View Full Version : Opinions on fanny packs for CCW
December 11, 2009, 08:52 AM
I live in central Texas where it is warm nine month out of the year and difficult to conceal carry. I am considering a fanny pack, because of the fact you can carry good sized guns in it year round. I was wondering if many people use them. I would like to hear from folks that use them, and don't use them, to get a wide contrast of opinions. Thanks.
December 11, 2009, 09:28 AM
I often use a waist pack in warm weather. I have one that is made for guns specifically, but I do have some generic types that work just fine. Example. I often carry my Det. Special or Smith 36 in a waist pack. This pack has a good wide top access zipper and I can get to the gun just fine. I do still keep my pistol in a quick release holster for added safety. I cannot speed draw, but I can have my pistol out about the same as a belt holster.
I am older so I look in place wearing a pack. No one pays any attention. So, in warm weather a waist pack is a good option.
December 11, 2009, 10:53 AM
I used a few, a long time ago. The only time that I felt I could get away with it (not look out of place) was when we go to the coast (lotta travelers/tourists walking around with all sorts of things hanging off of them- nobody wants to leave their cameras/electronics in their car). It seemed to be a good option if I needed to leave the gun in the car for a particular short stop too. I found that even a small pack would quickly produce/trap sweat behind it, though you can move it from 2 o'clock to 4'oclock often to facilitate some ventilation. Once I got used to IWB carry, I never used the packs again. Now I carry OWB, it very comfortable, easy to conceal and super accessible. Packs are a LOT more convenient to put on/take off then a belt slide holster though.
December 11, 2009, 11:04 AM
Never been a big "fanny pack" fan... even when they were popular (if you can say that). However, I do see the need/advantage of one. This being said.... I bit the bullet and bought a 5.11 push pack last year for a trip. Figured I would just sell it if I didn't like it. It is NOT for sale. Excellent piece to have, packs a lot in that small package and comfortable/versatile too. I highly recommend you look into one.
December 11, 2009, 11:14 AM
Along a similar line of thinking to MrClean, I purchased a Maxpedition Jumbo Verisipack (http://www.google.com/products?sourceid=navclient&rlz=1T4DKUS_enUS266US266&q=Maxpedition+jumbo&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ei=_W0iS6GpOoOZlAfw2M37CQ&sa=X&oi=product_result_group&ct=title&resnum=1&ved=0CB8QrQQwAA), mostly for use as a trail/hiking pack. I've found though that it makes a dandy "man purse" (as my wife likes to call it :rolleyes:). With 2 kids it doesn't look too out of place to be carrying something like this on trips and such. It's fairly easy to carry a full sized gun with extra "stuff" in this bag.
For daily CCW I stick to smaller/medium guns that are easier to conceal with the clothing of the season. Here in NC our summers are fairly warm and I get by nicely with a medium sized gun with a good belt/holster under an untucked T-shirt. My most often used CCW piece is a 2.25" SP101 with 135 gr .357 Mag Short Barrel GDHP's. There are times I pocket carry either an LCR or LCP if I don't want to belt carry, but that's only if I have to go tucked. Crossbreed also makes some fine tuckable holsters that are very comfortable and discreet and at times I find myself using them:
December 11, 2009, 12:47 PM
A few years ago I discovered the waist pack by Bagmaster and, after some experimentation, hit upon a solution for me.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v736/dairycreek/BAGMASTERPIC.jpg?t=1260553438 As you can see from the pic I just attached 3" split rings to each belt loop and an over the shoulder strap to the split rings. This way I can carry over the shoulder, on the belt loops, or use the metal clip on my belt as suits my particular situation. The waist pack is large and allows for carry of a gun but also the extra "stuff" you may want to add.
Bagmaster makes excellent stuff.
December 11, 2009, 02:28 PM
I wear a fanny pack most of the time when off duty. Unless I am doing things that are less casual. I volunteer at my Son's school 3-4 days a week and never a second glance. Although the kids who know I am the Police ask "What's in the bag?" and I give them a silly answer.
It is very practical way to carry your stuff
December 11, 2009, 03:49 PM
I live where a jacket or coat is normal wear, eight months a year. If you have a jacket on, the fanny pack looks out of place. I mean, the reason for the fanny pack is to store stuff that you don't have a place for without it. So, my fanny pack sees occasional Summer duty when the uniform of the day is shorts and a t-shirt. I absolutely do not buy into the theory that "everyone knows you have a gun" when you're packing in a pack. 90% of the population doesn't even know there is such a thing as a fanny pack holster.
December 11, 2009, 05:25 PM
I absolutely do not buy into the theory that "everyone knows you have a gun" when you're packing in a pack. 90% of the population doesn't even know there is such a thing as a fanny pack holster.
I agree. And anyway I am not sure what difference it makes. Someone can think what they want.
We have more warm than cool months here, but right now I am using a jacket & holster, or sometimes a vest and long sleeve shirt. So if someone sees a lump on one side....could be cell phone, etc. Same with the fanny pack. I can't remember when I even had a second glance. When it comes to police, our local sheriff firearms instructor also teaches civilian CCW class. His stated view is all law abiding and capable citizens should carry.
December 11, 2009, 10:18 PM
I wear scrubs or very casual daily so my fanny pack doesn't elicit a second look. It works great for me. I use this one with a Beretta PX4 Storm Subbie. http://www.gungear.com/cgi-bin/ez-catalog/cat_display.cgi?3X300536
December 12, 2009, 07:14 AM
If someone were to wear one, I would suggest trying not to look out of place. We get a lot (A LOT) of "winter visitors" in this area of the country, and many of them wear fanny packs. OK, November to March. But if you're in your 20's or 30's or 40's, any time of the year here, you'd probably look out of place. I might consider one in only the hottest of months, on a trip, but other than that, no. As for 90% of the people not knowing about fanny-pack holsters - OK. But I'm more concerned over the 10% of the people who DO know about them, and while some are LEOs, the rest are possible BGs. And if you fall in that 10%, then yes, you can usually tell who is "fanny-packing." Just my opinion (mixed with some experience) from the area.
Be comfortable AND safe...good luck!
December 12, 2009, 11:05 AM
I use a fanny pack holster often when sightseeing with the family, carried as a belly pack. I carried a CZ97B in it for years, and now carry a 5" 1911. A couple of key points:
- like any good holster, it must have a broad belt that does not stretch
- it must have a reinforced back (to keep from sagging forward under the weight of the gun)
- it should have one-handed access to the gun compartment
Oh, and I do not like retention devices in my fanny pack holsters at all.
December 17, 2009, 12:30 AM
I have two ideas for you
the first is the camelbak goblin. It looks like a small hydration waste pack that has a built in holster in the pack. Bad news is it is out of production so finding one may be difficult.
Second option is a safepacker. I just recieved one today so I need to play with it a bit more, but my initial impression is very favorable. Fits anywhere on my belt and also has accessories for a h2o fanny pack. It is very easy to draw from and does not look like a holster.
December 28, 2009, 08:05 AM
Fanny pack holster - very low hassle, practical way of going very safely concealed. OTOH, slow to draw from and requires mostly your both hands. I use one in no-jacket weather, which is maybe four months a year here. Otherwise, I go OWB.
December 28, 2009, 10:20 AM
Well, there isn't such a thing as no-jacket weather, not to my boss. He wears the exact same style suit all year round. But that's only at work, which has a no weapon policy. But anyway, a linen or seersucker jacket conceals things very nicely, thank you.
December 28, 2009, 02:19 PM
Fanny packs, or belt bags, are the CCW method of choice for me in warm weather. Without a jacket, and the extra pockets it provides, I need a bag for all of my stuff, and it is the easiest way for me to conceal a handgun of any size. I also pack a KT P32 in my RF pants pocket, which can be quicker to draw if necessary.
December 28, 2009, 03:08 PM
Here in the midwest I haven't seen anyone wear a fanny pack for years. In fact, I thought they went out of style 20 years ago. My choice in warm weather is a pocket carry gun. But since you want to carry a large firearm, I guess a fanny pack is your only route. Besides, I didn't think an ex-Marine (I assume since your name is oldjarhead) would consider wearing a fanny pack. :D It's a joke, don't get mad.
December 29, 2009, 03:35 PM
Here in the Northwest, I see bicyclists with all sorts of goofy packs, shoulder bags, etc. (because the Lycra shorts don't have pockets, and the shirts have really thin ones in the back...) I haven't had a problem "blending in" with a fanny pack when I'm riding a bike.
However, for the rest of the time, I found out that all I had to do was "think sloppy". It took quite a bit of mental effort, but I forced myself to wear a shirt untucked.
Untucked shirt in summer is not that crazy here, with the weather changes, and it hides a 1911 just fine.
Winter isn't a problem, of course, as everybody's wearing a coat of some type. Just don't buy Ike length bomber jackets and you're good. :)
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