It’s a strange time for travel at the moment, yet with vaccines starting to roll out around the world, it feels like there might be a light in the gloaming. The excitement of booking a kitesurfing trip might soon be able to bubble once again!
When that moment happens, you’re going to want to be ready for it, and what better excuse than to check out the ‘re pack’ travel backpack from Kitelement. They pride themselves on their expertise in creating splitboards, with the intention of making travelling with kitesurfing gear that much easier, and they have transferred that knowledge into the ideal luggage companion. As with their splitboards, they aim to create a premium bit of kit, which is simply more portable, without compromising too much on performance.
The first inspection of the ‘re pack’ reveals a decent build quality and plenty of attention to detail. There’s a whole host of carefully considered features creating a bag that’s clearly been designed by people who know its intended use and would want to travel with it themselves.
In ‘airplane mode’, the bag looks discreetly like a regular travel hold-all. Padded handles for easy lifting, good quality chunky zips, a sleek outer finish and internal padding are all included to help protect your precious kite gear from the elements whilst in transit.
Appreciating that space is a premium when it comes to travelling with gear, the bag can easily accommodate two kites (vacuum packed), two bars, a pump, harness, a wetsuit (should you not be quite fortunate enough to be heading to tropical temperatures), footstrap style bindings and a splitboard. Kitelement state they’ve designed the ‘re pack’ to be able to accommodate their largest light wind split kiteboard, which is 150 x 45cm. So that gives you an idea of what you’d be able to cram in for a kitesurfing getaway, avoiding extra oversized baggage and sports equipment charges.
In ‘backpack mode’, the bag is transformed into a real kitesurfers explorer pack. Padded shoulder straps and a substantial lumbar belt unzip from their hiding place and are fully adjustable to get the backpack as comfortable as possible, even when fully loaded. Even if you’re not planning on trekking to remote beaches for that elusive ‘never kitesurfed before’ session, simply being able to convert the bag into a backpack for carting around airports or making travel connections is handy.
Anyone who’s attempted escalators, airport elevators, and train stations with regular kitesurf luggage will immediately value the sense of freedom this gives. Gone are the days of Charlie Chaplin-esque ladder scenes to manoeuvre yourself through the crowds! The ‘re pack’ would be ideal if you live in a city and have to take public transport to your local spot too, don’t dismiss it purely for airline travel.
Obviously, the caveat with carting gear about being a doddle is having a splitboard as part of your quiver; the bag alone won’t do that for you – this isn’t Mary Poppin’s magic carpet bag, although it comes close. However, if travelling to rack up epic kitesurf sessions is big on your agenda, and you have or are thinking about getting a splitboard (you can read some reviews of ones we’ve tested here), then you really should take a look at the ‘re pack’ to make the most of it.
It’s robust enough to handle some serious abuse, the material is durable for all weathers, and there are neat pockets and compartments to satisfy even the most OCD packer. Well-thought-out, stylish and functional.
This review was in Issue 86 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit Kitelement
By Mary BoothMary has been kitesurfing since 2006, she became and instructor in 2007 and travelled the world teaching the sport that she loves! She joined the IKSURFMAG team in 2008 and has been testing ladies kitesurfing equipment and writing articles from a woman's perspective ever since!