Last Updated on November 20, 2018 by

As adventure travelers who spend a great deal of time on the road, we take our travel gear quite seriously and we always make sure to invest in quality products that can withstand extreme conditions. Through the years, we’ve spent quite a lot of money, time and effort to find the gear that suit our needs but it hasn’t been easy or cheap.

When Eagle Creek recently invited us to be their brand ambassador, we were thrilled to say the least. Since we started traveling more than a decade ago, we’ve heard so much about Eagle Creek.

The adventure travel gear company has a strong focus on innovation and durability and their packs are always the sturdiest and smartest you can find in the market. Their products are definitely not cheap, but I strongly believe in “you get what you pay for”. Besides, all of Eagle Creek products are covered under the “No Matter What” Warranty that promises lifetime warranty, regardless of the cause. They make for the best travel gifts for travel addicts who are always on the road!

Over the past month, we tested out a few of their products on the road – Alberto in Poland, and myself (Nellie) in Australia and New Zealand. Here’s a look at the gear we chose and how they fared on the road:

Eagle Creek ORV Trunk 36 Wheeled Duffel Bag

Alberto chose this bag because it’s built to the highest standard for extreme adventures. Think polar expeditions, long-distance treks and scuba diving trips. It is Eagle Creek’s ultimate gear bag thanks to its specific features and high-tech fabric. Although Alberto tested it out on a two-week trip in Poland and didn’t quite put it through any rugged terrain (except for cobble-stoned streets), he’s pretty confident this bag will withstand anything that comes its way.

Eagle Creek ORV Trunk 36

What he liked about the ORV Trunk 36:

  • His favorite feature was the stowable equipment keeper that holds gear such as a helmet on top of the bag. It attaches with a key that doubles as a bottle opener!
  • Cargo net can be removed and attached to different points of the bag to store even more gear on the outside of the bag or simply used to organize the content inside.
  • Expandable wet compartment at the bottom of the bag makes it easy to separate muddy, dirty boots from the content.
  • Multiple pockets and lash points are great for packing away portable gear and attaching trekking poles on.
  • Wheel and handle system operate smoothly — no twisting over no matter how heavy the pack is.
  • There’s SO much space you can pack as much as you want! P.S. Alberto is NOT a light packer.

What he didn’t like:

  • 143L is definitely excessive. The bag itself weighs 5.4kg and measures 41 x 91 x 39.5cm, too bulky for any sort of adventure.
  • It would have been great if the bag can be converted into a backpack or have a detachable daypack.
  • Too many lash points, making them unnecessary.

Alberto with his bag

2-in-1 Backpack/Duffel Bag

I chose this versatile and lightweight bag to use as a day bag during my trip and also as an extra piece of luggage when my main backpack is too full. This top-load and center-access backpack converts and expands to a full-size duffel bag with 15% more carry capacity. When the bag is not needed, it can be folded and stored as a 8″ x 5″ pouch. I used it on several hikes in and around Spain and it proved to be easy to carry and multi-functional.

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2-in-1 backpack/duffel bagDuffel bag

What I liked about the 2-in-1 Backpack/Duffel Bag:

  • Backpack holds up to 28L and 33L when expanded into a duffel bag. It can carry quite a few items: a fleece, 1L water bottle, snacks, iPhone, wallet and small camera.
  • Zip-away adjustable moisture-wicking air mesh shoulder straps make the bag comfortable to carry.   When not in use they are stored in a zippered compartment.
  • Plenty of zippered pockets provide easy access to quick grab items.
  • Grey color-coded webbing loops and clips are great for attaching trekking poles.
  • When used as a duffel bag, there’s plenty of space for a multi-day camping trip.

What I didn’t like:

  • Pack is made of nylon that’s super light and water resistant but does not protect its content from damage. I wouldn’t recommend checking it at the airport.
  • Due to the material it’s made up of, it’s not advisable to overload it. It will also be uncomfortable to carry when heavy as the shoulder straps are not designed for extended usage.
  • There are no instructions on how to efficiently fold the bag down but once you’ve figured it out, it doesn’t take more than a few minutes.

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RFID Mini Tablet Crossbody

As a travel journalist, I usually travel with a bulky daypack that holds my big DSLR, a few lenses and a laptop. But  on occasions when I don’t feel like carrying the camera and laptop, I need a small, lightweight purse to carry my wallet, phone and personal items. Which is why I chose this crossbody clutch — it’s big enough for all my personal essentials, yet small enough to stow away in my main backpack.

What I liked about the Mini Tablet Crossbody:

  • RFID Blocking Technology integrated into credit card pocket helps protect personal information with a frequency range of 10 MHz to 3 GHz.
  • 2 Passport zippered pockets, 2 slip pockets, 3 elasticized slip pockets, and 8 credit card pockets make it easy to organize my personal items.
  • I could fit quite a few things in this bag: my Kindle, wallet, iPhone, passport, lipbalm and mobile WiFi device.
  • Perfect for city weekend breaks.

What I didn’t like:

  • Sadly, I was pickpocketed while carrying this bag and my entire wallet was removed without me knowing. In all honesty, I’ve got no one else to blame but myself. I should have made full use of the compartments in the bag and used the bag as a wallet.
  • It is a bit too big for my liking, the Crossbody Wallet would have suit me better, as it’s smaller and takes up less space in my backpack.

Packing Organizers: Pack-It Specter Starter Set

We have wanted to try out these packing organizers for years, and now that we’ve finally got our hands on them, we can safely say they did not disappoint us. These organizers not only keep our bags organized, they also maximize the space we have and allow us to pack more efficiently. When pulling out a t-shirt, all I have to do is remove it from the cube where I keep my tops. No more fumbling through my clothes and repacking every time!

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The Pack-It Specter Starter Set is made up of three organizers: one medium folder, one cube and a half cube. Alberto tested out the folder since he was traveling with some formal clothes and the folder was perfect to keep them wrinkle-free. I used the cubes on my month-long journey that required me to pack for both tropical and winter climate and they turned out to be the best travel companion.

What we liked about the Pack-It Specter Set:

  • Both the folder and cubes are made of washable, water resistant nylon that are extremely lightweight and durable.
  • Organizers allow me to maximize space: the folder holds 8 to 12 shirts and pants, while the cube holds 8 rolled garment (including fleece and quick-dry pants) and the half cube holds 5 rolled t-shirts and shorts.
  • Folder is great to keep clothes wrinkle-free and it even comes with a folding board and illustrations to show how to fold. Folding board is removable.
  • Starter Set comes in white or orange – we liked the white folder and cubes as they are semi-translucent so you can see the content without opening them.

What we didn’t like:

  • Folder is catered to people who are ultra organized or for occasions when you require formal wear. Folding your clothes everyday takes some time and if you’re on a tight travel schedule, it might be a pain. I would recommend the cubes over the folder.

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Have you used an Eagle Creek product before? How was your experience? Share it with us in the comments below.

Disclosure: Eagle Creek provided us with the gear mentioned above for review purposes, but as always, the opinions expressed are our own.