have an ounce of organization. That’s about as old school as the canvas and while its a valid process, it can slow you down when trying get to something – let alone find it.
The 5.11 Rush 24 2.0 Backpack comes with plenty of spacious compartments and pockets to keep you well organized. In fact it comes with 29 compartments – now that’s a lot! Some of them being the main storage compartment, the hydration pouch pocket, padded laptop (up to 15″), sunglass pouch and a CCW (Conceal Carry) compartment. Yes, I know, it’s Canada and you can’t conceal carry. But I can hide my bullets and backup knife in there from my kids! And yes, even if they read this blog, they still won’t find this compartment too easily. So while CCW is out, a pocket where one would hide things they don’t easily want found is in – and that is handy.
It is not by accident organization comes up early in this post. If a pack can’t store what you intend to carry, it’s not the right pack nor does any of its “features” or tech specs really matter. The fist consideration for any pack should always be size and having the right pockets.
How Many Litres is the 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack?
The total capacity of the pack is 37 litres (2275 cubic inches). What I recall from a year ago (there’s no current reference on 5.11’s site) is that the “24” in Rush 24 means a 24 hour pack. Respectfully, the same is true on their other Rush models such as the 72. The model doesn’t imply litres, it implies hours. Compare that to my genuine military 3 Day Assault pack which comes in at 30 litres. Ie. the military feels 30 L suffices for 72 hours. At 37 L, the Rush 24 is very forgiving and just about the right size without becoming too cumbersome like a rucksack.
To peg the size properly, I could easily survive 3 days with this pack, maybe longer. But not neccessarily comfortably! Comfortably, 24 hours is more realistic as suggest by 5.11 Tactical.
The main compartment is quite large 20″ H x 12.5″ L x 8″ (50.8 cm x 31.75 cm x 20.32 cm) to be exact. The front pocket is also of a fair size at 12.5″ x 11″ x 2″ (31.75 cm x 27.94 cm x 5.08 cm). Then there’s all the little pockets on the back, sides and front. It even has an excellent admin pouch area built in, conveniently accessible in the front pocket.
Some Interesting Concepts
Considering this is an outdoors blog and we always incorporate survival functions into our posts, this section is very important. So let’s define some things:
- Relating to or constituting actions carefully planned to gain a specific military end.
- Disguising of military personnel, equipment, and installations by painting or covering them to make them blend in with their surroundings.
- Means to break up, vanish, help disappear.
- The Gray Man:
- A man who can blend in to any scene or situation without standing out, hiding his skills and qualities
This pack does them all, let me explain.
Yes, 5.11 Tactical is more of a tactical company and that shows in the pack. It has the look, feel, qualities and features of a tactical bag. That can’t be denied, especially with all the MOLLE webbing. Quite often one of the differences between tactical vs military is the lack of camo as tactical is usually plain.
The term tactical however, is so over used it’s absolutely ridiculous. In fact it’s been reduced to a marketing ploy as there’s a lot of “tactical” junk floating around. Junk you certainly don’t want to rely on when your life is on the line! Don’t get sucked into the “its tactical” so it must be good non-sense.
On top of all that, we are not John Rambo, John McClane nor John Wick! Unless you are military or law enforcement, you technically don’t have a real need for genuine tactical. So don’t make purchases based on hype. The tactical aspects of this particular pack, helps PERFECTLY organize camping and survival gear and its genuine tactical quality is also present here. In other words, there is a legitimate crossover where tactical actually has a civilian use.
Yes, the Rush 24 is very camo indeed! Don’t laugh because its plain colours and lack of camo as we generally know it, allows this very pack to blend in… In the city! Sure, it will look a little off but it’s not screaming at you. Remember that tactical bit, its become so trendy that tactical look is everywhere now.
Yes, you are reading BushLife, not “memoires of the city”. In keeping things real, a recently bought Realtree Max 5 camouflage jacket just happens to work perfectly with this pack. Why? It’s creamy brown colour is easily picked up in the Max 5 pattern. Is it perfect for hunting? No. But it works and won’t be screaming in a blind or duck boat.
5.11 Tactical refers to the pack as Kangaroo, but anyone that knows military will immediately recognize the colour as coyote brown. Regardless of what colour you call it, the 5.11 Rush 24 in Kangaroo is fairly at home in the woods. It just doesn’t provide break up like camo.
The Gray Man
In Backpack Gear Load Out, you’ll see my pack has it all. By all I mean everything one needs to survive – things like a headlamp, matches, compass, water filter and so on. And no, I’m not a preper, nor some tactical or militia type, nor a creep or anything else that may come to mind. I’m an outdoorsman that has always come home safely thanks to a little skill, common sense and gear.
When you ATV 30 clicks into the bush on a cold November day, what happens when the motor just shuts off in the middle of nowhere? Or an axle breaks? And there’s no phone service either… You have to be prepared to survive if that machine breaks down! If not, no offence but you are gambling with your life or worse the life of whoever else you suckered into going with you. So the gear that goes in here is quite substantial, not to mention expensive and has been put together over years of careful use and planning.
Above being said, if a really bad SHTF situation ever came up, civil unrest or so on, would you want desperate people to know what amazing resources are in your pack? Should you be attacked or forced to give up your gear? Gear you had the foresight, diligence and decency to put together to take care of yourself and your family. That’s where the gray man comes in. Being able to blend in and not draw too much attention to yourself is an art. Because my pack always doubles as a survival pack, it’s a nice bonus to have it in gray man form. This pack can walk back and forth between two very different worlds, without garnering too much attention.
The 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack 2.0 is a bit on the heavy side at 3.84 lb. (1.74 kg). It does not sound like much, but keep in mind this is an empty weight. Unfortunately, weight is always the price to pay for heavier, more durable materials.
At 37 litres, filling this bad boy doesn’t help either. It’s not hard to easily pack it up, only to realize its contents weighs a ton when you try to pick it up. I personally don’t see weight as a problem as my activities are usually vehicular even if that may be a canoe. But be mindful of the fact that it is a backpack and you will need to carry it sooner or later.
If you hike a lot, this may be a bigger issue. Serious hikers are usually reduced to ultra light packs and ultralight gear. In that case though, you better be prepared to open your wallet. Quality ultra light gear comes with a heavy hitting price tag and there’s no way around that.
5.11 Rush 24 Backpack Specifications
The fabric of the 5.11 Rush 24 2.0 Backpack is a high strength, water-repellant 1050 D nylon. That is one of, if not the most important spec. Let’s look at some features:
- Self repairing YKK zippers
- Front lower pocket with internal slip and zippered pockets and multi-slot admin area
- Dual top zippered pockets with 6″ x 1″ name tape and internal pockets
- External front and side web MOLLE with 3×3 loop
- Dual external side zippered pockets (1 on each side)
- Padded laptop sleeve and dual mesh pockets in main compartment
- Rear hydration compartment / hydration port
- Contoured yoke shoulder strap system with web MOLLE
- Adjustable height sternum strap, two external compression straps
- Bottom panel web gear loops
- Concealed carry compartment
- Eyewear / tech compartment easily accessible on top
- Hook and loop nametape / flag / patch area
- Glove-friendly pull tabs
- MOLLE compatible with wrap-around MOLLE
The 5.11 Rush 24 comes in a variety of colours, but to me the kangaroo colour appeals the most.
What is MOLLE?
Many of you may be asking what is MOLLE? MOLLE stands for Modular Lightweight Load-Carrying Equipment. If you haven’t guessed it, it’s a concept from the military and they love their acronyms.
What MOLLE really means is that you can attach any MOLLE compatible pouch to your pack for added storage or organization. In military terms, that usually means a radio pouch, magazine holders, food rations bags, grenade holders and so on. While some of this may even sound crazy in the civilian market, it’s not. By example, a grenade holder pouch is the perfect size for holding a headlamp – in a dedicated pouch and at the ready on the outside of your pack! That has literally saved my ass on several a dark night.
If you still think re-purposed grenade pouches are funny, know that you use several items every single day that were originally engineered for the military. From common items like 2 way radios to saving loved ones with nuclear medicine. Civilians have been repurposing military tech (and items) as far back as militaries have existed.
MOLLE webbing by the way is very strong. It can support loads of up to 60 lbs (27.22 kg)
5.11 Rush 24 Backpack Accessories
Wondering what else you can attach to your pack? Here are a few ideas:
- Admin Pouch
- First Aid Pouch
- Water Bottle Pouch
- Comm Pouch
- Bleeder / Blowout Pouch
- Double Decker Pouch
- Mag Pouch
- Flap Sac
- MOLLE Sticks
- Gear Clips
- MOLLE Clips
- Webbing Straps
Tip: Each pouch can be re-purposed to house something it wasn’t designed to hold and the attachment options are virtually endless! Between the MOLLE, velcro, loops and even some add on carabiners, you can truly customize this pack to do EXACTLY what you want it to!
What Can You Use the 5.11 Rush 24 Backpack For?
Everything! As mentioned earlier, this pack is quite versatile and can be used in all walks of life: military, police, range bag, hunting pack, survival backpack, hiking backpack, or even as a plain old everyday backpack.
After testing and torturing mine, it’s truly up to the job!