By Future Missionary on 6/15/2015
To all of you reading this review, please note that I have not used this bag in the field yet, so I don't know everything about it.If you have not watched the YouTube overview video of this bag, "Missionary Shoulder Bag", by the Mr. Mac store, you should, to begin with.I got my bag on amazon, so it was shipped from the LDS Bookstore. Taska Outfitters only has a few employees, so I assume that they only make one version of the bag. In the YouTube video there is a water bladder in the back of the bag. My bag does not have this feature. That Mr. Mac video is two years old by now, so the company may very well have removed this feature of their product, but I'm not completely sure. Does Mr. Mac get different bags than the LDS Bookstore?
I was a little disappointed that there was no water bladder in the back, but since I didn't really need that part I'm still giving this bag five stars.Now for the good part. This bag is very well made! The material/fabric is thick and the stitching is good. It feels like it should last well beyond my mission. Keep in mind that I haven't actually used it.
I'm going to a mission with the iPad Minis, so I didn't need a big bag. I just need to carry the iPad, some pens, pamphlets, and maybe a notebook or something. I was surprised when I got the bag because it was smaller than I thought it would be. Here is what I can describe to you about the size. If a Preach My Gospel was two inches wider it might not fit. The entire mesh padding on the back is like a big pocket. Plenty of space for the waist straps if you want to tuck them in.
I like the water bottle holder. There is tight elastic so that if a bottle is not in the pocket it still looks nice and not stretched out.
The "Taska" stitching on the front is not bluish like on the picture, but a dark grey, close to black. The electronics pocket in the back is soft.
This bag is not waterproof, but the bottom has a fabric on the bottom that feels a little like soft leather. The rain fly does not come out of the bottom like in the YouTube video either. It is inside the bag. Fine with me.As far as the price, this is a bit much for such a small bag, but I think that this bag might last a long time and be well worth the $100. This bag is probably the perfect size for me since I'll have an iPad mini, but for those of you who will carry more than a notebook/Preach My Gospel and a few copies of the BofM, you might want a bigger bag.
Overall I'm impressed and can't wait to use it and go biking with it. :)<strong>Response: The first version of the Taska missionary bag was larger and had a water bladder on the inside. This new version doesn't have the water bladder as most missionaries found it more convenient to just use a water bottle as it was easier to fill and keep from leaking, mildew, etc. The smaller size also makes it easier for tracting and wearing while riding a bike. Thanks for your great review and good luck on your mission!</strong>