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Backpack Reviews

Hands-on, in-depth backpack reviews by an experienced backpacker and wilderness guide.

Exped Lightning 60 Backpack Review

The Exped Lightning 60 can haul a lot of gear

The Exped Lightning 60 Backpack is a four season multi-sport backpack that’s equally at home on the long trail, hauling climbing gear to the local crag, or pulling a pulk in the backcountry. Featuring an adjustable torso, full body compression, and numerous external attachment points, the 41 ounce ( 2 …

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Osprey Packs Volt 75 Backpack Review

Osprey Packs Volt 75 Sleeping Bag Compartment

The Osprey Packs Volt 75 Backpack is a large multi-day backpack that features a highly adjustable torso and hip belt system. Also available in a smaller 60 liter version, the Volt 75 provides the standard features found on most Osprey Packs including a stretchy kangaroo pocket and top lid. Weighing …

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Boreas Gear Buttermilks 55 Backpack

Boreas Gear Buttermilk 55 Backpack

Overview The Boreas Gear Buttermilks 55 is a lightweight backpack suitable for weekend or multi-day backpacking trips. Although it’s a bit on the heavy side at 3 pounds 1 ounces, the Buttermilks combines the simplicity of a minimalist ultralight-style backpack with the load carrying capabilities of a more conventional frame …

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Klymit Motion 60 Backpack Review

Backpacking with the Klymit Motion 60 Backpack

The Klymit Motion 60 is a multi-day backpack that uses a removable inflatable pad to augment its frame providing increased comfort and support. A 60 liter alpine-style pack with a top lid and four tiers of side compression, the Motion 60 can haul a serious amount of gear, but also …

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Osprey Variant 52 Backpack Review

The Osprey Variant 52 a great winter backpack for overnights and ice climbing and one of the best winter backpacks you can buy off-the-shelf from a mainstream gear manufacturer. It’s lightweight, roomy, exceptionally comfortable and easily reconfigured for many usage scenarios. I think Osprey has hit a home run with this one …

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Boreas Lost Coast 60 Backpack Review

The Boreas Gear Lost Coast 60 Backpack is an internal-frame backpack suitable for multi-day backpacking trips and adventure travel. With a lively color pallette, the Lost Coast is a very comfortable, stylish, and streamlined technical backpack that will appeal to hikers who want one pack for backcountry adventure and more urban endeavors. While …

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Hyperlite Mountain Gear 2400 Southwest Backpack Wins Section Hiker Gear of the Year Award

The Hyperlite Mountain Gear 2400 Southwest Pack has solid external pockets for greater durability in tough backcountry conditions.

Every year, I like to recognize the piece of gear that has the biggest impact on my hiking and backpacking experience by giving it the Section Hiker Gear of the Year Award. This year’s winner is the Hyperlite Mountain Gear 2400 Southwest Backpack, which has withstood the rigors of backpacking, peakbagging, …

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Osprey Mutant 38 Backpack Review

Osprey Packs Mutant 38 Backpack

Designed for climbing and winter peakbagging, the Osprey Mutant 38 Backpack only weighs 2 pounds 15 ounces (size medium), and has a clean streamlined design optimized for rock and ice climbing that won’t slow you down over rough scrambling or more technical routes. Key Features Dual ice axe/tool attachments (top …

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Mountainsmith Apex 80 Backpack Review

Mountainsmith Apex 80 Expedition Size Backpack

The Mountainsmith Apex 80 Backpack is a high volume, expedition style appropriate for long backpacking trips where you need to carry extra food or technical gear. With an adjustable length torso, the Apex 80 is loaded with all of the features you’d expect on a high volume top-loading pack, but it is …

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