North Face Base camp Small 42l for a Year away at least Asia
Replies: 14 - Last Post: Aug 17, 2012 5:38 AM Last Post By: DubinNYC
Aug 9, 2012 10:59 AM
North Face Base camp Small 42l for a Year away at least AsiaGone through a few discussions on the north face bag, already convinced of their quality and have checked in a store. I'm heading to Thailand, then travelling around, but will be based in some of the locations for short durations as I'm looking to teach English there. My travel experience is limited, 2 weeks in Cuba, 4 weeks on Argentina, the first time with a 25l bag and a small courier type shoulder bag, the second was with a 30l bag that pretty well designed, with 2 strips of padding running down the back, so the spine is ventelated. It has compression straps, so could be used a s a day bag (prtty much what I use around town now)
So I'm looking at the 42l small base camp bag, will give me an extra 12l, so I should be able to pack my 30l bag into this. The large opening appeals, as I got a lit fed up of having to half empty a bag to access stuff at the bottom previously, and it water resistance should mean my stuff get s better protection if its strapped to the top of a vehcle during bad weather, or on a boat with chppy conditions. Also being one pocket with a a zip designed to padlock and the use of a cable to secure it somewhere, then all my stuff can be that little more secure for it.
My main reservation is the shoulder strap option, being just the 42l I'm sure it will be comforatble enough on my back compared to the larger version, but being a waterproof fabric, I can se it being a bit clammy when humid. Longer trips I'd of thought it would be on vehicle rather than carried, so fine, so on shorter excusions, do peopel tend to take all their stuff, or be based somewhere and just take some. If so my 30l day bag will be probably enough to travel on the trips?
No one can really say what I'm should do, just looking for some feedback of peoples experinces to help me make a decision
Aug 9, 2012 11:01 AM
Aug 10, 2012 9:46 AM
2They're great packs. I have several in a variety of sizes. They're called Base Camp Duffels 'cos that's what they are - more for storage and short-hauling than for backpacking. In recent years the bigger sizes come with a pair of straps so it can be carried like a backpack. OK for short distances but not comfortable for a long carry and pretty shitty in hot humid conditions. I'd bring both the shoulder straps and an end-to-end strap, which you can clip to the grab handles at the ends. The extra strap won't weigh anything and will allow you to vary the carry. Construction is excellent and the zips though not totally waterproof are certainly capable of keeping your gear dry in wet conditions. They also come with compression straps but they perform better when the bag is almost full. Construction is excellent and I've never had one puncture, but I keep a metre of duct tape handy for running repairs.
It basically comes down to what you want to use it for - it's certainly NOT a backpack and shouldn't been seen as such but if you want something bombproof to store your gear between transport and accomodation and for carrying short distances I can certainly recommend it. TNF are not the only company to produce these duffels. Very similar items are available from Mountain Equipment (in UK) - almost identical construction and a lot cheaper than TNF (you pay 15 quid for the TNF logo) - and they have an extra zippered inside pocket which the TNF doesn't have (other than the one on the lid). Check Cotswold Outdoors.
Aug 10, 2012 1:52 PM
3Thanks for the input. It's the clamminess I'm concerned about and you indicate this is an issue "pretty shitty in hot humid conditions. ". On the other hand I arrive at the end of the rainy season with about a month to go, so having them water-resistant is a bonus and curse. The shoulder straps come on the whole range (not sure if it was just the last ones in the past). I only wanted the 42 l and when my day pack is out and carrying a few things, that allows room for movement in the Base camp, when living out of it. My day pack as indicated abot is a compressable 35l (Lowe Alpine).
Because I'm not just travelling, but living there, I can see having this available being really useful, carrying my shopping, or any stuff to a school a work at (I'm still undecided if to take my wide screen Laptop or just get a tiny netbook for the travels, I'll need one or the other). I'm also taking one instrument, an alto flute. It is a little larger than an normal flute, but still compact. It's 51 cm long in the case, which squeezes into the Lowe Alpine and the 42l Base Camp is 51cm long also.
Another part of me, thinks take 3 bags, a messneger style to take the laptop, camara and a layer, plus what ever. I'm a sweaty git in general, despite being lean a healthy, so not wearing a back pack will be a good thing at times. When i need one for hiking or something the Lowe Alpine will be perfect. for the task and excess can be left in the main travel bag. Which only works when hiking is not also changing base as well.
Another option is the Lowe Alpine 40TT Carry on. It's only 2l less, and a bit more fussy, instead of being just one pocket. IT's about the same price too.
Arghh I just can't decided.
Aug 10, 2012 10:45 PM
4Interesting you mentioned the Lowe Alpine TT40. I've had one for a few years now and I really like it. Obviously it's a better carry than the TNF Duffel but not especially comfortable with a full load, so I'll typically only have about 12kg in it. TNF used to make a 35 litre pack called Recon which was excellent - not to be confused with their current Recon or Surge which are very poor in comparison - poor choice of materials, lots of useless swoopy features which add weight, reduce usable space but add nothing to the functionality - The Germans have a word for this - schlimbesserung - a perceived improvement which only serves to make things worse... I bought a Surge and gave it away after a few months.
Aug 11, 2012 5:26 AM
5Ideally I'm looking for a larger bag than my 35l Alpine Lowe I already have, so no need for the TNF 35l Recon. I love my 35L bag, so well put together, which kind of draws me to the TT40, but if you say that's also not great for taking the full load, which is what I'm looking for from it, then this makes me wonder if the Base camp duffel takes the lead a little, with it's simple one pocket, as well as being more suited to be strapped to the top of something. The TT40 is 55cm long, so would take my alto flute easily enough.
Though I can see the practicalities of a carry on, the fact I'll have some sharps in my bag (scissors , sewing needles) as well as some climbing chalk, means I have to put one bag in the hold at least.
My knew line of thought is to take a good size cheap messegner bag, forget the ideal of everything being (including my daybag) in one bag. Keep my camera laptop and a few thing in this, so I can have this over one shoulder with my 35L rucksack on my back. Then once I have experienced being out there for a while, if I need to change, then pick up what ever bag makes more sense out their.
Thanks for you comments, it's helping throw things around in my head a bit
Aug 12, 2012 12:05 AM
6One of my favourite bags at the moment is a cheap Nike bumbag...I'm sure most of the sports companies make similar items... It's a single compartment but quite voluminous (maybe 8-10 litres?) with an excellent 2-way zip and an adjustable strap. I can get an 11" netbook, kindle, compact camera, phone, ipod etc in that thing and probably weighs 5-7kg when full-full. Adjusting the strap you can carry it over the shoulder, across your body, front or back, around your waist if it's not too full, or strapped to another pack. It's big enough to hold a DSLR with a large lens and is far less obtrusive than a flashy camera bag. Worn across your body you can quickly get the camera out and put it away again. It's not 100% waterproof but certainly good enough to keep stuff dry in showery conditions. It weighs practically nothing and rolls up small when you're not using it.
I think I paid about £10 for it and I use it much more than some considerably more expensive bags.
Aug 12, 2012 9:07 AM
Aug 15, 2012 7:11 PM
Aug 16, 2012 3:43 AM
9Col had a look at the TNF 45L, but ideally I'd want something I can access by opening up one side, rather than a top loader. Current plan looks like sticking with my Alpine lowe 30L, which unzips pretty much the whole face of the backpack and then having something like this as a day bag
My thinking is, if i'm somewhere really hot, then not having my back covered, should allow me to be a bit cooler.
I'f made some tool roll type bags for things like my clippers, and another for my wash kit. I'll see how everything looks packed into my 30L bag before making a decision next
Aug 16, 2012 2:02 PM
Aug 16, 2012 2:17 PM
Aug 16, 2012 7:57 PM
Aug 17, 2012 3:19 AM
Aug 17, 2012 5:38 AM
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