Fancy getting your hands on a fab North Face Basecamp duffel bag? Here’s your chance!
A lifetime of packing at the last minute means I’m a bit of a packing ninja.
My top tip is to have a good selection of luggage. For some trips, a suitcase is best. But other times, you might use a small case on wheels, or a backpack.
I find duffel bags ideal for trips where:
- You need to pack a lot of kit in a hurry (basically me on EVERY trip)
- You won’t be carrying your bag for a long distance
- You’re travelling by coach/train and need to fit your bag into a luggage rack
- You’re staying somewhere that you might need to fit your luggage into a small space eg a cupboard or under a bunk
- You want a bag you can use while travelling e.g. as a sports bag or beach bag
The other big win of a duffel bag is that when you get home, it’s easy to store without taking up too much space.
This summer, I’ve been sent the North Face Basecamp duffel bag from Millets. In return, they asked me to put the bag through its paces.
The Basecamp is essentially the Vin Diesel of duffel bags. It’s enormous, it’s tough as anything, and colourful enough that you won’t miss it on a luggage carousel.
As a duffel bag, there are a few features that make this one worth considering:
- Wow, this thing is tough! It’s a laminate material with double stitching and covered zips that I can promise you is waterproof, dog proof and kid proof.
- The North Face Basecamp duffel is available in yellow and red – bright colours that aren’t easily lost and you can spot on a luggage carousel. Or you can get it in black if you enjoy the experience of lost luggage.
- The version I have is the Large size, and holds 95 litres – it’s also available in XL and XXL if you need even more room. You can fit a LOT in this bag.
- The haul handles can double as ‘rucksack’ style straps, allowing you to carry the bag more comfortably on your back
- There is a really big, clear, waterproof ID pocket on top, meaning your child shouldn’t forget which bag is theirs
- Once packed there are straps on the outside allowing you to compress the contents (great if you’re trying to stuff it into a tight spot in the car)
- Inside the top of the bag there’s a zippered mesh pocket for storing important documents
Tried and Tested
The North Face duffel’s first test was a 4-day school residential. Flea found the bag had plenty of room for all her kit, and it kept everything dry.
One thing I would say for kids is that when full, this bag is pretty heavy to carry on your shoulder. I think kids will tend to use one of the other handles to drag it along the floor. Because, well, kids.
Needless to say, our bag came home with some scuffing in the canvas at the end of the bag. That said, the underlying bag itself stood up to the strain without damage.
At the end of the summer, I used the bag on a road trip up to Scotland to spend time with family.
The North Face Basecamp bag is ideal for road trips. I could stuff it full of clothes and towels for a 3-day beach trip, and it was soft enough to squish down the front of the car’s back seat, leaving the boot free for the family dog. The bag spent plenty of time on the beach and in wet grass, and we found it kept everything dry and cosy.
As an adult, the bag is easy to carry rucksack style. If it’s not full, though, the shoulder straps and haul handles are very comfortable.
Win a North Face Basecamp Duffel with Millets
For me, the biggest downside of the North Face Basecamp duffel is it’s too expensive for me to buy the whole range! This Large bag retails at £115. Luckily for you though, I have one to give away, courtesy of the lovely folks at Millets.
To be in with a chance of winning your own North Face Basecamp duffel bag, all you have to do is comment on this blog post telling me your favourite trip of 2017, and complete the competition widget. Bonus entries are available.
The winner will be selected at random from all eligible entries after the closing date of 11 October 2017, and the prize will be shipped direct by Millets. Entry is open to UK residents aged 18+, no cash alternative, and you must complete the competition widget and comment on this post to enter. Good luck!