Brand: Black Diamond Gear Reviews
Model: Distance 15
Our take We reached for the sub-1-pound Distance whenever done-in-a-day summits were on the menu. Even though it’s light, the packbag’s PU-coated, 210-denier nylon is threaded with polyethylene, so we never worried about scraping it during scrambles. Tool attachment points are dialed, too: “The nifty cord attachment system let me carry two axes on the outside, and I stashed my trekking poles in the hidden vertical sleeves on the sides,” a tester said after climbing 10,280-foot Tenaya Peak in Yosemite.
The details The Distance’s vest-like harness wraps around the ribs for a secure carry, even without a hipbelt. But don’t overload this pack: It doesn’t have a backpanel, and the mesh shoulder straps can’t handle more than 15 pounds. Two chest pockets keep a headlamp, glasses, and snacks at the ready.
Trail cred “Even without a hipbelt, the Distance’s low profile kept the load from shifting while I was traversing narrow ledges in Yosemite,” our tester says.