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The fanny pack is the stealth bomber of adventure travel

Stealth bomber

The stealth bomber – Public domain Wikimedia Commons

This Saturday is International Fanny Pack Day, so this post is in honor of this day. On a recent trip to Mexico I learned a new way that the fanny pack can be useful. I found that it is the stealth bomber of the adventure travel world.

International Fanny Pack Day

The fanny pack is very useful while cross-country skiing

We all know how great the fanny pack is and how handy it can be. It keeps your wallet, keys, passport, and other important documents safe. It keeps your camera and snacks at a convenient locations for quick access. It even can keep you hydrated if you have an aqua fanny pack.

Aqua fanny pack

Here I am demonstrating the aqua fanny pack

In Mexico I found a new awesomeness for the fanny pack. It is the stealth bomber of packs and flies under the radar of security. The stealth bomber was designed to get through anti-aircraft defenses by using state of the art technology to avoid radar and quickly get deep into enemy territory, deploy its weapons, and quickly return to safety. The fanny pack can work in the same fashion.

For all the positive fanny pack aspects, there are a lot of haters out there who frown and even poke fun at the waist pack. The backpack is definitely the cool bag in the adventure travel and many in this group show contempt for those who augment their backpack with an ungainly fanny pack.

On a press trip to Puebla, Mexico, I happened to be amongst a group of savvy backpackers including The Real Vagabondish, the Art of Backpacking, and Jessie on a Journey. We entered a museum together. Security stopped us to have a look at our possessions.

International Fanny Pack Day

Backpackers foiled by security

They insisted backpacks needed to be checked in. I said “how about fanny packs?” They looked quickly at the small inoffensive piece of equipment strapped across my chest. I think they also sensed my confidence in wearing the apparel.  There was no sheepish look on my face when I asked this question. They waved me through, and I sailed into the museum while veteran travelers cursed under their breath as they got in line to check in their items.

International Fanny Pack Day

While it was all sighs of exasperation from the backpackers, the fanny pack contingent was all smiles

I soared into the room depicting the seven deadly sins knowing that carrying a fanny pack in Mexico is not one of them. I loaded up on culture like a marathon runner on carbs while the three backpacking amigos fumed in line.

Mexico bowls

What I got to see while the backpackers were in line – Some cool bowls, and a guy talking about some cool bowls in Mexico

Mexico museum

More neat stuff I soaked in while waiting for backpackers – We have some fruit and some other food in like some bowls in Mexico

By this time they were so frustrated with the entry that they had trouble focusing on the next couple exhibits once they finally joined us. They were still mentally in line with their backpacks, while I concentrated on the fascinating exhibits.

Mexico museum

Some very unfocused backpackers

The fanny pack sometimes takes a lot of abuse in the adventure travel world for its ungainly lump on a wearer’s chest, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The lump may not be the most beautiful aesthetic thing around, but it sure flies under the radar, and this one time out foxed even the most top notch backpackers.

Happy International Fanny Pack Day,


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19 Responses to The fanny pack is the stealth bomber of adventure travel

  1. Jeremy Branham March 8, 2013 at 3:36 pm #

    To those of you who still use it, Happy Fanny Pack Day. I have to admit I see a slight appeal to it of not having to give up my bag with my camera when visiting a museum. But then again, that really isn’t adventure travel is it? 🙂
    Jeremy Branham recently posted..Austin travel guide for budget travelers

    • travelingted March 9, 2013 at 7:15 pm #

      I don’t think being frustrated in line constitutes adventure travel. If it was then I would just stay at home and drive in Chicago traffic all day long.

  2. Charles Higgins March 9, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

    A significant number of Vegas gamblers use fanny packs to store their cash…useful in many ways.

    Charles Higgins recently posted..Las Vegas named Trashiest 2013 Spring Break Destination in the US

    • travelingted March 9, 2013 at 7:16 pm #

      Next time you are in Vegas, get a picture of one of these fanny pack wearing gamblers. I would love to see it.

  3. Francesca (@WorkMomTravels) March 10, 2013 at 3:22 am #

    Oh Ted, you crack me up. I hope you’ve enjoyed your happiest day of the year.
    Francesca (@WorkMomTravels) recently posted..Giving my daughter the gift of travel

    • travelingted March 13, 2013 at 4:01 am #

      It was a great weekend. I look forward to next year’s celebration. I have plans to make 2014 International Fanny Pack Day even better.

  4. Ted and Dani March 10, 2013 at 3:38 am #

    Ahh yes the fanny pack. Where I come from fanny is a much different part of your body… and anyone wearing one should also wear a sign that says ‘please rob me’ in the native language of whatever country you are in.
    Ted and Dani recently posted..Arugam Bay is not just about the surfing! A TRoom Travel Blog

    • travelingted March 15, 2013 at 3:56 am #

      I think wearing a sign would be a great idea. It would throw robbers off. They would think there is some kind of catch.

  5. Leigh March 10, 2013 at 3:39 am #

    Happy Fanny Pack Day Ted. Did you make this up?
    I have one of those oversized packs you put around your waist, bigger than a fanny pack. It holds a lot but I always feel fat so would rather I’m sorry to say wear a knapsack. Call it my vanity at work.
    Leigh recently posted..What’s the Better Place to Visit – Whistler or Banff?

    • travelingted March 13, 2013 at 4:02 am #

      I did not make it up, but I am planning a coup to take it over.

  6. Raul (@ilivetotravel in Twitter) March 10, 2013 at 12:09 pm #

    So what did you do to celebrate Intl Fanny Pack Day? Besides writing this post, I mean!
    Raul (@ilivetotravel in Twitter) recently posted..Safari on Tanzania’s Lake Manyara National Park

    • travelingted March 13, 2013 at 4:03 am #

      I had a glass of wine and a quiet evening: just me and my fanny pack thinking about future adventures together. It was dreamy.

  7. The World Wanderer March 13, 2013 at 2:57 am #

    Hahaha, this is very funny. I will admit, you make a good case for your beloved fanny pack. These will always remind me of my dad and trip to Disney. Also, I had a red one back in the day…don’t tell anyone. 😉
    The World Wanderer recently posted..Music Monday: Safety Rope.

    • travelingted March 13, 2013 at 4:04 am #

      Would love to see a picture of that one. you should share that one on your blog for International Fanny Pack Day 2014.

  8. thelazytravelers March 14, 2013 at 4:43 pm #

    we’ve FINALLY accepted backpacking as a feasible way to carry everything. having to reduce everything to a fanny pack just seems plain impossible. challenge accepted!
    thelazytravelers recently posted..laws to travel by – #38

    • travelingted March 15, 2013 at 3:57 am #

      I am not saying a fanny pack replaces a large backpack or even a small one. I think it augments it. You can bring even more things.

  9. Erika March 14, 2013 at 5:59 pm #

    OMG I remember that day! It was the first time I met you and I had immediate fanny-pack envy after leaving my pack at the door:-/ Great post!
    Erika recently posted..First hike of spring: Mount Wire via The Living Room, Salt Lake City

    • travelingted March 15, 2013 at 3:58 am #

      Thanks Erika,

      Fanny pack envy? I like that. It sounds so Freudian.

  10. Pola (@jettingaround) March 18, 2013 at 11:01 pm #

    I probably wouldn’t be caught dead with a fanny pack, but I admire your dedication!! 😀 I guess the thing is useful in adventure travel, but doesn’t go with high heels. 😉
    Pola (@jettingaround) recently posted..Photo of the Week: Rooftop view of San Diego

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