Friday, August 29, 2008

Good Gear: Ode to the A-III

My Eagle Industries A-III pack and I have logged a lot of miles together. When last I checked (and because I’m a huge geek, I actually did check), it’s been to at least 15 countries. It’s traveled by car & van, helicopter & HMMWV, jetliner & puddle-jumper, speedboat & subway - to say nothing of my own two stinky feet. It’s been beat up, abused, over loaded, slept on & stepped on, dragged & dunked, and it’s never skipped a beat.

It looks basically just like the day I bought it five years ago for $99 - that is to say totally unremarkable and plain black. The Cordura nylon has softened a bit with wear, and the brass hardware has lost its black coating. I keep wondering when I’ll have to test Eagle’s lifetime warrantee.

Add to its ruggedness that it blends in perfectly in the sea of black bags in any airport, precisely meets the dimensions for carry-on luggage, and has extremely comfortable straps. If I can’t fit it in the A-III’s ~ 2,600 cubic inches, I usually don’t need it. The AIII pack has proven to be a perfect companion from tent camps to five star hotels.

Eagle Industries’ AIII pack:

But they’re cheapest here:

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