now, i spent about a month researching whether i wanted a 256 or 257 and trying to figure out where to get the bag from. i settled on the 257 because too big is better than too small. here is some info for you to figure out what size you need
on a school day, i carry:
-13" MBP w/ neoprene sleeve
-1 or 2 textbooks (i'm not a surgeon... just average textbook size)
-leather zippered portfolio (approx 15"x11")
-sunglasses case (it's pretty bulky)
-1 litre metal water bottle
-random small assorted items (small stapler, pens, mini notebook, corkscrew, etc)
as it is, it's pretty packed, but everything fits comfortably. there is definitely no room for any other items unless they're tiny.
i'm happy with this size, and the brown colour is fairly unique. i regularly see filsons while i'm out and about, and the colour breakdown is around 75% tan, 20% green, 5% brown
i'm located in vancouver, canada and used the website solomon outfitters to place my order. it cost $265 (shipping included) and then i had to pay an additional $10 at the post office for duty. there's one shop in town that i know of who carries most of the filson line of bags (umeboshi) but i didn't find that out until later. mr lee's general store also sells filson but appear to get extremely limited stock very intermittently. i think they both sell the 257 for $280 + tax, so i saved a bit of money using solomon. i think it took about 2 weeks to show up.