When I’m shopping around for rucksacks, I’ve normally got tunnel vision in the sense that all that I’m thinking about is practicality. This means I end up with a bag that has 15 different compartments, endless adjustment points and multiple straps hanging around as a result. Sure, it’s practical in the mountains, but when you’re on a shorter adventure or travelling, it’s not really a fashionable look…
Then I stumbled upon Filson, an American brand that started in Seattle during the Klondike Gold Rush of 1897. As soon as I laid eyes on the brand’s range of bags I was in love. From duffle packs to backpacks and everything in between, the range marries timeless style with rugged materials and, in doing so, offers up luggage that you’ll want to keep by your side for years.
Take the Filson Duffle Pack for example. It’s constructed with tough, lightweight ballistic nylon that is tear and abrasion-resistant, so it can handle rough treatment no matter the adventure, while there is also a handy, lined mud-proof pocket for dirty gear. When you need to hoof it on foot, simply attach the backpack straps and you’re away. For all of these practical features, the pack still looks a thing of beauty, with timeless class a feature across the whole range.
If you’re heading off on a long-haul adventure, the Large Rolling Duffle might be more up your street. This roomy duffle is made from abrasion and water-resistant fabric and features stabalising rails and Bridle Leather reinforcements, so you know it’s going to take a beating on your travels and still see you through it all with style and verve. The wide wheels are heavy-duty in order to tackle a range of terrain and the corners of the duffle have been reinforced to increase durability.
But what about day packs? Sure, when you’re tackling something like Ben Nevis or Crib Goch you’re likely to be facing a long day in the hills with changeable conditions, so a traditional hiking rucksack is probably a good shout. For shorter excursions, though, or when you’re exploring a country, hunting for fantastic views and going for short walks, you don’t need something quite so in your face. It’s for moments like these that some of Filson’s backpacks are ideally suited.
The Field Pack deserves a special mention here. It’s an all-season backpack that is constructed with tear-resistant ballistic nylon, making it both lightweight and durable. It has a padded back and shoulder straps, plus hip and chest straps that provide improved weight distribution and stability. Two side pockets offer easy-access storage and a perfect spot for a water bottle. For day tripping around the fjords of Norway or chasing down waterfalls in Iceland, the Field Pack is a worthy companion.
For more casual use, the options open up exponentially. The Day Pack, Roll-top Backpack, Ranger Backpack and Journeyman Backpack all look simply stunning, and are great for urban adventures or exploring an area on day trips.