Proviz has established itself as a well known brand of super visibility jackets. Now they are producing various other items that will make you stand out at night.
The latest item that I have been testing is the REFLECT360 rucksack. We all get that slightly uncomfortable feeling when you're all set to go out, you've put on a high vis jacket in the hope of being seen at night, only for everything to get obscured by a big black rucksack! So how well will motorists approaching from behind see you now?
You can cover it with a high vis cover, but it's not guaranteed the cover will fit. Sometimes I wear an oversized high vis gilet on top of the rucksack - not very pretty! And it may not do the job anyway.
So when I was sent the REFLECT360 rucksack to try out I was quite impressed with it. It would only have been a matter of time before this latest accessory was produced. And it is the logical solution when you think how many people cycle commute now, particularly through London.
Judging by the numbers of people on the Cycle Superhighway there's no sign of the dark streets and the sub-zero temperatures deterring people from circulating through London by bike. So a super-reflective rucksack was a logical addition to the array of Proviz items, considering how useful and popular the jackets had become.
So what do I make of the rucksack? Well, it does everything it says on the tin! It's a rucksack, and a rather spacious one too. Capacity is 30 litres, meaning there was room in it for my change of clothes, my lunch, and a book, which I usually carry in case I get on public transport, plus a bit more space in reserve.
There is a front pocket in which to put smaller items like your wallet and phone etc. Then there are deep side pockets in which I put things like tools, puncture repair kit and maybe an extra drink.
Then I like the little touches such as a loop to hang a light from, a mesh ventilation system to help reduce dampness on your back, and additional loops to attach a strap if you want to carry the rucksack as a shoulder bag.
The thing I like most about the REFLECT360 rucksack though, is that addresses the things that concern me most as a commuter - will I be seen, and will my stuff get all soaked if I get caught in the rain?
Well those reflective beads are ever present in the fabric and there are no worries about you not being seen at night, and you stand out like a spaceman! Also during these autumn days motorists have on their headlights during the day so the reflective properties take effect even in daylight, so you can still be spotted on the road.
The fabric is waterproof, and furthermore all the zips on the rucksack are Aquaguard(R), meaning that they completely seal up when closed.
So there you have it, a rucksack that I can feel comfortable (literally and metaphorically) when out on my bike.
Christmas gifts for the cyclist - 2
Christmas gifts for the cyclist - 1
Review: Proviz REFLECT Switch jacket