Gear review: Osprey Daylite 13l pack

Recommended price: £45 (£50 for print colour shown)
Weight: 500g (as reviewed)

A surprisingly spacious, comfortable, reliable pack for summer days when no winter kit is required.

Osprey have updated their daylite pack with some added features, new colour options and a kids version. I’ve been using this one on a variety of day walks and found the single main compartment can easily hold a lighterweight set of waterproofs, first aid kit, insulated top, and food. There’s a sleeve at the back of this section that can take a tablet or small laptop and an externally accessed pouch for up to a 2l hydration bladder with a neat clip strap to keep the bladder in place. At the front there’s a zippered pocket perfect for sunglasses, snacks etc but not big enough to take an OS map – there are two mesh pouches within the pocket, useful for storing phone/compass and there’s also a clip to keep keys safe. The zips are robust with plastic pull loops large enough to use with gloves. The main compartment can be made smaller using the two compression straps on either side.

On the outside there are two mesh side pockets which can take a litre bottle each although accessing them while wearing is a little awkward. There are no fixing loops for poles or ice axe although foldable poles can be stowed in the side pockets and held in place with the compression straps.

This is a unisex pack but the shoulder straps are fairly adjustable and the back long for a pack of this capacity so whilst I’ve found it very comfortable at 5’2″, Paul at 6′ has also worn it without any issues. Smaller frames will appreciate the padded link between the two shoulder straps at the top of the back which stops those straps slipping down but wider built folk might find this a bit restricting. The shoulder straps are mesh covered foam at the top and double layer fabric lower down. There is also a sternum strap, adjustable on a slider, that comes with its own built in whistle. The removable hip belt is made of thin webbing and is fine for the normal capacity of this pack but on longer hikes with a heavier load, a bit of cushioning would be good.

The back is semi-rigid foam with ventilation holes and mesh covering – it has kept is shape well over time. I always get a sweaty back heading uphill but I haven’t found this pack overly hot. The construction is very good and the fabric very abrasion resistant. For more capacity, the Daylite Plus which has a stretchy front pouch is an option at an RRP of £50.

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