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Black Diamond Zion Haul Bag Review

While it isn't as burly as some, it offers average performance and is comfortable
Black Diamond Zion Haul Bag
Photo: Black Diamond Equipment.com
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Price:  $280 List | Check Price at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Comfortable shoulder straps, easy to get in and out of
Cons:  No waterproof closure, not as burly as other bags
Manufacturer:   Black Diamond
By Chris McNamara ⋅ Founder and Editor-in-Chief  ⋅  Nov 18, 2016
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78
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#5 of 8
  • Durability/Material - 40% 7
  • Capacity - 10% 9
  • Waterproofness - 10% 5
  • Closure systems/Ease of Access - 20% 9
  • Carrying/Suspension System - 20% 9

Our Verdict

We found the Zion Haul Bag to be a solid but not particularly exceptional performer. We liked the comfortable suspension system and the fact that it is adequately burly. It's very easy to use, but we preferred the Metolius El Cap Haul Bag because it's burlier and has a waterproof closure. The Metolius is one of the most indestructible haul bags we have used whereas the Zion is more just a solid performer that gets the job done.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award 
Price Check Price at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
$172.46 at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
Check Price at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
$187.46 at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
$60 List
Overall Score Sort Icon
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69
Star Rating
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Pros Comfortable shoulder straps, easy to get in and out ofBomber, great size, comfy, one of the most waterproofGreat closure, bomber, great as a crag packDurable, comfortable, water-tight closure, lots of volumeLightweight, can haul outside of haulbag, no assembly required
Cons No waterproof closure, not as burly as other bagsTakes some time to get in and out of topExpensiveHard to access the bottom, takes some time to get in and out of the top of the bagExpensive, not completely air-tight
Bottom Line While it isn't as burly as some, it offers average performance and is comfortableOur favorite haul bag for any climbing adventure you can dream upOne of the best haul bags that can be purchased in this volumeThis big, burly bag is one of our favorites for carrying large loadsThe best off-the-shelf poop tube we know of
Rating Categories Black Diamond Zion... Metolius Half Dome... Metolius Quarter Dome Metolius El Cap Hau... Metolius Waste Case
Durability Material (40%)
7.0
10.0
10.0
10.0
10.0
Capacity (10%)
9.0
8.0
6.0
10.0
1
Waterproofness (10%)
5.0
10.0
10.0
10.0
10.0
Closure Systems Ease Of Access (20%)
9.0
9.0
9.0
7.0
9.0
Carrying Suspension System (20%)
9.0
9.0
9.0
9.0
0
Specs Black Diamond Zion... Metolius Half Dome... Metolius Quarter Dome Metolius El Cap Hau... Metolius Waste Case
Volume (cu inches) 8848 7600 4200 9600 500
Weight 9 lb 8 oz 7 lb 7 oz 5 lb 1 oz 8 lb 10.6 oz
Main container material 37 oz vinyl-laminated nylon Durathane Durathane Durathane Durathane
Closure material 840 Denier ripstop Ballistic nylon Ballistic nylon Ballistic nylon Ballistic nylon
Sewn or welded seam Sewn Welded Welded Welded Welded

Our Analysis and Test Results

Likes


This has one of the best carrying systems. The waist belt and shoulder straps are among the comfiest. They also tuck away conveniently and have a unique quick-release function. This means you can't lose the straps and can more easily transition from haul bag mode to backpack mode. This is especially helpful on routes with slabby finishes or ledge traverses like Lurking Fear on El Capitan.

While the fact that there is no waterproof closure is overall a BIG downside in a storm, it does mean it is pretty easy to access stuff. By comparison, the Metolius El Cap Haul Bag has a more waterproof closure that makes it a little harder to get in and out of. We have never been in a serious storm and so overall we don't mind the BD closure system. However, anyone who has been in a serious storm can tell you how much the best waterproof gear available is GOLD!

Dislikes


The closure system is not waterproof or very burly. The drawstring on the one we have used the most eventually broke. In addition, there are no beefy compression straps to use when the bag is overloaded. This bag is durable, but not nearly as durable as a urethane bag like the Metolius or Yates.

A minor dislike: it is hard to clip stuff underneath the bag. The place for your biner is too small whereas most bags have big points to which you can clip multiple biners.

Value


This is a decently priced bag and, if you get it on sale, it is a steal. That said, the Metolius bags are cheaper and we liked them a bit better.

Chris McNamara

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