Drawing attention is something that rifles and rifle cases do very well. Most tactical gun case options on the market today do nothing to conceal what's inside. Tailored to universally fit a long gun, the shapes and designs of tactical gun cases betray their contents, leading to an uncomfortable or undesired reveal.
Because of this, many leave their long guns at home, heading out instead with a handgun in the waistband. Yet, people forget Col. Jeff Cooper's old adage: A handgun is for fighting your way to a rifle.
Now, the likelihood that people might find themselves in a dangerous situation that lasts long enough to have to fight to a rifle and use it is unlikely. But it isn't unheard of. Natural disasters have wrought havoc on civilized areas, turning law-abiding citizens into desperate criminals for survival's sake.
In such situations, it is imperative to have access to as much defensive capability as possible. A rifle can do much more than a handgun. So, here are 10 tactical gun case options for carrying your firearms discreetly, rifles and handguns alike.
The Diversion Carry Racquet Bag looks, from all appearances, to be a standard racquet bag, obviously. Inside, though, there are padded walls and an inner shell to keep your firearm protected and to ensure that no stray angle juts out of the side and reveals what you're really packing. Constructed of 420 velocity nylon, the bag has an internal divider that allows you to either separate two firearms or keep an AR upper and lower separated. The pack can accommodate a total length of 29 inches. The suggested retail is $71.44.
The Covrt M4 tactical gun case is designed with access in mind. The pack will hold a firearm up to 32 inches in length, allowing it to carry a standard M4 carbine with a collapsible stock without having to break apart the upper and lower. The interior has foam support padding and a padded muzzle cup, as well as retention straps to prevent your gun from jostling about. The bag also features 5.11 Tactical's unique Roll-down Assault Compartment, which allows the bag to be opened fully and easily for access the gun. There is also an external compartment for housing magazines, optics and other accessories. Suggested retail is $140.
Comp-Tac's Trojan Horse Long Gun bag isn't designed to emulate any particular sport bag. Instead, it's made to carry a full-length AR, with 36 inches of interior space. But the Trojan Horse isn't designed to look like a typical gun bag either. The curved edges and white-striped exterior looks like anything you'd find at a sporting goods store or at your local Walmart. Inside, though, you'll find side panels to prevent printing, Molle straps and Velcro attachment points, as well as zippered pockets for storage. This bag retails for $90.
What if you're looking for something that has a dedicated handgun storage solution, but still provides options for everyday use? Check out the Blackhawk Covert Carry Messenger Bag. The non-descript black exterior looks like any other work bag. And, for all intents and purposes, it is. There's a large padded laptop compartment, external zippered pockets with key fobs and internal pockets with spots for IDs, pens and even glasses. The real secret, however, lies in the external back panel that holds two concealed magazine pockets and has a space for mounting a holster. The suggested retail on this bag is $112.45.
For those who enjoy the finer things in life but still want easy access to a defensive weapon, look no further than the Bison Messenger Bag from Coronado Leather. Made from shrunken Bison hide and handcrafted in California, no expense was spared in making this bag as luxurious as possible. What sets it apart, however, is an internal lockable pocket made of ballistic nylon. The pocket contains a universal-fit elastic and nylon holster that will secure your handgun and make it accessible when necessary. The suggested retail price for this bag is $500.
Maybe you're not really a bag person. Maybe your friends look at you weirdly when you walk out with a racquet bag, having never played racquetball. Or maybe you live in Nashville, Tenn. If so, Hazard 4 has a great solution for you in the Battle Axe. Sure, it looks tactical, but it's shaped like a guitar! Surely, only guitars go in guitar cases. Wrong. This tactical gun case is custom-fit for rifles up to 40 inches in length. An interior guitar-shaped shell maintains the outer contour of the case, while internal tie downs keep your rifle secured. It also has exterior pockets for all your rifle accessories. Plus, for those who are wondering, it can actually carry a guitar.
Another winner from Hazard 4 in the covert tactical gun case department is the Armadillo. Shaped like a 13-inch laptop case, the interior of this carry option can hold up to two full-sized semi-auto pistols along with two compact pistols and two double-stack magazines or four single-stack magazines. If one gun is none, then four ought to be plenty. The interior is padded to protect your pistols, and the zipper-pulls are made of lockable steel. Plus, like its big brother, the Battle Axe, it can actually be used for its apparent purpose in carrying a 13-inch laptop.
The Covert Rifle Bag by Sneaky Bags was designed specifically for professionals who needed a subtle bag for their fully loaded and assembled rifle ready at a moment's notice, but didn't want to draw any attention to themselves. These bags, with their external bungees and daisy chains, look more like a hiking backpack than anything else. There is also an exterior pocket that fits a small trauma kit. Inside, there is a concealed flat pocket that is a perfect fit for paperwork or anything else similarly sized. A small key pocket also is sized to fit most smartphones. The rest of the interior, however, is slick to ensure a quick withdrawal of your firearm. At the bottom, a plastic insert prevents sharp muzzle devices from ripping through the bag. A divider also allows for the carry of multiple firearms or other tools in addition to your gun. The suggested retail for this bag is $150.
Of all the bags on this list, this one is most likely to be considered a tactical gun case. But, even so, there isn't much that gives away the presence of a firearm. With its non-descript exterior and rounded, padded edges, it could easily carry any number of things. It isn't long enough to carry a full-size rifle, however. ARs will have to be broken down into uppers and lowers. But with the Molle webbing inside and the magazine pouches, as well as the option to customize the interior to your taste, it makes a great range bag and won't immediately scream "Gun!" when you're walking out of your apartment. This case retails for $170.
Another option in the hiking pack look-alike line is the Rackit-36 Covert Rifle Pack from Vanquest. The main compartment on this pack can hold a 36-inch rifle, which is retained by two FASTabs, allowing for quick access to the gun when needed. As with many other options, the padded interior prevents printing. The pack itself is made from water-repellent Cordura fabric. An external pouch provides extra storage and also allows for the use of a pistol holster and magazine holder sold separately. The recommended retail price is $160.