GORUCK Rucker – Long Range: Our Review

⭐️ Best for Distance Rucking: 86/100

GORUCK’s Rucker – Long Range is nowhere near the company’s most expensive ruck and is actually one of it’s larger-capacity offerings. Conventional thinking dictates that these qualities are mutually exclusive. How “good” can a big, inexpensive ruck really be?

Really good

The Rucker – Long Range has quickly become my go-to ruck for everything from “lazy”, treadmill rucking ventures to intense, ruck versions of CrossFit metcons.

Collecting rucks is fun (and addictive), but with the Rucker – Long Range, you might just be able to meet all of your rucking needs with a single bag.

Pros

Incredibly versatile

Comfortable features

Inexpensive

Cons

Not the best bag for everyday carry

Can feel somewhat bulky, especially when performing gymnastics movements

Might be overkill for shorter/easier rucking ventures

Buy on GORUCK

Overall Score

86

Rucking

95

Dynamic Rucking

95

Load Capacity

84

Everyday Carry

60

Materials

100

Price

75

Customer Reviews

96

Customer Service

80

How we test & score products

GORUCK has quickly become one of the “it” brands in the world of outdoor fitness apparel and gear. With a special emphasis on, you guessed it, rucking, the company has released a number of quality, yet unique ruck sacks over the past few years.

The Rucker – Long Range is one of the company’s, for lack of a better term, “secondary” offerings. It doesn’t get the same press or attention of the flagship rucks of the GR series or even of the Bullet offerings, however, it might be the most “ruck-like” of any of the bags in GORUCK’s inventory.

Built to hold up, whether during a long, hard march or while getting thrown around on surf and sand, the Rucker gets the job done without the flash or price tag some of its “colleagues” boast.

I’ve had a lot of fun using my Rucker over the past few months. Now I’m gonna tell you all about it.

Rucking

Operators jogging around in their giant rucks look cool, for sure, but if you’re a more “casual” rucker, you may be asking yourself “do I really need such a big bag for my ~5-mile outings?”

It’s a good question and trust me; I’ve asked the same question myself (many times!)

Although the GORUCK Bullet is more of an everyday carry bag, in some ways it seems more practical for accommodating a smaller plate while also being less bulky and box-like.

…but after rucking over a hundred miles carrying both bags, there is nothing nicer than that not-so-bulky and box-like ruck against your back!

GORUCK markets the Rucker – Long Range as being “built for rucking” as well as “long range rucking”. What this translates to is a number of features that transform the bag from being a glorified backpack to being an implement specifically designed to accommodate the unique needs and “proper” rucking demands. 

rucker - long range

The most critical additions? The dedicated and intentionally created/designed ruck plate pockets, incredibly sturdy, yet accommodating frame sheet, and the padded shoulder straps. 

One of the ruck plate pockets (yes, plural!) can accommodate a 10-to-30-pound plate while the other is capable of holding a 30 or 45-pound plate. The larger pocket is capable of holding one of GORUCK’s “long” plates, although my “regulation”-sized plates fit just fine in the front pocket/sleeve.

In addition to simply being “capable” of holding these plates, the hard, thick plastic keeps the plates in place, ensuring that your back isn’t getting a hard shot of metal with every step!

The oft-overlooked frame sheet also helps to keep the weight off your back and essentially serves as an extra barrier between your back and the plates. I also find that it encourages better posture, essentially “enveloping” my entire back and casually boosting my torso up.

A lot of ruck straps are sufficient to keep you comfortable for a shorter period of time and under lighter loads. However, less-padded varieties often start to dig into my shoulders when the loads are heavier and gets exponentially more annoying over time, seemingly digging further and further into my shoulder. 

In contrast, the the Rucker – Long Range’s straps feel much better in these conditions, never digging into my shoulders and better absorbing the feel and impact of heavier loads.

The latter two of these inclusions (frame plate and padded straps) probably aren’t things you really think about or consider, particularly when purchasing your first ruck, but I can assure you that they really affect (in a positive way) the rucking experience.

With so many different compartments (both internally, externally) it can be fun getting creative with your weight and plate distribution as well. I actually find it preferable to stick a 10-pound ruck plate in the top, zippered pocket.

It fits perfectly and with the larger plates weighing down the bottom of my bag, I find it creates a more even weight distribution (specifically when I have 30-plus pounds loaded up). The tough, durable CORDURA isn’t as hard as the hard plastic in the plate sleeves nor are the YKK zippers as compressive, but I find that they are more than capable at keeping the plate in place.

I don’t really use the extra, internal mesh pockets, but it’s nice to know I could easily throw in a couple of snacks or other items I might need out on the road.

Ultimately, if “traditional” rucking is your main priority, it’s hard to beat the bag that was engineered with this task in mind.

Rucking Score : 90

“Dynamic” Rucking

We mentioned that GORUCK markets the Rucker – Long Range as being (as the name implies) the rucking bag. However, it also promotes it as being ideal for “GORUCK Selection and other endurance events”. I’m nowhere close to taking on Selection, but I have incorporated this beast into a number of CrossFit metcons. The bag ain’t gonna do the work for you, but it won’t be the reason why the WOD is so hard!

The Rucker – Long Range’s two most important features that help to facilitate dynamic workouts are the heavily padded and secured ruck plate pockets and multiple (top, bottom, sides) padded handles.

As we mentioned in the rucking portion, the ruck plate pockets are not only specifically designed to accommodate GORUCK plates (my Yes4All plates fit just as fine, as well) but also hold them secure and firm with a hard encasement. This ensures that the plates stay in place when throwing the ruck around. Each ruck clean, press, or thruster feels the same as the last (minus the whole getting tired part!)

If you haven’t experienced this stability with your ruck, you’re missing out. If you have, you know that after doing so, you can’t really go back!

Most rucks have a top handle, making it easy to grab it from above and sling over your shoulder. However, when the ruck overhead squats and push jerks start, you’ll really appreciate the extra, bottom handle to hang on to. Even suitcase carries are easier to perform by holding on to the side handles than they are when holding on to the top handle.

I can’t vouche for how well the drainage holes work as I haven’t done any beach workouts (yet), but it’s it’s nice to know that these capabilities do exist on the Rucker – Long Range (which don’t on most other ruck options).

Of course, I had to put my bag through my favorite dynamic rucking complex…the opening movement of “Test” 2 of the 2023 CrossFit Semifinals.

Hey, Michelle!

Thank goodness for the sternum strap!

Other bags’ movement and shifting has caused them to smash into the back of my head during the turnover of the muscle-up…not the most fun feeling. Unfortunately, the added overall bulk of this bag makes it much more difficult (at least relative to the GORUCK Bullet) for me to even turn over when performing the muscle-up.

Sad!

As extreme as this test may seem, keep in mind that CrossFit and GORUCK are officially affiliated with each other now…so…don’t be surprised if this shows up in your workout some day!

Overall, the Rucker – Long Range’s “dynamic rucking” capacities are excellent. Although it can feel slightly bulky at times, especially when performing exercises with lighter weights where the extra load capacity isn’t needed, it serves as a stable and consistent workout implement.

Dynamic Rucking Score: 90

Load Capacity

The Rucker – Long Range actually comes in both 33-liter and 39-liter load capacities. Both are usually the same price (for whatever reason) and I opted for the 39-liter version because, ya know, I like to carry a lot of stuff (or at least have the option to do so!)

While you won’t be confusing it’s load capacity of the mega-sized, 55-plus liter capacities of bags like the Rush 72 or the Rush 100, it is still much more spacious than the majority of everday carry rucks and sports 10-30 percent more capacity than your more “standard”-sized 30-35-liter rucks.

Load Capacity Score: 84

Everyday Carry

If you’re like me (and hopefully you’re not,,,for your sake!), you probably got a lot of joy and pleasure out of making fun of that kid (you know the one) in school who had the yuge backpack. It wasn’t so much that he filled it up with all of his books every night…it was just big.

If you opt for using the Rucker – Long Range as your everyday carry bag…well…I hate to break it to you…but you will become that kid.

Maybe you like that look, but…yeah, whatever works!

The good news? If you rock around with this thing, you, as you might expect, have a lot of space to fit your stuff. However, due to the bag being designed more for rucking than it is for…anything else, it doesn’t fit your stuff as well as many other similialry-sized bags. 

The ruck plate sleeves are the logical places to stick your laptop, but unless you have a larger (and possibly even thicker) machine, its going to bounce and move around a bit. The hard plastic will ensure that it stays protected against external threats, but it can be threat itself to the computer as it moves and bounces against it.

Additionally, the two separate compartments are excellent for keeping items or groups of items separated within the bag. However, this format also limits your ability to load a bunch of stuff, to include larger items, that you would be able to fit into a bag with one, large compartment.

Everyday Carry Score: 60

Materials

When it comes to picking out a ruck to (literally) “invest” in, it makes sense to select one that is constructed of the materials that are suitable for the job.

(“the job” being handling heavy loads over long distances and holding up to a steady stream of abuse!)

The Rucker – Long Range is constructed of 1000D CORDURA, ensuring that the material itself is tough enough to withstand a pounding and the zippers (usually the easiest things to bust on a ruck) are of the YKK variety. These two components alone ensure that the bag is in the “better than acceptable” category of rucks.

The interior mesh is sufficient, but doesn’t seem to be overly supportive, although the material in the upper, non-ruck sleeve pocket is robust enough to easily support my 10-pound ruck plate. The word “support” is applicable again to the frame sheet and to the hard plastic surrounding the ruck sleeves.

I don’t get a “cheap bag” vibe at all from the Rucker’s materials or construction. That it has held so well so far is further evidence of that.

Materials Score: 100

Price

Despite its large load capacity, high-quality materials, and practical additions (ex. Extra handles) the Rucker – Long Range clocks in at a very reasonable, sub-$300 price point. I got mine on sale for $225, although I think it’s still good value (at least as far as GORUCK-priced bags are concerned) at it’s “standard” $295 price.

Price Score: 75

Customer Reviews

GORUCK’s bags never show up on Amazon, however, there are currently over 300 reviews of the Rucker – Long Range on it’s product page on GORUCK’s website. The vast majority of these customers are thoroughly satisfied with the bag as it sports a 4.8/5 rating. Even more impressive, only 11 of these ratings are below 4 stars and of these, only 3 are under 3 stars.

Customer Reviews Score: 96

Customer Service

GORUCK’s shipping, return, and other general policies are reasonable-to-good. As long as an item isn’t a “closeout sale” item, returns are accepted (with free return shipping) within 30 days of purchase. Additionally, footwear ships free (within America) and shipping is also free for GORUCK Tribe n’ Training members.

GORUCK’s shoes, bags, and equipment is designed to take a beating. The company is so confident that its gear will hold up that just about all items (to include the Rucker – Long Range) are covered by the Scars Lifetime Guarantee (“You Break It, We Fix It”) where the company will fix items that have been damaged, assuming, more or less, “normal” use.

I have made a couple of mistakes while ordering from GORUCK before (I guess I just get too excited!) and have had to reach out to address these mistakes. On one occasion, I didn’t get a reply (I had mistyped the zip code on my new address…thankfully, the order was still delivered in a timely manner).

On another occasion, I ordered the incorrect size of an item and immediately asked if the size could be switched out. I received a fast response, but was told I would need to confirm that I wanted to cancel the existing order and make the entire order again…just to change the size ordered.

While their shipping and return policies are really good, I find the company’s customer service to be not so much “bad” and more…”unsophisticated”.

Customer Service Score: 80

Who is the Rucker – Long Range really for?

A lot of people would like and appreciate the Rucker…but who would really like it?

“Long-Range” Ruckers

The engineered “comfort inclusions” (ex. heavily padded shoulder straps) ensure that while your body may start to fatigue over the course of a long journey, it won’t be your ruck’s fault!

Functional Fitness/CrossFit Types

I keep harping on this point, but, especially now that GORUCK and CrossFit are really tight, there is going to be a lot more “ruck (insert exercise here)” activities in WODs/metcons/etc. The side handles and heavily-padded ruck plate sleeves make this the bag for these tasks.

Not for Everday Carry Bros

Unless you want to be “giant backpack kid” that isn’t actually maximizing his maximum carrying capacity, I wouldn’t recommend this one if your main intention is everyday carry.

How we reviewed the Rucker – Long Range

I ruck at least 3 days per week with two of these sessions being shorter, post workout sessions (~3-4 miles) with another one being more of a grinder (~10 miles at 5-MPH pace). The Rucker – Long Range is on my back roughly 60 percent of the time.

I have also been working on pace work a lot lately which has involved rucking, ruck “shuffling” and ruck running on the Air Runner.

I also regularly incorporate the bag into CrossFit metcons and have used it to train common “dynamic rucking” exercises (ruck cleans, ruck thrusters, ruck presses) as I prepare for upcoming GORUCK events.

GORUCK Rucker – Long Range Alternatives

If the Rucker – Long Range sounds pretty good to you, but you think you’d prefer something pretty similar to it, check out our three alternative picks:

Best Alternative

GORUCK GR1

A really short description of what the product is about and why people should consider it instead of the product reviewed.

Pros

Manufactured for dynamic rucking

Superior for EDC

“Scars” Lifetime Guarantee

Cons

Expensive

Less storage capacity

Buy on GORUCK Read Review
Capacity Alternative

5.11 Tactical RUSH24 2.0 Backpack

A really short description of what the product is about and why people should consider it instead of the product reviewed.

Pros

Excellent interior storage compartment

High-quality materials

Built-in hydration system (60 oz.!)

Cons

No dedicated ruck plate sleeve

Load not ideally allocated on the body

Buy on Amazon Read Review
Inexpensive Alternative

GORUCK Bullet

One of the best “intro rucks”, the Bullet is great for light rucking without the bulkiness of larger bags. Also great for stuffing your laptop and work gear and going.

Pros

Compact, ideal for low-weight rucking

Ideal for “light” every day carry

A less expensive GORUCK bag

Cons

Straps aren’t overly padded; uncomfortable on longer ruck outtings

Not equipped for most “dynamic rucking”

Frequently Asked Questions

For when you need to know just a little bit more to be sure…

In most cases, yes. If pure rucking and fitness-related ventures are your priorities, it certainly can be your primary or even only ruck. If you prioritize everyday carry, you might look into getting something more suitable for your specific needs and priorities to complement it.

Little-to-none, even when ruck running (assuming you actually put your plates in the sleeves/pockets!)

Per the company's website: "Purpose built (sic) for long range Rucking and Rucking Events like GORUCK Selection and other endurance events." So...you tell me!

The Rucker – Long Range…My New Favorite Ruck?

Your preference may be for small, compact bag that still holds up well. Or it may be for a bag that looks just as sleek during Mile 9 as it does at the airport check-in desk.

The Rucker is neither of these things…but I’d wager it could still become your favorite ruck, too.

When you’re ready to get serious about rucking and to get prepared for all of the new challenges and nuances that the GORUCK-CrossFit relationship surely has in store…the Rucker – Long Range will be waiting for you…

Summary

Overall Score

86

Rucking

95

Dynamic Rucking

95

Load Capacity

84

Everyday Carry

60

Materials

100

Price

75

Customer Reviews

96

Customer Service

80

How we test & score products

GORUCK Rucker – Long Range

Short summary of the review, what makes the product stand out, and what are the main weaknesses.

You can take some space to expand as this box is meant to let you share your last thoughts with the readers.

Imagine people did not read the review when writing this.

Pros

Incredibly versatile

Comfortable features

Inexpensive

Cons

Not the best bag for everyday carry

Can feel somewhat bulky, especially when performing gymnastic movements

Might be overkill for shorter/easier rucking ventures

Photo of author

AUTHOR

Tom, CrossFit Level 1 Trainer, ISSA-CPT, PN1-NC, DPA, CAPM has been CrossFitting for over 10 years. He has participated in a number of team and individual CrossFit competitions across Europe and the United States. He was the 2012 Chick-fil-A Race Series champion (North Georgia Circuit) and has put together a few gnarly garage and basement gyms in his time!

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