I wear many hats in my life. I’m a digital nomad, world traveler, foodie, photographer, biker, gym enthusiast, and a tech geek. Therefore, I need a multipurpose bag that can join me in my worldwide conquests, from the relaxing beach to the busiest foreign food mecca to the fitness center to the coffee shop.The Under Armour Storm Hustle II has been the perfect companion to my adventures. It’s been there to ensure that I have everything I need to see the world one plane ride at a time. I replaced my old tiny carry-on luggage with this bad boy.
Why I like it?
This backpack was with me when I worked remotely, traveling and working from Norway to Japan. It was with me when I was stuck in New York City traffic searching for the best pizza the city had to offer. It safely and securely held onto my stuff when I was biking on beaches of Florida even though there was a slight drizzle. My camera gear was safe and dry and was ready to shoot next day.
I’ve taken it hiking a few times already and even when my load was heavy, it never failed me. There are lots of things I like about the Storm Hustle II backpack and only a few things I’d like to improve to make it perfect for the busy adventurous hustler.
About the bag
The Storm Hustle II is a backpack made from 81% polyester and 19% nylon. Made from a tough and durable material, this backpack has an abrasion-resistant bottom panel. It carries Under Armour’s special Storm technology that gives it a highly water-resistant finish. The bag is roomy inside and it has a soft-lined laptop sleeve that securely and delicately carried my 15-inch MacBook Pro without scratching it. Its adjustable HeatGear shoulder straps made it extremely comfortable to carry.
Most people wouldn’t carry a laptop with their trail gear when hiking, but if they do, it is good to know that it will be more than alright. But if you need a camera and other gear with you, you’ll need a proper camera bag.
- Highly water-resistant
- Durable and comfortable straps
- Versatile as a laptop bag, trail bag, or gym bag
- Can be bulky
- No compartments for camera gear
The curvature of this bag’s strap makes it a comfortable fit around your arm pit and shoulders. There is padding where your back rests so there is a nice cushion between you and the gear in your bag.
I’m amazed how form-fitting this backpack is even when it is fully-loaded. Its padded rear panel and adjustable HeatGear shoulder straps kept the load firm on my back even when power walking and going up and down stairs.
Not only is it a comfortable bag to carry, it is also extremely durable and strong, despite the amount of gear and weight I’ve put into this backpack. Even with odd shaped items in the compartments, there have been no rips or tears in the material whatsoever.
Before this backpack, I would usually carry a frameless daypack that looks like a knapsack that only has a couple of strings to lock the contents in place and keep the bag safe. Then, if I needed to bring a laptop, I would put it on a separate laptop bag.
With the Storm Hustle II , I reconsidered the way I carry around my day-to-day stuff. This backpack combines the two bags I usually carry. It has a separate container for a 15-inch laptop and I never worry when I put my laptop there because it is fully padded.
Unlike other backpacks, this one does not look ugly even when it is empty. I like that it is available in different colors but getting a neutral solid color like black allowed me to pair it quickly with my laptop, photography gears, and phone.
People who want a super eye-catching, sports backpack ,might not find this one amusing, but for most, it will do well.
What to improve?
There is always room for improvements even for products that I already like very much. Although it felt near perfect, the Storm Hustle II would have been better if it were designed differently.
For instance, they could have added mesh pockets on both sides for water bottles. The mesh pockets can also serve as additional space.
The backpack will tremendously improve if it had a built-in ventilation system. Since there are instances when it is carried for long periods of time, my back and shoulders were drowning in sweat.
Lastly, the major improvement that can truly change this backpack is that if the laptop container had some sort of protection from rain or other leaks. Although I can easily slip my laptop in there, it felt strange that it didn’t come with full protection. It would have been better if the laptop container has a waterproof lining that isolates it from the entire backpack just in case it rains hard or I accidentally spill my drink on it.
North Face Borealis
The North Face Borealis is a good alternative because it is more versatile in terms of its organizational capability. The North Face Backpack offers organization pockets to keep all your stuff in place. Moreover, it has tight mesh pockets on both sides for your water bottle and more, which makes it a better pack for hiking or other physical activities.
This backpack is also a tad less expensive, making it a practical choice for people who are tight on the budget.
The Patagonia Refugio is a more durable alternative. Its main compartment has a padded laptop sleeve with a waterproof-lined pocket for a tablet PC. The front area is a great container to organize cords and other accessories. The front stash is for small stuff you want to have quick access to. It has two large water bottle mesh pockets just for good measure.
This bag is extremely durable and it can certainly take a beating. It is perfect for sporty individuals who go on many great adventures outdoors.
SwissGear ScanSmart Backpack
The SwissGear ScanSmart Backpack is the ideal bag for digital nomads who frequently jet off to different countries. Aside from offering ample space and extreme durability, this is only one of the few TSA-approved pack so passing through inspection is quick and easy with it.
This backpack is designed for people who travel by air a lot.
The Under Armour Storm Hustle II is a reliable backpack that will contain all your important stuff without straining your back and shoulders even if you have to carry it for a long time, thanks to its fully padded rear and adjustable straps. Even if I had to carry it fully-loaded, I never had to worry that the straps will rip. Even if the design is basic, it still impresses a lot of people who see it.