VSlinger side compartment open to camera.Last October I had just gotten the tactical gear bag from VanQuest called the VSlinger. This bag is smallish and comes with only one shoulder strap (right or left, you specify) though it wears much like a backpack. It rides low on your back and has additional straps that can secure it around your waist. It is an extremely well made bag and will accommodate many attachments using the popular MOLLE ("Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment") system. I love the bag, but it just didn't work quite right with my Canon gear. (http://www.infotor.com/blog/using-a-tactical-gear-bag-as-a-camera-bag/) So, last week when I did my "bag therapy" session (http://bit.ly/bagtherapy), I took another look at all of my bags to determine just which ones I could use for what. It turns out that this coincided with my making an unexpected one-day trip from Lynchburg, VA to Burlington, VT. This was to be a trip with no overnight, so no suitcase needed. I was going to represent our family at a dear friend's funeral service and I would only be in Burlington for a few hours. So, I thought it was a good chance to test out using the VSlinger bag with some essential gear. The bag worked well. I hoped I would get a chance to take some fall foliage shots, but all I got are several from the balcony of the condo in which the service was held. However, this was a spectacular view as our friend's condo overlooks Lake Champlain and sits just across the tree-lined street from the lake. For non-US citizens, a note: Vermont is one of THE best places to visit in the fall as the leaves are changing color. My decision to fly up to Vermont was a quick one and I didn't think it through properly. Since I was already paying for a roundtrip ticket from Washington, DC to Burlington and back, I should have thought about the leaves. I should have planned to stay at least two days or even three. But, I didn't.  Our son chastised me a lot!

So, for this bag test, I packed in my full size iPad, my Olympus OM-D E-M1 with the 12-40mm lens attached, three lenses wrapped in Domke wraps (60mm, 40-150mm, and 75-300mm), the FL-36R flash until, small Eagle Creek bags with batteries, charger, and other miscellaneous attachments, a filter case with polarizers and Variable ND filters, a power charger for my mobile devices, my small Kindle, my Hoodmann Loupe, and my Lollipop tripod attached to the outside of the bag. This bag is quite compact and even with all that gear, it was not very heavy.

Though I wouldn't take this bag on an extended trip, it is perfect for this kind of trip or outing. The strap goes over my right shoulder, so I can swing the bag around to access my camera easily. With the bag on my lap, or even if I were standing, I can easily access the other lenses and make a lens change while on the go. Yup, the VanQuest Slinger passed the test.