Published on September 17th, 2010 | by Greg0
The Columbia Mobex XL Provides More Space, Less Weight
Columbia has been a go-to for anyone who shares the love of the great outdoors and well-executed clothing or equipment. Most recently, they introduced the Mobex XL Backpack for those who desire to carry a little more. The Mobex XL looks like an oversized version of it’s old self.
What makes this backpack so compelling is the light feel of our heavy load. It is made with Flex Frame construction which is similar to the design of a tent. Flexible poles give the Mobex its shaping, but most importantly, the support to carry our substantial load.
This bag is a bit overkill for normal student use. But the design of this backpack is magnificent and it really appeals to those adventurers who need a compatible, versatile design when hiking, canoeing, kayaking, or plain old biking.
Columbia wanted to appeal to trailblazers who need more space but don’t need the extra bulk. The lightweight fabric paired with Columbia’s Omni-Shield-armed material on the pack dissuades rain and grime from seeking shelter. You might have remembered us sharing the perks of the Omni-Shield when we wore the Titanium Micro Advantage Fleece the half-zip fleece that kept us warm and dry. If you need to keep comfy on the road, we really liked the zipper and chin guard, especially at the neckline where a zipped-up fleece can often rub against skin and become pretty irritating. Not here; plus the fairly tight sleeves and neck line ensure that wind doesn’t get inside.
While on a bike ride we rode into a patch of rain and we were able to easily wipe the rain and some mud clean from our pack. The nylon shell is water-repellent so no harm done. The pack moved with us instead of against us as it is more aerodynamic that most.
What we found most helpful about this pack was the visibility. The clamshell main zipper made it possible for us to peel back the main compartment and have access to the interior. The Modex XL also features cargo netting dividers so our items easily kept their places while hiking.
A decently comfortable hip belt provided the ideal spot for a water bottle and a removable tool pouch inside handled our first aid kit. There is even a neat front compartment to put your shoes if you really are using this for a triathalon.
We found the design to be a well-rounded addition to the Columbia family. We were able to purchase for $120 from Amazon. You can choose from a bright orange or a bright blue color, solarize or capri, respectively.