This has been long overdue. A lower back injury and the COVID-19 induced lockdown kept me off motorcycles for quite some time, which didn’t allow me to thoroughly test the Grand Pitstop GR Pack Anti-Theft backpack to my heart’s content. However, I finally managed to clock a couple of city rides and a long highway run with this backpack. Now, motorcycle-mounted luggage is far more convenient and backpacks don’t really appeal to me as much as they did a few years ago. The former lets you ride harder and longer with minimal fatigue, which is music to any motorcyclist’s ears. But what about the time when you’re off a motorcycle? That’s where this backpack shines above all.
Grand Pitstop GR Pack Anti-Theft Backpack: Tested
Is it easy to install?
Very. One can wear it like a traditional backpack and use the additional waist strap (removable when not required) when the Grand Pitstop GR Pack is filled to the rim. There’s also a chest-buckle to unload some weight off your shoulders, however, the setup isn’t as convenient as the unit on the Kriega or Carbonado backpacks. Grand Pitstop will sell you additional bungee cords to strap this to a motorcycle, but it isn’t designed to be used that way – a feature that you get with dedicated tail/tank bags from Rynox and Viaterra.
How much can it carry?
A lot! This backpack is loaded with pockets – 19 to be precise. These are stacked on the inside and that allows you to store the contents separately. For short rides, say to the office, this backpack can easily carry a laptop, charger, an extra set of clothes (for those monsoon days), shoes, wallet, etc. and still have enough room to fit in a cow, well, not literally, but you get the gist. After all, it has a storage capacity of 25 litres.
Then there were days when the Grand Pitstop GR Pack was loaded with at least four-day worth of clothes and accessories (chargers, cables, snacks, water bottle, and more) and the backpack didn’t break a sweat. Lastly, there’s a helmet sleeve which, if used smartly, can be used to carry some additional stuff. In fact, I once used it to carry a sleeping bag for an overnight bus ride.
Now, I’ve used this backpack more off the motorcycle than on one, and it feels useable this way. Why? When fully loaded, the Grand Pitstop GR Pack can carry a lot of luggage, and that isn’t something that one would want, especially on a long motorcycle ride. This was part of my luggage to Goa, and I plonked it inside my colleague’s Suzuki S-Cross without a second thought. On a long highway ride when I did use this backpack, it started to feel uncomfortable after about an hour and a half or so.
Off the motorcycle, it has been my go-to backpack to travel to media rides as it allows me to carry everything – from clothes to my motorcycle helmet – in a single bag. What’s even better? It has a trolley holder strap at the back that allows me to mount it on the handle of my bigger bag and keep the weight off my shoulders until the check-in counter at the airport. The anti-theft zipper design gives me peace of mind when using the Grand Pitstop GR Pack as a backpack, while the hidden pockets allow me to safely tow-away valuables like my wallet during airport security checks.
As aforementioned, motorcycle-mounted luggage is far more convenient and I would choose that over a backpack for any ride – short or long. This would change if Grand Pitstop makes dedicated mounts to convert the GR Pack into a proper tail bag. It did, however, impress me with its prowess off the motorcycle and I would highly recommend it to people who tend to travel with their motorcycle helmet. It can carry a good amount of clothes along with additional equipment and, to top it off, a helmet.
Name: Grand Pitstop GR Pack Anti-Theft Backpack
Price: Rs 3,499 (Rs 2,999, when acquired)
How to buy: Grand Pitstop’s official website
Photography by Kaustubh Gandhi