BEST FOR: Trips that begin in the air and end on a mountain path.
THE TEST: The longer we traveled with the 32-liter, carry-on-size BRX Exchange convertible bag, the more we discovered its hidden talents. When the sidewalks ended in Bavaria, our tester unzipped a back panel to reveal padded backpack straps and a hipbelt. And though the bag was muddy, his clothes stayed clean, because the back panel zips down to cover the grimy wheels. Daisy-chain loops allow you to strap it to car roofs and boats, and the contrasting orange interior of the front pocket makes it easy to find small items like keys. Our only gripe: the padded laptop sleeve is a bit flimsy.
THE VERDICT: Perhaps a touch overpriced, the BRX Exchange is the most civilized hybrid we’ve tested. 7.8 lbs.