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A Great Backpack for Photographers

By  |  June 11, 2017, 10:43am  |  @ewerickson


I just spent a week in northern Arizona and the Grand Canyon. Over the past year, my wife insisted I needed a hobby other than cooking, so she signed me up for a photography class. I fell in love with it and have been investing in both learning and cameras and lenses. I switched from a Canon to Sony’s a7rii camera and now have several very nice lenses too.

Heading to Arizona, I wanted a backpack that could hold all my gear and would be convenient for travel. I actually bought several and sent all of them back except one. This one from Thule.

Thule may not be a company that comes to mind immediately for photography. I actually had not considered it. I was going with Manfrotto. But the Manfrotto bags had more tradeoffs than I wanted and couldn’t hold my 15″ laptop and 12″ iPad Pro. I wanted to take the bag on the plane with those.

The Thule bag did everything I needed and then some. It held four lenses, my camera, a flash, all the batteries, an ND filter, my laptop, my iPad, a magazine, my headphones, pens, etc. It had a top zipper pocket that was easily accessible going through security so I could drop in my keys and wallet. It fit well on my shoulders and had extra straps for hiking. It had a pocket and strap system so I could attach a lightweight Manfrotto tripod to it.

I love this thing. I could also sling it off one shoulder and get access to the camera section of the bag. It also stood up straight making it easy to access the zipper pouch.

Having tried a ton of camera backpacks and messenger bags, this is the one I recommend from personal use. In the Grand Canyon, I even managed to stuff in my kid’s jacket and a bottle of water.

The bag sounds massive, I realize, but it is very compact. It just holds a lot of stuff because it is so well designed. If you need a great travel backpack for a DSLR or mirrorless system, I cannot recommend this enough.