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Published on April 19th, 2017 | by Greg


Thule Subterra Backpack 23L: Work On The Go, Near Or Far

The most important thing about traveling is making sure you are carrying the right amount- not too much, and not too little. Pack accordingly, and make sure that you treat your baggage the same way. You want to keep everything close, compact, and not get weighed down with extra space or a lot of additional pockets you can’t use. Today’s pack isn’t built for hauling books to school or mountaineering, and it’s not made for photographers who need a lot of adjustable inserts to protect lenses.

Instead the Thule Subterra Backpack 23L is part of a family of backpacks that covers most other occasions for most environments. There is a larger, heftier 25L as well as a 30L model, but this daypack This one fits up to a 15-inch MacBook Pro or similarly-sized PC in the padded laptop sleeve, and offers a separate soft pocket for your tablet. Weighing in at just a tad over two pounds, this bag can nonetheless fit just about everything you’d need for a long weekend. Carrying it is comfortable too, with shoulder straps that are nicely padded- as is the rear of the bag- and the sternum strap keeps things snug.

You might recognize the name of the company- Thule is a Swedish firm founded in 1942, and best known in the United States for bike racks, roof racks, and similar gear. But they also manufacture everything from phone cases to strollers, bike seats to bike trailers, and a pretty surprisingly wide range of luggage as well. The Subterra features clean lines, rounded edges, and an unusual shape- it’s fairly aerodynamic and balances well on your back, but might not balance well if you set it on the ground or the floor.

The side pockets are a little small (somewhat expandable but zippered, so your water bottle may not fit). But there is a handy luggage passthrough for use with your rolling suitcase, something many bags this size and style lack. Reflective details ensure night visibility, important on a black bag like ours (technically, dark shadow, with blueish mineral and brownish ember options also available. And we liked the internal cord management, allowing you to keep your devices plugged in and charging from a battery that can hide in what they call a ‘PowerPocket’. Overall, the Thule Subterra 23L looks great, is priced right, and is a solid commuter, computer bag with plenty of organizational capabilities. Expect to spend around $100 online and in stores.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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