As with all the Flipside bags, the flap for the main gear compartment is on the part of the bag that sits against your back. Because of that, you have to take the shoulder straps off in order to get at your gear. You can either set it on the ground or use the waist strap to support the entire bag and swing it around to the front of your body. It's a process that takes a little getting used to, and, again, if you're tall, can be a little awkward. Still, it's nice to have the option not to have to set it all the way down.