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I've fallen backwards while wearing this bag, slept on it, stepped on it, had it thrown by someone who didn't know that thousands of dollars in photog gear was inside (gah!!!), and miserably watched it being tossed around after I checked it in onto a plane that was so small that they didn't allow carry-on luggage (IMPORTANT: none of the above actions are recommended) BUT my gear has always remained perfectly intact and safely snuggled up in the impenetrable fortress that is the Dakine Sequence backpack.
I've traveled around the world with it - I take out the camera block and stuff my clothes and other belongings into the bag. The bag can be checked in but because I've had too many experiences with airlines temporarily losing my stuff, I prefer to not check in any luggage and instead I take it with me as my carry-on luggage with the camera block as my extra "purse" allowance (or "laptop bag" etc, if you're a guy). You look like just another student backpacker, so no one suspects that you're carrying gear worth more than a first class plane ticket and a few nights at a five star hotel.
The back access is excellent! Some people might prefer the sling style, but I definitely like knowing that no thieves can get to my gear. The sling style can be useful and that's why photographers tend to collect an annoying amount of bags to suit different situations, but the back access is definitely tops - ESPECIALLY if you're into backcountry riding. Just throw down your bag (rain cover optional - my bag has always survived a rest in the snow), unzip from the back, and you're ready to shoot!
I also dig all the pockets and straps for goggles, my snowboard, a tripod, snacks, lens caps, etc. This model, unlike the previous years', actually has the laptop sleeve that many have asked for. Note that I've not gone snowboarding with this year's model yet - nor have I taken my laptop with me when riding with last year's model - but seriously, you're out to RIDE and maybe take a few nice pictures, not to check facebook and post process.
Anyway, yeah. This is the second time I've bought this bag - for my boyfriend because he was way jealous of mine. The ONLY gripe I have about this is that as a 5'2", skinny (read: super wimpy) girl, this bag could sometimes get heavy. It's 5lbs alone, so stuffing it with camera gear while snowboarding (much less stuffing it with clothes and other belongings, while carrying a fully filled camera block on your shoulder, then walking for a few hours, owww) could turn it into a possibly tiring load. But that's what a nice boyfriend is for, right? ;) Otherwise, I'm pretty certain that no respectable snowboarder/hiker/backpacker can be as wimpy as me and YOU, dear reader, can certainly take this awesome piece of gear wherever you wish.