The Aeronaut loads from the top. A large zipper opens the entire side for easy packing. The flap has a webbed zipper compartment for loose items.
We like how the zipper is sealed against dirt and water when closed. This type of zipper is found more and more on high quality gear. Look for them when you buy bags, jackets, and packs. You'll find them on all of the zippers in this Tom Bihn bag.
If you need a little bit more room in the main compartment, just unsnap the end panels and you'll get a few more inches on each end. This doesn't make the bag longer. It just lets you push into the two end pockets.
Tom Bihn offers a couple of really comfortable straps to go with this bag. The one shown here is the Absolute Shoulder Strap. It has a little bit of "give" to make the load feel lighter. It is also comfortably padded and built out of high-quality material.
A strap is not required for this bag as there are plenty of other carry options. There are convenient pull straps at both ends of the bag. The carry handle on top has snaps to form a grip for carrying the bag like a duffle.
Built into the back of the pack is a zippered compartment which stows the backpack straps when not in use. The Aeronaut can convert into a full backpack complete with sternum harness. The straps snap into a socket hidden at the base of the bag.
While this backpack can't be considered a replacement for an internal frame model for serious, out in the wild backpacking, it is a great option for when you need to have both hands free or have to carry a load for some distance.
One thing to keep in mind when packing the Aeronaut is how you plan on carrying the bag. The orientation of the "bottom" of the bag will change depending on how you carry it and you wouldn't want all the heavy stuff ending up on the top :-)
If you do a lot of weekend trips, this bag will be perfect for you. If you want something that will let you pack quickly and go with you onto the plane, this bag will be perfect for you. If you can't make up your mind what kind of bag you need, this bag will be perfect for you. If you.... get the idea???