Mountainsmith is an outdoor gear company based in Colorado. Patrick Smith founded Mountainsmith in 1979 to produce gear that could withstand the Colorado Rockies. I had been wanting a more reliable way to carry my camera gear while traveling or just a place to keep all of my gear organized. Being that it's the new year, my inbox is always getting slammed with special discount and outlet emails from various online retailers and I decided to see what Backcountry had to offer. To my surprise, they had this camera bag at 50% off. Seeing as I was interested in this bag when I first saw it at it’s original price of $120 on Mountainsmith’s website I could not pass it up.
This review is primarily of the Mountainsmith Endeavor camera bag however, I want to also give Ian at Backcountry a very big shout out for his customer service and insight in my order of the bag. No more than 20 minutes after I had placed my order with Backcountry I received the confirmation order email along with a personal phone call from an employee at Backcountry. This being the first phone call I had ever received from an online retailer I was not sure what to expect. Ian at Backcountry informed me that my order would be shipped 2-day shipping at that it would arrive the following Monday. Along with that information, Ian also noticed that my order was heading to Ohio even though I had a (303) area code and asked if I had lived in Colorado. After some conversation of mountains and my hometown of Littleton, I felt as though I was talking to a long lost friend more than an online retailer employee. Ian was also nice enough to follow up the phone call with emails in which he even gave me some advice on how to further my website and reviews. This kind of customer service is absolutely unheard of in today’s times, and I want to give Backcountry and Ian my thanks. I will without a doubt be searching Backcountry above all for any more gear orders. Now on to the bag itself!
The Endeavor camera bag comes in at 20L and is made of 500d S-Kodra High Tenacity Nylon with a 210d Liner. The bag also comes with YKK® Zippers, Bar tack reinforcements, and 5000mm PU waterproof fabric coating.
The Endeavor has a total of 4 external pockets 3 of being on the front of the bag. The first on the left side of the bag is a stash pocket that can be used for anything from gloves to lens caps. This pocket is where I would put my cellphone, wallet, keys, and any other grab and go items.
Next behind the front stash pocket there is a large zip pocket that is used for storing all of my DSLR cables, filters, SD cards, and other smaller items. The pocket has many different slots and inner pockets for all sorts of items.
On the front right side of the bag there is a smaller zip pocket. I used this pocket for all of my GoPro accessories, chargers, batteries, screws, cases, attachments, etc. This pocket also had many different slots and pockets for these various items. I found these two pockets on the front perfect for storing my accessories for my DSLR and GoPro and almost felt like they were made for it.
On the backside of the bag there are three different details. The first being a velcro sheet that can be open and slid over a luggage handle to carry in pair. The second is another pocket that can be used to store documents or folders. The third is the dedicated padded laptop compartment. I feel for any camera bag this is a very important part. The compartment does its job and is very well padded making me feel confident when putting my laptop in.
Finally onto the inside of the bag. When first opening the main compartment you will notice a small mesh zippered pocket that is perfect for storing and small important items that you want to be protected inside the main pocket. Next there is a padded camera insert that takes of the remainder of the bags room. This insert is the same as many other camera inserts and can be customized to the users needs. I kept mine with 4 different slots so that I could fit my DSLR with the kit lens with the 40mm on top into one, my shotgun mic into the next, followed by my different camera straps and covers, and last my smaller tripods and grab handles. You also have to option to remove this insert and use the bag as a messenger style bag which is a great feature to have.
All of the straps and handles on the bag are padded and are very comfortable. The zippers are smooth and the pulls are made of paracord with plastic attachments on the end. The grayish color is very neutral which is important for a camera bag making sure not to attract thieves. The laptop compartment and the camera insert are both very padded.
The top main compartment zipper tends to catch on the opening of the bag. The camera insert is very thin and can make sliding your DSLR in a bit of a struggle.
Who this bag suits
- Anyone looking for a bomb-proof way to carry multiple cameras and the gear to go with
- Anyone who wants a bag that can play a role as a camera or messenger bag
- Anyone who wants a well-padded laptop compartment in a camera bag
- Anyone who wants the best materials in a bag and is willing to spend more to get them
Who it doesnt
- Someone on a budget (unless you can find it on sale)
- Someone who has very large cameras/lenses
Overall the Endeavor by Mountainsmith is a great camera or messenger bag for anyone looking for a bomb-proof way to carry multiple cameras and the gear to go with.