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MSR Baja Pak Reviews

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  • Retail Price ~$69.95 Shop Now
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I had recently developed a hole in my current waist tool pack (I refuse to call it a fanny pack   :prof: ).  It would seem that carrying every tool possible to rebuild my bike in the middle of the woods had taken its toll. The over abundance of wrenches, tire bars, spark plugs, etc., had it nearly bursting at its seams. With the need for a large capacity tool pack in mind, I zero'd in on MRS's largest  model; the Baja Pak.


What's it do?


The MSR Baja Pak is the largest capacity "fanny pak" (their words, not mine) that they offer. Realistically, the Baja Pak is designed for longer adventure riding and/or desert rides. With all the available space, you should be able to carry everything that you need to get yourself back to the truck in the event of an untimely scenario.


Product Overview


Right out of the box, the Baja Pak looked humongous! Both visually and in-the-hand, the product appears to be extremely well made. It offers a wide variety of elastic loops, high capacity pockets, clear plastic map holders, and very cushy "air padded" 2" tapered belt. It's made from Ballistic and 845 D nylon and features big YKK zippers with custom pull tabs. Wait... Ballistic? Sounds good to me!   ;) The Baja Pak measures 6.5" high, 11.5" wide, and 3.75" deep (empty). When fully loaded, mine expanded to twice that depth.








I found the waist straps/buckles to be very easy to use. The adjustments were simple to make, even with gloves on, staying securely where they're set. Filling it with tools was also very easy and efficient. It swallowed up all my typical gear easily with room to spare, so I tossed in some snacks. Once all the pockets and zippered compartments were full and closed up, the belt straps snugged up, the Baja Pak felt very secure. Everything was nicely compacted together, where I felt confident that the pack wouldn't open up while riding or that anything would be lost.


The first thing that I noticed once I got on my bike was that the full loaded Baja Pak was touching the rear fender. That was the demise of my old tool pack.  The weight of the tools rubbed a hole in it when riding in the sitting position. I tightened up the padded waist strap pretty good in an effort to get the Baja Pak to ride higher and for the most part, this worked. It still rubbed on the rear fender a little, but I suppose that the entire garage worth of bike tools inside had something to do with that.   ;)





Loaded up with the MSR Baja Pak, ready for some PAC NW single track!



The air padded belt was extremely comfortable, even with it cinched up as tight as I did. I had the opportunity to ride in the mud and rain, so I was able to see how well it held out water. My trail map was still dry as were all the things inside the outer pocket. The Baja Pak is not waterproof, but water resistant and in the typical Pac NW wet weather that I rode in, it did just fine.


When riding, I did notice the Baja Pak flop a bit, but really only a small bit off jumps. Considering the generous dimensions of the pak and how loaded up I had it, some flop is to be expected.



Pros   :thumbsup:

  • Large capacity.
  • Durable construction.
  • Comfortable waist strap.
  • Well organized tool compartments.

Cons   :thumbsdn:

  • Rubs on fender when sitting.


Bottom-line   :prof:


When it all comes down to it, the massive MSR Baja Pak gets the job done. It's neatly organized, well made, and comfortable to wear. The only drawback to being so large is that if you bring ALL your trail tools, you may get some fender rub that may shorten the life of pack somewhat. But, that may be the small price to pay if you pack for every eventuality like me.

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Holds a ton and its bullet-proof. It would be nice to have the option of suspenders/shoulder straps 'cause it can get heavy with a full load of tools.

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The first two rides I did with mine I managed to fall off the bike both times right on my back.  The tool pak full of tools left a bruise the first time and the second time a bruise on top of a bruise.  Ouch! 

I just started wearing it again this year on longer rides.  It's a good tool pack, but if you're going to be racing with your buddies leave it at the trailer.

I struggling to figure out if it's better to have the tools attached to the bike or not.

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I've got nothing but good things to say about the MSR Baja Pak. I run dirtbike adventure tours in Cambodia, and my present pak i have had for nearly five years, I kid you not!


It has only just started to show signs of wear and tear, mainly around the waist band joint; We carry a lot of tools for days on end [probably more than they were designed for.] It has bulletproof stitching, well thought out design, and the best thing has to be the zips. My main issue with previous bags were that after a few months of use, [normally after one monsoon], the zips would fail, often resulting in losing precious tools. The Baja pacs zips are still going strong after five years of mud & dirt.


On another note, I also tend to wear it on my front, which puts less strain on my back, and solves the fender damage issue.


My only issue [i call it an issue, it's a minor inconvenience really] is the velcro map holder on the main flap; after a while it tends to come undone, and things do fall out when you try to get stuff out of the pak while you wear it. If they put a zip instead then this Pak would be 10/10 for sure.


An amazing Pak for long adventure tours. Brilliant!




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