Can You Carry a Gun in a Backpack in California? – Important to Know

Most people refer to follow all safety guides during a backpack traveling. What happened sometimes hijackers or robber comes to harass you or in severe condition like they come to kill you then what will be your condition that time? Do you think carrying a gun while backpacking is dangerous, or shouldn’t we have to take a gun? But now my topic is Can you carry a gun in a backpack in California? I am going to demonstrate this topic briefly.

First of all, you must be familiar with backpacking: it’s a kind of travel activity in which you travel to different countries it can be backcountry or anywhere but independent travelling, carrying all essential things in your bag like 

  • knife,
  • rope,
  • hand lamp,
  • Sleeping Bag. Learn to Attach Sleeping Bag to Backpack.
  • microfiber towel,
  • Camping tent
  • Toiletry bag
  • International travel adapter
  • Electronics like laptops, Tabs, Mobiles, camera, wireless earbuds
  • If you have to go diving, then you must carry your diving mask
  • Converse shoes
  • Clothes

These all are the more necessary things. But one this still missing from this list which is the gun.


Now the question is that can you carry a gun in backpacking. People went to different countries like North America, South Asia, and South Korea.

Rules and Regulations for Carrying a Gun

Can You Carry a Gun in a Backpack in California

In states where a permit is still hard to get, probably not if there were much interest, they would make a stronger movement to change the law. 

It doesn’t require a majority to change the law. It requires only a passionate minority that will trouble for legislators in their public primary elections.

According to the California guns law: It’s illegal to carry a gun in a backpack, said by California supreme court, Monday.”

  • Open-Carry Law: According to California’s open-carry law, Nobody can carry a gun in public places except the smaller county residents.
  • California Don’t allow to put unloaded or exposed handgun on a person outside of a vehicle in public places.
  • The persons authorized to carry a firearm are Peace Officers, Military personnel, licenses hunters, or guns packed in a locked box.

Read More: Best Handgun Safes

Place where you can’t Carry a Gun

Can you carry a gun in a backpack in California

According to California guns rule, you can’t carry a gun in the following places:

  • Public places
  • Outside the vehicle
  • On a person
  • Unloaded gun in any incorporated county
  • Unloaded gun in any incorporated city
  • Any prohibited area like schools or business offices where the gun is not allowed
  • Unincorporated regions
  • The persons who have a permit license to carry a gun only carry a county where it is issued.

Concealed Carry in California

Rules and Regulations

These rules give a little bit of relaxation if you have filed adequately in terms of concealed. In my view, if you are not following any visiting countries rules, you must have to stay home. But these rules can give you some favor as:

  • A person is still not allowed to carry a concealed pants so the firearm if its concealed weapon is not licensed. 
  • Nevertheless, If a court-issued order that A person can carry a loaded concealed in case he/ she is in a life-threatening situation from a defendant. 

CCW Application Requirements

  • 1st thing you must know about California. California is a “may issue” state. If they consider any application to approve, then they approve. If not, then you can understand why I say California is a may-issue state.
  • 2nd thing license authority check you have a good moral
  • They will check your background. 
  • After checking your background and don’t find anything wrong with you, you have a free hand to buy or sell a firearm.
  • You must have a Good Cause that why you want CCW? If you can satisfy them, then you will surely get a CCW license.
  • The applicant must be completed his/her firearm concealed training course.
  • The licensing authority will check your residency requirement. As I mentioned above, you can only apply to your county of residence. 
  • Further, if they want to check how you physiologically behave, they will take your employees or ask you relevant buddy about your psychological behave. More, they will refer you to a psychological specialist.

Who Will Issue the CCW License

Now you fulfill all the application requirements. What’s the next procedure now? Who will issue this license to you? Before discussing, I want to discuss Sheriff: Sheriff is responsible for the peace of a county. And it’s responsible for enforcing the law.

There are three possible ways through which you will get a CCW license by Sheriff;

  • Local Police Department
  • Residence of a county
  • The city within the county

Is it Necessary to Carry a Gun in a Backpack

The chance of you needing a gun, in general, is very slim, even more so in the backcountry. But it’s not a reason not to be prepared for any difficult situation. Any person who says it’s unnecessary while backpacking, If he faces any problem where he needed protection, I tell you this guy would be dead.

On the other hand, you are driving a car and not putting on your seat belt and thinking nothing will happen. Is it right, or do you have to strap for protection to prepare for the worst? 

Prepared with a few extra pounds or unprepared, Now it depends on a person what he needs.

Magzine Law in California

According to Magazine law in California High-capacity Magazine ban is a law in which there is a restriction on more than ten bullets’ high capacity magazines. It’s either be more round or more ammunition.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I carry an unloaded gun in my backpack?

According to California’s law, it’s illegal to carry an unloaded gun in a pack due to safety reasons. But if you are a county resident and have a permit, you still can’t use guns publicly.

Can you carry a gun in the car in California?

Yes, you can carry a gun in the car if it’s fully packed in a locked container. It must be unloaded and packed in a locked box. 

The other thing you must remember before carrying a gun in a car: you must be more than 18+. 

Can I carry a gun while camping in California?

According to California law, a more than 18+ can keep loaded or unloaded guns on his place of residence while camping.

Can you open carry with a bullet in the chamber?

If you are legally able to carry a bullet in the chamber, then there is nothing wrong if your gun is round, hammer back, and safety on. Too keeping bullet is good because sometimes what happened robber or any defendant suddenly come to kill you. You have only a few seconds to make defend yourself. In this case, carrying one bullet in the gun is not bad.

Can I take my gun hiking?

Yes, you can take your gun on hiking. But it can b risky for you or another buddy. Sometimes it’s challenging to carry a gun during hiking more; where you keep that gun? There are many cases where, while hiking, gun trigger shoots, and many people kill, and many receive serious wounds in many cases.

What happens if you carry a gun without a permit in California?

As I mentioned in this article, Keeping a box packed gun is not illegal if you are more than 18 years old. But exposing a gun in a public place is unlawful on which you will receive one year of the county jail. According to California P.C 25850 c6 & California PC 25850 c7, If you carry a loaded or unloaded gun in a public place or prohibited place, you will sentence to the jail for one year with a 1000$ fine. Moreover, it will affect your whole future.

Is it hard to get a CCW in California?

1st thing you must know about California. California is a “may issue” state. If they consider any application to approve, then they approve. If not, then you can understand why I say California is a may-issue state. 2nd thing you must have good moral, Good cause, you must have your training course, Your country of residence, and Physiological test.

Is it wrong to keep magazines loaded?

Yes, it’s okay to keep your magazines loaded. Because when you need it, It will be fully loaded. One disadvantage of keeping the magazine loaded is, it will loosen the gun spring. To prevent this situation, you can rotate it every six months. Then it will be normal, and you can use it whenever you want.

On the other hand, If I talk about unloaded magazines: if you keep your magazines unloaded, then your gun will be okay every time.

There is no need to make any changes to it. One advantage of the unloaded weapon is, If you need it, you can’t use it suddenly because first, you have the magazines, then you can use it.


Thus, this full discussion shows that if you are 18+ or more, you can carry an unloaded handgun in locked only in a car. It’s illegal to carry a gun in public places or any prohibited place; also, if the court allows you to carry a handgun or firearm in life-threatening conditions, then obviously, you can take in a backpack. Hope now you got your answer on Can you carry a gun in a backpack in California.

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