Our take Alpinists want two things in a pack: high durability and low weight. Unfortunately, they usually have to choose one or the other. Not so with the Whiteout, which uses a barely-there, 150-denier polyester fabric reinforced with Dyneema thread to make the pack ultralight and nearly indestructible. “The Whiteout held up to the abrasion of the chimney on Snowpatch Spire in the Bugaboos, British Columbia, which is more than I can say about my pants,” one tester says. Caveat: The Whiteout is expensive for its size.
The details This pack is waterproof—rare in this weight class—with taped seams, a roll-top, and TPU lamination on the interior (it’s not submersible, though). It has two ice axe loops, plus a rope strap on top. Three small loops on each side of the pack and a daisy chain on the front allow for versatile lashing. A foam backpanel (it also protects you from sharp gear) and dense foam shoulder straps are comfortable under loads up to 25 pounds.
Trail cred “On a 25-mile trek to summit Mt. Olympus in Olympic National Park, I endured almost constant rain and snow, but not a single drop of precip got through the Whiteout,” one tester says.