Review: Mystery Ranch Booty Bag – Dana’s Hidden Gem?

Let’s admit it. We all like tactical stuff that is full of features and made to military standards, right? Well, I for one certainly do. If that’s the case, then why would I care about something like the Mystery Ranch Booty Bag? There are many reasons! It’s an absolutely brilliant bag, made to Mystery Ranch standards, and the usability is beyond your imagination.

Mystery Ranch Booty BagLet’s start with the basics and take a look at the construction. The Mystery Ranch Booty Bag has been made of a medium, thick weight Cordura. It appears to be 500 den, which is strong, waterproof, and also easy to clean. The design is simple. It’s a 11 liter sack made of one big piece of Cordura stitched to the back panel and then trimmed at the top with nylon webbing tape.

There are two adjustable shoulder straps that are quite broad and layered for comfort. They also act as a closure device. Put the Booty Bag on your back and it’s closed. It’s as simple as that. The back panel has two layers of Cordura with a foam stiffener in between them which helps keep the pack’s shape regardless of whether it’s full or empty. This also helps prevent heavy and hard-edged loads, like a dozen bottles of Samuel Adams, from poking and jabbing you in the back. Not a bad feature, right?

Mystery Ranch Booty BagInside the Booty Bag you’ll find an internal storage zippered pocket. It’s quite generous in size, but not too big. This pocket is just right for a wallet, cell phone, keys and a few other small items. Your every day carry pocketknife fits in there as well. In my case, it’s a Chris Reeves’ Sebenza. The Booty Bag also has a nice two-piece handle for easily hand carrying the bag located on top of the pack.

Mystery Ranch Booty BagThe Mystery Ranch Booty Bag is available in all of our favorite tactical colors (Coyote, Foliage, and Multicam), but there are also more social-friendly options like green and teal. The only downside is the lack of any morale patch panel. While it doesn’t impact the usability of the Booty Bag, nevertheless it would be nice to have even a small one. Who wouldn’t like to stick a cool patch on the bag while heading to local grocery? (Dana, I have one special request. Please add a patch panel in Booty Bag V2.0!) However, since there is plenty of space for it, I think I’ll just stitch a piece of loop onto it myself.

This pack, albeit simple, is all about the fine details. Take the shoulder straps for example. They’re multi-layered with soft mesh on the inside for carrying comfort. They feature nylon tape trimming on the sides for an extra long life. They have milspec tape for adjustment, which is attached with two rows of self-locking stitching. The bottom attachment points are reinforced with additional Cordura ‘wings’. It’s a simple feature that works really well. In case you’re wondering, there is another very reputable bag manufacturer that calls attention to this small feature on packs that are six-times more expensive so it’s not just for looks.

The internal compartment of the Booty Bag features a heavy-duty YYK zipper. The stitching on the bag is just as good as all the other packs in the Mystery Ranch product range. It’s thick, strong, and self-locking – perfect! On top of that, all the materials used in the bag – including the tapes, buckles, and thread – are high quality and designed for long-life service. All of this, backed by a lifetime warranty and Mystery Ranch’s legendary quality, starting at under 50 bucks? Yes! It’s impressive, don’t you think?

Mystery Ranch Booty BagNow let’s take a look at how I’ve used in the real world. Whether it be shopping with style, hunting vegetables, or tracking the kids, I’ve been using my Booty Bag on many ‘local missions’ for many months now. I can say without a doubt it’s been a really handy bag for all non-tactical everyday activities.

Mystery Ranch Booty BagFirst of all, the Booty Bag has quickly become my favorite grocery bag. There is nothing like daily hunting for milk, bread & fresh vegetables with a Mystery Ranch on your back. It’s also perfect for barbecues with friends. Grab your Booty, drop in a couple of pounds of beef, some bacon, cold beers, and a fleece shirt for cooler evening temperatures and you’re ready to go!

Mystery Ranch Booty BagHeading out with the kids to the park or a half-day walk in the woods? The Booty Bag is all you need. Load it up with your Klean Kanteen, a couple of sandwiches, an extra layer for the kids, compact camera, cellphone, some 8×30 Steiner binoculars and you’re all set. There is even enough space for a compact stove, instant soup and a metal cup for an emergency hot meal for kids in case they get hungry.

Mystery Ranch Booty BagAt the end of the day, with a jacket stuffed inside, the Mystery Ranch Booty Bag can also be used as a pillow. My 3-years-old son loves to rest on it in the middle of the forest and to listen to the sounds of nature. It seems like the bird’s song is his favorite music. He must have inherited my rambling gene!

Mystery Ranch Booty BagThe Mystery Ranch Booty Bag has been incredibly useful. I’ve used it to carry loads of up to 20 beers, to bring wood slivers and twigs from the woodshed to my cabin to start the fire, and just about anything else I can think of. It really is a multi-task bag! The Booty Bag is also very easy to wash and clean, which is why I’m not afraid to use it for virtually anything! I would think twice before stuffing my beloved Mystery Ranch ASAP with resin-covered twigs, but I didn’t think twice about using my Booty Bag for that since it’s durable and easy to care for.

Mystery Ranch Booty BagWhile the bag in itself maybe awesome, the ultimate test is carry comfort. Since the bag is pretty basic there isn’t anything ultra technical about it. However, the mesh-inlaid straps and foam-filled back panel offer a surprising level of comfort for what it is. I was really amazed how nicely the Booty Bag rides on my back. When walking, running, or playing with dog and kids, the Booty Bag is nice and comfortable. Of course I’m referring to fairly light loads in these situations. I’m not jogging with 20 beers on my back for God’s sake! There are certain rules that have to be followed when carrying precious cargo such as cold, frosty brews.

In conclusion, the Mystery Ranch Booty Bag is a great pack and I need to buy at least two more. Yes, AT LEAST two! I want one to put in the trunk of my 4×4 and always keep it handy and the second one for use at my country cabin. Oh, well … maybe I should get a third one for the wife as well. Now think about your friends. With a moderate price tag of $49 (remember you’re buying Mystery Ranch quality), it makes a perfect gift for anyone who enjoys outdoor life. In my humble opinion, Dana Gleason has created a small gem without even knowing it … or who knows, maybe they knew it all along in Bozeman!

Mystery Ranch Booty Bag

AUTHOR

Piotr Ma

Piotr is an avid backpacker, mountaineer, skier, sailor, and all around backcountry adventurer. Read more …

All stories by: Piotr Ma

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