Gear Review: Marmot Eiger 40 XT Daypack

This workhorse pack has been redesigned with an easy-access opening.

Tough and Versatile

Over the years, the Eiger has earned a reputation among our testers as a workhorse, surviving redrock scrapes and alpine slogs alike. This year’s upgraded model is still tough as nails, but has a redesigned opening that improves access.

In lieu of a spindrift collar and lid, a U-shaped top zipper opens wide for easy stuffing and grabbing. It became a go-to pack for two testers—a hiking guide and a climber—because of its dump-it-all-in utility and a well-armored backpanel that kept bulky items off of their spines. A hipbelt pocket fits two energy bars, and a stiff gear loop on the right hip lets climbers clip carabiners one-handed.

A full-length front pocket, designed for crampons, worked equally well for river shoes on an Escalante trek. Smart: The canted bottle pockets, which sit underneath shorter wand slots, let you haul twin bottles and still carry tent poles. $129; 2,450 cu. in.; 3 lbs. 1 oz.