From Issue Seven of Gear Patrol Magazine.

The days of international backpackers lugging hyper-technical bags might be a thing of the past. Soft-adventure travel is on the rise, and naturally, luggage design from outdoor brands is following suit with a slew of duffel-suitcase-backpack hybrids that don’t look like they came straight out of the woods.

These hybrid suitcases have a few hallmark features, including a clamshell opening, a 40L capacity and a handful of different carrying options, backpack straps included. While a number of traditional outdoor brands have brought examples to market, there’s only one you need to know: Evergoods, a Montana-based backpack brand founded by GORUCK and Patagonia alumni.

Evergoods’ Civic Transit Bag 40L, or CTB40, has all of the features listed above. But more notable is what it lacks — clutter, fuss, an over-smattering of pockets designed to hold everything yet fit nothing. It even lacks any sort of obvious logo. The CTB40 is sleek, minimal and impeccably designed from the inside out.

One of the bag’s signatures is a clothing-compression strap system called Flex-Fold, a four-sided flap with stretchy corners that keeps your clothing from getting snagged in the zipper closure and plays very nicely with packing cubes. There’s also a separated and fully suspended laptop pocket, comfortable fixed shoulder straps and an ultra-durable, water-resistant exterior that owes its performance to 500d, silicone-coated nylon.

You could say that the CTB40 looks like some sort of space-age jet pack, something NASA might issue to the first colonists of Mars, which is fitting because we’re pretty sure Evergoods just defined the future of adventure luggage.

CTB 40 by Evergoods $289

But if you’re looking for other options, or just can’t get on board with the Evergoods aesthetics (you’re wrong, but O.K.), we’ve also included a handful of the other options out there for a similarly styled travel bag. None quite hit that goldilocks middle ground of durability, performance and style that the Evergoods bag does, but maybe you need something in a bag that we’ve overlooked.

Travel Pack by AER $220

Mission Rover by Mystery Ranch $185

Border 35 by Gregory $140

GR2 by GoRuck $495

40L Anti-Theft Carry On Pack by Pacsafe x Quiksilver $190

BRFCS by RMU $200

Allpa 35L Travel Pack by Cotopaxi $210

Travel Bag 40L by Topo Designs $229

Evergoods provided the CTB 40 for review.

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