Our take Testers called this pack “the favorite sweater” of the group—they were happy to leave the Eiger on all day. The S-shaped shoulder straps are more curved than normal, similar to those on women’s-specific packs, but testers of both genders reported that load distribution was perfect, with no hot spots or pinching under 30-pound loads. Also good for comfort: Customize fit by shaping the single center aluminum stay to cradle your spine. “Novice hikers might be nervous about bending it, but the custom fit is worth the tinkering,” one tester says. (Ask a sales clerk to help.)
The details Chevron-shaped air channels cut down on the sweaty-back syndrome typical of close-fitting packs. Shock-cord tool attachments adjust to hold trekking poles and ice axes.
Trail creD “The hipbelt’s sharply- angled stabilizer straps are particularly effective; they sucked the load into my lumbar,” a tester noted after climbing Colorado’s 14,259-foot Longs Peak.