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Gobi Gear Review:
Stuff Your Stuff Into
Segmented Stuff Sacks

By Diane Spicer

Gobi Gear Review from Hiking For Her: These segmented stuff sacks are the solution to the chaos inside your backpack. This review presents two different options for hiking gear organization.

This Gobi Gear Review focuses on two compartmentalized stuff sack options.

Before we get to the good stuff, a few disclosures:

Gobi Gear, located in Bend, OR, provided this hiking gear to Hiking For Her and asked for an honest review.

All of the opinions, facts and photos in this Gobi Gear review are based on Hiking For Her's use of these stuff sacks.

Rest assured, nothing is recommended on this website that doesn't mean high standards.

  • If I haven't put my hands on it, or don't use it myself, I don't recommend it!

Now on to stuffing you full of facts in this Gobi Gear review.

Gobi Gear first impressions

Black GobiGear sack

Wow, nice small footprint in my already stuffed gear locker!

And are these stuff sacks ever lightweight (see exact weights below).

But you may be wondering why a hiker wants a stuff sack for anything other than a sleeping bag.

Here's your answer:


Trail fact: it's your secret weapon as a hiker.

In my experience, you can get on the trail in one of two ways.

Let's start by using Disorganized Diane's approach to packing for a hike:

  • Throw everything you need into your backpack and allow gravity to do its customized "gear mix" as you hike.
  • Arrive at your destination and spend 10 minutes digging around blindly for your (fill in the blank) inside your backpack while your hiking companions fidget and fume.
  • Give up the blind groping in frustration, and resort to the dramatic "gear dump", watching your stuff fall into rock crevices or flop into the dirt.

Now let's give Organized Ophelia's method a chance:

  • Lay out all of your gear at home, segmented into piles that make sense to you (outer wear, clean clothing, survival gear, female hygiene, ten essentials).
  • Stuff that gear quickly and efficiently into separate compartments in a Gobi Gear stuff sack.
  • Plop the sack into your backpack, knowing that you double checked your gear AND you know it's arranged for easy access.

If you resonate with Ophelia, read on for details in this Gobi Gear review.

Gobi Gear for day hiking:
The Hobo Roll
with shoulder strap

Hobo Roll from Gobi Gear

Again, there are two ways to approach getting ready for a day hike.

But let's channel Organized Ophelia right away by using the Hobo Roll's vertical compartments.

To give you all the details that any self respecting hiker wants to know, here are the Hobo Roll technical specs:

  • Weight: 3.5 ounces   
  • Capacity: 18.5 liters
  • 10" wide  x 15" long
  • Ultra-light, ripstop 30 Denier nylon
  • Lightweight aluminum buckles for straps

Followed by...

Usability specs for
comfort & convenience

  • 5 internal vertical compartments
  • 2 radial compression straps
  • Opens at both ends
  • Clever little storage pouch that reverses to a secret internal pocket for critical items for navigation, communication or transportation
  • Shoulder strap attachment points for optional strap, a generous 57 inches long, fully adjustable, featuring a non-slip shoulder pad and 2 metal swivel snaps with a quarter inch snap opening
GobiGear shoulder strap version

Bottom line for the Hobo Roll?

  • Plenty of space and versatility but lightweight and not bulky to use
  • Can be pressed into service as a day bag

I used it in my day pack for this review, and found it to be the perfect solution to the perennial problem of staying organized on the trail.

  • If you've ever felt the frustration of hunting for misplaced gear, you know how precious that is.

I also tried the shoulder strap carrying method, and realized how convenient it will be when I'm in the back country and don't want to pack an extra day pack but do want to carry gear, food and my ten essentials when leaving base camp.

And here's a small but important fact that might be a "girl" thing: The color combo (Midnight and Lava) is one that you don't see anywhere else. I like it!

See what you think:

HoboRoll from GobiGear

Packing the Hobo Roll is something of an art, especially if you want to utilize the "secret" pocket inside. Luckily, Gobi Gear provides a 3 minute packing video which I highly recommend for two reasons:

  • A loveable dog steals the show.
  • You won't believe how much clothing and gear can be stuffed into this sack and cinched down tightly unless you see it with your own eyes.

So feel free to use this stuff sack for carrying your gear on multiday hiking trips as well as day hikes.

Need a size comparison?

Take a glance at the photo below for an idea of how small the Hobo Roll cinches down when fully loaded, via the magic of compression straps.

Gobi Gear Hobo Roll leaning against green backpack for size comparison, as reviewed by Hiking For Her

And see how easily it will fit into my 34 liter backpack, leaving me lots of precious space for camping gear?


But what if you want more volume?

Let's keep going...

Larger Gobi Gear for backpacking:
Seg Sac

SegSac packaging

This segmented stuff sack is a bit different than the Hobo Roll above, although it's also made of feather weight, durable 30D nylon.

Technical specs:

  • Weight: 2 ounces 
  • Capacity: 20 liters
  • 16.5" tall by 10" diameter
  • Water repellent

Usability specs for comfort and convenience:

  • 4 interior compartments
  • Drawstring closure at top
  • Closed at one end, with a sewn on loop for ease of handling
View into 4 compartments of GobiGear

Note the lack of compression straps or carrying strap, and the larger capacity with one less compartment.

I used this Seg Sac for a little contest I had with myself while writing this Gobi Gear review: trying to fit all of my gear (pictured below) for an upcoming 3 day snowshoeing trip into it, in 5 minutes or less.

A stack of backpacking clothing and water bottle, ready to go into a backpack for a hiking trip

It only took me 2 1/2 minutes to load up the sack, probably because I had segregated my gear into logical piles already so I didn't have to think it through as I was loading.

As you can see, everything fit easily, with a bit of room for last minute additions.

Hiking clothing in a pile

That's the great thing about stuff sacks!

  • You can always stuff one last thing into them without busting a seam.

And then you can stuff the stuffed sack into your backpack, and know that you're organized, prepared and ready to roll.

Green hiking backpack lying next to a GobiGear segmented stuff sack for size comparison

The fully loaded Seg Sac also slid into my smaller 24 liter pack (not pictured) with no problem.

  • So I really look forward to using it on my day hikes, too.
  • It will keep my ten essentials nicely organized, with a bit of room for trail treasures (things I pick up during the day, like rock samples, feathers, animal skulls, and pine cones).

Cautions in this
Gobi Gear review

I noticed a few things that could become issues on the trail with these stuff sacks.

One was a minor problem I noticed when I took the Seg Sac out of its package:

  • The drawstring cord was threaded incorrectly through the plastic toggle cord lock.
  • I quickly re-routed it and the sack was good to go.

Tip: Always take a moment to check out little details like this before you start loading up any new stuff sack, to avoid frustration.

I also noticed that the nylon is gossamer thin, which is good for saving weight.

  • But I will be careful with these stuff sacks when I'm around jagged rocks, sharp tree branches and kitchen gear that could puncture or slice them open.
  • And I will carry a generous supply of duct tape, just in case.

NOTE: I will update this Gobi Gear review after a few hiking seasons of using these stuff sacks, so check back for more insights into performance and durability.

A few words about
the Gobi Gear company

Two avid outdoors aficionados started this company, and have demonstrated deep insight into a perennial problem for hikers:

  • keeping gear organized and un-lost in the bowels of a backpack.

I also like the fact that no plastic is used in their packaging or shipping processes.

They are also a company that gives back to Planet Earth.

Gobi Gear review
final thoughts

Here's a thought:

Why not combine these 2 stuff sacks into a packing system for your larger backpacks?

  • Both sacks are lightweight and water repellent (although I'd put them in heavy duty garbage bags for peace of mind).
  • Devote one sac to your outer wear, stinky socks and clothing, hygiene essentials (toothpaste, soap and other smelly stuff), and anything that traps food odors like kitchen or bathing towels. Put this sac into your bear bag or bear canister each night.
  • Take the other Gobi Gear sac into your tent, with clean clothing, your sleeping clothes, headlamp, reading & writing materials, and all of your odorless comfort items.

Another idea: You can wash these sacs after hiking, and use them for travel packing.

I know that I'll be doing just that for upcoming trips that combine day hiking with checked luggage.

  • Because a Hobo Roll can be used as a luggage insert in your suitcase, and then easily converted into a day hike bag with the shoulder strap, right?

I can finish up this Gobi Gear review by telling you that Gobi Gear makes useful, durable products with thoughtful designs.

  • Give them a close look!

Questions about this Gobi Gear review?
Send them my way!

If you're still not sure if these stuff sacks would be useful for your hiking plans, send me your questions.

I read, and answer, all of my emails and would love to hear from you!

If you need information on great backpacks to use with your Gobi Gear, get started here.

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Gobi Gear Review