Black Hole Duffel 90L

Patagonia Black Hole Duffel 90L Reviews

Patagonia's Black Hole 90L Duffel Bag is inspired by rugged-yet-light alpine packs. The Black Hole Duffel features a burly ripstop fabric coated in a TPU laminate and DWR finish for the ultimate in outdoors protection. The padded base protects your gear throughout the trip, and Patagonia padded the removable shoulder strap and removable backpack straps for comfort. Internal organizers and zippered mesh pockets organize all the small things, while the external side pocket stows the duffel for compact storage. Compression straps prevent your gear from bouncing around whether you're traveling via airplane or four-wheeler.


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Product Reviews

Use it for everything

I have used this bag from everything from clothes to junk I've just been moving out of my house. I take it camping all the time and I love how durable it is.

Stuff it full of anything

This bag came with me all over Europe and almost every climbing trip. It is so big and expandable, you can fit a most anything in there. Climbing gear, clothes, photography equipment, tripod, tent, sleeping bag, etc. it’s made out of a super durable material keeping water out for the most part, and tears I likely. It has a daisy chain sewed on either side for extra attachments. The optional shoulder straps made all the difference for me carrying it around Europe, so you don’t have to carry it duffel style. I’d like to get a smaller one such as the 60 or 40 liter option some day for when I do smaller trips, because 90 liters is a lot of bag!

parecer ser buena

seve grande esa maleta

It’s truly a black hole

I traveled with my family for three months in Australia. Each person got one of these bombproof bags. They are nearly waterproof and indestructible. We dragged them through Western Australia and they looked brand new. Since that time the boys have taken theirs to college and we continue to stuff them full of what ever adventure we are on. There is always more room. You think it’s full and yet it will accept more. Cannot praise these enough. The side pocket in the updated version is bigger and improved as are the back pack straps. Taking mine to Santa Fe Friday. Feel free to buy me a beer and I’ll tell you more about these great bags.

So nice!

This bag is great!

The Bomber Duffel

There are some pieces of gear I find a necessity, and a duffel bag seems like a no brainer right? This is certainly one of those pieces, it’s truly become invaluable. Think what you will about Patagonia’s price point on certain things, I rarely pay full price for any of their items (not excluding this one) but they are always better than outstanding and worth every penny. Keep an eye out for past season deals! This bag has traveled the West Coast with me for three years. Cars, airplanes, and even a few ferries. Camp site to camp site, it has done and hauled it all. It’s burly as heck, very water resistant (no where near submersible), and full of useful pockets inside and out. The materials are tough and thick, but do not have structure like a suitcase, so consider your packing strategy accordingly. Also note, it’s not meant to lock with the standardized TSA locks, but the zipper’s retention has not failed me yet. The 90L size is cavernous, it will swallow anything and everything you throw at it. It has lash points on all four corners to strap down, although I personally have been hesitant to haul it outside a vehicle as all my valuables and gear I need are contained. There is two inner mesh pockets on the underside of the U-Shaped lid (props for thoughtful zipper direction!) and one outside horizontal zippered drop pocket. There is no singular shoulder strap so I purchased a universal one from REI (smaller versions DO have one). I used it once and ditched it for the built in backpack straps. I found these totally comfy for short hauls and steady on the back when my hands were also full. Simply stated, it’s a thoughtful ergonomic design from Patagonia given this bags load potential; and one shoulder strap could be awfully uncomfortable. Also has a grab handle on top and on either end to give it a toss to your buddy loadin’ up. Love this bag, would recommend and repurchase again and again.

Perfect camping supply bag

I’m able to fit just about everything I could need for a night of minimal tent camping for two people in this bag including a tent, 2 self inflatable sleeping pads and 2 sleeping bags.

Lost in space

The Black Hole is no joke. This is my go to duffel for camping and travel for the following reasons:

•Water Proof
•Rad style 
•Fits a ridiculous amount of clothing, shoes and toiletries.

Aside from functionality, I’m a pretty socially responsible consumer—so the fact that Patagonia uses recycled material and maintains a private stake in their company makes me a loyal consumer.

I’ve been rocking my black hole duffel for about 5 years now and it shows very little signs of wear and tear and I  certainly put it through the elements. Patagonia is known for their quality, truly a bag you can’t go wrong with and is applicable for so many situations.

Great travel bag, okay beer cooler.

I own the 60 L bag. It is my go to travel bag. It has hauled gear to the crag, to resorts, and to biostations. I will sweatr by this bag till the end of time. Though it is water resistant and tough, it will keep moisture in the bag if there is any previously present. Again this bag is not water proof, the zippers will let in some moisture if you are standing in a torrential down poor or submerge the bag. So make sure you stuff is dry if you don't want it to stay wet.

Compact with convenient back pack straps and over the shoulder straps.
Will keep things dry, if the things are already dry.
Different size options
Has doubled as emergency beer cooler.

Will trap moisture if water gets in.

The side pocket has an inside opening that can become unzipped. So if you have toiletries or small things in that pocket, it can get opened and things will migrate

Not a great beer cooler.

My favorite travel duffel

Overview: I think this bag is the most versatile of all the sizes in their lineup. Large enough to pack equipment for a week trip, small enough to not take up too much room in the car. Easy to check in while flying, it is probably a little too big to qualify as a carry on.

This bag is the same bomber proof construction as all the other bags in the line up, and comes in a variety of colors. We’ve taken this on a number of trips over the past few months, we’ve loaded it with up to 50lbs, and while that was pretty heavy, the shoulder straps still allow it to be carried on the back. The size was not too bulky and the balance was ok for shorter distances on the back. We use this bag as a replacement for suitcases. The size allows you to fit more odd sizes within, and it is much more compact than a large suitcase. I never liked rolling suitcases anyway, so having this as a total replacement makes sense. I also use this bag to store some of my bulky winter items (jacket, pants, gloves, etc), when not in use.

Patagonia Black Hole - General Qualities shared by All bags: Note, the bags that I tested are predating the change to the recycled material. 

The bags are built out of 15-oz 900 100% polyester ripstop which means that these bags were built to take a beating and keep going. I have had my bags from 1 year to 3 months, and the oldest of the bags still looks more or less brand new after multiple international and national trips. 

The bags are designed to be able to carry massive loads with no real bells and whistles. Before purchasing the bag, I read multiple reviews saying the biggest challenge with the bag when used for airline travels is to keep it within weight limit, and I agree. The large rectangle shape of the bag makes it perfect to “Tetris Load” your bag so heavy, it becomes overloaded. When driving, that is no issue due to the heavy duty material and reinforced stitching. Creating something simple and useful takes a lot of work, and I have to hand it to Patagonia. These bags are essentially one large cavernous hole, containing two straps to help keep everything in place. I use the straps only if there is some extra space, in order to keep everything from roaming around.

On the side is one pocket, which a lot of users have complained isn’t lockable. The issue with this pocket is that it is also it’s carrying case for storage, so there is also an internal zipper which gives you access to the main cavity, so if it is not lockable, thieves can enter. I don’t really mind, as my thought is that if someone wants to steal something, they will, whether there is a lock or not. 

The lid also has two mesh pockets where you can store small things like power cords, kindle e-reader, etc. I love these pockets and use them to carry my passport, wallet, headphones, etc on all my flights (60L pack). In the bigger bags, I use it to carry my first aid kit, repair kit, etc.

One of the best features of these bags is the removable backpack straps. The top part of the strap is fed through a locking D Loop, and the bottom uses a plastic buckle. The plastic buckle is my only durability concern on the whole bag, but I haven’t seen any issues yet, nor did I read about any while researching. These straps make transporting the bag super easy. I’ve loaded the 120 and 90L bags up to 50lbs and was able to carry it on my back with no issues. Even my wife was able to do so. The straps are padded, but not overly bulky, so they can slip in the side pocket when travelling.

The bag also has normal handles on the top to carry like a traditional duffel bag, but it is missing a over the shoulder carry strap, but I don’t really miss that. In a pinch, the backpack strap could be used as such. Another clever design was handles on the bag on each side, so you can pick up and throw the bag around much easier. These straps have proven infinitely useful!

The bag is also a bit water resistant (DWR), and I have carried it in some mild rain with nothing inside getting wet. I feel that the insides would stay dry even in a fairly decent downpour, but remember it is only DWR and ripstop polyester.

Over all: I am 100% by the construction and design of this bag. It is heavy duty and built to last. I have three sizes (60L, 90L, & 120L) and use them all the time. If you are looking for a new travel duffel built to last decades of use, pick one of these up. Bonus points to Patagonia for switching to recycled material in their new line up. I am 100% confident that the bags will be just as burly. As Patagonia is an ambassador of environmental stewardship, I want to note two things 1) if you don’t need a new bag, don’t buy one. 2) these often come up for sale as used bags on Patagonia’s used gear website, Craigslist, or Ebay. I would go for a used one. Most people only use them for a trip or two, and these things can really take a beating with no side effect.

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