Gregory Jade 33 Backpack Review
The Gregory Jade 33 is a ventilated women’s backpack with an adjustable length frame that has enough volume for lengthy day hikes. It has a women’s specific hip belt and shoulder harness. It weighs 43 oz and has comfort features common to larger packs.
Specs at a Glance
- Volume: 33L
- Weight: 43 oz (rain cover 2.4 oz)
- Gender: Women
- Type: Internal frame
- Ventilation: Ventilated suspension
- Adjustable: Yes
- Exterior pockets: 5+ main
- Torso sizing: XS-S: 14”-17”, S-M: 15”-19”
- Waist sizing: 27”-46”
- Max carry weight: 25-30 lbs.
Backpack Storage and Organization
The Jade 33 is a top-loading backpack with an attached top lid sewn to the pack. There is an additional U-shaped front zipper to allow additional, access to the main compartment. The main compartment easily handles a large amount of stuff, keeping you well supplied through summer and cooler spring and fall hikes. The main compartment also has a hydration sleeve and ports for the hose.
The top lid has a reasonably sized pocket on top with an additional pocket w/ key fob on the underside where the pack cover is stored. You can certainly store the pack cover elsewhere if you prefer to keep other items in there. I like to use it for insect repellent and sunscreen.
The side water bottle pockets are made with a sturdy, stretch mesh. They will each hold a 1-liter Nalgene bottle, but it’s difficult to reach back, pull one out, and return it while wearing the pack. I can do it with 24 oz SmartWater bottles, however, since they have a smaller diameter.
There are two generously sized hip belt pockets which easily hold snacks, a medium-sized cell phone or small camera, a thin pair of gloves or any number of other small items.
There is a stretch pocket on the front of the pack, a pretty standard item on most decent packs, that you can use to store layers and damp items like a water filter.
Backpack Frame and Suspension
The Gregory Jade 33 is an adjustable-length daypack, so you can really dial it to your torso length and get a good fit with it. The adjustment system is a simple rip and stick mechanism that lets you raise or lower the shoulder straps to match your torso length.
The Jade 33 is available in 2 sizes. The XS-S fits torsos 14-17” and the S-M fits torsos 15-19”. While those are wide ranges, I’d still recommend sizing measuring your torso length before purchasing, just to be on the safe side.
This pack has a women’s specific shoulder harness with a sternum strap that has an integrated whistle and hydration clip. The left shoulder strap also has a bungee designed to hold sunglasses. I like this feature quite a bit. I only like to wear sunglasses when I absolutely need them in the bright sun. As soon as I hit the shade, I want to take them off. It nice to have a place to put them without having to stop and take off my pack to store them.
The Jade 33 sports Gregory’s FreeFloat ventilated suspension with a 3D comfort cradle hip belt with dynamic flex panels. What does that all mean? It means that it’s pretty darn comfortable and it moves with you quite well. The Jade 33 has a distinct and dynamic feel that moves with you, like an extension of your body, rather than a rigid backboard.
The hip belt padding is sturdy enough so that you don’t feel things in your hip belt pockets poking you. How well does the ventilation work? For me, there is a significant improvement over a pack with just a ventilated foam cavity. I had been skeptical about if I would notice a difference which I do. Yes, my back is still sweaty, but I don’t feel like I could take off the shirt and wring it out. The hip belt is well padded and covered with a coarse, breathable mesh. The belt webbing is a generous length.
The shoulder straps have the same coarse mesh found on the hip belt and the back panel. I find it a little abrasive on my neck with some shirts, but it’s not a big negative for me.
The Jade 33 is pretty spare when it comes to compression straps and external attachment points, which is the norm for a pack in this volume range. There is one trekking pole holder with elastic cord at the top and a web loop at the bottom to hold the shafts, and a single tier of compression straps on the pack’s sides. The lack of external attachment points is probably the biggest negative on this pack, limiting it to three-season use when you don’t have to carry extra traction for winter hiking and snowshoeing.
Comparable Women’s Daypacks
|Make / Model||Ventilated||Adjustable-length||Price|
|Deuter Futura 28 SL||Y||N||$150|
|Deuter Trail Pro 30 SL||N||N||$155|
|Gregory Jade 33||Y||Y||$170|
|Mystery Ranch Scree 32||N||Y||$189|
|Osprey Sirrus 36||Y||Y||$170|
|Osprey Mira 32 Hydration Pack||Y||Y||$180|
|Osprey Tempest 30||N||Y||$140|
|REI Traverse 35||Y||N||$139|
The Women’s Gregory Jade 33 has proven to be a great daypack and I’ve very happy with it. It’s not the lightest day pack out there, but it’s not the heaviest either and I don’t think shaving a few ounces off a day pack is that important. I’m not carrying that much weight anyway, so comfort is more important to me.
There’s a color for everyone whether you like bright red, more feminine aqua or good old neutral gray. I guess you can tell from the pictures which category I fall into. I appreciate that Gregory offers neutral colors in women’s gear.
There is one other thing I wish Gregory had added. On the upper compression straps, there is a little plastic thing that keeps the extra webbing under control. I really wish they had put this on the shoulder strap webbing as well. I have 11” of extra webbing hanging from the shoulder straps which ends up slapping me in high winds. I’ll probably trim them down to a more reasonable length.
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