Have you ever been frustrated with your travel bag? Thought, "hey, you know what? I could do better than this"? Well that’s exactly what Jeremy Cohen and Fred Perrotta were thinking somewhere in the middle of their extended trip through Europe. At the end of the trip they decided to take matters into their own hands and founded Tortuga Backpacks, which has now launched its flagship pack — the Tortuga Travel Backpack 45.
Tortuga Backpacks were kind enough to send along a Tortuga Travel Backpack 45 pack for me to test.
The pack consists of two main pockets, two side pockets and two small stash-style pockets on each of the hip belts. There’s also a hidden pocket inside the main pocket for stashing your valuables. The Tortuga 45 also includes something I consider a must have for travel packs — a zippered cover for the shoulder straps and hip belt.
I didn’t get a chance to test it on the road, but the pack had no trouble holding everything I brought with me on a recent trip around the world. The Tortuga 45 also meets the size requirements for carry on luggage on most airlines, so you’ll never need to check it unless you want to. The padded back and hip belt make the pack comfortable even when it’s loaded down, though do bear in mind the emphasis on "urban". I wouldn’t want to walk ten miles with this pack, but for walks from the train station to the hostel you’ll be just fine.
The pack is made of ballistic nylon, which means it’s tough enough to stand up to the rigors of city travel, though you probably wouldn’t want to hit the Appalachian trail with it. The nylon also means the Tortuga 45 is water resistant (though not water proof). I stuck it in the shower for 20 seconds or so and it managed to repel most of the water. Suffice to say if you’re caught in a brief rain shower you don’t need to worry.
Overall I liked the Tortuga Travel Backpack 45. It’s a bit on the boxy side compared to some packs, but it’s definitely functional. My only real gripe is the size of the logo. It’s big. Really big. But I have a known allergy to all branding/logos/labels (even for brands I like) so that may just be me.
If the logo doesn’t bother you and you’re in the market for a new pack, well, we’re giving away our review copy of the Tortuga Travel Backpack 45 (which, as noted, has been briefly exposed to water, and few walks around my neighborhood, but is otherwise brand new). Just leave a comment below telling us where you’re headed and how long you’re going for and I’ll randomly select one lucky winner next week.
Congrats to our winner Jim Johnson
The Tortuga Travel Backpack 45 is available from the Tortuga Backpack website and costs $250.