1 year ago
Patagonia Lightweight Travel Courier
My bag is small, but it is Bad Ass.
During medical missions to politically sensitive or disaster-stricken areas, teaching abroad, and routine leisure travel, the need for a small and light bag to compliment my main travel kit was becoming more and more apparent. My significant other and I have always held to a strict “pack light and be ready to leave very, very quickly” philosophy, so a complimentary bag to our main pack needed to be extremely light and extremely useful.
The Patagonia Lightweight Travel Courier (LWT Courier) is the swiss army knife in my “bag” of tricks. It is now my daily go-to, my nimble messenger, and the versatile piece in my travel kit.
My main bag is the universally lauded GORUCK GR1, which handles all of the daily heavy lifting, my short-term travel, and the occasional GORUCK challenge. When I don’t need to carry a Macbook Pro and gear, a weekend to weeks worth of clothes, a full set of bug-out equiment, or 6 bricks plus water and gear, the LWT Courier meets all of my remaining needs.
Folding to the size of a very thin paperback and weighing half of that, the LWT Courier stores into itself and sneaks into any of my larger bags (the GR1, a Patagonia MLC, an Arc Teryx Bora 80 & 40, or a Granite Gear Vapor Trail ). It provides me with the ability to carry a large pack to my destination, leave my main bag at a secure site, and travel light and fast to a local clinic, hospital or other destination.
Fully deployed, the bag has enough space to hold my reasonable daily needs- a rain shell, a down insulating layer, a scarf, an iPad and apple bluetooth keyboard, a stethoscope, glasses and those other small items I need to have on me for most reasonable situations like an iPad/iPhone and micro usb chargers, USB keys, backup battery, a tripod and [Glif](http://www.studioneat.com/products/glif-for-iphone-4) for my iPhone, a small multitool protein bars, and of course- gum. This does not leave the bag over-stuffed or strained, and there is always room to spare if I pick up additional items. The material is very thin, so the iPad needs to live in another case to protect it from signficant drops and bumps.
There is an easily accesible zippered internal pocket to place small items securely, and that also serves as a pouch to stow the bag when not in use. On the front of the bag there is an outside zippered pouch for fast-grab items that don’t need to be so securely stored. Finally, there are two elastic pouches on the sides that easily store small thermoses and water bottles or other items like protein bars, etc., and close completely flat and tight to the bag when not in use.
This size is ideal for my daily needs- if I am going to the hospital for the day, running errands or visiting people around town it is the perfect bag on its own. When I go to my clinic or take an overnight call in the hospital, I need to bring my Macbook Pro for charting, my diagnositc set, clothes, and food for the day. In that case I place the Travel Courier into my bag fully loaded without any difficulty, and I have all of my daily items readily accessible and without needing to unload/reload every other day.
The bag travels comfortably as a standard messenger-style bag. I have read there were issues with the grip of the strap on previous models, but the latest version (as of mid 2011) rides perfectly and gives me no trouble regardless of the material of my jacket or clothing. The messenger-style makes it easy to carry if I’m already wearing a traditional backpack-style pack and the need arises to wear both at once. This wouldn’t be as easy if the Travel Courier was a backpack.
The material is a ripstop nylon with double reinforcement on the bottom. I have used this particular bag heavily for nearly a year and it shows no signs of wear. Even if it did however, the bag is backed by Patagonia’s [Iron Clad guarantee](http://www.patagonia.com/us/includes/ironclad_guarantee_pop_up.jsp?OPTION=SAR&assetid=2082&ln=280) which gives me confidence as the customer service at Patagonia is among the best I have ever encountered. My bag is black and I think it has a really nice look given the material. The colors available vary season to season.
For the price and the utility, the Patagonia Travel Courier not only compliments my current needs, it stands alone strongly on its own. It meets my critera for a daily grab bag, and adds little weight to my main pack when I travel domestically or abroad. With so much punch in such a little package, this bag truly is Bad Ass.
Volume: 17 liters,
Dimensions: 15” x 9.5” x 5”
Weight: 207g/ 7.3 oz
Color: varies with season. Check the Patagonia web site or your local outfitter for availibility.
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