It’s hard to find a good bag these days. If you’re like me, you’re pretty specific about what you look for in a bag. Pockets, but not too many pockets. Enough space for a weeks worth of clothing, as well as space for the gym clothes you’d like to bring in case you’re able to head out for a run. Let’s face it, if you travel, a good bag is a necessity. With that, I must say that I have been nothing by HAPPY and ELATED with my Patagonia Black Hole Duffel. It might not be fully waterproof (it’s water-resistant), but it surely lives up to the quality and attention to detail that Patagonia, Inc. is so famously known for.
I recently packed up some clothes to head back to campus for my last year of college. I knew, right from the first thought of having to pack clothes, that my Black Hole Duffel would be at least one of the bags I would use to transport my clothing. Strapped to the roof of my car on Wednesday morning, the bag looked right at home; as if it would look on the roof of a chicken bus in Central America. I was able to pack almost half of all the clothes I chose to bring here to school for the year. Let’s back up a few months now.
I studied abroad in Central America from the end of August 2012 until mid-December 2012. The entire time I had two pieces of luggage—my Black Hole Duffel and the Mile High Mountaineering Salute 34. The duffel, when packed with the clothes I knew would be essential and versatile for the semester amidst three Central American countries (Guatemala, El Salvador, and Nicaragua), served the perfect amount of space. I studied abroad again in Argentina for the Spring semester (February 2013- July 2013) and forewent bringing my Black Hole Duffel. Though a trekking backpack proved valuable for hiking and camping the Patagonia region of Argentina, I did find myself longing for the versatility, and the great design of my Duffel.
The Black Hole Duffel 60L proved just the right size for a week-long trip. Ample space that one can fit multiple outfits, and even footwear and toiletries, and still not have to sit on top of the bag and hope that the zipper doesn’t burst when the airline employee carelessly throws it into the cargo-hold. Furthermore, the built-in backpack straps provide for easy and hands-free carrying. On the inside, you’ll get one more taste of Patagonia’s impeccable design with two mesh pockets on the lid of the duffel. There you can keep your essentials—cards, nail clippers, floss, the cool stone you find on a stroll along an exotic beach, what have you….
BUT, as with most travel experiences, one cannot fully understand the Patagonia Black Hole Duffel until one uses the luggage themselves. Only then, will they find their go-to bag.