Finding a travel pack
The time has almost come for me to set out on my next long travel adventure and since this time it will involve a lot of hostels and a lot of countries I had to think about a new travel pack. After a lot of research online and reading a few reviews and watching corny videos of people giving the ins and outs of the many packs on the market I bit the bullet and ordered one. The makers of the pack are REI and are an American company who have no idea who I am so the opinions and review of the REI Grand Tour 85 travel pack are entirely my own. If for any reason you happen to like this review REI, feel free to get in touch with me and offer me some cool stuff 😉
So as the title suggests, this pack is an 85 litre which is one of the larger sizes out there. The pack comes with a small day pack which can be zipped off and to be honest is the only part of the pack I did not like. The small back has great little storage areas for cards, pocket knives, external hard drives and the like, but overall is very small and has delicate mesh shoulder straps which I doubt will handle much weight. Since I carry a bit of photography gear and a laptop I have had top resort to carrying a more robust day pack on my front which can handle this gear.
Now that was the downside, so let’s move on to the good stuff which is just about everything else! The REI Grand Tour 85’s main pack is brilliant. It has fully lockable zips and a waterproof duffel cover which can be used when checking the bag at the airport, as some airlines don’t like loose straps from travel packs.
The main compartment has heaps of space and I was surprised to fit a large sleeping bag, towel and about seven changes of clothes in it with room to spare. The back just seems to keep expanding, kind of like that bag Mary Poppins had which had all manner of things in it. Inside there is also a few mesh areas for separating dirty laundry and a strap for securing items.
Access to the pay is via a large zip lid to the main compartment and access through a sec on zip at the bottom of the pack. Another separate compartment can also be found on top which easily fitted all my toiletries.
The shoulder straps on the main pack are super sturdy and comfortable and feature a fully adjustable back so that they can be fitted for your torso. The waist belt works well and puts most of the load onto your hips and off your shoulders making it easy to carry a lot of weight without any problems. It also comes with a fully adjustable chest strap and some support straps on the shoulders to pull the top of the pack forward towards your head for better support. There is also a set of straps at the base of the pack to attach a yoga or camping mat.
The REI Grand Tour 85 was $199.00 US and took only 2 1/2 weeks to reach Australia which I was pretty happy with. You can visit the site and check out all their packs at www.rei.com.
If you are in Australia or New Zealand I also recommend checking out this site too www.bivouac.co.nz for great accessories like travel organiser bags and the like, all at reasonable prices.
The images in this post were all taken from the REI website and REI I’m serious, if you wanna help a brother out holler at me 🙂