Backcountry Access, Inc. Squall

For the price, the Lafuma Manang 65+20 packs a hard punch with superb padding and durability.
Price $56.50

Specs

Frame Type frameless rucksack
Load Type hybrid
Fixed Capacity (cubic inches) 1647
Sizes Available 1

 

Smallest Size (Torso Length/Inches) 17
Weight 1 lbs, 14 oz

Killer Deal

Get a lot of pack for a little money with the Manang. "I hauled more than 40 pounds on a 35-mile trip through the Wind River Range," said one tester, "and this top-loader performed way above its price range." How? The Manang's well-padded suspension includes shoulder straps with extra-cushy gel inserts, and the frame is plenty stiff for big loads, thanks to two aluminum stays and a rigid U-shaped tube.

The packbag is easy to load and organize, with a cavernous main compartment that has a vertical access zipper, lid and hipbelt pockets, and plenty of lashing options. Even more impressive: The mix of 840- and 420-denier fabric is bushwhack-durable, yet the pack is reasonably lightweight for the capacity. The catch? No sleeping-bag compartment, and the ladder-style, adjustable harness is not as stable as the best in this category. $180; 5,190 cu. in.; 5 lbs. 2 oz. Lafumausa.com

The Squall is our sleek mainstream pack without hydration. It does have a pass-through hole to accommodate hydration tubes. This pack includes interal pockets for shovel/probe. There is a convenient back panel access door. Has load-lifters. Diagonal and A-frame ski mount and vertical snowboard carry system. 3 colors: saffron yellow, steel blue, kiwi green