Get a lot of pack for a little money with the Manang. "I hauled more than 40 pounds on a 35-mile trip through the Wind River Range," said one tester, "and this top-loader performed way above its price range." How? The Manang's well-padded suspension includes shoulder straps with extra-cushy gel inserts, and the frame is plenty stiff for big loads, thanks to two aluminum stays and a rigid U-shaped tube.
The packbag is easy to load and organize, with a cavernous main compartment that has a vertical access zipper, lid and hipbelt pockets, and plenty of lashing options. Even more impressive: The mix of 840- and 420-denier fabric is bushwhack-durable, yet the pack is reasonably lightweight for the capacity. The catch? No sleeping-bag compartment, and the ladder-style, adjustable harness is not as stable as the best in this category. $180; 5,190 cu. in.; 5 lbs. 2 oz. Lafumausa.com
This expedition sized AC² pack is built for the long haul through pristine valleys and across continental divides. Engineered for heavy loads, the Naos 85 is fortified with a larger double-ring Load Transfer Disc, an adjustable two-point side stabilizer, and a broader radially formed hipbelt for increased comfort. Bonded to the Monoframe is our GridLock shoulder strap adjustment system, which allows fast fine-tuning to ensure the optimal fit and ultimate comfort.
Fully seam sealed
Hydration bladder pocket
Laminated map pocket
Laminated molded AC² Fusion Points
Load Transfer Disc
Pigment dyed WaterTight Zippers
Radially formed Binary hipbelt
Radially-formed shoulder straps
Removable WaterTight top lid
Side access kangaroo pocket
Six external compression straps
Gridlock adjustable shoulder strap suspension system