I send you HUGS Rich!
I know it is a tough time for you...but perhaps it was meant to be. And, in time, you will find an even better 30L bag. Not to say that it will replace your old one....because I know it will always have a place in your heart.
PS: Tam...you and your 313! lol
I got a pretty basic Tatonka Wayfarer 27L bag last week. Very basic, nothing fancy, nice and compact and easy to carry. I think it's the end of the range though! It cost me AU$90, which is pretty close to 30GBP. That's my first backpack - seems like a perfect size to me. Hope you have luck finding something.
UPDATE: I'm currently just using my 20l instead whilst i take stock and see what's around (Read: i'm a skinflint waiting for the jan sales). 20l is plenty for normal useage for me, but doesn't include a whole lot of spare room to carry food/beer/spirits etc around as well.
Have had a little look when on a flying trip through the Uk, and the current selections aren't great. Most 30l bages seem to now be twice the size of mine - very long and thin, but with no expansion room (my one would exand in any direction - obviously not all at once - because the fabric wasn't so tight that it was rigid). In addition though, i've heard rumours that Karrimor have lifetime guarentees on all their bags and will at least replace for free if it can't be fixed, so will investigate that.
Mim - Sorry to hear about your Sth American issues. I'd missed that completely. Hope the insurance pays up in full, although unfortuantely i doubt they will.
Ed - Sorry mate, i completely lost this thread of late. Yes there will be Ski/snowboad schools for complete beginners, and speaking English as well. I went to one in Riksgränsen (the only time i'd every worm skiis before was XC ones, 2 days previously, and i managed to break both skiis and a snowpole within the first 20mins that day), and can't remember exactly, but have a feeling i paid 300kr (about 20gbp), which gave me a 90min lesson, ski/liftpass plus extra "assistance" after the lesson if needed (i stayed on the slopes for a couple of hours after the lesson offically finished). Had to hire equiptment, but think it only cost about 100kr for 2 days (plus returnable deposit). You want to know anymore, just ask.
Will check that link you sent now - your bag sounds decent, but would go with the smaller one. I'm not looking for a 40l, as i think that's WAAAAAY too big.
And finally, taking two ideas to the logical extreme here. Many Thanks to Mim/Nikki/others - I've decided/been inspired to hand-line my next rucksack with silver duct tape
Last year I was issued a camelback ruck its about 2700ci not sure if it equates to 30 liters, but this thing is on the road to being epic,
I dont normally like to many pockets but it is well layed out and built solid, it has a seperate pocket for a water bladder that comes in handy, may favorite thing is the orginization slots I use it at work, can use it as abrief case to carry my lap top pens papers and books, it always has room for more, there is handing cinch straps inside the main so you can really secure heavy items, it has these nifty attachment points that you can hang additional kit on with.
I have lived out of it for up to two weeks, cometo think of it I am living out of it now
I have really loaded it down on one job in Peru and the only complaint was it seemed to hang up on alot of stuff but to be fair it was real thick jungle. Mine is basic OD green, but they come in several colors for Military apps and they also make civilian versions.
my 2 kopecks worth...