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Matador Freerain24 2.0 Review

The Freerain24 2.0 is the latest waterproof packable daypack from Matador. Outside of the compression pouch, we’ve been thoroughly impressed with this pack!

Matador Freerain24 2.0
Matador Freerain24 2.0

Matador Freerain24 2.0 Details

7.7

  • Capacity

    24l

  • Denier

    30D

  • Weight (oz)

    6.6 oz (187.1 gm)

  • Dimensions

    19.5 in x 11 in x 9.5 in (49.5 x 27.9 x 24.1 cm)

    Compressed: 5in x 3in
  • Notable Materials

    Cordura Ripstop Nylon, Hypalon®

  • Manufacturing Country

    China

  • Warranty Information

    Matador Warranty

Overview

The Freerain24 2.0 is the second iteration of the first Freerain, and it’s Matador’s highly weather-resistant packable daypack. In fact, it’s actually waterproof—and we don’t use that word lightly!

PSA: This is just one product out of Matador’s Advanced Series. They’ve also got the Freefly16, Transit30 2.0, Flatpak Soap Bar Case, and the Flatpak Toiletry Bottle. If you’re interested in adding some compressible gear to your travel loadout, we’d highly recommend checking out the full series.

Matador Freerain24 2.0 In Use
Matador Freerain24 2.0 In Use

Here’s what you need to know:

This pack is made with a siliconized 30D CORDURA® ripstop nylon that is puncture-resistant. So it’s lightweight, strong, and weather-resistant.

This thing is incredibly weather-resistant and more or less waterproof. We have tested it by submerging it in a bathtub, and it passed. If water-resistance is a big deal for you, this is your best bet out of the advanced series.

Matador Freerain24 2.0 Pocket In Use
Matador Freerain24 2.0 Pocket In Use

Although the main compartment is totally waterproof, the front zipped pocket is not. We also thought this pocket was a little tricky to use—it’s extremely wide with barely any depth. Really just good for flat items.

They’ve added a removable sternum strap, which was not on the first iteration. We like it, although it’s not entirely necessary.

Matador Freerain24 2.0 Side Clips
Matador Freerain24 2.0 Side Clips

You can secure the rolltop opening two ways. 1) You can roll it up and buckle the two ends to each other, like a dry bag. 2) You can roll it and then buckle the two ends to the additional buckles on each side of the bag. Not waterproof, but more convenient and compact.

Matador Freerain24 2.0 Straps
Matador Freerain24 2.0 Straps

The 1.0 version had load-lifters, but they’ve been stripped on this one. Considering the size of this pack, we think this was, overall, a good decision from Matador. It shaves some weight and means less dangling straps.

Matador Freerain24 2.0 In Detroit
Matador Freerain24 2.0 In Detroit

Like the Freefly16, this pack now uses the rolltop closure on the compression pouch. Meh. We liked the drawstring better, although this system works fine.

Usage Timeline

  • Initial Usage
    Condition: Excellent

    Looking good, excited to try this out. Lots of improvement from the 1.0 version.

  • 1 Month of Use
    Condition: Excellent

    Functions well for daily use. Plus, it passed the bathtub test! One of the most weather-resistant packs we’ve tested to date.

  • 2 Months of Use
    Condition: Excellent

    Still going strong, no major durability issues although we have our concerns about the compression pouch.

Observations

Pros
  • Actually waterproof
  • Multiple rolltop methods
  • Highly compressible
Cons
  • The sternum strap can fall out easily
  • The front pocket isn’t very ergonomic
  • We prefer the drawstring compression pouch

Overall

Here’s the deal. If you’re looking for a compressible daypack that is also extremely weather-resistant, this is the one you want to pick up. We like the small improvements they’ve made from the 1.0 to the 2.0 version, and in fact, there’s not much we don’t like about this bag.

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