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Kelty Cycle Hiker Pack : Retro Style With Modern Features

Kelty’s Vintage Cycle Hiker day pack has quickly become an invaluable part of my daily life. In the last few weeks I’ve hauled my belongings throughout Colorado and throughout airports in the US and Europe. The back pack is roomy and has tons of pockets so I can stay organized. I also like the sixties-inspired design.

The first thing I noticed when I opened up the Cycle Hiker pack was how many organizer pockets it has. I stopped using basic messenger bags many years ago because when they initially appeared on the scene, they were nothing more than huge waterproof bags. All my pens, receipts, spare papers, and odds and ends wound up floating in the bottom, so retrieving anything was a fishing expedition. Not so with the Cycle Hiker pack.

Inside each of its two zippered pockets are several small inner pockets. As I look inside my pack right now, I’ve got a wad of cash in a hidden zippered pocket, my Kindle reader in its own pocket, my laptop charger in its own pocket, my keys clipped to a key lanyard so they don’t disappear, and pens in their own sleeves. The only items in the main pocket are: a set of headphones, a book, and a notebook.

I’m not generally an organized guy, but if I’m traveling and I’m disorganized, I’m invariably late. I hate wasting time trying to find my passport, or my wallet, or a of couple bucks to buy a coffee at an airport. With the Cycle Hiker pack I stay "put together" and on time. I keep all of my traveling necessities in the outer pocket, which helps me when I’m running through airports on hyper drive.

At 18 liters, the Kelty Cycle Hiker day pack isn’t too big--nor is it too small. I can fit a 13- or 15-inch laptop in it, as well as my most important travel accessories. It carries comfortably thanks to well-padded shoulder straps – and those straps are also so adjustable that they’ll fit little kids as well as 6’2” adults like myself.

Kelty’s Cycle Hiker pack is made out of thick 500-denier Cordura nylon, which means it stands up to the rigors of daily use and abuse. It’s also got metal zippers – I think the last time I had a backpack with metal zippers was in second grade, and that backpack went with me everywhere, every day, and never had a hiccup. Metal zippers are built to last. So far, aside from a bunch of dog hair adorning the bottom, my pack looks brand new. I expect it will stay that way for many years.

The Cycle Hiker pack is available in a variety of old-school colors: black, olive green, green, sand and tan.

Bottom Line: Cool-looking day pack for outdoor hipsters who need lots of storage and organization -- N.W. (April ‘11)

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