This cute-but-tough bag was designed with women in mind, so it fits well and doesn’t slip off the shoulder. If you need a laptop bag for casual use and want something a little different than anything else out there, this might be right for you and the price is reasonable, too.
On full-day or trans-alpine hikes, it’s the details that really matter. This pack delights with its attention to small features: a helmet loop, a rain cover that zips out from a hidden hatch on the bottom, a drinking valve that attaches to a magnet on the sternum strap, and “stow on the go” loops where you can jam trekking poles without skipping a beat. Women’s Adventure testers raved about the drinking valve (which pivots 180 degrees), and the wire-suspension system that keeps the packs weight away from the sweaty small of the back.
During a spring hike, one tester filled the accompanying 3-liter bladder, stuffed the main compartment with a jacket and gloves, and still had room for lunch. A top-side sunglass or electronics pocket and an organizer in the front pocket kept small items easy to find—and access—and the side pockets had enough elastic in the top edge to prevent a GPS or other small item from falling out. Hip pockets are also large enough to fit small electronics.
To support the launch of their Spring/Summer 2011 commute packs and recently launched Hydraulics collection, Osprey has added eight new independent bike rep agencies in addition to the three cross-over Outdoor agencies to service the IBD channel, according to a press release.
“We’re honored to be adding this level of expertise to our sales team,” said bike sales manager Patrick Piller. “Finding Reps that understand Osprey and have established relationships with respected dealers is important to us. I’m confident that retailers in this market will appreciate Osprey’s commitment to providing them with dedicated business partners to support them in the sales of Osprey Packs and hydration systems.”
The Kestrel 68 is classified as a multi-day backpack, ideal for carrying 40 to 60 pounds on long weekends or week-long trips far from civilization. The 68 in the name refers to the 68 liters of gear it can haul (M/L size) and it does it intelligently. One gripe I’ve had about packs in the past is the lack of large outside pockets for quick access to key items. The Kestrel 68 has two long slash pockets along either side, as well as a stretchy mesh back panel, the latter of which is perfect for a holding pair of sandals to wear around camp and a rain shell. In addition, the Kestrel also has two stretchy side pockets that are sized right for liter water bottles. Even the hip belt has two small pockets, which allow your energy bars and GPS to be close at hand. The floating top has no less than three zippered compartments in different sizes. Multiple bungees and compression straps make for easy lashing of loose items such as tent poles or a camera tripod. There is a smartly-placed pair of loops made specifically for stowing trekking poles on the fly. Brilliant.