Meet the RōM Pack: A backpack that converts into an insulated poncho, shooter’s mat (w/Video)

It’s a backpack that converts into an insulated poncho or a waterproof ground cloth — the perfect shooter’s mat.

It’s one heck of a great idea from RōM Outdoors.

The RōM Pack was invented in 2008 by a father of twins who wanted to tote less bags on family outings.

I’m sure he realized — like everyone who’s carried a pack in the military — pounds equal pain.

The first thing you notice when you take the RōM Pack out of the box is the quality of the materials. The DWR (Durable, Water Resistant) fabric is thick — it feels like Kevlar — far thicker than the flimsy material used in other packs.

Between the thickness of the DWR fabric, the zippers and the plastic buckles, this pack is almost over-engineered.

The RōM Pack, folks, is made to last.

The pack features one main storage area and two removable saddle bags, which combine to give it more than 3.000 inches of cargo space. It features mesh compartments for water bottles, and plenty of Arno straps, Molle straps and webbing for adding additional pouches or gear.

The RōM Pack weighs 4.6 pounds empty, and comes in either matte black, camouflage or, my favorite color, FDE.

The best news — RōM Outdoors just dropped the MSRP to $69.97.

T&E

I’ve been carrying a RōM Pack every day a week in preparation for this review.

I couldn’t be more satisfied. This is a great piece of kit — by far the most comfortable and durable day-pack I’ve ever used.

It’s taken a beating, yet still looks brand new.

The shoulder straps are wider and thicker than those of most day packs, and since the pack is longer and wider than others — 19” wide x 17” long — it fits me better.

The insulated lining cushions my laptop better than previous computer bags I’ve used, and there’s plenty of room in the side pockets for all of my EDC gear.

The RōM Pack unfolds to become a poncho or a shooter’s mat.

Deploying is easy, but it took me a couple tries to fold it back into a backpack.  There’s a handy graphic that shows how to refold the pack, plus a video on the RōM Outdoors website.

When you unfold the pack you, obviously, lose the main cargo compartment, so RōM Outdoors offers a simple sling bag for use inside the main compartment. This is also a great idea.

The insulated poncho, which comes with a hood, was a bit warm when I tested it — this is Florida after all — but during our winter (when it drops below 60 degrees) it will be perfect.

Recommendations

There is no doubt this pack will become extremely popular with hunters, anglers, boaters — anyone who spends time outdoors.

I think it’s perfect for long-distance shooters, law enforcement snipers or anyone else who spends an extended period of time on their belly looking through glass. It’s plush compared to other shooting mats I’ve used, and bigger. It offers enough room for two shooters, or a shooter and spotter.

I can wholeheartedly endorse the RōM Pack. You won’t be disappointed, especially for the price.

A 3-in-1 pack was a great idea, which was very well executed.

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About Author

Lee Williams can’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t shooting. Before becoming a journalist, Lee served in the Army and worked as a police officer. He’s earned more than a dozen journalism awards as a reporter, and three medals of valor as a cop. He is an NRA-certified law enforcement firearms instructor, an avid tactical shooter and a training junkie. When he’s not busy as a senior investigative reporter, he is usually shooting his AKs, XDs and CZs. If you don’t run into him at a local gun range, you can reach him at 941.284.8553, by email, or by regular mail to 1741 Main St., Sarasota, FL 34236. You can follow him on Twitter: @HT_GunWriter and on Facebook @The Gun Writer.

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