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The KUIU Waypoint 2800 Duffel is a rugged carry-on ready bag with removable backpack straps. KUIU, which is a high-quality hunting apparel and gear company, says it built the duffel for once-in-a-lifetime hunts — and everything before and after, of course.
To get us a closer look, KUIU sent Man Makes Fire a review unit. After using the duffel for long weekend and camping trips during the testing process — but not yet on a once-in-a-lifetime hunt — this is what we learned:
KUIU Waypoint 2800 Duffel Review
KUIU is best known for its technical hunting apparel, camo, and hunting packs. The company has developed a stellar reputation and loyal fan base, which has helped KUIU offer its hunt-ready clothing in everyday color options. For instance, KUIU’s bestselling pant, the Attack Pant, is now available in three camo patterns and eight, count them, eight solid colors for fans to wear everyday.
What am I getting at here? KUIU’s Waypoint Duffel Bag series might be built for the hunt, but KUIU’s gear and fan base is wearing and taking KUIU gear everywhere these days because it’s also great for non-hunting use.
More to the point specifically, the KUIU Waypoint 2800 Duffel is an awesome all-around travel bag, making it cross-over gear. Still, understanding the KUIU Waypoint 2800 is knowing that its rugged build quality and features were designed for the way hunters travel — from the pickup to the airport, to another pickup, UTV or bush plane, into the tent . . . and back home again.
Rugged Design, Refined Looks
The Waypoint 2800 — and all the Waypoint Duffel size options — are highly water-resistant but not technically waterproof.
KUIU uses a 420D Nylon with a matte TPU coating for water-resistance for the upper fabric where the backpack straps are located. The bottom fabric is a beefier 840D Nylon with a TPU coating.
The KUIU Waypoint 2800 Duffel is so legit you’ll use the bag for more than hunting trips.
The interior liner fabric gets in on the water-resistance action, too: A 300D Poly Ripstop fabric with a DWR coating. I’m not sure if the coating is between the layers or on the outside of the inside fabric — or both — and I’m not sure it matters to water.
Meanwhile, the zippers are rugged YKK with water-resistant seams. Great zipper pulls, too.
Excellent Backpack Straps
We’re big fans of the KUIU shoulder strap system. The straps themselves are pretty comfortable, ergonomic, and have the all-important sternum strap.
Most importantly, they clip in and out in a flash. There are no metal buckles to futz with or hook. It’s hard to beat metal clips for ultimate durability, but I’ll trade a tiny bit of ruggedness for instant usability here.
Four Grab Handles!
This is how you know the design engineers at KUIU know what it’s like to travel to far off places through multiple modes of travel: The Waypoint Duffel has four grab handles!
If you’re reaching into a boat, raft, pickup bed, bush plane or trailer, you’ll likely find a grab handle easily. And if you’re passing gear bags around, your travel partners can grab and move the bags with ease, too. If you personally move and stow packs and gear bags much at all, you’ll understand why this is a big deal.
Padded for Optics
What I really appreciate about the KUIU Waypoint 2800 Duffel is that KUIU added lightweight padding around the entire bag. This means that you could stow your critical spotting scope, camera or binoculars inside and keep them with you when you travel. Moreover, you can stow this bag in the back of a pickup and then bounce around on rough roads. That’s the most important point of the padding — travel moments that are far less refined than reclining in your seat.
The KUIU Waypoint 2800 doesn’t have a padded laptop or tablet sleeve, but you should be able to protect a laptop or tablet inside of this pack, with or without a separate protective sleeve. If you need fast access to your laptop in the airport, you’re just going to have to use the main zipper to get to it — or carry a smaller separate bag, of course.
Inside the Waypoint
On the outside, the Waypoint 2800 doesn’t scream hunting, but once you open it up? The KUIU camo interior is there to remind you of your hunting heritage.
The Waypoint Duffel has a lid pocket and a large main compartment.The main compartment takes up 80% of the volume while the interior lid pocket takes up 20%. In the larger Waypoint options, the water-resistant lid pocket is big enough to stow wet boots or wet gear.
To help with content management, KUIU uses two simple cross straps to hold a packing cube like the Extreema Bag or larger items in place.
Along each inside side, you get two mesh pockets that are great for smaller odds and ends.
At the top of the bag, you get one medium-sized stash pocket that’s easily accessible with the main compartment closed.
Only One Drawback?
Are there any drawbacks to the Waypoint 2800? Yes. It has no water bottle pocket. This a minor annoyance if you’re thinking of this duffel as a backpack more than a duffel. It’s really a super rugged duffel with a great backpack strap carry option.
I don’t believe KUIU overlooked this because I think the priority of the Waypoint bags are designed to maintain a streamlined exterior to protect your gear inside, first and foremost. Even so, it wouldn’t hurt my feelings to see a couple webbing loops added to the straps to allow you to add a separate water bottle pouch.
Volume: 10,400 cubic inches (170 liters)
Weight: 5 lbs 5.1 oz
Dimensions: 40.5″ x 21.5″ x 17″
Choose the massive Waypoint 10400 for self-supported expedition hunts.
The Bottom Line
All-in-all, the KUIU Waypoint 2800 Duffel is so legit you’ll use the bag for more than hunting trips. It’s rugged enough to withstand most anything in and out of the pickup or UTV, and if you need to fly with with it, the Waypoint 2800 is carry-on ready. Overall, it’s so well designed with such excellent fit and finish you’ll want to use it all the time, even when you don’t need its ruggedness. We think the KUIU Waypoint 2800 is an excellent gift for hunters, certainly a great gift for KUIU fans, and a great gift for outdoor-focused men — or anyone who likes muted colors like black, bourbon or stone. And when your hunt of lifetime does open up, grab a Waypoint 5500 or 10400 for all your gear. Very highly recommended.