Up until recently, I've been using a Camelback Peak Bagger as my long day hike bag as well as what I stuff inside my Gregory Z-pack for overnighters with a day 2 summit ascent. It's done it's job just fine, but takes up a lotta room in the Z-pack.
So, I started looking around for a pack that 1)had improved "stuffability" inside a larger pack and 2)could double as a nice long-day hike pack. I decided on the Deuter Speed Lite 30
I had not heard of this brand until I started this recent inquiry. Since then, I've noticed the Deuter products showing up in some of the wilderness/recreational stores, eg, REI and Wilson's in Bishop. However, it is their Arc Lite line that seems to be coming into those retail shops. The Arc Lite line has a metal frame and mesh back to create that "air conditioning" effect. Frame = weight in my mind, and so I steered away from the Arc Lites.
The Speed Lite 30 weighs 1 lb 14 oz / 850 g, and has a volume of 30 liters (1850 cu in). In comparison, the Peak Bagger weighs 2.4 lb and has a volume of 1587 cu in.
I took it with me on my Split Mtn trip, packing it in the Z-pack then summiting with it, as well as had it out on a couple day hikes. This pack definately met my #1 goal of being more packable in the Z-pack and it's large volume accomodated "extra" gear I took to the summit of Split, eg, helmet, ice ax, crampons, softshell, long sleeve shirt, water filter, etc. Although it's only 300 cu in larger than the Camelback, it seems 3 times it's size, probably because the cargo space is primarily in one large compartment. There are 2 smaller compartments in the lid that do a fine job of organizing some of the smaller items I carry. I especially like that it is a narrower pack therefore I feel like I have more arm and shoulder movement. It doesn't appear to have as much padding on the shoulder straps and back support as the Camelback, but I can't say that I have noticed the difference. It's large volume really comes in handy when that day hike requires more gear than just some snacks and jacket. I'm really liking the lighter weight.
Yesterday, I purchased it's smaller sister, the Speed Lite 20 for those day hikes that don't require a lotta gear.
Share your advice and personal experiences, post a gear review or ask any questions you may have pertaining to outdoor gear and equipment.
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