I have a nice backpack style camera bag that holds most of my gear, but it’s big, bulky and heavy, not ideal for carrying a small setup. Plus, it looks like a “camera bag,” which isn’t always desirable.
When I travel, I usually have just one body, a flash and two lenses, plus some extra gear and don’t need a big bag. Backpacks are great for carrying gear, but they’re not ideal if you want to frequently access that gear. I’ve been reading and checking out messenger bags, and they seem perfect. Unfortunately, most are pretty expensive, over $200, which is more than I wanted to spend.
While at the local Best Buy today I checked out the Lowepro Passport Sling and liked it, but there were things that concerned me. First, I wasn’t sure if it would be big enough to hold my gear, and I wanted something with more padding.
I ended up purchasing the Tamrac Rally 6, which was on clearance for a ridiculous $39. It’s roomy, well padded and very comfy. It can hold a full size DSLR (but not one with a grip) with a medium length lens about 6 inches or less attached, a full size flash such as a Canon 600EX-RT and a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. The flap has Velcro and a plastic clasp to keep it shut. It seems to work fine in normal use, but I wouldn’t trust it if there’s a chance the bag would get turned upside down. It’s not that kind of bag. It’s just a basic “satchel” that hangs around your neck and makes it easy to get to your gear.
The bag features a zippered pocket on the flap with divided pockets inside that are perfect for cell phones, batteries and other gear. There’s also a second pocket on the backside that doesn’t have a zipper but is perfect for maps and other papers. On the sides are two mesh pockets that can hold other gear. I use one of them for my Black Rabid but haven’t decided on what to us the other one for.
Here are some pictures showing the bag and some of its features. What bag do you use? If you could pick any bag, what would you choose?