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Duffel bags for bows
Guys, need your help here. I live in Mexico and now airlines are charging for bow hunting equipment (75 dollars each single trip) if it comes in a bow case. There is no hassle for duffel bags. I had read about Badlands Terra Glide, William Joseph Terrestrial, High Sierra Ultimate Access 36 and Sitka Gear Nomad which can accommodate compound bows (I use now a Matthews Halon 7). That means I can transport my bow without extra charges and at the same time pack inside my clothes. Which one will you recommend? Or any other option, please. Thanks for the help and good hunt for everyone this season.
I have used the Sitka nomad on several trips and it works pretty well. Your bow should fit in there without a problem
I have the Nomad and its been great. i've heard good things about the Badlands and the WJ--don't think you would go wrong with any of those.
They beat the old hard bow cases hands down.
I’ve used my Badlands Terraglide several times with my Mathews Switchback XT with zero problems so far.
Thank you guys. T- Roy I think the Badlands Terraglide is not in production anymore, which is a pitty. Zackmann a Beendare I will follow your advice and purchase the sitka nomad.
I have an older Cabelas drop bottom duffel no longer in production. Best $60 I've ever spent.
With the way airline luggage loaders handle/throw luggage how do you go about protecting your bow in a duffle bag? Where do you put your knives, broad heads and arrows and keep them from getting damaged? I guess I just don't trust them with my expensive equipment outside of a locked hard case. Mexican hunter. I flew with American to Michigan at the beginning of this month with my bow. They don't charge for the first checked luggage under 50lbs which in this case was my bow case. Go to the kiosk, punch in your info number, check your free bag as normal and the kiosk spits out the luggage tag. I did this both ways. In Lansing Mi my bow would not fit in the x-ray machine so they needed it opened to run a wand over it and see the contents. Had a connecting flight both ways in O'Hare. Back here in Phoenix I had to get my bow from an office area for oversized luggage because it was a bow and I was not even questioned about it on either end. A buddy of mine had a huge duffle bag he put his bow in but the bow was still in a protective case and his clothes packed around it. not sure where he got the duffle bag but I can find out.
The Nomad and Terraglide are rolling duffels with rigid bottoms that protect the bow, not soft duffel bags, and have lots of pockets for the rest of your gear. They are wonderful for traveling with a bow.
Thanks Stekewood. I didn't know that they had rigid bottoms. Still seems risky.
GotBow...I’ve flown with my Terraglide probably 6-8 times with no issues, but agreed, they still make me a bit apprehensive. I always put my backup bow in it. I put a 1” piece of rigid foam in the bottom, then pack a jacket, clothes, etc. around it to protect/cushion it. I also use a Pole Mtn. bow case for my primary bow. It’s discontinued too :-(
Sitka Nomad works great for me. Pack hunting clothes all around it and I feel like my bow could take a lot more beating wrapped in the Nomad than it gets being dragged around in the woods with me.
Mexican hunter, Its still important with whatever case you use to have a packing system. You want whatever system you use to work with TSA guys just throwing stuff back in willy nilly
I remove my sight and pack that in a padded bag...then pack the bow in a cheapie soft bow case at the bottom of the bag. I put bow tools and loose stuff in the freezer zip loks so the TSA guys can see without opening. I do the same with arrows....big holes in my arrow tube...and Bh's in a locking tupperware container. Then just pile clothes in up to the 50# limit. Heck I can stand on that case and not feel the bow inside.
Take your bow case and put it in a duffel bag; problem solved. :)
Bruce, after seeing how well your Nomad worked I was interested and was looking at them, the last straw was being hammered with my old bowcase by American for $150 (flying home, not leaving) which they have upped now to $200. I set my ebay daily search app to look for one. Took nearly two years but just picked one up. Seen dozens and dozens of them but being the patient bowhunter I waited em out and finally dropped the string one for $200, new in the box with tags still on it. Haven't used it yet, but I'm sure it will work great. Not to mention losing 10 or 15lbs off the Kalispel...... =D
I've used my William Joseph a bunch of times with no issues. The only thing you really need to worry about is whether your bow will fit in it or not (you can't just think axle to axle, but also need to be mindful of how far beyond the axles the cams extend). Other than that, they work great.
I fly multiple times a year with my Nomad and have so far had great success!
Ok, I'll put in my two cents, probably only worth one cent though. I fly 2-8 times a year pretty consistently to hunt, and have been using these bags for several years now.
I own both the terra glide and the nomad. I personally prefer the terraglide, I'm deeply disturbed that badlands no longer makes them.
The terraglide seems more "streamlined" than the nomad. I don't care too much for the exterior pockets, especially the little slash pockets on the side. But I do like the top/bottom compartment design (instead of one big one on the nomad). I have never been questioned on what's in it, or if it is over sized. Never been charged any additional fees. Never any damage to contents. Really flies under the radar so to speak. Only real drawback I see is only fits the smaller AtoA bows. But I buy my bows to fit the terra glide, not the other way around ;)
The nomad is nice. Mine really shows wear/dirt a lot faster for some reason, but not a deal breaker for me. I don't like it as it feels "bulkier" in general. My biggest complaint on the nomad is it's just too big. I can't really get my bow in there, plus gear/clothes and meet the 50lb rule. Obviously I can, but it's seems like I have a lot of room left in there at 50lbs. For me it's all floppy when fully packed. I like that my terraglide because it is basically perfectly packed "full" at about the 50lb mark every time. Kinda keeps everything tight and in place through the trip.
Both are good bags, I just slightly prefer the terraglide, and I'm thinking about buying myself a spare since they aren't making them anymore...
Thanks Jtreeman. I had already purchased the Terraglide. But, the company I ordered told me they are no longer on production, so they offered me to swap to Nomad. It has been a hassle now to fly with "sport equipment" in some airlines. The golf bag is no longer an option here, since they charge also golfs cubs (75 dollars for any "sport equipment".
Gotbowaz the reason I want to travel with a duffel bag with hard bottom is that they're charging bow equipment in the Mexican airlines (75 dollars for a single trip) and a hard case immediately brings the attention of the guys at the check in counter. So I want something low profile.
Beendare, you're right. I have to protect the bow with extra padding and clothes and put the rest in a transparent bag so the guys at TSA can check it promptly and surely. Thanks for the recommendation.
Well it used to be those hard sided cases were the way to go...but now with the airline 50# limits...the big duffle type cases just kill them.
TD, Nomad is 10.5# empty. That big rectangular aluminum 10 rifle case you had must have weighed 40# empty. Worth a fortune in scrap metal value alone. The excess weight is probably due to the #9 rebar and heavy angle iron reinforcing. Its kind of nice walking through the airport without your arm falling off, eh? grin
Bruce.... when I got the Kalispel double case the baggage limit was 70lbs...... =D
But all those years NOTHING ever got damaged even when it looked like they drove a luggage trailer over it..... and been good luck.... it's never been lost.....