One of my favorite features of the Lowepro Pro Trekker is the removable waistpack. Depending on where you reside, this device goes by many names, including: fanny pack, belly bag, and my personal favorite… the bum bag.
Regardless of what you call it, this mini-pack fits comfortably around your waist and can be very useful once you’re on location. If I’m dashing out for a quick bite, I’ll drop in the pack a camera and maybe spare lens, just in case a good shot presents itself. While working, it’s perfect for holding a lens or two, extra flash, and other photography paraphernalia.
Front view of waistpack (top image) and padded back (bottom image). This is actually the lid for the Pro Trekker that transforms into a useful fanny pack when on location.
As you can see from the illustration, the waistpack design is probably the best you’ve ever had in a bum bag. Features include mesh-covered back pad, wide belt, secure buckle, two pockets, splashguard zippers, and even key clip. When you’re traveling, the waistpack serves as your backpack lid, adding a little extra security and weather protection. But once you arrive, it’s like having an extra gear bag.
One of my favorite tricks is to use it as a waist stabilizer while hiking. Why? Well, I often remove the thick-padded belly band and leave it at home when traveling by plane. The padded belly band is great for rugged backpacking, but it’s not very “overhead compartment friendly” on some planes. What many people don’t realize is that you can use the waistpack to stabilize the Pro Trekker once you’re on location. Just clip it into place at the bottom of the bag. There are matching buckles to make this easy. In this configuration, it doesn’t take weight off your shoulders the way the padded bellyband does, but it helps keep the Pro Trekker from swaying. I find this is important when I’m in situations where I want to maintain my balance.
Once the trip is over, return the waistpack to its rightful place as the lid for your backpack. I think it looks stylish that way too.
Derrick Story is the Photography Evangelist for Lowepro. Photo by Derrick Story.