Revelate Shrew Seat Bag Review
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Just launched, the Revelate Shrew is their smallest seat bag yet and works with just two straps, on any seatpost and any bike. This compact creature is designed for day rides, full-suspension rigs with dropper posts (and not much room), or small riders looking a little extra packing capacity. Here’s our review…
The new Revelate Shrew isn’t exactly a bikepacking bag. However, I suppose it could be… on longer travel full-suspension bikes, small bikes with big tires, or children’s bikes that have hardly any room in between the saddle and rear tire. Either way, it’s clear that with the Shrew, Revelate is stepping away from multi-day trips into the world of single-day brevets, singletrack epics, and long gravel rides. The Shrew is their smallest seat bag to date, suited to stash a few necessities, in lieu of a backpack, when extra preparation is necessary. Here are our impressions, along with a bunch of photos and specs…
The most interesting and unique thing about the Shrew is that it doesn’t rely on a seat post connection, unlike most seat bags. Attaching it just requires saddle rails. Furthermore, instead of using a center-mounted webbing point that loops over the rails, it mounts to the saddle rails via two “indie-rail straps,” similar to the ones Revelate created for the Vole and latest Terrapin systems. These urethane-coated loops individually thread through each rail from the inside out, connecting to one of the main straps with a locking plastic hitch. To help stabilize this two-strap system, each indie-rail loop has a triangular hypalon reinforcement that wraps around the saddle rail. Coupled with a fiberglass stay stitched into the top of the bag, the system keeps the Shrew upright and fairly stable. Additionally, the Shrew has a reinforced Rhinotek top fabric that provides some extra grip to keep it from slipping.
On the Trail
As shown below, the Revelate Shrew doesn’t fit a whole lot. But it’s not supposed to. The kit I packed in it for testing on a couple rides weighed about 755 grams (1 pound 10 oz) and included a Montbell ultralight down anorak, a Montbell Peak Dry Shell, some peanut butter, and a single Larabar. That pretty much maxed it out. Other uses might be a spare tube, tools, and an extra layer. Or just food overflow. TJ carried a couple layers in it for his ultralight bike fishing kit. Like many bags, the Shrew’s performance depends on how you pack it. It doesn’t have much structure to it, so if you don’t compress it tightly at the front it can get a little droopy. Otherwise, if you carefully compact the contents and strap it down tightly, it’s pretty stable and solid.
The Revelate shrew comes in black, blue, and purple “RevX-Pac,” a coated X-pac that’s exclusive to Revelate. According to Revelate, RevX-pac is extremely durable and abrasion resistant, more so than standard VX. A HiVis Lime version is also available, which isn’t RevX-Pac. All are made in the USA and available now for $57.
- Volume 1-3 liters
- Weight (as tested) 131 grams (4.6 oz)
- Place of Manufacture Alaska, USA
- Price $57
- Manufacturer’s Details RevelateDesigns.com
Obviously, there’s not too much to this review, but there’s not too much to the Shrew, either. Similar to the Pronghorn handlebar system, which I love, it’s fairly simple with just a single fiberglass strut and two straps that hold it together. It does require careful packing to keep it from drooping and rolling forward. But all in all, the Revelate Shrew is a great little bag for carrying an extra layer and a repair kit or a couple layers and spare food. It’s so light and compact that you don’t really notice it. While most folks won’t use it for bikepacking purposes, it’s not unreasonable to consider it for multi-day trips if you have limited room between your saddle and rear tire, or, if a longer-travel full-squish rig is in play. Still, most folks will gravitate toward the Shrew for long day rides, such as big gravel grinders or singletrack epics. It’s perfect for these types of missions. The best thing about the Shrew, of course, is that it can strap to any seatpost on any bike.