Stephen

AKA Steven
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Nov 14, 2015
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York, PA
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I have heard so much about the heated Kulkea Thermal Trekker, which I’m sure is a great bag, but it's hard to imagine ever parting with my SP Pro. Previously I carried a Transpack boot bag; it was definitely functional, but my new Kulkea bag upped the function big time.

My first concern was carrying it on flights. It’s a big bag. I mean big: 61L. I decided to try it out on a trip, knowing that if it wouldn't fit in the overhead compartment, I could just pull out my boots and check the bag. I packed it a little bit light so there was a little room to squish it down if needed. I wear size 13 street shoes, so my boots are fairly large; they normally have to be tipped inward to fit in the overhead. To my surprise, the Kulkea was easier to fit than the Transpack. The disclaimer is that you can't pack it full; there is no way it would fit. When I traveled in the past, I carried my boot bag plus my backpack with my electronics and such in it. Now I just carry my Kulkea, as it has room for all the extra stuff.

Off the plane, it has been even more exceptional. Did I mention it was big? One of my friends described the inner compartment as cavernous. It holds everything I need it to. I’ve gone away for an entire weekend using just that bag. The quality seems superb: I haven’t been gentle with it, and it still looks brand new.

As silly as it seems, I do think a little directions pamphlet for some of the features would be helpful. At first I could not figure out how the jacket strap worked. It had to be repaired after a friend whose name will not be mentioned (@Andy Mink) broke it trying to figure it out, but we finally discovered how it was supposed to work. Some type of directions would have saved some stress.
  • Who is it for? Someone needing or wanting lots of space to carry everything they could ever need.
  • Who is it not for? Someone who could actually fit inside of it or who requires a heated boot bag.
 
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Henry

Getting on the lift
Skier
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Sep 7, 2019
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177
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Traveling in the great Northwest
I know that Kulkea makes A+ bags, but if one flies, one of the bags that the boots fit into nested flat...toe to cuff...may fit the overhead bin. Each airline sets their own size limit, and that is certain to be reduced after you book your flight. United, for example, currently allows 22"x14"x9" in the bin (which might be checked in a frame in the gate area) and 17"x10"x9" as a personal item (purse, computer bag, pair of boots, etc.). I don't think the personal item size is generally checked; it's supposed to fit under the seat. Some airlines also have a carry-on weight limit. Last winter I flew Lufthansa, and a nice attendant walked around the gate waiting area with a hand scale weighting bags...17# maximum. I may have hoisted my carry-on and taken a stroll to the Men's when she was weighing bags. Other airlines will have different weight limits. They know the quality of the latches on their overhead bins.

So...consider the lay-flat boot bag, check your airline's size & weight limits, never check your boots. About the time one lady in our group on a flight to Calgary had her checked boots go to Reno.... She did get the frequent flyer miles her boots earned.
 

Andy Mink

I am a half fast skier.
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Nov 12, 2015
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Reno
It had to be repaired after a friend whose name will not be mentioned
I don't recall breaking it, just being confused. One must be smarter than one's boot bag.
 

laine

I ski like a girl. Fast.
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Jul 31, 2016
Posts
571
Location
Oakland
I wear size 13 street shoes, so my boots are fairly large; they normally have to be tipped inward to fit in the overhead.​
  • Who is it for? Someone needing or wanting lots of space to carry everything they could ever need.
  • Who is it not for? Someone who could actually fit inside of it or who requires a heated boot bag.
Given your shoe size, I'm gonna go out on a limb and guess you are tall. It's something often overlooked when people review backpacks - height and back/torso length. I have a Powder Trekker - and that is probably the largest bag I would go with at 5'1" - until now. My husband bought me the Kulkea heated bag for my birthday, since I was often envious of his warm boots. And trust me, I'm thrilled to have it. But it's also just too big for me. It's slightly awkward to carry and would throw off my balance if I actually filled it. And I kinda look ridiculous. But I'm ok to suffer in that regard for the toasty boots.

I'm not doubting this is a well-made bag. My Powder Trekker is like new condition-wise (not dirt-wise) after 3 years of consistent use (30-ish days per season). But as a shortie, I'd love to see some indication in the "who is it for/not for" as it relates to height. Or some callout of the height of the reviewer would be helpful. Thanks!
 

AmyPJ

No longer on the single track.
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Nov 12, 2015
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4,409
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Ogden, UT
Given your shoe size, I'm gonna go out on a limb and guess you are tall. It's something often overlooked when people review backpacks - height and back/torso length. I have a Powder Trekker - and that is probably the largest bag I would go with at 5'1" - until now. My husband bought me the Kulkea heated bag for my birthday, since I was often envious of his warm boots. And trust me, I'm thrilled to have it. But it's also just too big for me. It's slightly awkward to carry and would throw off my balance if I actually filled it. And I kinda look ridiculous. But I'm ok to suffer in that regard for the toasty boots.

I'm not doubting this is a well-made bag. My Powder Trekker is like new condition-wise (not dirt-wise) after 3 years of consistent use (30-ish days per season). But as a shortie, I'd love to see some indication in the "who is it for/not for" as it relates to height. Or some callout of the height of the reviewer would be helpful. Thanks!
That's a good point! There is a consistent battle that takes place in our house with the strap length when da man carries my bag. Longer. Then, I grab it to head up for a solo day and grumble and grouse that I have to shorten the straps. :rolleyes:

I love the comment about "someone who could actually fit inside it". We have an SP RXL here to test and review, and I could PROBABLY fit into it, but my 12 YO daughter DEFINITELY could. I am trying to convince her to crawl in there for a picture but she is so far resisting. The bag is HUGE.
 

KULKEA

Getting on the lift
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73
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Massachusetts
That's a good point! There is a consistent battle that takes place in our house with the strap length when da man carries my bag. Longer. Then, I grab it to head up for a solo day and grumble and grouse that I have to shorten the straps. :rolleyes:

I love the comment about "someone who could actually fit inside it". We have an SP RXL here to test and review, and I could PROBABLY fit into it, but my 12 YO daughter DEFINITELY could. I am trying to convince her to crawl in there for a picture but she is so far resisting. The bag is HUGE.
Try putting her favorite snacks in the RXL. Some Kit Kats would surely entice me to get me in that bag! :roflmao:
 

AmyPJ

No longer on the single track.
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Nov 12, 2015
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4,409
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Ogden, UT
Try putting her favorite snacks in the RXL. Some Kit Kats would surely entice me to get me in that bag! :roflmao:
LOL more like Legos for her! Not a bad idea! I'm going to line up our 3 Kulkea bags side by side and take pictures so people can see the different sizes.
 
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TS
Stephen

Stephen

AKA Steven
Pugski Ski Tester
Joined
Nov 14, 2015
Posts
229
Location
York, PA
Update: This bag is absolutely standing up to rigorous use. I’m am not easy on my gear and this bag looks impressively fresh after more than a season’s use. I have been taking it as carryon when flying though and decided it was time to see how it would fair checking it. (Not checking my boots, just the bag with other gear in it) I have one trip in with checking it and it came out looking pretty good.

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This bag has become a mainstay for my ski days. I recently got new boots with a lace up liner and having enough room to carry my boots and liners separately has been an additional bonus.
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