Should you have a concealed carry bag?

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I’ll start with a caveat: this author does not promote out-of-body carry. However, there may be circumstances that require you to carry out of the body and modern concealed carry bags can facilitate this, but in most cases the weapon must be on the person. That said, there are a variety of other reasons that make a backpack, messenger bag, or shoulder bag extremely useful for the concealed carrier. Having a bag designed for everyday transport, either kept in your vehicle or, better, carried with you on the go, makes perfect sense.

The good news is that people in rural, suburban and urban areas regularly carry bags with them, and that doesn’t make them stand out. However, it is important to choose a bag that looks mundane and mundane, not tactical in nature and covered with Molle strap. Bad actors usually associate such a pack with someone who is prepared and is carrying something they might want. Let’s see what this pack is, or rather what it is not:

What is this “hidden transport” EDC pack?

A bag that meets your daily carrying needs is not a bug out bag or a return home bag. A return home bag is one that you should have in your vehicle if you are traveling away from home to help you get home in an emergency and it will usually contain heavier and more comprehensive equipment. For example, in my return home bag, I have several categories of equipment that would not apply to the concealed carry bag, such as additional clothing, outdoor shelter, water purification, tools ignition, navigation tools and three days’ worth. of food. All of these items listed should be in a return home or bug out bag, but are irrelevant for a daily carry bag which should be small and light enough to carry on a daily basis.

This concealed carry bag is not designed for keeping an individual stranded away from home and wandering in nature. Rather, it is designed to be transported in cities, suburbs, towns and public under relatively “normal” conditions to carry other items that may be needed on a routine or emergency basis.

Mountain peak

Recommendations for the pack itself

There are several general options for the style of bag that can be used: typically these are backpacks, shoulder bags, or messenger bags.

The backpack includes two straps and is ideal for carrying heavy loads as bags with a single strap do not distribute the weight for comfortable extended carry. Evacuation bags and return home bags, intended to carry heavier loads of equipment, should always be backpacks as they can be carried much further with more comfort. For a daily carry bag, however, which will be relatively light, a shoulder bag or messenger style bag is usually sufficient. Although shoulder bags or messenger bags are not suitable for heavy loads due to the single shoulder strap, they do offer the advantage of being easier to put on and take off throughout the day, as it is easier to wear a single shoulder strap.

The second advantage of shoulder bags and messenger bags is that they can be carried on the front of your body while carrying them so that the contents of the bag are accessible without removing it; for an EDC bag, this is very important. Therefore, while backpacks are the only solution for heavy survival bags, shoulder bags and messenger bags are ideal for an EDC bag.

I have used these three pack designs a lot and am of the opinion that the sling pack is the best design for a bag intended for EDC use that takes your defensive plan into account. The reason is that a shoulder bag can be quickly hung over the front of your body and snugly adjusted across your upper body, which a typical messenger bag does not do well. This proves to be advantageous for certain reasons which will be discussed further:

What to carry in this bag?

Obviously, equipment related to self defense should be considered in this EDC pack. Again, I advise carrying on the body, but these bags are often designed to carry a handgun. If you keep a handgun in the bag itself, make sure you never leave the bag unattended in public; he must remain attached to you at all times. Some people carry a small, collapsible long gun in their bag, and if you do that the same principle applies, you can never put the bag down.

If you keep your gun on you which is best, there are still a number of things that can go in the bag to meet your self-defense needs. Consider additional magazines for your carry pistol: I believe you should carry at least one refill on one person, but a few spare magazines in the bag make sense. A full size flashlight and a knife can definitely fit in this bag. Even if you wear these items on the body, which you should do, a larger version can be easily carried in the bag. Also consider keeping a good size OC spray cartridge in the bag for less lethal needs. Keep in mind, however, that if you leave the bag for long periods of time in a hot vehicle, OC cartridges can explode in extreme heat.

An absolute must for this pack is going to be emergency medical supplies: again, I recommend wearing at least one tourniquet on the body, but carrying many more can be a problem. The pack can certainly hold a lot more medical supplies, and a complete trauma kit should be kept in this bag along with a tourniquet, hemostatic gauze, pressure bandage, and chest seals, and possibly more than one of each. Medical supplies are absolutely essential and this bag isn’t complete without them.

Also consider carrying simple first aid items to treat non-life threatening injuries, and pack any medications you or yours may need on a daily basis. Do you need certain medications? Keep it in the bag. Also, do you wear corrective glasses, glasses or contact lenses? Keep a set of spare glasses and lenses, as well as contact solution or other eye cleanser, in the bag. Also, think about the mundane things that are important, but light, that can be carried: phone chargers, pen, checkbook, multi-tool, etc., things that are useful throughout the day.

Bullet proof vest

An emerging trend to consider incorporating into your carry bag is the bulletproof vest. Yes, bulletproof vest. Many of these dedicated concealed carry bags are designed with a pocket that fits snugly over a plate-sized armor panel. The rifle plates are quite heavy, but the soft panels that can defeat the threats of handguns are very light and flexible and can be added to this pack. Now back to the previously mentioned benefit of a shoulder bag; if you have armor in the bag, you can simply rotate the sling bag towards your front and immediately put armor on the front of your body if you are faced with a threat. In the event of violence, the sling bag can show up, now offering ballistic protection, while also putting your extensive defensive and medical equipment within easy reach.

When it comes to armor, the most obvious choice will go with a soft panel as the hard rifle plates are quite heavy. I recommend using soft armor rated for Level IIIA, as it can defeat handgun cartridges, including 357 and 44 Magnum, while being slightly thicker and heavier than lower grade soft armor. Depending on the size of your bag, you can fit a standard 10 × 12 inch soft plate or a larger 11 × 14 inch square plate designed specifically for backpacks.

With the addition of armor, a sling bag becomes an active part of your self-defense tool set rather than just a way to carry it. The now purpose-designed low profile crossbody bags produced by a number of manufacturers prove to be a valuable addition to any concealed carrier’s everyday tool set.

Closing thoughts

While many shooters watch the chaos of the world and consider increasing their self-protection by adding a long gun to the vehicle, I am of the opinion that most people are better and more practically served by adding an EDC pack. to their daily transport which contains the items discussed. Long guns get attention, but not a regular shoulder bag. Having extra ammo for your handgun and a full trauma kit with you, along with the other useful items discussed, dramatically improves your abilities in a likely more useful and practical way.


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