The FCS Mission Premium is very possibly the daddy of all surf backpacks.
Arguably it has redefined the whole backpack genre. When showing off its neat and efficient design to envious friends, you will use words like “ergonomic” and “compartmentalisation” and feel highly pleased with yourself.
First things first – and we really can’t emphasise this enough – the zip comes all the way round the outside and down to the bottom. This means you can lay the bag on its back and pack your stuff in it as though packing a suitcase, rather than just jamming one thing on top of another through the opening in the top, which is what you usually have to do with a backpack. It’s far more space-effective, and you can actually fold stuff properly and keep your things organised; for weekends away, and possibly even whole weeks, it’s ideal.
At 34 litres, it’s already extremely spacious. There are heaps of specialised pockets and compartments, too, including one wet/dry pouch for keeping your sodden wetsuit, boardshorts, etc. without them leaking into the rest of the bag (this is also useful for storing dirty clothes). All in all, it’s an invaluable companion on surf missions and non-surf missions alike, and a great idea for a Christmas present.