The backpack features dedicated pockets for a laptop and iPad.
We’ve always been a big fan of San Fransisco-based WaterField Designs, and for good reason. The company offers a huge line of beautiful and well-designed bags, sleeves, and other accessories made to last.
And one of the latest products from WaterField is the Bolt Backpack.
It’s available in two different fabrics – waxed canvas or ballistic nylon. You can select from leather accents in one of three selected colors – black, chocolate, or grizzly brown.
I’ve been testing out the waxed canvas version with grizzly brown leather accents. Easily my favorite part of the bag is the waxed canvas. The beautiful material is water resistant and looks good at work or just on the weekend. Combined the waxed canvas with the waterproof zippers and thick leather bottom, the backpack should easily keep your devices and other items protected.
In my testing, the top feature of the backpack is the pair of zippers that allow access to the main compartment along with the additional laptop and iPad sleeve. You can fit up to a 15-inch MacBook in the main sleeve while the smaller compartment holds up to a 12.9-inch iPad Pro. While you’ll still need to take out a laptop while going through airport security, the extra zipper does make it quick and simple to grab those important devices when needed.
The rest of the backpack’s main compartment is is big enough to hold a number of other items, and the pair of hand pockets can secure power bricks and cables.
The additional zipper provides fast access to your laptop and tablet.
On the exterior, two side pockets are perfect for water bottles or other smaller items. The biggest front zippered pocket can hold smaller items like your wallet and travel documents. There are also two small pockets that are closed by leather tabs with hidden magnets.
A big part of any backpack – the straps – are comfortable and can be easily adjusted. The back is also covered with anti-sweat mesh material. A bottom section can slide over a rolling suitcase handle while traveling.
While I’ve enjoyed using the backpack while traveling and just in my day-to-day use, there are two notable downsides. First, the bag isn’t designed to hold a huge amount of items. While it’s spacious enough to hold a laptop, tablet, and other smaller items, don’t expect to hold all of your electronics. If you’re looking for a larger backpack, take a look at Speck’s MightyPack Plus that I reviewed last year.
Then there’s the $329 price tag. That’s steep, but I definitely think its a case of getting what you pay for. The bag is well made and the waxed canvas will only look better with age. The leather is also very high quality. The Bolt is something I can see carrying for years and holding up wonderfully. And that’s more than I can say for other backpacks.
- Made with beautiful and durable waxed canvas or ballistic nylon and full-grain leather accents.
- Two separate padded pockets for a laptop and up to a 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
- Both an iPad and laptop can be accessed through a separate waterproof zipper.
- A number of compartments to hold accessories, including two exterior pockets.
- The backpack’s rear slot can fit over a rolling suitcase to make traveling a bit easier.
- Extremely pricey.
- Not particularly spacious.
- Won’t lay complete flat, so you’ll still need to take a laptop out at airport security.