For my family’s river rafting trip in the Grand Canyon I needed not only a new daypack for our hiking excursions but also a duffel bag to carry all of my clothes for the week. I found two ideally sized items, plus a couple of nifty versatile packing cubes from a new-to-me company Lewis N. Clark.
The ElectroLight Day Pack ($43.99) is made from super lightweight and strong “silnylon” fabric. It’s very thin; in fact, the material is translucent. Some days I stuffed the bag so full with a water bottle, jacket, camera and other items that I thought the material would rip, but it held up well. The bag does come with one side water bottle holder, but I was using a metal HydroFlask bottle and it didn’t seem to want to stay put in the mesh pocket. Perhaps a plastic, squatter water bottle would not have slid out as often. I like that the bag folds up into it’s own small pouch and can tuck easily into another carry-on bag (though I used this day pack as my “personal item” carry-on for our flight to Las Vegas prior to our rafting trip). There is a small interior pocket to help organize your items, too. I found the pack very comfortable to carry on my shoulders while we traipsed throughout rocky side canyons. If you prefer a sturdy pack, this one may not be for you, since the material is indeed thin and flimsy (though strong, as I noted). It’s also not waterproof.
The 12-by-12-by-24 Duffel Bag ($37.49) was perfectly sized for the amount of clothes I needed to bring on my six-night camping trip. In fact, it also held a few extra items of clothing I wanted to have on hand for sightseeing and dining in Las Vegas before and after our outdoor adventure on the Colorado River. This affordable piece of luggage also doubled as my carry-on bag on the plane (though, technically, it is a bit long for overhead bins; since it’s a soft bag, I was able to smush it in). The canvas-like material (“weather-resistant 900D polyester”) is lightweight and sturdy. I like the multiple small zippered outer pockets, as well as one found inside. The padded side grab handles are also a plus.
Small ElectroLight packing cubes are awesome. My husband and I each used these on our recent trip for storing electronics. The bigger one (the Mini) expands to hold a lot of stuff; I had a point-and-shoot camera, a solar charger, my GoPro, headphones, and miscellaneous chargers in there. The smaller one (the Micro) doesn’t expand, but it was big enough (4.5×4.5×2 inches) for my husband’s limited electronic stuff. The material is the same lightweight but sturdy silnylon that’s used in the day pack above. One important note: These cubes have a mesh strip across the top cover, so sand can get inside (I know this from experience in the dusty Grand Canyon). Lewis N. Clark makes many sizes of these cubes, and some of them are big enough for packing clothes. I love the concept of packing cubes, and I especially like how lightweight and non-bulky these cubes are.
Overall, I’m pleased with how these four items held up during my most recent vacation, and I certainly appreciate how Lewis N. Clark luggage and packing solutions are reasonably priced.
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Lewis N. Clark provided bags and cubes for purposes of review.