Let's get a couple of things out of the way, I'm a web nerd and I am a gear nerd...
...ok, now we have that clear, check out this awesome Maximus 40 duffle bag which I got via a Highsnobiety online competition.
Now I have had my fair share of duffles ( though still wishing a got a limited edition North Face Base Camp duffle I saw in Chicago once ), but this one is the ultimate! After a nuclear assualt, two things will survive...insects and this bag!
It's a simple bag ( as all true outdoor products should be ). It's extremely well built and hardwearing with multiple haulage options. I really wouldn't be afraid of throwing this onto the back of a landrover or off a bus in Khatmandu...and the blue is very distinctive ( which is a good thing ).
So what is the skinny? Well it's made by the new Eddie Bauer 'First Ascent' brand, who make stuff under the 'Guide Built Gear' heading. Check the list of the people they are working with...it's a who's who of mountaineering ( remember Ed Viesturs from the original IMAX Everest movie? ). Now I have only had a chance to check out this one product, but by the look of their website the rest of it looks pretty awesome. Nice clean functional lines, no pandering to the masses...pure mountain design. Unfortunately you can't buy First Ascent products in the UK ( or any Eddie Bauer for that matter ), so looks like when I am back in the States i'll be checking more of their kit out ( looks like May for another work trip to SF ). Just look at the clean lines of the BC-100 ( and liking the blue colour too!)
Anything negative? Well this is only the 40 litre model, which whilst awesome, it isn't big enough for my mountain biking or full outdoor kit...but i'll still be using it a lot. I might even use it as my international travel bag? ( instead of a shoulder strap it actually has a very clever backpack harness instead ).
Anyway, check it out online here