Travel is great, but packing and dragging a wheeled case around can be a pain, as can living out of a rucksack for weeks on end. Get the best of both worlds; find yourself a capacious kitbag you can carry on your back if you need to and enjoy easy access with unrivalled durability.
If you’re the type to grab what you need and go at a moment’s notice, make your life easier with luggage that thinks like you do. Open up any one of our commodious kitbags and it’ll sit there and swallow up all the gear you need for a trip, whether that’s clothes, climbing gear, tent, ski boots, cookware or something more esoteric. Then zip it up and you’re away, secure in the knowledge that it’ll handle some rough and tumble along the way. At your destination, open it up and see the contents at a glance (or a bit of a rummage): ideal for finding your kit without unpacking in a tent or hotel room. Moving base is no hassle either – zip it up again and at your next stop you can carry on where you left off.
From 30-litre minnows for overnight to 120-litre whales of duffle bags for extended trips, there’s one that’ll suit your purpose. They’re all conceived with adventure travel in mind: well-made and hard-wearing, designed to withstand some abuse as well as plenty of tough duties. Featuring plenty of strong handles for carrying options, many also have removable shoulder straps for carrying them rucksack-style, though of course the bigger the bag, the shorter the distance over which this is a comfortable option - with a stuffed 120-litre duffle you may think twice!
Most of these workhorse travel companions are made from rugged tarpaulin-type fabrics. These are usually waterproof in themselves, which adds a good level of protection from splashes and light rain. However, since the bags aren’t seam-sealed or equipped with waterproof zips, they’re not going to keep your gear dry in a monsoon - if a dousing is likely you’ll need a submersible drybag or more inside. On the plus side, they are wipe-clean, durable and come in all sorts of eye-catching colours so you know immediately when yours appears on the carousel or is unloaded from a roofrack.
As for features, only the most useful and essential make it into the mix. The occasional pocket will hold small items out of any potential melée for instant location and compression straps can stabilise a load that doesn’t fill the space so the contents don’t fall all over the place. Occasionally you’ll find daisy chains on the outside to aid strapping on car roofs, luggage piles and even yaks, but that’s about your lot; these are straightforward holdalls in the broadest sense of the word.
In short, for trips involving more kit than time to pack or where various modes of transport will be employed, you can’t go far wrong with a beefy kitbag or duffle. Made for an adventurous life on the move, it’s the convenient and reliable option to support all manner of journey and come back begging for more.