Saturday, April 08, 2023

Cotopaxi Allpa 42L Travel Pack & Cubos Travel Cube Bundle Reviews

Article by Jeff Valliere

Cotopaxi Allpa 42L Travel Pack ($220)

Sizes: 42L (as well as 35L and 28L variants)

The Allpa 42L is a super burly, versatile travel bag/backpack that is ideal for 3-5 days of travel, but if you pack light, up to a week.  Made of an incredibly burly, TPU-coated polyester shell that repels inclement weather it also  features a padded, mesh suspension system and can double as either a backpack or a shoulder bag.


  • 42L (2563 cu in) 

  • 22 x 14 x 11 in (56 x 36 x 27 cm)

  • 4 lb 2 oz (1871 g)

  • TPU-coated 1000D polyester

  • Lighter weight, more durable 840D ballistic nylon paneling


  • TPU-coated 1000D polyester shell with 840 ballistic nylon paneling

  • Weight-distributing, low-profile harness system with removable, torso height, adjustable hip belt

  • Suitcase-style, full-wrap zipper opening on the main compartment

  • Large zippered mesh compartment on the right side

  • Subdivided zippered mesh compartments on the left side

  • Padded laptop sleeve up to 15 inches

  • Padded tablet sleeve up to 12.5 inches

  • Shortcut zipper to main compartment

  • Top zippered pocket

  • YKK security zippers on all closures

  • Carabiner lash points for attaching extra gear

  • Four reinforced grab handles

  • Included rain cover

  • One exterior water bottle pocket that accommodates up to 3" in diameter

The straps (shoulder and waist) can be easily adapted for different carry methods and uses.

Shown below with the waist strap removed (the process is easy and just takes a moment to undo the velcro and slide out of the pass through).  

The shoulder straps also unclip at the bottom and then can be tucked in behind the back pad to streamline the pack a bit if you were to check it in as a checked bag with the airlines.

The Allpa 42L arrived just in time for an 8 day, 4 state family road trip covering Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico.  Being late March, it is difficult to predict what you will need for clothing and gear, so on can easily over pack, which I sort of did here, but the Allpa 42L handled it well.  As you can see in the photo below, I had a few jackets, several pairs of pants, shorts and shirts (hiking, running and civilian), a pile of socks, underwear, toiletry bag, hats, gloves, iPad, charging cables and maps.  It all fit no problem with a bit of careful packing. 

The zippered compartments are really handy for keeping contents organized.  First we have the main zip compartment that opens in a clamshell luggage fashion.

Once the bag is open we have one very large main compartment on one side, then 3 zippered compartments on the other side.  The mesh allows you to see where things are and keep contents contained.

On the outside top of the bag, there is a large zippered pocket that is great for storing items that you need quick access to and within that pocket, there is another zippered pocket and within the inner zippered pocket, are two small organizing pockets.  

As if that were not enough, there are three other stretch pockets opposite of the inner zippered pocket, and a key clip.

There is even an exterior water bottle sleeve to accommodate up to 3” diameter water bottles (thinner bottles, like a bike bottle, but not a full size Nalgene).

A rain cover is included if you really get caught out in the rain for an extended period.

On the side of the bag is a full length zipper to access the padded laptop compartment for up to a 15” laptop.

There is also a removable shoulder strap if you want to use as a shoulder bag

The Allpa 42L is by far the nicest travel bag I have used or seen.  The quality and durability is off the charts, I feel like one (or the airlines) could beat the heck out of this bag for a lifetime and it would hold up. The ballistic TPU outer shell is thick and rugged, which will deflect abrasion and moisture and hold up over time.  The ease of carry and the various carry options are amazing with sturdy reinforced grab handles on all 4 sides, options for backpack shoulder, it is easy to transport, load, unload, even when packed to capacity.  The amount of clothing and gear that the 42L can carry is surprising and it is nice to be able to stay so well organized with the well thought out zippered pockets and subdivided pockets.  While I have not yet flown with the Allpa 42L, it meets carry-on specs for US domestic travel and possibly international.

Cotopaxi Allpa Travel Packs



Cubos Travel Cube Bundle - Del Dia - Surprise Pack

If you still feel like you need to micro organize further, you can add these travel cubes to the mix.  Each bundle is unique, with a random mix of colors, using recycled fabrics and feature a wrap-around zipper, mesh side panels for breathability and a top handle.  When using the Allpa 42, I used the large bag for dirty socks and underwear, while my daughters confiscated the other two for their own personal use.  I think they could be handy, but not necessary for the Allpa 42L with its built in organizing, so they are more handy for a larger suitcase or bottomless duffel bag.  I like that these bags are colorful and easy to keep track of.

Specs are:  

  • 10L: 10 x 11.5 x 5 in (26 x 29 x 13 cm) 

  • 3L: 6 x 11.5 x 3 in (15 x 29 x 7.5 cm)

  • 2L: 7 x 8 x 2 in (20 x 18 x 5 cm)

Cotopaxi Cubos Cubes 


Jeff Valliere loves to run and explore the mountains of Colorado, the steeper and more technical the better. He has summited all of the 14ers in the state and can be found on mountain trails daily, no matter the weather, season, conditions or whether there is daylight or not.  On the side he loves to ski (all forms) bike and hike, often with his family, as he introduces his 12 year old daughters to the outdoors. Jeff was born and raised in New Hampshire, but has called Colorado home for over 25 years. He is 5’9” and 145 lbs.

The packs were provided at no charge for review purposes.RoadTrail Run has affiliate partnerships and may earn commission on products purchased via shopping links in this article. These partnerships do not influence our editorial content. The opinions herein are entirely the authors'.

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