- Buyer's Guide
Best New Gear: July 2018
Furoshiki-inspired carry, rugged dry duffels and adaptable travel backpacks step into the spotlight as we check out the best new gear gracing the carry stage in July…
Having refreshments close at hand is a fast way to beat the heat, and the Mack Weldon Chiller does that in carry style. It fits 12 cans or 8 bottles, and keeps them cool for up to six hours. The lightweight, waterproof and leakproof design features a top buckle closure that also serves as a handle. Plus there’s a bottle opener and a quick-access exterior pocket for smaller essentials. Talking of style, the Mack Weldon Tote offers plenty of it in a sleek form that moves easily from the beach to travels and day-to-day needs. The tote includes an external pocket and provides a durable and lightweight build to withstand frequent use.
Backpacks by their design restrict what you can carry. But what if you had a highly flexible backpack that adapted to a wide range of carry needs? ONFAdd have designed the WRAPPING BACKPACK to do exactly that. Inspired by Japanese Furoshiki, the backpack can wrap around a diverse variety of objects by unlocking the buckles, opening out the fabric and extending concealed straps. However, it can also be used as a standard backpack by keeping the exterior buckles secured, and includes a 15″ laptop pocket and a choice of pockets for storing smaller items.
When wet adventures come calling, OtterBox’s Yampa Dry Duffles will keep your gear dry, no matter how gnarly things get. Waterproof, rugged and adaptable, the duffles come in three sizes to suit a variety of needs, including 35L, 70L and 105L options. The bags are crafted with waterproof TPU-coated nylon, a waterproof zipper and sealed seams, with a reinforced base and ends. For added peace of mind and comfort on the go, the bags also feature an ultra-low density, open-celled foam exoskeleton that protects gear on the go, along with padded backpack shoulder straps for easy portability. Plus with multiple grab handles you can easily haul and maneuver the duffles on the fly. And for added functionality, they include a bright interior to easily distinguish internal items.
Keeping the little things in order can be a frustrating carry challenge. But BOND Travel Gear offers an effective and versatile solution with their Tool Roll. A functional blend of ruggedness and organization, the Tool Roll features multiple “no-slip” silicone-backed elastic loops and three pockets. Made with a durable nylon exterior that’s water resistant and abrasion resistant, the Tool Roll also features double stitching and bartacking for added ruggedness. And backed by a lifetime warranty, you don’t need to worry about putting it through the daily grind. An aircraft-grade aluminum hook secures it shut and can be used to hang the Tool Roll up. From EDC and work tool organization, to storing bike commuting essentials, art supplies, travel items or first aid supplies, this is a highly practical and adaptable piece of kit to have in your carry setup.
Japanese carry experts master-piece have teamed up with innovative Italian apparel brand Nemen for a slick collaboration including the Nemen × master-piece Body Sling Bag. The fabric features a unique color unevenness and unique texture through the dyeing process. The functional design can be worn across the back or around the waist and offers a range of pockets to keep your daily or travel essentials secure and tidy on the go.
Topo Designs gets your trips off to a solid start with their Travel Pack. Available in 30L and 40L sizes, the carry-on backpack features a U-shaped zipper to the main compartment for easy packing and access. A front organizer compartment and dedicated laptop compartment keep your travel essentials and tech at the ready. The pack also features stowable backpack straps, a removable shoulder strap and top and side grab handles for adaptable portability. All backed by a rugged build and lifetime warranty so you can roam confidently for years to come.
Patagonia have welcomed their updated Arbor Pack Collection, offering more eco-friendly production and everyday functionality. The updated collection features the Arbor Market Pack 15L, the Arbor Daypack 20L, the Arbor Classic Pack 25L, and the Arbor Grande Pack 28L. The packs are made with 100% recycled materials, reusing eight and a half plastic bottles per bag. Additionally, the bags include a solution dyeing process that saves half a gallon of water per bag and creates 96% less carbon dioxide compared to more conventional dyeing methods. Each pack provides a padded laptop sleeve and flexible design that can move from the commute to the weekend to suit changing needs.
Many packable backpacks leave a lot to be desired when it comes to comfort and durability. But Matador’s Beast Packable Backpack proves this doesn’t have to be the case. Durable, water-resistant, lightweight and packable down to the size of a football, the backpack is also hydration bladder compatible and features breathable shoulder straps, a hip belt and sternum strap for carry comfort. And now you can get it in a sleek exclusive black colorway courtesy of Matador’s Huckberry collaboration.
When you transition constantly between travel, work, and play, having carry that can keep up and move with you is important. And this kind of versatility is a driving force behind Heimplanet’s Transit Line. A collection of bags that celebrate functionality, durability and sustainability, while effortlessly adapting to changing carry needs. The collection includes the Travel Pack, Roll Top Messenger, and Sling Pocket. The Travel Pack is a clamshell backpack suitable for carry-on use and EDC needs, with organization for daily or travel essentials. The Roll Top Messenger combines a briefcase and messenger in one and can be carried by hand, over the shoulder or across the back. Its magnetic roll-top closure and choice of organization keeps your tech and tools tidy for work and the weekend alike. The compact Sling Pocket is ideal for minimalist loads, with internal organization to keep your smaller essentials easily accessible on the go. The line features DYECOSHELL outer fabric, a custom strong, eco-friendly fabric that will stand up to years of demanding use.
Chrome Industries have added solid updates to a much-loved classic with their Orlov 2.0 Backpack. Updates include a gusset added to the quick-access pockets to easily reach items at the bottom, along with a redesigned main compartment and base for better stability and more interior organization. The pack also features a reconfigured strap and back panel to accommodate a wider range of body types, as well as an added quick-access pocket for stashing small essentials such as a phone and keys.
Looking for a versatile travel and everyday pack for urban environments? Kathmandu’s Federate Travel Pack is definitely one to check out. The pack combines urban-friendly styling, convenient access, and an adjustable volume that allows you to compress the 28L bag into a slim daypack for EDC at home or day-to-day use at your travel destination. The bag offers a clamshell laptop pocket and a removable organizer for storing smaller items. Top and side access helps you get to gear throughout the bag, while the understated aesthetics blend in to a variety of settings.
Tough, adaptable and organized, the Mystery Ranch Mission Rover is designed to make your travels as smooth as possible so you can enjoy the journey as well as the destination. The travel bag offers multiple carry options including a shoulder strap, stowable backpack straps and suitcase style to adapt on the fly. The clamshell opening lets you quickly pack and retrieve items, with zippered dividers, a footwear compartment, and dirty laundry storage for organization. And with dedicated tech storage and a quick-access front pocket, you can move easily through airport security and be on your way in a jiffy.
Mystery Ranch brings heritage styling and bomber build quality to the mountains and beyond with the Bomb Pack USA. Made in America, this rugged pack features a sewn-on lid and minimal moving parts for increased durability. The pack’s Mountain Frame comfortably supports large loads, while the bag’s front Stick-it, daisy chains and tool loops let you easily secure additional items.
If you dig Mystery Ranch’s functional durability but need something larger, check out the Terraplane USA. This pack is made in the USA, with a top-loading design that nods to the Dana Designs original, combined with improvements in materials and construction. The pack features a Mountain Frame for load stability and carry comfort, a detachable lid, top and side access to the main compartment, quick-access sleeping bag storage, and handy front pockets.
Mystery Ranch’s Urban Assault gets the exclusive Huckberry touch with this handsome collaboration. Made with 1000D Cordura Nylon, the pack includes a removable Velcro morale patch and comes in an exclusive Dusky Green colorway. Equipped with Mystery Ranch’s 3-Zip design for ready access throughout the bag, this versatile and hardy pack will see you through countless carry missions in urban and outdoor environments alike.
In an emergency you don’t have time to gather essential supplies. So Uncharted Supply Co. created the Seventy2 Survival System as an all-in-one grab-and-go system to help get you through the first 72 hours following the emergency or natural disaster. The waterproof backpack features a variety of emergency survival supplies kept tidy and easily accessible in pouches. Additionally, the pack also includes survival advice for quick and easy reference wherever you find yourself.
Triple Aught Design takes modular organization to the next level with their Control Panel 1. The panel features pockets on one side and PALS webbing on the reverse side to accommodate MOLLE-compatible pouches and accessories. Top, bottom and side attachment points let you decide how you want to secure the panel in a bag or on another surface depending on required access and organization. The removable HDPE frame sheet provides rigidity in less structured bags if desired, while the modular design lets you easily swap loadouts between bags as needed.
When the summer heat is sweltering, you don’t want your carry making you even warmer. So Brooks England have designed their TechLinen collection to help keep you cool on the go. The collection includes the 12L and 26L Pickwick Backpacks as well as the Camden Tote. The bags are made with lightweight yet strong and water-resistant linen that helps you stay cool on the move. There’s also a choice of colorway options so you can carry in your preferred style, whether on or off the bike.
From cash to medication, some things you just can’t afford to get wet. And the Dango Products Capsule XL keeps these small valuables safe and sound in a durable, waterproof design. The Capsule XL is made in the USA with food-safe anodized 6061 aluminum. It includes a Quad Loop Secure Cap for flexible carry options and is available in black and silver colorways.
KILLSPENCER breathes new life into pilot issued parachutes with their Parachute Bag 2.o. Handcrafted in the USA with repurposed U.S. Air Force military parachutes, the bag is tear-resistant and collapsible. It comes in multiple colorways and two sizes designed to hold shoes or laundry, providing a lightweight solution for separating gear inside a larger bag.
Eagle Creek Women-Specific Global Companion and Wayfinder
Men and women’s bodies are shaped differently, so it makes sense to design packs accordingly. And that’s what Eagle Creek have done with their women-specific Global Companion and Wayfinder backpacks. The Global Companion comes in 40L and 65L sizes and offers a clamshell opening for easy packing and retrieval of specific items. The Wayfinder comes in 40L, 30L and 20L sizes to suit a range of travel and day-to-day needs. Both packs feature women-specific suspension for improved comfort day in and day out, whether at home or away.