The Mosko Moto Gnome Tank Bag helps riders keep essential items — like wallets, passports, water, and snacks — protected from the elements and close at hand. And just like a real-life gnome, the bag is low-profile and stout in the dirt, or anywhere you want to take it.
I was on a mission to find the ultimate motorcycle tank bag. My plan was to take my 2022 KTM 690 Enduro R across the U.S., eating up dirt roads and Backcountry Discovery Routes.
For that, I needed a rugged tank bag that wouldn’t get in my way. Tank bags are notorious for bumping into riders’ legs and midsections when standing on the pegs, so I was hoping to find something low-profile.
My approach to buying gear has always been not to skimp on quality. For this build, I wanted to stay as spartan as possible — light, compact, and utilitarian. While searching for products to help me set up my KTM, Mosko Moto became an obvious choice.
Mosko is a motorcycle luggage and apparel company out of Washington state. It has a track record for creating bombproof gear that is thoroughly tested to the extremes. The company also supports moto travelers and hardcore riders alike.
In short: The Mosko Moto Gnome Tank Bag was almost ideal for my adventures, and for shorter day trips, it’s perfect. It’s not so large that it blocks my view or bumps against my legs while standing. But aside from fitting trail essentials inside, like maps, a cellphone, and snacks, I found it too small for my camera gear, including a GoPro.
Mosko Moto Gnome Tank Bag Review
The bag’s 5L capacity fits between Mosko’s larger, 7L Nomax tank bag and its smaller, 2L Nomini tank bag.
As mentioned, the Gnome doesn’t block me or my view with its bulk, but also isn’t so small that it’s useless for carrying anything.
My 690 has a fuel tank in the rear, ignition where the tank should be, and an aggressive motocross-inspired seat. In other words, real estate is limited for luggage. But strapping on Mosko Moto’s Gnome tank bag was easy, as it fixes on directly to the frame behind the forks and subframe.
Installing Mosko’s Gnome Tank Bag to Your Bike
The Gnome Tank Bag comes with mounting straps, buckles, and zip ties. It may take some work to find the perfect spot, but when you do, you can leave the harness in place and just remove the bag to bring with you. Mosko even sells the harness separately if you have multiple bikes, so you can easily swap the bag between each one if you want.
The buckles wrap around the front of the frame, behind the triple tree, and back to one another. The rear straps go all the way to the frame and attach via zip ties.
On the KTM 690, I had quite a bit of extra strap material, so I cut off the excess and burned the ends to prevent fraying. I then wrapped off the end with gaffer tape, which is essentially cloth tape.
Even with a secondary fuel tank installed under the seat, the bag and harness system doesn’t crowd me when I’m riding, or cover the fuel cap. There is easy access to the buckles for swift removal or adjustment as well.
Mosko Moto hosts videos on mounting its luggage on its website, as well. Mounting a tank bag to your bike may take some trial and error, as not all bikes are set up in the same way.
Mosko Gnome Tank Bag: On-the-Go Hydration
The Gnome tank bag comes with an integrated hydration bladder/water reservoir. The bag itself weighs 1.5 pounds with the water reservoir empty.
The HydraPak water reservoir is high quality and comes with a removable twist on/off bite valve and cap. This cap is important, as it keeps you from eating sand and road grime.
The tube and valve should be washed prior to and after use to remove any plastic taste and grit, and prevent the bladder from getting funky. It’s best to only use water in these bladders, as sugars from electrolytes or juice can cause molding.
I use mild dish soap and warm water to clean the bladder, which is also reversible for drying. For the tube, you’ll need a special brush, which is not included.
The Pros & Cons of Carrying Water in the Gnome Tank Bag
The reservoir is located in its own zipper pouch underneath the main compartment, closest to the bike. When the bladder is full, it significantly reduces the amount of internal volume. Even when it’s not full, the bladder and zipper mechanism take up a lot of space.
I ended up taking mine out, so the advantage of frequent hydration while riding wasn’t an option for me.
Another advantage of having hydration in a tank bag is not having water weight on your back. As I generally carry water on my back, I stuck to that method and increased the usable interior space of my tank bag.
With its low-profile positioning and landscape design, the Gnome allows for easy movement around the sides when standing on the pegs, or sitting and looking at your dash.
Various handy pouches and pockets — both inside and out — are thoughtfully arranged to hold maps, charging cables, ear plugs, pen/paper, and on-the-go energy.
While riding mixed on- and off-road in Baja, Mexico, over the course of 2 weeks, Mosko’s Gnome Tank Bag was able to stand up to the abuse. It took some hard hits without detaching. Border crossings were made easier by having my documents close at hand and in one place.
The zipper didn’t seem affected by all of the sand I accidentally threw at it, though it doesn’t hurt to keep the zipper clean after use to keep it from getting damaged from grit.
On my return home run, the zip tie, which held the harness in place, ate through the strap, and the bag was loose until I made it home. A replacement strap is available from Mosko Moto, but the part is not under warranty and I had to purchase it. This setback was insignificant and was likely user error in the initial installation.
The tank bag is not waterproof, and the contents will get wet eventually. Riding between Mexicali and Arizona, I was caught in a storm for several hours. My personal items stayed dry, but the bag itself needed a day to dry off. This wasn’t a major issue, as it quickly detaches from the harness to bring it indoors.
The Gnome is, however, made from water-repellent nylon and Hypalon — just like all of Mosko Moto’s luggage.
Hypalon is a material often used to make inflatable boats. In this case, it’s used to create a grid panel known as “modular lightweight load-carrying equipment” — or MOLLE.
Mosko’s use of Hypalon MOLLE allows accessories such as the Mosko Moto Navigator Cell Phone Pocket to be strapped securely on top. I use it to attach my GoPro remote for easy access.
- Capacity: 5L
- Tank bag dimensions: 11″ x 8″ x 5″
- Overall footprint: 11.4″ x 8.2″ x 7.8″
- Weight: 1.5 lbs. (with empty water reservoir)
- 1.5L Hydrapak & insulated hose
- Easy on/off mounting harness
- 2 mounting straps
- 4 cable ties with metal closures
The Mosko Moto Gnome Tank Bag is full of decent features. So far, through driving rain in Alaska, blowing dust in Mexico, and the heat in Nevada — all have yet to affect this tank bag.
If you need a hearty tank bag and not a lot of space, I can recommend the Gnome. But … in the end, I’m swapping the Gnome for Mosko’s larger, fully waterproof Hood Bag. The Gnome is simply too small for my needs. If I didn’t have cameras and cables along for the ride, it would be near perfect.
Mosko Moto only sells direct to the public, so this bag is available on the brand’s website. I know from personal experience that the company’s shipping is fast.