Jun 18, 2009 at 11:36 pm #1237198
Any thoughts or opinions on this particular back? I like the fact that its light, has a decent framing system, and good ventilation even though I am a little concerned about the overall quality of the materials. I would hate for the bottom of the bag to tear or rip due to the thin materials that are used.Jun 19, 2009 at 11:06 am #1509329
There's a review thread for the Exos here:
I bought the Exos 46. I tried a lot of packs with a 30 lbs load in mind and this was by far the most comfortable one. I'm also hoping that it'll be more durable than it looks.Jun 19, 2009 at 11:37 am #1509334
Jim MacDiarmidBPL Member
Last summer, I used a North Face Skareb backpack with a body made out of 70D nylon just like the Exos. At the time, I didn't understand that this wasn't the same as my heavy cordura EMS backpack that weighed 7 lbs and could probably be dropped from an airplane and come out unscathed. So I treated it pretty roughly. 5 trips in the Sierras and 2 snow camping trips of being dropped, sat on, pushed through deadfall and brush, repeatedly coming into contact with abrasive granite. I looked it over in the spring and all I could find was one 1/4" tear that probably came from something stowed improperly inside the pack.
Not that I'd recommend treating an Exos the way I treated my Skareb, but don't get scared off by the lighter fabrics. Just exercise some care. Abrasion is probably your biggest concern with the lighter fabrics. The ripstops will keep tears under control until the can be patched with some seam grip or tape. Anyways, chicks dig scars.
The bottom of the Exos is likely the part made with the 210D. My Gorilla pack body is made of this, and I have no real concerns as to it's durability so long as I'm not going out of my way to be rough with it.Jun 19, 2009 at 12:44 pm #1509344
David DrakeBPL Member
@daviddrakeLocale: North Idaho
Some thoughts on the Exos:
I bought a 58 a few weeks ago. The Atmos 50 had been on my list for this season as the last item of my 3 heavies to be replaced, trying to go lighter. I almost bought an Atmos on closeout over the winter and am glad I waited.
I tried the Exos 46 and really wanted to be able to use it (lighter and cheaper than the 58), but my gear needs to work for a variety of conditions, as I don't have the cash to have multiple sets. The 46 would be tight for weeklong spring or fall trips in the Cascades or Seven Devils, so I had my retailer order a 58.
Man, the thing looked big when I got it. Plenty of room for everything, even in what I think of as "comfort" mode (base weight ~14.5 #, with BA Seedhouse SL2 carried solo, 3/4 Thermarest Prolite 3, WM Ultralight, etc). Still, the pack seems to cinch down to a nice compact bundle. For an summer overnight back east it might seem too big, but I usually try to get in a few good midweek multiday trips, rather than a bunch of weekenders, and love hiking around Mt. Rainier, where 3 (or 4) season weather can be expected even in high summer.
As far as durability goes, I have to keep telling myself the pack is "only" 2 pounds and change, because it almost seems overbuilt, and has a lot of bells and whistles (okay, no bells, but there is a whistle). While certainly not as burly as the beat-to-hell 19 year old Mountainsmith it replaced, or my K2 Shortbed that's been gathering dust for years now, the fabrics seems plenty tough where they need to be. I try not to be too heavy-handed with my gear these days–another reason I went with 58 rather than the 46 is so I wouldn't be stressing fabric, seems and buckles when I need to carry more. I don't do much bushwacking, but if I knew I'd be going off-trail, it seems like a packcover would be pretty cheap and light insurance against snags and scrapes.
Of course, this is all academic, as I haven't actually had the pack out yet (but soon). As the saying goes: In theory, there's no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there usually is.
Looking forward to reading trip reports from other Exos owners, and posting my own.
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