This mountain-oriented top-loader rode securely and shrugged off abuse during canyon scrambles and summit climbs. Credit tough 420-denier Oxford fabric and rubberized reinforcements on the front crampon/shovel pocket. The stability comes from a stay-reinforced framesheet, stiffened hipbelt, and well-padded shoulder harness that carried 45 pounds for a tester on Mt. Whitney’s Mountaineer’s Route.
The Peuterey has welcome features like D-rings and wrist straps on the shoulder harness, a smart nape-of-the-neck hose port that passes fat bite valves, zipper access to the main packbag, and a hipbelt pocket. You also get ski and tool attachments with reinforced slots and retractable, stretchy ice-axe loops. Warning: Durability equals weight. It’s a guide’s dream pack, but overbuilt for occasional users. $200; 3,050 cu. in.; 4 lbs. 6 oz. Milletusa.com