Objects of Our Time: Dior by Mystery Ranch

Shane Anderson

Engineered past our sanity, is this object of our time inciting a dystopian future, or does it shed light on the facets of our current, inescapable reality?


First thought: Doesn’t Mystery Ranch design bags for hunters and soldiers?

That and for skiing, climbing, and backpacking. The specialty of the brand, founded by legendary designer Dana Gleason, is anything involving outdoor emergencies—think fires, muddy trails, or explosions.

Second thought: What makes their gear so ready for danger?

Depending on the line, they’ve got Stick-its to carry chainsaws, daisy chains to dangle carabiners, zippered top pockets for gloves or headlamps, a discreet storage sleeve for three fusees, and some are even coated in Teflon. They’ve designed radio holsters, hydration reservoirs, and rucksacks where you can tuck in your assault rifle, and have worked with a handful of acronyms, organizations specialized in SAR (Search and Rescue), USAR (Urban Search and Rescue), SOCOM (United States Special Operations Command), JSOC (Joint Special Operations Command), AFSOC (Air Force Special Operations Command), Naval EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal), as well as wildlife and international firefighting agencies. Navy SEALs swear by them, Green Berets too. They’re the holy grail in backpack design.

By the bye, our EIC has sworn by his Mystery Ranch Asap 1 Day Assault pack in multicam for years.


Third thought: And now they’re collaborating with Dior? For, what, a combat bag?

Not exactly. The Gallagator backpack, belt bag, saddle bag, and bifold wallet—all beige or black, and some in (alligator) leather—are more for the urban explorer. Those who journey from one fashion show to another and need to have their cameras, powerbanks, and three looks ready for a single day. There is also a detachable water-repellent hooded cover that slides over your knapsack.

Fourth thought: Should you go hiking with a 3000 dollars bag?

Yes. You can take any of the bags with you on the mountains outside Davos or to overlook the ocean on the Azores. Pair it with an Arc’tyerx windbreaker, compliment it with On or Solomon sneakers, and Prada nylon pants. And a Fiji or Voss water bottle will certainly fit into the Gallagator. And since you’re asking, yes, Fiji Water does taste different.


Fifth thought: What makes this collaboration so special?

Although gorpcore is everywhere, Kim Jones is going to the extremes and working with a brand trusted by outdoor freaks. This isn’t just a nod to a trend; it’s raising the bar and demanding excellence. It’s the same thing Jones did during his tenure at Louis Vuitton when he collaborated with Supreme at the height of streetwear’s popularity. Kim seeks out the crème de la crème, brings two distinct worlds into close contact, then adds his own touches, making it his own. That hooded cover, for instance, is a thing of poetry. And the alligator leather? Genius.