1. Are you a current member with account or password issues?

    Please visit following page for more information

    Dismiss Notice

2015 Camelbak H.A.W.G. Mil Tac

Discussion in 'Gear Reviews' started by Southpaw, Aug 29, 2015.

  1. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    This is the review of the 2015 Camelbak H.A.W.G. A member requested this review as there hasn’t been much review on the internet.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    Materials:
    500D Rip Stop Cordura w/ Laser cut Molle.

    Dimensions:
    Size: 19 x 10.5
    Capacity: 23L (including the hydration compartment)
    Weight: 2.2 lbs.

    Prior to purchase:

    I wanted a pack that had enough options for carry, but still have that sleek, simple design that doesn’t cause too much attention. What attracted me most about the pack are its dimensions and versatility. Some packs are either too tall and narrow, or short and boxy. I do not prefer packs that are on the wide side as it limits body motion when the pack is worn. Then some packs are either too simple with not enough straps/loops, or look too busy with excessive straps and loops.

    First Impression:

    When I first got this pack, the first thing I noticed was how light it was. I’ve had a lot of great packs in the past, but most were on the heavy side, and for a reason. For instance the Goruck GR0 is made out of 1000d Cordura. It’s a very high quality built pack and it can take a beating, but again, it’s on the heavy side, but it keeps its shape which I like. Same with the Rush 12 (another great pack), its 1050d Ballistic Nylon puts the pack at a little over 3 lbs, but again, it keeps its shape which I like. The HAWG’s 500d Cordura was actually far less stiff out of the box than what I am used to, which I initially didn’t like (and I’ll explain the good ending later) and it actually felt flimsy to me. It reminded me of outdoor polyestermade packs from Osprey, Deuter, Gregory etc. We’ll get back to this in the end.
    [​IMG]
    Key Features:

    Velcro Keepers: This pack is sleek. It has so many little options that make up to be an outstanding EDC pack. I love the Velcro keepers on every strap. You’re able to fold the straps and secure them with the Velcro keepers built in, making dangling straps disappear while using the pack. Every strap on this pack has it.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    The pack also comes with a waist belt that is detachable. Again, comes with Velcro keepers to keep your straps from dangling. I took my waist belt off.
    [​IMG]

    Loops/Straps: The bottom of the pack has loops for attaching extra gear. Again, another option that is discreet yet it’s ready when you need it.
    [​IMG]

    The main compartment has three loops to dangle or tie gear, and the side compression straps are also there to accommodate strapping items on the sides.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    I’m a big believer of the laser cut molle. It is very tough while not putting weight on the pack.
    [​IMG]

    Velcro for Morale Patches:
    It can accommodate 2 full sized patches with room to spare on each side
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    D Rings: It has 4 D rings on the shoulder straps; 2 up top and 2 in the middle. Also 2 more D rings on the waist belt attachment for hooking things like a lunch pale. Again, discreet yet available when you need to hook gear if need be.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    Hydration Tube ports: The pack has five different drinking tube exit ports. The typical top middle, then there’s also one on each side of the pack towards the bottom if you want to route your hydration tube under the arm. The other two are on each side of the handle grips up top. I believe it is mainly for devices with an antenna or other wire related items like headphones, but again, the option is there for the hydration tube. The pack comes included with the Camelbak Antidote hydration bladder.



    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]


    Zippers: The zippers are very responsive and super easy to open without it being loose. This is probably my favorite zippers out of all the bags I’ve owned. All of the bags I’ve owned had very heavy duty zippers, but I hated the “drag” that heavy duty zippers have when operating. Camelbak did a fantastic job on this. The loops on the zipper were crap. I cut them off and replaced it with gutted paracord and the pack looked even better.
    [​IMG]
    Compartments:

    The hydration compartment can house a 3L hydration compartment. I currently have an SKD Pig Grunt Frame Sheet to give the bag some frame (thought the pack is comfortable and feels no different without it) and my favorite jacket the Arc’teryx Atom Jacket when I need it, fits in there as well.
    [​IMG]
    Pictured below shows the SKD Tactical Pig Grunt Frame sheet behind the jacket
    [​IMG]

    Quick stash compartment: very convenient and has a lot of room. I can fit my hand all the way to wrist. Also has a key attachment
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    The pack has two full length compartments. The admin compartment does have some organization. But not as good as lets say the Rush 12. My initial impression of the admin compartment wasn’t too good to say the least, as I thought the materials they used for the organization was too thin and flimsy (again, I will explain the second good ending in the end).
    [​IMG]
    The pack has three pen size slots. Surprisingly they’re actually three different widths. One fits a pen perfectly, the other I use to hold a Chapstick, and a large bottle of eye drops.
    [​IMG]

    The two bigger pockets, one I store a case with my headphones, the other I store Sunscreen , sanitizer (not pictured), and gum. The top has a large slit in which I store a case with my Chums Pouch as my FAK, wet wipes, and tissue.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    Keep in mind, the admin compartment is full length, and there’s TONS of cavernous room on the bottom which I have a maxpedition organizer (inside: Zebra pen, Zebralight SC52, LM Wave, extra batteries, paper, spare key, super glue, lighter wrapped in electric tape) , a pouch for my charger, and mobile wifi, as well as an umbrella.[​IMG]

    The main compartment is very simple which I like. I was used to packs that have the zippered pouches on the front flap (which is awesome and a great way to organize items), but I prefer a main compartment with a separate admin compartment to keep my “little items” easily accessible rather than taking that extra step by unzipping the main compartment, then unzipping the zippered compartment on the front flap, taking out another organizer or pouch, and then pulling out the item. I like for my bigger items (such as laptop, binder etc) in the main compartment, the rest of the tools in the admin compartment. I like that it's grey as it gives a nice contrast from the rest making it easier to see your gear. Again, very cavernous as there's a ton of room on the bottom. You can see my Hydroflask.
    [​IMG]

    Shoulder Straps:

    EDC packs shouldn’t have wide or bulky straps. The independent suspension harness has just enough padding to accommodate an empty or fully loaded pack. I love the way they reinforced the side of the straps with the extra layer of material along the sides, preventing it from tearing. Also, the straps have breakaway buckles.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Where the pack shines:

    This is by far my favorite part of the pack. When it comes to choosing an edc bag, the most important aspect in a pack for me (and in edc) is carryability. They hit the nail in the coffin with the dimensions of this pack. It is not too narrow or too wide where my arms hit the pack when I walk. With the perfectly executed shoulder straps, along with the very comfortable Air Director back panel and great dimensions, by far, this is the most comfortable pack I’ve ever worn, empty or fully loaded. If anything, the straps are hardly noticeable in feel when wearing the pack heavy or light. It’s bizarre.
    [​IMG]

    Remember when I mentioned about the flimsy frame? How I felt the 500d Cordura was just too soft and didn’t hold the shape of the pack? Yes that is true, and I actually battled with this feature when I first got it. But this is where this pack shines. You can compress this pack according to how much or how little you have in the pack. That was one thing I didn’t like on “thicker built” packs that keep the same shape. When you barely have anything in there, the pack still looked bulky even if it was empty. With this pack you can simply compress it or expand it however you want depending on your carry. No wonder why they designed it this way.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    note: even when the pack is full, the side straps still has extra length to accommodate attaching more gear on the side if need be.
    Remember the flimsy admin compartment? This bothered me the most and I’ve talked to a few buddies on here about it. But maybe Camelbak did this for a reason. The other day I was testing its load out and I packed the heck out of it, and guess what happened? Since the pack expanded, the admin pocket became tighter, but not too tight. Items were still snug and accessible, even when the pack was fully loaded. Imagine a bag in which the admin pockets were already snug to begin with. If you had a fully loaded pack, the admin pockets would be so tight; you wouldn’t be able to put anything in or out of those pockets. Genius.

    Pictured below is when the pack is not fully loaded
    [​IMG]Pictured below is when it is fully loaded. Notice the pockets get a little snug but you're still able to pull items out
    [​IMG]
    The last thing I want to point out is the 500d Rip Stop Cordura. I absolutely love Cordura (and as many do) because they are very abrasive and tear resistant, but I also love the rip stop woven technique which makes the pack even more tear resistant. I don't know if it's the type of Cordura they use on this pack or the rip stop technique itself but the material on this pack is "sleeker" than other packs made from Cordura (as supposed to let's say matte finish which attracts dirt and pet hair), which makes it very easy to clean and it hardly (if that) attracts hair. And if dirt gets on it, it can easily be wiped off.
    [​IMG]
    Overall, I love this pack. I actually love everything about it. In the very beginning at one point I thought it wasn't going to work out, but the more I used it the more I realized how utilitarian this pack was. Now I see why so many people use this pack especially the military community (supposedly the Navy SEALs favorite pack- but who knows. This pack just works). I bought it for $136 and it came included with an optional waist belt and a Camelbak Antidote hydration bladder. The perfect dimension, carry options, material, and amazing carryability, and useable organization, what’s not to like?

    Here are some other misc pictures, along with a size comparison with my Rush 12 (emergency bag that I keep in my trunk

    At work
    [​IMG]

    At work with the Goruck shoulder bag and HAWG
    [​IMG]

    With my other favorite pack, the Classic Rush 12
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I will keep this thread going and will post updates on features I find useful, ways of carrying gear effectively, and maybe some adventure pictures "in the wild." And if any current or future members that own or will own this pack, feel free to post pictures as well
    -------------------------------------------
    Cool features:
    The velcro cover to the ports on the sides of grab handle has loops on the end. I was able to attach a carabiner to attach my Hydroflask. I just bought the Sbiner from Nite ize tonight and it works fantastic!
    [​IMG]

    Added S Biners to the Velcro covered of the exit port up top.Very small and discreet. Blends in with the pack put will perform when you need it to
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The elastic chest strap has room to spare to hang my sunglasses!
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Great way to carry a fixed blade when outdoors
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Pepsi Jedi

    Pepsi Jedi Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    Messages:
    500
    Likes Received:
    641
    Nice. What's the cost on that?
     
  3. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    I paid $136, and it came with the Antidote Hydration bladder


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  4. Pepsi Jedi

    Pepsi Jedi Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    Messages:
    500
    Likes Received:
    641
    Not too bad. I like the some what minimalist look.
    Thanks.
     
  5. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    Minimalist with lots of options when needed


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  6. tmedina

    tmedina EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Messages:
    6,108
    Likes Received:
    7,732
    Holy carp, that's a helluva review - thanks!
     
    Southpaw likes this.
  7. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    The guy wanted a review so that's what he got lol do it right or not at all right? (at least I hope lol)


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    tmedina likes this.
  8. chaosmagnet
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • In Omnia Paratus

    chaosmagnet Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,410
    Likes Received:
    739
    OUTSTANDING review and pics. Thank you!
     
    Southpaw likes this.
  9. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    No problem !


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  10. geostation

    geostation Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    May 15, 2015
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    16
    what an awesome review. Camelbak should send you the quantico for review.
    It was me who requested the review. Thank you very much Southpaw .

    hawg seems better than i expected. I wonder why this bag doesnt get much love :/
     
  11. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    Yes sir. It doesn't matter if it hasn't gotten much love. If anything I'm happy not many have it as I feel exclusive :)


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  12. Thomas Chagrin

    Thomas Chagrin Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    64
    Great review, as everyone has said. You have me thinking about snagging one of these to try! I'm in all-out "find what's right for me!" mode, so this may be another candidate now! How do you feel about the large compartments not fully clam-shelling? It's a feature that I generally look for, but maybe it's not a necessary as I think. Thanks for any further input! The side-by-side pic with the Rush 12 was very helpful, by the way.
     
  13. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    That's probably the most effective (and most expensive) way to find what you like is to buy it and use it. Try getting it on Amazon if it doesn't work out bc they have a great return policy. That was probably the biggest challenge for me before buying this Cuz my rush 12 and gr0 was clam shell opening, it really depends maybe on how much you pack. If you carry a ton of stuff and have many packing systems then you might wanna stay with a clam shell. But this wasn't a deal breaker Cuz the stuff that goes in the main compartment are big stuff so I don't need a clam shell. I know my laptop goes in, I know my clip board goes in, I know my lunch pale goes in, I know my hydroflask goes in. Lol so from someone who was used to clam shell, it wasn't a hard transition. Plus all the other features in this pack trumps all that anyway.

    I love the rush 12. Still the most organized pack in the backpack world imo. But I prefer the hawg for edc better bc it's more comfortable, I can compress it when I have less things, the shoulder straps on the r12 are thick and bulky for edc for me and I prefer the crisp zippers in the hawg. I forgot to mention about the zippers. It has material over it that guards it (can't explain is well at the moment) like the Tom Bihn bags.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  14. Thomas Chagrin

    Thomas Chagrin Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    64
    Great info, thanks! I have been buying from Optics Planet because they have great prices and their return policy is awesome. I may have to give this CamelBak a go!
     
  15. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    Go for it! What's to lose?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  16. JHGM

    JHGM Dinosaur Supervisor

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2012
    Messages:
    2,186
    Likes Received:
    11,787
    Well done sir.

    :D
     
    thePlumbah likes this.
  17. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    Here's another feature I just found. The velcro cover to the ports on the sides of grab handle has loops on the end. I was able to attach a carabiner to attach my Hydroflask. I just bought the Sbiner from Nite ize tonight and it works fantastic!
    [​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    Chris C and chaosmagnet like this.
  18. chaosmagnet
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • In Omnia Paratus

    chaosmagnet Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,410
    Likes Received:
    739
    I have the previous model and I like it a lot. Much of what I see on this version is similar.
     
    tmedina likes this.
  19. Southpaw

    Southpaw EDC Junkie!!!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    13,517
    I'd like to see a picture of yours when you get a chance


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  20. chaosmagnet
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • In Omnia Paratus

    chaosmagnet Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,410
    Likes Received:
    739
    Pics are hard for me to do but I'll try to get something posted tomorrow.