The Alpkit Possum is a half-sized frame bag, meaning it leaves space for easy access to water bottles on both mountain and gravel bikes. It’s stable, fits a lot of different frames easily and is ideal for carrying tools and spares. It really doesn't carry very much, however, and it’s a tad pricey considering it isn’t waterproof and has a rather basic system securing it to the frame.
I tested the smallest Possum bag, which measures 42cm along the top and weighs just 170g. It's 10cm deep at its largest point and 4cm deep at the narrowest end. There are two other sizes (47x11x5cm and 52x12x65cm), and they all come in an array of jazzy colours.
The Possum is made from four-layer, 210-denier laminated nylon, and has a durable water resistant (DWR) finish. It feels robust and hardwearing; I’ve yet to mark or rip it. It’s pretty water resistant too, withstanding showers well and only soaking through in prolonged rain. As the seams are not taped, you're best putting valuables in a dry bag anyway.
The bag attaches with Velcro straps that can be positioned anywhere around the webbing ladder. I used three on the top of the bag – to stop the middle sagging under heavier loads – and one on the front.
The Velcro comes in one long strip you cut down to size. It’s a fairly rudimentary way of doing things, but it works, and means you can get the straps the perfect length for your frame tubes. Other bags, like this Polaris one, get d-ring Velcro straps to winch in, which are easier to attach but can leave a lot of excess.
The bag is predominantly designed for mountain bikes, and the half size means it plays well with rear suspension designs. I’ve used it on a variety of hardtails and horst link or single pivot mountain bike frames with vertical shocks, and it's fitted well. It's also a great small bag for gravel essentials on adventure rides.
In fact, it’s become my staple frame bag for day-long gravel rides, as the main compartment is big enough for a road tube, mini pump, multi tool, tyre lever and some snacks. The second flat compartment holds cards, cash and keys. That's pretty much your lot.
The tapered end restricts what items you can carry, and as with most frame bags, it's best not overfilled so it doesn't bulge into your knees. However, that taper means I can run two bottle cages and access both on my 52cm gravel frame, which can be very useful.
The zip toggles are large and easy to grab, while the zips are waterproof yet slide nicely and don’t get jammed up even in dirty conditions. Also well worth noting is the cable exit on top, where the webbing ladder separates to reveal a hole for running cables to battery packs or whatever.
There are other bags out there at similar prices that are properly waterproof, but the Alpkit Possum is easy to use, weatherproof enough for spares and basics, and very well-shaped for all kinds of frames. This is probably the least versatile size, though there are of course two (slightly) larger ones to choose from.
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