Brand: Backcountry Access
Model: Float 27 Speed
Our take The “Old Faithful” of avy packs gets an upgrade this year, making it both lighter and roomier. The biggest changes come in its internal system: a more efficient ejector and 300 more psi in the cylinder, both of which are smaller than in previous iterations. The full canister setup now fits inside the lunchbox-size airbag compartment, increasing space in the packbag for layers, tools, and water. (Note: The new system is also available in a 17-liter pack.) The pack has a clamshell design with a single opening (an internal divider separates your avy tools), and allows for diagonal ski carry.
Trail cred “I’ve been using the Float 32 for years, and I can fit just about the same amount of gear into the new Float 27 Speed,” a Colorado tester says. “It’s a bit small for mountaineering, but I’m able to carry water, an extra layer, some snacks, a shovel, and a probe if I strap my helmet to the outside clips.”
$630 (pack), $200 (cylinder); 5 lbs. 11 oz. (with full cylinder);