I finally picked up a backpack for traveling: ONA’s Bolton Street Backpack. For my last few trips I’ve been borrowing friend’s Lowepro Fastpack 250, which although was completely functional and well built I wasn’t happy with. Since I already have a messenger bag (Domke F-2 Ruggedwear Shooters Bag) and my Pelican for jobs (Pelican 1510 Carry On Case) I really wanted to find a backpack I could take along with me when I was traveling. Messenger bags are awesome, but if you’re walking a lot while carrying a few lens it gets painfully heavy on one shoulder. Trust even if you man/woman up after a long period of time your shoulder will want to bloody murder you. I also very much love my Pelican case (it has wheels! it stores overhead on airplanes! you can sit on it! you can hit it with a car [yes this has happened to me]! it’s very, very organized!), but it’s not very traveling around the city or mountain friendly. Solution? Backpack!
The key features I look for camera backpacks:
- – Adjustable, padding to keep gear secure
- – Comfortable to wear
- – Well designed for easy access (this was the main thing that the Lowepro was lacking)
- – Doesn’t scream “I’m a camera bag! Come steal me!”
- – Fits a laptop
- – Fits in an airplane overhead compartment and/or under an airplane seat
- – Doesn’t make you look like a turtle from the side (I used to have the Crumpler Karachi Outpost –major turtle backpack! See photo below)
I think I’ve found the perfect combination of these features in ONA’s Bolton Street. Here’s my review and unboxing of it.
I was debating about getting a backpack from ONA for a while. Originally I was planning on getting The Camps Bay Backpack, but the large size wasn’t doing it for me. While I’m on the go I’d really like to have a small, compact bag (again avoiding the turtle effect.) I hesitated with the Bolton Street since all the review and photos at the time didn’t show the backpack holding a 13in laptop. Even the photos from the company didn’t show one. How the laptop was stored was important to me since I’ve had bad experiences with other bags. One made it nearly impossible to access the laptop without going through a series of zippers and velcro. The other was too accessible and resulted with my laptop flying out at an airport one time. I can happily say that my laptop is snuggling with the Bolton Street now.
I’m going to have to say that ONA is one of the most aesthetically pleasing looking bags. It looks sleek and clean enough to tag along with me to meetings, but also casual enough to ride with me on a subway. Compared my everyday laptop backpack (an Electric Blue Incase) this one doesn’t cry out for attention. Yes, I’m happy being ignored. Go away and let me people watch you!
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