Carryology: the ultimate reference

Thomas - founder / mad of backpacks -

Carryology or the art of carry

It It's impossible to talk about the history of Keus without talking about what inspired me the most (and which still inspires me so much): Carryology. This American blog was founded around ten years ago by a handful of enthusiasts, including the iconic bearded man with a hat, Taylor Welden (an industrial designer by training (like me, hey)). We must also mention, if we want to tell this crazy story correctly, the Australian brand Bellroy, which comes quickly enough into the loop to pay the bills (as they say very clearly), but above all because they consider the blog as a huge creative pool, capable of bringing together a large number of enthusiasts who, until then, had no other alternative than let's say travel blogs, on which one could find a selection of material for traveling, but not really original. (Below is a categorization available on their site to clearly identify the different types of materials used in the manufacture of backpacks).

Carryology: The Keus Bible

​​ And this is certainly the greatest quality of Carryology: highlighting brands and products that are still too little known to the general public. Which is, it should be remembered, our reason for living at Keus. We can always find today on this blog, any archive on just about any cool bag. This is where Carryology represents my absolute reference. I remember having felt like a kind of frustration when I discovered this blog several years ago: I had the impression of being in front of an ultra-attractive but absolutely inaccessible showcase. Looking back, I can clearly say that it was this feeling that drove the creation of Keus.

The Carryology team is made up of a group of writers who like to travel, test backpacking or EDC. All this in worldwide mode. Among them in particular, Bo Ismono, a German Youtuber, whose videos and impressive collection would make any backpack fanatic drool. I had the chance to meet Bo during a meetup organized by Heimplanet in Hamburg, during which he talked about the most important points to consider in the design of a backpack. A real specification for who would like to embark on this adventure, as we know his experience in the matter (the video is available on his Youtube). Carryology is also the birth of the now famous Chase Reeves (who will be remembered for his unique patter or his test frenzy, sometimes criticized) or the more discreet Tom Wahlin, ultra prolific creator of the Pack Hacker blog. Two essential references today. (Below are photos of Taylor Welden, Bo Ismono and Tom Wahlin). Find here a live Instagram in which we exchange with Bo on his journey.

Carryology Awards: better than the Oscars

Each year now, Carryology delivers awards in multiple categories. And you know what ? Nobody slaps anyone, total respect atmosphere. The Carry Awards reward products in 14 different categories: Hall Of Fame / Brand Of The Year / Best Accessory / Best Sling / Best Everyday Bag / Best Carry-On Bag / Best Work Backpack / Best Active Shoulder Bag / Best Active Backpack / Best Waterproof Bag / Best EDC / Best Work Shoulder Bag / Best Camera Bag... and that's just for bags, because there are also categories for clothes or suitcases. Here is a small summary of the winners of the last 4 years.

Carry Award IX ​​​​​​​

- Hall Of Fame : Frakta- IKEA
- Brand Of The Year : HEIMPLANET
- Best Accessory : CAP 2L - EVERGOODS
- Best Sling : Largo - TRAKKE
- Best Every Day Bag : CPL V2 - EVERGOODS
- Best Carry-On Bag : Max Backpack - ABLE CARRY
- Best Work Backpack : Transit Workpack - BELLROY
- Best Active Shoulder Bag : Metrorunner01 - GREENROOM136
- Best Camera Bag : Athlete - ATLAS
- Best Active Backpack : Umlindi V2- HILL PEOPLE GEAR
- Best Waterproof Bag : Pro Dry Bag 45L - SUBTECH
- Best EDC : Rockwall Thumbstud - TACTILE KNIFE CO
- Best Work Shoulder Bag : Drift Tote - MISSION WORKSHOP​​​​​​​

Carry Award VIII

- Hall Of Fame : Superbreak - JANSPORT
- Brand Of The Year : PEAKDESIGN
- Best Accessory : Travel Tripod - PEAKDESIGN
- Best Sling : Everyday Sling 2 - PEAKDESIGN
- Best Every Day Bag : Evade 1.5 - ALPHA ONE NINER
- Best Carry-On Bag : Transit Plus - BELLROY
- Best Work Backpack : Synik 22 - TOM BIHN
- Best Active Shoulder Bag : Bravo 18 - REMOTE EQUIPMENT
- Best Camera Bag : MCKinnon Camera Pack - NOMATIC
- Best Active Backpack : Ducan Spine - MAMMUT
- Best EDC : Carter - THE JAMES BRAND
- Best Work Shoulder Bag : Commuter Brief 2 - AER
- Best Travel Luggage : Travel Bag Roller - TOPO DESIGNS
- Best Specialist : Tower 47 - MYSTERY RANCH

Carry Award VII

- Hall Of Fame : GR1 - GORUCK
- Brand Of The Year : PATAGONIA
- Best Accessory : Run-Off Collection - NITE IZE
- Best Sling : X-POD - CODE OF BELL
- Best Every Day Bag : Conceal V3 - THE BROWN BUFFALO
- Best Carry-On Bag : Travel Backpack - PEAKDESIGN
- Best Work Backpack : Bannoch V2 - TRAKKE
- Best Active Messenger : Granville Courier - ARC'TERYX
- Best Camera Bag : Backlight 26L - MINDSHIFT GEAR
- Best Active Backpack : Terraframe - MYSTERY RANCH
- Best EDC : Free Series - LEATHERMAN
- Best Work Shoulder Bag : Cary Double - STUART AND LAU
- Best Travel Luggage : Duffelpack - PEAKDESIGN
- Best Specialist : Wrapping Backpack - ONFAdd

Carry Award VI

- Hall Of Fame : Base Camp - THE NORTH FACE
- Brand Of The Year : COTOPAXI
- Best Accessory : Nanodry towel - MATADOR
- Best Every Day Bag : Citadel Minimal - BLACK EMBER
- Best Carry-On Bag : Setout - TORTUGA
- Best Work Backpack : Daypack - AER
- Best Active Shoulder Bag : Leaf Courier Bag 15 - ARC'TERYX
- Best Camera Bag : Prima system - BOUNDARY SUPPLY
- Best Active Backpack : Spectre system - TRIPLE AUGHT DESIGN
- Best Work Shoulder Bag : Suffren - ATELIERS AUGUSTE
- Best Travel Luggage : Transporter - OSPREY
- Best Specialist : Patrol - MYSTERY RANCH

The impact of these Awards is considerable. I particularly remember talking to the creator of the Vormann brand about this, who told me that his order book had exploded after his brand was named on the blog. ​​​​​​​

Carryology Limited Editions ​​​​​​​ 

Of course, we also have to talk about limited series, on the sidelines of this competition. Several times a year now, the Carryology team joins forces with a brand to develop an exceptional product, and most often in very small series. Like when they teamed up with Goruck to create the inimitable GRX, for example, an upgrade from the famous GR1 turfu in Dyneema, which sold out in just a few minutes... and resold the next day on eBay at twice the price. Must say that they know how to teaser at Carryology... and tell stories. But after all, isn't that ultimately what we expect the most from an object? You will have understood all my admiration for this extraordinary blog and how fundamental its role was in the creation of Keus. You can also easily imagine how I felt when they chose us, with brands like Bellroy or Goruck to be their official distributor in Europe... Are you still hesitating which hiking bag to choose? Go Carryology check their reviews or their Youtube friends!