Outdoors enthusiasts pride themselves in knowing how to travel lightly and nimbly … and to do that, having the right bag is essential. The Patagonia Black Hole Duffel Bag 60L ($129) is a great choice thanks to its durability and versatility.
I had used the 45L Black Hole duffel for the last three years, and I took pride in looking like I knew how to travel light. But in truth, I constantly found myself cramming all my stuff in there, and so the first thing I appreciated about the 60L was the extra space.
I could fit everything I needed for a four-day weekend (including my yoga mat, which I could actually put in the bag rather than strap to the outside) and still get away with bringing the bag as a carry-on item.
I also used to take my over-stuffed 45L and try to wear it as a backpack, putting my arms through the carry straps — which are meant for your hands, not your shoulders — and simply ignoring the pain they caused as they dug into me. The 60L comes with removable backpack straps, a total game-changer for someone who wants the versatility of traveling either like a weekend warrior or a long-haul backpacker.
Like many of Patagonia’s products of late, such as the rain jackets or tote bags, the duffel folds into its own zipper pocket for storage. For those of us gear junkies with entire cabinets devoted just to our backpacks, duffels, dry bags, camera cases, etc., this was a much-appreciated added feature.
Finally, the durable water repellant (DWR) material lets you take this bag into rainy or snowy conditions or onto boats or kayaks. Don’t throw it in the water, but if you get a little spray on the bag, there’s no need to worry about what’s inside.
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