In 2017 GORUCK announced the pre-order sale of their newest pack in the GR lineup the GR3. The GR3 is the largest in the line of GORUCK packs coming in at 45 liters with standard/custom options like molle or slick exterior, side handles compression straps on the sides, and a Velcro lined interior wall. The GR3 opens clamshell style like the other GORUCK packs and has a large open interior with a Velcro back wall for attaching Velcro backed pouches. This allows the user to customize the interior to their needs.  The inside of the flap has three zipper pockets one solid and two mesh. The outside of the flap has a zippered slash pocket and the back has a laptop pocket.

These are the specs from the GORUCK website:

  • Weight: 5.15 LBS
  • Weight (without Hip Belt):4.59 lbs
  • Scars Guarantee: Lifetime
  • Frame Sheet: Yes
  • Materials: 1000D CORDURA®
  • Made in USA: Yes
  • Dimensions: 22″H x 14″W x 9″D
  • Size: 45L
  • Laptop Compartment: 20″H x 13″W
  • Interior Top Pocket: 6.5″H x 14″W
  • Interior Middle Pocket: 7″H x 14″W
  • Interior Bottom Pocket: 7.5″H x 14″W
  • Bottom MOLLE Webbing: 2″H x 11″W

I ordered one with the slick front (no molle webbing on the front or sides) I wanted the lower profile of the slick front so that it has a more traditional luggage appearance that a bag with molle on the front and sides, and with side handles on both sides (The one on the top of the pack is standard). There is some molle webbing on the bottom panel for attaching a Tough Bag (A heavy-duty compression bag made out of the same Cordura material as the pack); it also came with a removable waist belt and sternum strap.

When the pack arrived several months later the first thing I noticed is that it is substantially larger pack then the GR1 and even the GR2.  What I especially like is the one large main compartment compared to two separate compartments in the GR2. I’ve had a GR2 and could never really get it to work that well for me as a travel with one bag only setup. The two compartments didn’t allow for me to get my clothing and extras packed in the available space (but that could just be me). I’ve been able to pack the GR3 for a five through seven-day trip where business casual is the accepted attire and use the pack as my only piece of luggage with no issue.

With regards to the back interior wall being Velcro for attaching patches and pouches and such, personally, I could live without it and wish it was an option when ordering.  I have a Velcro backed IFAK and pistol pouch that I tried using in the pack and felt that they only took up room making it hard to pack around them. I placed a couple of leftover strips of Velcro that I have to cover the exposed Velcro and usually just run a flat Admin pouch from 215 Gear and a single mag pouch for my Leatherman if I’m checking it, and a Velcro backed CAT holder.

There are also two rows of molle on the back interior wall where molle compatible pouches can be attached.  I like to slip a carabineer or Grimlock through the molle and put my keys there so that they don’t get lost and a small flashlight.  The one other thing I’ll usually attaché to the interior molle strip is a Readyman EDC Covert Belt Pouch.  I stash some extra cash in it for emergencies.  This gives me the most and best packing options.  The laptop compartment like other GORUCK packs is pretty much bomb proof and keeps my laptop safe along with a body armor panel I slip in with it.

The three interior pockets on the front flap are perfect for holding any type of miscellaneous items needed for travel and work.  The front slash pocket is deep and can hold all the things that you want rapid access to and is perfect for dumping your wallet, phone, cash, watch, etc… while passing through airport security.  The side handles make it easy to grasp while boarding a plane (so that you don’t have to swing it off your back in the aisle to stow it in the luggage bins), or to pull it out of the bin. If you cinch up the shoulder straps you can carry it like a standard bag.

At a list price of $455.00 the GR3 is by no means a cheap travel pack but it’s built tough and will provide a lifetime of travel use and is covered by the GORUCK SCARS Lifetime guarantee.

The GR3 can be purchased directly from the GORUCK website

Author  – Art Dorst is the owner of A. Dorst Consulting & Training Services and is a Senior Consultant for LaSorsa & Associates.  He served in the U.S. Navy and Navy Reserves and eventually retired as an NCO from The Army National Guard.  He is also a retired municipal Police Officer, a Certified EMT, NRA Instructor, and is currently a security provider/trainer.