Monday, February 6, 2012

Gear in Review - Backpack

Osprey Exos 58

Size: 58 liters
Weight: 2 lbs 8 oz

Loaded Osprey Exos 58

The Story
I have had this pack for over a year. I purchased it from REI after trying several on and doing research online. I had every intentions of this being the pack for the Appalachian Trail. I have a Kealty Redwing, which I love, but it is too small of a pack. I would stuff things into it for a weekend trip and almost be short of space. I knew I would not be able to fit all my gear and then add 7 days worth of food on top of everything. The Redwing is very comfortable, very durable pack, however it is heavy as a result.
The Osprey is very light, and still comfortable. The frame design is minimalist, the pads not solid, instead full of holes to allow air flow and reduce weight. The two mesh pockets on the belt are also very beneficial to hold a camera and a few bars for lunch.

I have used this pack on several weekend hikes, with never being in any discomfort. The size is great, and the pocket on the back is large and stretch to toss in a bladder of wine or a shed layer of clothing.

On one of the first times I used the pack I hooked my finger into one of the rope and plastic zipper pulls and tugged on it to get it closed. It immediately broke. So as a word, be gentle with the pulls, and grasp them, don't tug them. Other than that the durability is not questioned. This is the pack for my back while hiking the AT!

The Redwing - a good, but small pack
I have tested out all my gear, plus 8 days of food and 2 liters of water. The pack is comfortable and fits snuggly on my back. The weight is not bad at all. The Packa fits perfectly over the packs, and is easily accessible to convert into poncho too. I have nothing hanging off the pack and I have room to stuff things in the outside pocket too. All in all I am very satisfied with how the pack fits, weight distribution, and room.