Jul 4, 2007 at 11:07 am #1223958
nmJul 4, 2007 at 11:53 am #1394376
Ben 2 WorldParticipant
@ben2worldLocale: So Cal
I've only played around with both… but really, given that you have narrowed down your choices to two excellent packs — each with its own legion of fans — I think you've arrived at the final decision point of personal "comfort and feel". I can tell you, for example, that I prefer the more feature-rich Aether — but that may mean little to you.
Given the money you'll be spending and the importance of comfort/fit — if I were you, I would order them both. Hopefully, you can find a place with good prices and free shipping (it's July 4th, right?) — and then your only "risk" is the slight hassle of keeping one and returning the other. To me, it's well worth the trouble to let yourself really load up and play around with both before making your final decision.Jul 4, 2007 at 12:30 pm #1394378
@marti124Locale: Moderator-JohnMuirTrail Yahoo Group
You might want to also consider the luxurylite.com pack (I was given 45 days to try it out, and decided to keep it, and have been doing my workouts with 39 pounds. I did decide to use a back support belt under the belt that comes with it for extra comfort, but I will be hiking for 17 days with it come July 27 and I estimate my hitting the trail weight will be close to 36-37 pounds (base gear weight being about 22-24 pounds). This 1.2 pound external frame pack (you choose the size and number of hookable cylinders to use with it) is rated for 200 pounds (before breaking) and has been used by hikers lugging over 50 pounds of gear. The sixmoondesigns.com Starlite pack is rated for 35 pounds though and I used that pack last year with much affection. I changed to the luxurylite.com pack to easily carry the 900 cubic inch wild-ideas.net bearikade expedition cannister.Jul 4, 2007 at 3:17 pm #1394386
@ericnobleLocale: Colorado Rockies
I have not used an Aether 60 but I have the Aether 75 (5.2 lbs). It's a great pack and carries very well. The Aether 75 accepts an add on pouch that doubles as a day pack, which makes it very flexible. The top lid is also a fanny pack. The compression system on it is great. I once put 65 lbs in it and the pack handled it great but my knees didn't. That experience changed me forever and lead me here to lighten my load. It's a great pack and in perfect shape. If you are interested, it needs a good home. I can certainly vouch for the comfort and quality of Osprey packs.
Another option to consider is the Arctic pack, it's my new big load (<40 lbs) pack. I haven't had a chance to use it yet, however. I'll be using it on a week long outing at the end of the month.Jul 5, 2007 at 8:56 am #1394432
I looked at both and agree it is a very close call and very personal decision based on comfort. I went with the Meridian because I like the panel access, the 8 oz less weight, and I actually like the compression straps and side pockets on the Meridian (the straps going over, rather than through the pocket being the only complaint I have read about the Meridian). Also, for me, I like having the load closer to my back. I realize that is warmer, but the great back pad on the Meridian solves this and it also doubles as a great place to put my feet when sleeping.
That being said, I don't think you can go wrong either way. Pick the one you like best. With two very good packs, it is up to you and the individual features of the pack that you might prefer.Jul 5, 2007 at 2:24 pm #1394470
Both are excellent. Neither are UL. Neither work well for external water bottles, but are fine if you use another method. The Aether mesh pockets are too tight. The Meridian compression straps cross the pockets. The Aether has a heat moldable hip belt that seems to be very comfortable.
Roleigh – I'm sure the LuxuryLite works great, but you sure do look funny!
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