Saturday, January 29, 2011

Review: S.O.C. E&E Tac Ruc

S.O.C. E&E Tac Ruc
When it comes to day packs most people are not picky. Usually something small that holds a water bottle and a Cliff bar do the job and anything more is a bonus. Some people like more and some people like less and each have their pros and cons. With a small pack that carries a hydration system, food, and a few other small knick-knacks you can move fast and cover land without fatiguing yourself. If you’re like me, you have a larger pack that has all that the smaller pack has and more room for extra gear such as rain gear, a three liter hydration system (less I have to stop to pump water), general preparedness kit, headlamp, and more. I have a tendency to take a bit more then I’ll need but at least I know that if I get into a jam I have what I need. Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. So with this ideology in mind, I bought a pack that I knew would suit the need. This pack is the S.O.C. E&E Tac Ruc.

Now when I bought this pack I was new on the outdoor scene and fell victim to an occurrence that many newbies do. I bought military gear. Now by no means do I label Mil-Surp as garbage, in fact, I still use some Mil-Surp gear. You just have to be careful that you get the USGI gear and not copies from overseas. I was fortunate enough to have my lack of knowledge work for me; the S.O.C. E&E Tac Ruc makes a more then capable day pack. Its dimensions are 20” x 12” x 6” making it rather large for a day pack. When rock scrambling and squeezing through tight opening in rocks I sometimes have problems maneuvering, but it is by no means impossible. My biggest complaint is how far the pack comes out. Even with the “slimming straps” tightened all the way it still seems to protrude.

As you can see it protrudes quite a bit
Note the slimming straps being used to carry poles
The Tac Ruc’s size does not create to any discomfort issues because of its awesome suspension system and padded straps and belt. The back panel has three padded mesh sections that fit the natural contours of your back which do a pretty good job of keeping back strain to a minimum when used with the waist belt (recommended). The load fits closely to your back and does not shift, making it feel more like an extension of yourself rather than a backpack that may bounce around or distribute weight unevenly. The waist belt feels to be a little high but I’ve been told by a friend that it is fine and it doesn’t seem to affect the fit negatively so I’m not complaining.

When it comes to features the Tac Ruc really shines. There is literally MOLLEE webbing everywhere. The only side that does not have MOLLEE webbing is the side going against your back, leaving you with five sides to attach any MOLLEE compatible gear you may have.

I used the MOLLEE webbing to attach a external pouch
As stated earlier, the pack itself is large. This gives a very spacious main compartment typical to any rucksack design while also providing two smaller slip pockets on the sides of the main compartment and two pockets running the depth of the pack in the front and rear of the main compartment. These pockets allow for organization of gear making it easy to know where your desired piece of kit is in the main compartment. 

Main compartment
Since all the space gives the pack a potential to be loaded with heavy equipment, the Tac Ruc has two aluminum stays that provide support while remaining very flexible. The internal pocket closest to the users back is big enough to hold a three liter hydration system that runs out through the pack’s drawstring waterproof storm flap and out of the lid of pack where you can route it through the D-rings.

Closed storm flap

Hydration hose coming through the storm flap exit and going through the lid
Hydration hose coming through lid and routed by D-rings
 The lid of this pack is even special. On top it has a Velcro closure which when opened has its own waterproof map viewing window. This “viewing compartment” is accessed through a zipper pocket on the lid, inside the map compartment is another zipper that gives you the ability to access the main compartment without unbuckling the lid.

Map viewing compartment
Large and in charge, the S.O.C. E&E Tac Ruc sports many features that provide the user with more options than he or she could want. Although it is a little pricey, averaging at around $84.99, it is wroth the money if you have it.  


  1. Nice review mate. Cleared a few things up for me and good over all pics.