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  1. #1
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    5 Days in Costa Rica with a Synik 22 and a Co-Pilot

    I've travelled the world with my trusty A45 and Co-Pilot. Those were mostly extended cycling trips or work trips that necessitated bringing lots of gear.

    However, I wanted to slim down my travel gear with other trips so early last summer I picked up a S19 and did several 3-5 days domestic flights or road trips. I also used the S19 as my EDC at work for the last 6 months or so. It worked ok but I never really liked the way it handled a laptop.

    With retirement on the horizon (happened 2 days ago) and a scheduled trip to Costa Rica (leave tomorrow), a few weeks ago I checked back into Tom Bihn to see if there was something better suited for me. Low and behold, during the time that I ordered my S19 and then, the SN22 was announced and released. This looked like the perfect bag for me but alas it didn't seem like it would be available for my trip. However, Darcy soon announced that they could once again be ordered on 11/5. I was on the site at the appointed hour and picked up a Deep Blue/Iberian SN22 and paid for express delivery.

    My new bag arrived yesterday and I couldn't be happier. Below is my packing list for this trip as well as a few pictures.

    Wearing on the plane:
    Quick dry Eddie Bauer pants
    Merino T-Shirt
    Quick dry Columbia shirt
    Merino undies and socks
    Belt
    Hiking shoes
    Light weight zip hoodie

    Inside the Main Compartment of the SN22

    In Large A30 Packing Cube:
    Quick dry Eddie Bauer shorts
    Bathing suit
    Tech t-shirt
    Merino t-shirt
    Merino undies and socks (2 each)
    Quick dry Columbia shirt
    Cotton shirt
    Cotton shorts
    Cotton undies
    Cotton socks
    Beach shoes

    In Front Inner Pocket
    Clothes wash kit
    Oatmeal, bowl and spoons
    Rain jacket

    In One Side Pocket
    Old United Airlines pouch with various cords

    In One Side Pocket
    Various snacks for the flight

    Lower Pocket
    3DO organizer with toiletries
    Electric shaver

    Water bottle pocket
    20oz HydroFlask

    Co-Pilot
    In-Flight snacks
    Headphones
    Kindle
    iPad mini
    Moleskin
    Passports
    Wallet
    Gum

    NOTES: There's a Side Effect in the first photo but I don't think I'm going to use it. I ordered it for me iPad and Moleskin but they don't fit well. I order something else (maybe a small cafe) after my trip. Also, this will be my wife's maiden voyage using a Tom Bihn bag. She'll be using my old A45. She's resisted for years but I think had a few "a ha" moments as I was showing her some packing techniques earlier today.

    5 Days in Costa Rica with a Synik 22 and a Co-Pilot-img_0007-jpg

    5 Days in Costa Rica with a Synik 22 and a Co-Pilot-img_0008-jpg

  2. #2
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    Congrats on your retirement - hope you enjoy your trip to Costa Rica!
    Be sure to check back in afterwards and let us know how it went
    I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...

  3. #3
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    Congrats! Hope you’re having a great time with your new bags in your new phase of life.

    You might like a Side Kick for your tablet. When you come back we can help you figure it out!

  4. #4
    Forum Member nsh's Avatar
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    Your bag and pack list look awesome! Have a great first post retirement trip! Pura Vida!!!

  5. #5
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    Thanks for this. We need more one-bag trip reports with the SN22. The SN30 seems to get most of the glory there (lately, anyway).

  6. #6
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    This is great. I did a similar pack out with an A30 large cube, including my laptop. But that was only for a weekend trip. Great little bag.

    Have a great trip! And happy retirement!

  7. #7
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    Finally back online after our trip (and then a previously scheduled minor knee surgery on Friday). I have to say that the SN22 was absolutely perfect for me and I could have done without the Co-Pilot. It really felt like the Co-Pilot was brought simply because I had it and it was available.

    I could have easily consolidated things into the SN22 completely as it turns out I still had some space and there were a few items I didn't need to bring after all. But, that's part of the fun of traveling this way. Trying out new things and seeing what you can get by with (or without).

    Having said that I am on the lookout for the perfect hand-carry, seat back bag for small in-flight items, like my iPad mini, Kindle and various snacks. Anything that I get should also at least have an option to attach a carabiner to hook to the front of my SN22 while walking through the airport as well as possible include a shoulder or waist strap (but not critical). While sitting on the beach I researched quite a few options that I will be taking a much closer look at very soon, including:

    TB Side Kick
    TB Snake Charmer
    AER City Sling
    AER Day Sling 2
    Peak Design Tech Pouch
    Peak Design Field Pouch
    WaterField Designs Tech Pocket Plus
    WaterField Designs Padded Gear Pouch
    Alpaka Air Sling
    Alpaca Go Sling

  8. #8
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    Btw, I think my wife is now onboard with TB bags. Although it's a bit big for her, she really liked the A45 and will be taking a look at the A30 very soon. She's not interested in the SN30 or other more backpack style bags.

  9. #9
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    If you really need to carry your iPad mini, then you can cross the Aer City Sling off your list.

    The largest, flat item I can fit is my Field Notes notebook, at 4.75 x 7.5”. I’m sure a Kindle would fit fine. I use a HeroClip Mini for the aircraft seat back. There’s one spot on the strap that’s ideal to attach a carabiner or HeroClip.

  10. #10
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    Thanks. That’s good to know. I haven’t studied the size specs of all of the bags too closely yet. Sounds like I’ve got to mark that off my list unless I compromise and keep the mini in the SN22 laptop sleeve (which could be a possibility).

  11. #11
    Forum Member Rocks's Avatar
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    For my most recent trip I used a packing cube shoulder bag (PCSB) as my in flight bag. It held a paperback, phone, inflatable pillow, battery pack and Side Effect. I think that could also have fit in a Sidekick. I wore the Side Effect sling bag style with an attached waist strap at my destination. I could've done the same with the PCSB or Sidekick. Hooks for seat back pocket is a good idea for next time!

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