Stable and Feature-Rich
Testers loved this featherweight top-loader for heavily laden dayhikes and lightweight overnights. "Surprising usable space," wrote one. "It holds more than the capacity numbers would suggest, and the flat-and-wide packbag keeps weight close to your back." Effective hipbelt load transfer manages a whopping 35 pounds, and female testers praised the supportive and comfortable shoulder harness of the 30LD women's version.
Despite its deceptively simple design, the Elevation has a pull-out raincover, a hipbelt pocket, zip access to the main packbag, plenty of interior pocketing on the lid, and even long wrist loops on the shoulder straps. The latter is a smart feature and a fave among Euro hikers; pulling the loops redistributes pressure on the shoulders, easing aches at the end of long days. Good compression lets you cinch it down for short hikes. Bummer: It could use more back ventilation for the hottest temps. $135; 1,830 cu. in.; 2 lbs. 9 oz. Milletusa.com
Molded EXOLITE back panel + Dual-density Airmesh shoulder harness + Airmesh waist belt with three-point
adjustment + Three-dimensional zip pocket and webbing tool loop on waist belt + Large main compartment
with organizer + Zippered front stash pocket + Padded universal laptop/hydration sleeve
(fits most 15" laptops) + Stretch woven water-bottle pockets + Zippered rain cover pocket with rain cover
included + Reflective hits