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Bags of Fun! - part 1 of 1 2

by Mike McNamee Published 01/02/2016

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Recovering bagaholic, Mike McNamee falls of the wagon again.


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A tripod may be attached either to the side or on the back.

I fear that I am morphing into a camera bag equivalent of Imelda Marcos. She couldn't keep her hands away from collecting shoes, with me it's camera bags and rucksacks!

Now I know that I am not alone in this vice - almost all photographers have more than one camera bag and live in a permanent quest for a 'more perfect' match. This, of course, is impossible - like a lady's handbag there is no such thing as a perfect one and the only way to address the dilemma is the purchase of a bag menagerie!

My previous pack was the f-stop Tilopa and when this was nicked, a replacement was sought. This was a legitimate enterprise, a chap has to have a bag after all. The Tilopa's predecessor was (and still is) a 35-litre climbing rucksack into which lenses were chucked with no more than spare socks for comfort. This is hardly convenient and when bad weather was expected each lens was often packed into its own padded bag. At 48 litreS, the Tilopa lives at the higher end of the day-sack range and could be pushed into overnight service providing the weather was warm. However, the length bordered on the long side for your tiny editor, a problem that would also Affect many women. Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago and just as I was leaving Wilkinson Cameras, the manager, Sara Penwarden, dangled the new Mindshift Backlight in front of me. This is not something that should be done to a recovering bagaholic. The upshot is the subject of this review is an owned, not borrowed, copy of the bag!

The Mindshift Backlight is a 26-litre day pack, back-opening with facilities and attachments for walking poles, crampons, ice axe(s) and a modest space for waterproofs, etc. The back opening may be accessed by swivelling the bag round to your front (with the waist belt still closed). Then there is a handy lanyard to keep the back flap out of the way while the bag acts as something of a bench. Not having to put your bag down on the ground is a bonus for several reasons:
1. It keeps sheep shit off your shoulder straps. 2. The bag cannot roll down a riverbank into a stream (or for that matter down a slope and over a cliff ).
3. On the beach, the gear is kept further from blowing sand.
4. The dog cannot get to your sandwiches.
5. The gear is more secure when directly in front of you all the time.


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1st Published 01/02/2016
last update 30/01/2018 12:09:36

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Updated 30/01/2018 12:09:36 Last Modified: Tuesday, 30 January 2018