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EasternSlopes.com – Featuring Momentum Series – March 24, 2015

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EasternSlopes.com – Featuring Momentum Series – March 24, 2015

March 24, 2015
Osprey-Momentum-34-300x276

When most of us hear the phrase “bicycle commuting,” one of two images pops into our minds: One is of a hipster in skinny jeans, riding a fixie with flat bars, a basket hanging off them, stopping at a favorite coffee shop to have the barista make them a latte. The other is of driving through a howling snowstorm, seeing flashing lights, and passing something that vaguely resembles a bear with a helmet on, doggedly slogging along to a job that’s probably closed due to the storm…

Here’s our takeaway on this one: Messenger bags are for messengers. Think about it; they go from place to place, sometimes only a block or two, constantly pulling things out and putting them back in. A side-slung bag makes a lot of sense. But, if you’re carrying some weight long distance, having it yanking on your neck from one side is going to be bloody uncomfortable. We had our resident cubicle rat use an Osprey Momentum 34 (now replaced by the Momentum 30), and after a couple of months, he simply got rid of his briefcase and used it for everything. For organizing files, pens, calculators, business cards, and the what-have-you of the business world, a good bike-specific backpack beats a pannier easily…

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EasternSlopes.com – Featuring Sirrus 36 – November 26, 2012

November 26, 2012

A reader contacted us with what is likely a common dilemma; she was downsizing, moving to a condo, and was going to have very little space to store all of her outdoor gear. Like many of us, she had a collection of packs that she’d accumulated over the years…bulky and difficult to store in any logical way. She wanted advice on how best to upgrade and downsize at the same time. Hmmm. Just the kind of challenge that we like! (…)

After more searching, we settled on the Osprey Sirrus 36. We’re unabashed fans of Osprey for packs that handle ridiculous amounts of abuse. Time after time, the Argon 110 proves to be our packhorse of choice when we need to carry loads that humans shouldn’t be able to handle. Given that we’re trying to make these packs fill gaps they really aren’t designed for, that’s a great characteristic. And, the sizing is just about right; small enough to be a heavy-duty daypack, but large enough that we should be able to get an overnight out of it. Finally, it comes in “Amethyst”; we said we wanted colorful, and we got it!

The Osprey Sirrus 36 was a great companion for winter picnics, allowing room for necessities AND luxuries.

With both packs in house, time to get them out in the field. A day-after-Christmas hike to purge some of the excess calories was a great first test for the Osprey Sirrus; it easily stowed extra clothes to stay warm when we stopped, a Jetboil and some (low calorie) cocoa, and random lunch food. And, thanks to well-designed pockets, everything was easily found when we wanted it.

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EasternSlopes.com – Featuring Raptor 14 Hydration Pack – August 19, 2010

August 26, 2010

A quick switch of clothing and equipment, and the day turned from mountain biking to mountain hiking, with the bonus of a picnic at the summit becoming part of the new plan. We’d picked up some local cheese and paté and put them in our cooler for an evening appetizer; instead, they were pressed into service as a decadent lunch, along with some of our usual traveling bag of food. The Osprey Raptor 14 hydration pack that I’d been trying out is larger than the typical MTB pack, and was able to handle our lunch easily. That’s actually pretty impressive for an MTB pack; our lunches aren’t exactly starvation rations! So, in short order we were headed up the trail. And, I do mean up.

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