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Helly Hansen ULLR RS30 Backpack

Out on a Canadian glacier the ULLR RS30 was close to its natural home and ideal for carrying my all-important camera kit and other items [© Jean Gormley]

The Helly Hansen ULLR RS30 is a highly adaptable and universal backpack suitable for many occasions, writes Mike Gormley.


I have had this backpack for some time and have held off publishing for good reasons, as I have been busy using it in various ways and for me it has become my ‘camera and day kit’ rucksack when away on trips. For this it has proved to be ideal for my uses.

On a walk near Vancouver in Stanley Park ~ as ever the Helly Hansen ULLR RS30 was on my back [© JG]

On top of this it is just the right size as carry-on bag for airlines; at least the ones I have been on. All this said, it is actually aimed at those involved in snow sports and has been designed alongside free ride skiers and ski patrollers at the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort in the Canadian Rockies. You just have to love those Canadian Place names. So descriptive and storytelling! This was somewhat appropriate as I passed close by there on one of my trips while evaluating this rucksack. We stayed over in Banff, so it was no wonder when I was warmly greeted in the local Helly Hansen shop, whose staff immediately recognised it. Sadly, I have not yet tried it for real on the snow slopes, albeit it did get onto some ice once or twice.

The ULLR RS30 was developed for snow sports and to be able to carry skis and helmet [©MG]
The top centre compartment is of soft feel material to protect more sensitive items [©MG]

As you may guess, I really like the ULLR RS30 which is one of a group of ULLR items in the range. For my use it all works very well indeed. It has clearly been thought through by real ‘end users’ so has the type and sort of compact stowage that you need for trip out; be those snow days, adventure days out, or big trips away. The material used is robust and water-resistant. On each side is a very useful side pocket for drinks, snacks or smaller items such as hats and gloves. There is a soft feel inner top section that is perfect for binos, camera, sunglasses etc. Readily accessible and protected.

When out walking on one of the Croatian islands the ULLR RS30 was ideal for carrying my camera kit and needs for the day [©MG]

The front, or back, section is clearly arranged for snow sports with sections for avalanche poles, snow shovel and so on. For me this mostly took my laptop, or other flat items if I was not taking that. The main section has a real bonus. It can be top loading via a zip, or the entire back section can be zipped open for ease of access to any specific items you have in there. The zipped back section has an additional section containing a polyethylene board for added rigidity and protection, but this can be simply removed if not required.

The ULLR RS30 alongside Jean’s previously featured Helly Hansen travel bag as we headed off on a boat day out [©MG]

To me this was just perfect for my camera kit. My camera was carried in here and there was enough space for my additional, large, zoom lens as well as other bits and bobs. All of which I could keep protected against the weather until required. When laid down it was a good secure and protected place to do lens swaps and so on. There was also enough room for my additional warm top, which doubled as a protective base for the cameras. It all worked out as quite a load when full but was still kept compact and all accessible.

The first trip away with the ULLR RS30 was to Croatia where I very quickly realised this is a very handy backpack for such trips [©JG]

For a quoted 32 litre and 1500 grammes backpack, this seems to be a bit of a Tardis in the real world. To add to this there are volume adjusters on both sides, which can also be used to carry skis. There are various fixing points and additional straps to allow for a snow board or snowshoes, plus there is a very handy top grab handle, as well as a small hanger loop. Zipped away in the base is a helmet net and there are various attachment points and fittings for your gear.

During a Croatian boat day out the ULLR RS30 was perfect to keep my gear in one place and safe [©JG]

This really is a ‘feature rich’ and multipurpose backpack fit to accompany you on many adventures. Mine is already booked up for my next long distance trip away.

Well, as they say, “when in Rome…” though this was Dubrovnik and hot! [©JG]

[images © Mike or Jean Gormley]


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