Open main menu

Mystery Ranch Forager Hip Pack

rated 4.5 of 5 stars
photo: Mystery Ranch Forager Hip Pack lumbar/hip pack

A well made, nice sized pack for everyday and shorter outings.


  • comfortable
  • well made
  • reasonably priced


  • can't bring the kitchen sink :)

Now that I'm retired I find myself hiking the myriad of single-track trails we have close by daily.  

I was carrying a 20 oz handle water bottle and nothing else. I'm pretty dialed in to the weather and what to wear, but would sometimes find I wished I had brought gloves or a beanie or a windshirt or a little more water or a snack, etc.

I've got a few day packs that would certainly work, but was looking for something smaller. Enter the Mystery Ranch Forager.

A small (2 liter) lumbar pack. Constructed of sturdy (but light) 300d Robic. The small lumbar pack weighs in at a svelte 6.3 oz.  It has a comfortable padded rear that goes against the small of your back. Typical Mystery Ranch construction—very nice and sturdy.

A small flat pocket (secured with a snap) next to the padded section. A main compartment along with a small mesh zipped interior pocket.

When I received the pack my first thought was it's light and it's small, but is it too small?

I put together some bits I wanted to take—small first aid kit, small headlamp, and some other just-in-case pieces. 


These bit fits perfectly in the small interior mesh pocket.


Have to have tp and some wipes; these fit nicely in the small flat snapped pocket.




So far so good, but I wanted to carry a windshirt, gloves and a beanie too.


These fit w/o any problem in the main compartment, but I also wanted the ability to carry a little extra water for longer hikes (or hot weather hikes). I played around with numerous containers and limited it to just two that would work. A 16-oz soft water bottle and a small 12-oz thermos if a hot beverage was called for.


Voila—everything fit without too much trouble. Pack is not overstuffed, but it's at its practical limit.


Fine in theory, but how is it working?  With a 100-ish miles on the trails I can say—great. The pack, if I'm carrying the extra water or thermos, is about 2 lbs total—less if the liquids are left out.

It carries so well with that weight, that I forget it's on. Already it's saved me some misery. Twice a couple of fast moving storms moved in on me and I was able to add the windshirt/glove/beanie. On a longer and warmer hike I drained my 20-oz handheld with a couple of miles to go and was able to take advantage of the 16-oz soft bottle.

In summary, a nice light/small lumbar pack that carries the necessities, but nothing extra.





A couple of dozen hikes ranging from 4-12 miles (100-ish miles overall)

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $35

Your Review

Where to Buy

Help support this site by making your next gear purchase through one of the links above. Click a link, buy what you need, and the seller will contribute a portion of the purchase price to support Trailspace's independent gear reviews.

You May Like


Price MSRP: $35.00
Current Retail: $35.00
Historic Range: $14.91-$35.00
Reviewers Paid: $35.00
Weight 0.4 lb
Volume 155 cu in
Dimensions 5 x 10 x 4.5 in
Product Details from Mystery Ranch »

Recently on Trailspace

Patagonia Light Farrier's Shirt Review

Patagonia Iron Forge Hemp 5-Pocket Pants Review