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Backpacks The Backpacks forum is for the discussion of backpacking packs (including front packs and pack accessories: hipbelt pockets, pack covers,...).

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Old 01-17-2015, 10:59 AM
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ThePurpleCaver ThePurpleCaver is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 2
Newer Women's Packs

Hi all!

I have been researching packs for about a month now and since I am petite I have decided to go with a gender specific bag (5'5"/125). After reading forums and reviews there is not much comparison on the newer versions of the bags that are out for women specifically; that being said I have narrowed it down to: 1) The Deuter ACT lite 60+10 SL and 2) The Osprey Viva 65.

This is my first bag, so a little synopsis of what I do. Overnight hikes or day trips with sleeping gear and caving gear that consists of helmet, harness, up to 300 feet of rope, climbing gear etc. On the other hand, two week trips abroad, one for work and one for pleasure (some gear brought along).

I know this is the size bag that I need just due to the extra gear and having to pack "work clothes" which I wouldn't normally bring on a trekking trip obviously. Would love to hear your opinions!

Deuter ACT lite 60+10 SL
Pros: extra "10L" if needed, custom sizing options, hydration compatible, main compartment divided into 2 if needed, 3lbs 10-12 oz (depending on the website), great suspension
Cons: only one waist pocket, no rain cover, seen negative reviews on zippers?

Osprey Viva 65
Pros: entry to main compartment top and bottom, hydration compatible accessible from outside so no need to unpack bag, 2 waist pockets, stow-n-go for hiking poles, shipping weight 3.8 lbs but could not find actual weight
Cons: no rain cover, 65 total L (compared to Deuter above).

Basically, I am stuck between these two packs that I think equally fit my needs. However, being in FL there are not many opportunities to try these in store. Would you all recommend purchasing both, loading to around 30lbs and testing fit ?

Thank you so much in advance!
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Old 01-18-2015, 01:37 AM
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GGervin GGervin is offline
Practical Backpacking­™ Forums Moderator
Backpack: Gregory Shasta, Deuter ACT Lite 65+10
Sleeping Gear: REI ThermoPod +0 mummy, MH 3D +40 mummy
Shelter: SD Superflash, GoLite Hut 1
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: California
Posts: 436
I'm a guy, and can only comment on the guy's versions of these packs.

I have a Deuter ACT Lite 65+10, and I like it very well. I'd call it a very good backpack, maybe an excellent one, but I'd stop short of raving about it. It's like most lite backpacks. It isn't bombproof, and I'm scared of carrying too much weight in it, both for comfort and failure issues. I'd have to add my preferred load is a little out of the ordinary. Base weight plus a bear can and a view camera (= 20+ lbs). I could see doing base weight plus a bear can in the Deuter, but not the view camera. If you're like most packers, the Deuter will probably suffice, maybe be real good.

On the other hand. my brother has an Osprey (he prefers loads similar to mine). He isn't prone to raving, but if you got him talking about the Osprey, he'd probably qualify as raving about it. He paid more for it (maybe considerably more) than I did for my Deuter, but I don't rave about the Deuter. It's real good, but stops short of rave quality.

It may boil down to money. You won't go wrong with either. If you can afford the Osprey, get it and don't look back. If the Osprey is a real stretch, and the Deuter works in your budget better, get that and try not to look back.
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Old 04-15-2015, 03:49 PM
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wathen wathen is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 2
I have also been looking for sometime for a petite women's pack for my wife. But i'm looking for something in the 30-40 litre range for 2-3 day hikes.

I just saw the brand new Thule Capstone women's pack, and it looks good, somewhat light and adjustable. Has anyone tried this pack?

I probably won't get any pack for her unless I am with her at the store trying them on. I purchased a NorthFace pack for her around Christmas and returned it right away because it wasn't small enough for her torso.

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