We check out the ‘Tardis’ like capcity of the Black Diamond Gym 30.
The ultimate gym bag, big enough for the essentials for everyday gym sessions.
- Good size for gym session.
- Great for bouldering.
- Good closure system
- Only big enough for ‘gym’ sized rope (35m)
- No key clip
- No rope mat.
I must admit I do go to a climbing wall (or gym) more often than I’d care to admit. The fact that one of the best bouldering wall in the city is 10 minutes from my house means I never have an excuse not to climb. Several years ago I started using a dedicated bag for climbing wall trips, this doubled up for bouldering and I have a set of kit that I just use for these trips. It has a variety of stuff I’m not likely to use on the crag or boulders but do use at the wall – liquid chalk, timer, notebook and pens, training notes, etc. To date I’ve been using a messenger bag so was very interested to look at a dedicated bag designed for indoor use (more on that later as it turned out to be useful outdoors too). Some facts too – here in the UK there are now more people who climb exclusively indoors than there are outdoors. (They may be fake however as I can’t find any information on the BMC website to corroborate them, but it seems that way)
Now, I hear my mates already saying – “what’s wrong with my trusty IKEA blue bag?”. The simple answer is nothing really. If you want to use that type of bag it will easily accommodate all your climbing kit for transport between routes. But if you commute to the gym in anything other than by car then a dedicated back seems a more comfortable and stylish option.
So, the Black Diamond Gym 30 is a good option for those who climb a lot indoors and are looking for a functional and stylish bag to ferry their kit about in. The main fabric is a bombproof 1200 denier polyester that BD uses in its Creek series. This is more than enough to take any knocks and bumps both indoors and out and will last for a long time. Its only padded on the base and not reinforced, but then it is designed for indoor use but the fabric should last fairly well for bouldering. The stitching looks burly with plenty of bartacking where the padded strap meets the main body flap.
The strap is adjustable and locks well and has a sliding shoulder pad so it sits where you want it to. Other features include a zippered security pocket at the front which is plenty big enough for wallets, phones, cameras and the myriad of little items that need to be stowed away. No key clip though so be careful how you unload it. There is another pocket inside the bag to keep items such as nail clippers, liquid chalk, finger tape, etc. The main compartment is lined with the bottom half padded.
I really liked the top closure, the lid is intergrated and easily closed using the oversized pull. A quick tug on the large tab and the pack open to full extension nice and speedy. The lid then closes with the single closure buckle made from aluminium and cinched into place with the Hyperlon reinforced webbing which has plenty of bar tacking to stop it from becoming detached.
So a great pack and although I’ve been using it in a gym I have found it very useful as a bouldering bag. It’s plenty big enough for all the kit I need for a bouldering session with 2 pairs of shoes, two chalk bags as well as the unbelievable amounts of stuff I seem to take out bouldering these days (how this happens I have no idea I used to just boulder in my shoes with a beer towel hanging from my belt!). The Black Diamond Gym 30 is a great addition to the range and well thought out. I reckon if I was using a leading wall more often I would opt for the Gym 35 which would easily be big enough for my kit and a 40m rope. One improvement could be the addition of a lightweight, small rope mat and a couple of grab handles for easy transport – but that is taken care of with the Full Rope Bag Burrito. As a dedicated Gym bag it’s pretty much on the money and whether you are an urban adventurer or outdoor weekend warrior you will find it pretty useful.
Comes in two colour options: Gray or for the more sustainably minded Repo/Assorted which uses cuttings from other products to cut down on waste.