Eagle Creek Daypacks and Transformer Bags Review

Morphus 2-in-1 Transformer Bag

Eagle Creek Exploration System Morphus 22

  • 22″ high. 14″ wide.
  • Construction allows you to zip off the front gear bag.
  • Polycarbonate back shell.
  • 10 lockable, self-repairing zippers.
  • Bi-TechT Armor fabrics for extreme abrasion.

Ever need one suitcase when you start out but two when you come home? Or have limited space to store luggage where you live?

This Eagle Creek Morphus Bag can be one suitcase, two suitcases, or a suitcase and a backpack. But it’s not that short and simple…

I mentioned this bag back in my January gear trends recap because it was like nothing else on the market. It’s got a hard shell back, a soft waterproof front, and two bags hiding in what looks like one.

On top of that, it’s got wheels or you can put the whole thing on a backpack for a daunting flight of stairs—but the straps are on the front, so no wheels digging into your back.

Already pretty cool, but the real magic happens when you need two suitcases, as I did recently when I went on a trade show trip and had a bunch of things to bring back.

I did a quick unzipping that turned this Morphus bag into two bags and checked one of them for the trip back.

“What’s the catch?” you’re probably wondering. Well apart from the price, which is nosing up against $400 for the carry-on, you do lose a little cargo space since there’s an extra layer of bag in there.

I can’t pack quite as much in one of these as I can pack in some other Eagle Creek 22-inch bags I’ve tried. A 47-liter capacity is not always apples to apples.

The Morphus comes in at a rather average 7 pounds 14 ounces when you’re wheeling along with both of them together. Obviously that drops a lot if you’re just using one.

When it comes to features and versatility though, you’ll be hard-pressed to find any carry-on bag anywhere that has such a long list. This thing has all kinds of handles, straps, and grabs to enable you to haul either section multiple ways, comfortably.

It’s got lockable zippers, multiple pounches, a padded laptop section, a tablet sleeve, even an emergency whistle. Yes, a whistle!

If you can’t get your head around all this, there’s a good video demo on the Eagle Creek website.

I mentioned the hefty price earlier, but I do have to point out that besides this being for two bags, it comes with Eagle Creek’s “no matter what” warranty. If you buy this and like it, you’ll probably still be using it when you’re 15 years older.

Get the Eagle Creek Morphus Bag in a 22-inch carry-on or 30-inch version to check direct from Eagle Creek, at REI, or Moosejaw.

Gear Warrior

Eagle Creek Gear Warrior Wheeled Duffel
59 Reviews
Eagle Creek Gear Warrior Wheeled Duffel

  • 100% Nylon. Imported.
  • Wheeled duffle bag with large secondary compartment.
  • Lockable, self-repairing zippers.
  • Finger friendly zipper pulls on main compartment.
  • Exterior wings with full front compression straps.

Sometimes you just can’t pack light for a long or gear-intensive trip. When that happens, you need luggage that can fit everything in the most convenient way possible, to avoid that multi-bag “yard sale” feeling.

One of the best bags that gets it all in without struggle is the Eagle Creek Gear Warrior.

This duffel on wheels is lightweight and has multiple carrying options, depending on the terrain.

Grab the handle and wheel it along when things are smooth, or use the side and top haul handles when you’re hiking stairs and getting between tight spaces.

The durable lockable zippers, reinforced material blocking, bumper protection, and the sturdy wheel and handle system will keep this bag from falling apart easily on your multiple adventures.

The gigantic main compartment has interior compression straps and a side zippered mesh pocket. The secondary compartment allows for a dedicated space to put your gear so that it’s separate from your clothing.

Use the additional laundry chute to keep your dirty clothes away from everything else. Traveling companions will thank you.

There are also plenty of attachment options for exterior loading, when you can’t get absolutely everything into the bag. The stowable equipment keeper secures clothing and gear (like that helmet) on the outside, and includes the handy Porter Key bottle opener.

Hey, why spend time digging for a bottle opener when you need one? Some things require speed. In addition, you can use the exterior front compression straps to lash gear to the bag.

If you’ve got any of Eagle Creek’s Pack-It folders, cubes, sacs, or kits, they’ll integrate easily into this duffel so you can spend less time digging around for that essential item.

I’ve used the bag on a couple of longer road trips, but am especially excited to use it for a variety of ski trips this winter. Now that’s a sport where I have a lot of gear.

The Eagle Creek Gear Warrior lists for $285 (that’s the 32-inch version) on the Eagle Creek website. The 36-inch version is $310. Each size is the same price onBackcountry.com or Moosejaw.

Digi Hauler Backpack Carry-on

Eagle Creek Luggage Digi Hauler Backpack
34 Reviews
Eagle Creek Luggage Digi Hauler Backpack

  • 100% Nylon. Imported.
  • Zipper closure.
  • Lockable, self-repairing zippers.
  • Lockable padded laptop compartment fits 17″ laptops.
  • Finger friendly zipper pulls on main compartment.

Whether you’re a flashpacker or a business traveler that wants to keep the load light, thisDigi Hauler convertible backpack by Eagle Creek could be your ultimate carry-on.

As a laptop or tablet has become as common for travelers to carry as a toiletry kit, and legacy airlines do their best to make you pay up to check a bag, a carry-on bag that can hold your clothes and your electronics is now vital.

While some rolling bags have a laptop pocket, those wheels subtract vital space you could be using for packing, plus they add a lot of weight.

The lightest rollaboard bag I’ve used is a 6.8-pound one from Delsey I’ll be reviewing later. This one without wheels comes in under two pounds—and has a higher cargo capacity.

So unless you’re a 98-pound-weakling and can’t carry your bag, this Digi Hauler allows you to pack more and be more mobile, especially in places where you can’t wheel your bag down a sidewalk.

This one works as a backpack or you can stuff away the straps and use the grab handles for a suitcase/duffle bag. It holds 44 liters, or 2700 cubic inches. Probably not enough for a year-long round-the-world journey for all but the lightest packers, but plenty for a week’s vacation or long weekend break.

All you need, with no baggage fees to pay. (Unless you’re on Spirit Air, Ryanair, or Allegiant that is.) That’s the same capacity, by the way, of the much-loved Tom Bihn Aeronaut I’ve used on countless trips.

This Eagle Creek one is considerably lighter than that one, but thanks to thinner ripstop nylon fabric. I’m not really worried about the durability.

I have yet to wear out any Eagle Creek bag ever, over a period of close to 20 years now, so the lifetime warranty is not just a marketing ploy.

The laptop section doesn’t have much padding, so you might want to put your computer in a sleeve, but it sits right next to your back instead of being accessible to thieves on the other side. There’s also a hook at the top for locking the zipper in place.

There are three other pockets: one on the front flap, a mesh one inside the flap, and a lined side one that can be used for a water bottle. All the zippers have pulls that are easy to grip and there are external compression straps to hold everything in place.

It comes in three colors, all with reflective areas for safety.

This Digi Hauler backpack is widely available at retail or at the Eagle Creek site for the list price of $120, or you can check prices online at Zappos.

Want one for $10? Our sister site, the Cheapest Destinations Blog, is participating in the annual Passports with Purpose charity drive to raise money with Water.org to build wells in rural Haiti.

You can bid a $10 donation on this item that Eagle Creek so generously donated and you could score. (If you’re seeing this now, the drive is over–sorry!.)

Want to bid on some other things to improve your odds? Perceptive Travel is giving away a weekend getaway in Texas and our contributor Amy Whitley pulled in a stay at a Ritz Carlton in California.

You ladies might be more interested in what our blogger Jill Robinson put up: a nice merino wool Realfleece 260 jacket from Icebreaker.

There are probably a dozen other things you’ll drool over. Visit the Passports with Purpose donation page before December 11 to see the whole list and try to win.

Packable Daypack

Eagle Creek Packable Daypack
50 Reviews
Eagle Creek Packable Daypack

  • 150D Poly Ripstop.
  • Durable lightweight ripstop fabric.
  • Lockable main compartment.
  • Pack-in pocket doubles as a front pocket with key fob.
  • Breathable mesh shoulder straps.

Here at the Practical Travel Gear Blog, we’re big fans of anything that packs down to a little pouch and can then pop out Transformers style when you need it in your travels.

So I was pretty darn excited when Eagle Creek gave out samples of this Packable Daypack at an adventure travel conference I attended in the fall.

Apparently I wasn’t the only one who gave this a thumbs up because for the next few days, the host city of San Cristobal de Las Casas was awash in tour operators with this Eagle Creek daypack slung over their shoulders.

Many of them surely packed something else for carrying around their daily essentials, but they liked this better.

The photo at the top is what this daypack looks like when you stuff it in its sack for packing. A little smaller and thinner than a paperback book (and obviously more squishable).

Then the photo on the right shows what it looks like in use: a nice backpack-style daypack that will hold 11 liters of your stuff.

On the two trips where I’ve used it this thing has been stuffed with a super-zoom hybrid camera, tripod, guidebook, notebook, a phone or music player, pens, a windbreaker, and assorted papers. I’ve still had plenty of room to spare.

There aren’t a whole lot of bells and whistles to this, but the zippered front pocket does have a key clip on a loop and there’s a fabric loop on the top for hanging or grabbing.

The backpack straps are made of a mesh, which surely helps with the weight and packing compression, but they’re also quite comfortable and they keep your shoulder from getting sweaty.

The fabric is strong, water-resistant ripstop nylon. Here’s the amazing part though: it comes with a lifetime warranty. When’s the last time you saw that for a product retailing for under 30 bucks?

This packable daypack comes in three colors: black, Pacific blue, and “Morocco.” You can buy direct from Eagle Creek for $27.50 or follow these links to order fromZappos, Amazon, or REI.

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Chris Guill

Having spent most of his adult life traveling for business Chris is obsessed with the latest business and travel gear. He lives in Boise with his wife and 2 boys.