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#177996 - 06/22/13 05:21 AM Portable/Folding Lightweight Backpack?
newbiee Offline
newbie

Registered: 06/22/13
Posts: 1
Hey all! I'm new to these forums, and wanted some advice on gear. I'm going on a couple trips this summer wherein I'll be hiking, but I don't have room in my suitcase to pack a full backpack (plus, I'd like to travel light). Ideally, I'd like to carry a small day bag (cell phone, wallet, passport, etc) that could fit the portable backpack inside--that way, so I could use the extra space as needed.

I was wondering if you knew of any decent <$60 folding/portable backpacks? I absolutely love the older model of North Face's Flyweight backpack, but I'm not totally sold on their newer one. Just for reference, here's the older model I was interested in:



It just seems more well-made than the current model--it has various compression straps, more pockets/zippers, sternum buckle (I think?), etc. Unfortunately, you can't find it anywhere. Trust me, I spent like 3 straight hours googling. I think a shop or two in the UK sells them, but I'm in the US (California to be exact).

Do you know of any mid-sized folding/portable/packable/etc backpacks similar to the one above? I think I'm looking for one of the following:

1. similar quality to the one above, max $70. better build quality with more features (i.e. compression straps, more pockets/dividers).

2. a basic backpack that is ULTRA-portable (i.e. so small you could almost fit it in your pocket). i.e., something along the lines of the Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil day pack

I'd really prefer the first--something of great build quality, that is at least small enough to fit in a small/medium-sized day bag. If no one can recommend anything of that sort, I guess I'd go for whatever can fit the tiniest amount of space.

I'd use it as my go-to bag for day hikes, and maybe in the cities when I spontaneously need more space. The bag should at least be big enough for some food, a water bottle, minimal camera gear (my 16" monopod and my compact camera), and maybe a sweater. I don't want a mini backpack, I want something full-sized. It should be durable enough to last at least 15 or so uses. Thanks so much!

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#177997 - 06/22/13 05:39 AM Re: Portable/Folding Lightweight Backpack? [Re: newbiee]
Glenn Roberts Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1385
Loc: Southwest Ohio
I can't really recommend anything specific to you; I don't have any need for a pack like you describe. However, given the uses you anticipate, and the quality you're after, have you looked at L L Bean? That sounds like something they might carry, maybe under their own house brand.

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#178005 - 06/22/13 07:24 PM Re: Portable/Folding Lightweight Backpack? [Re: newbiee]
PerryMK Offline
member

Registered: 01/18/02
Posts: 1156
Loc: Florida panhandle
I've taken a Wanderlite all over the world for just what you describe. It's great for short trails/day hikes, museum hopping, etc. It's a fairly thick, durable fabric (420D nylon), not an ultrathin nylon that feels like it might tear. It rolls up to the size of a can of soda, so pretty compact yet it still unrolls to a standard full size (1925ci) pack. Plus it's made in USA. And it's well within your price range.

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