291 forum posts
I just snagged a Millet Odyssee 60+10 backpack from SAC last week. Finally came today. Oddly, I bought it not knowing very much about it at all. For me this is really strange as I typically research and agonize my decisions for a year & a day before pulling the trigger.
Part of the reason I bit the hook on this one is that in many ways, the pack seems to be, almost, identical to the Deuter Air Contact I've been looking at for over a year. Most of the features are sufficiently one and the same that I thought it must be a Deuter clone or knock off. It had a lot of the details that I liked from Deuter and looked well made. A quick google search showed me that this brand I've never heard of was started in France in the 1920's and I figured with SAC I could send it back if I didn't like it. At $89.99 it was hard to pass up.
After the order was placed, more information was hard to come by. I still have no idea if this pack is actually made in France (doubt it) or if it's like Deuter, old world German company now manufactured exclusively in Vietnam. The similarity between it and Deuter would leave me unsurprised to find it's made in the same Vietnamese factory ad the Deuter. One of the few reviews I could find for Millet at all, not the Odyssee, was from a website that seems to carry only top end gear and none of the cheap stuff, so that was encouraging.
Well it came today and my first impression is... I'm impressed. The quality of the materials and workmanship, the design, engineering & details, all seem far better than average. I've never had zippers on anything work this well. One finger, don't have to hold anything with the other hand and the pulls are nice. I of course immediately packed it up with everything I could find, my god it swallows alot, and tried it on. Very comfortable, doesn't restrict my movements at all. I think I'm going to like this pack.
There are some oddities. There are no pockets to hold water bottles on the sides like, well pretty much every other pack out there. It is bladder compatible, but I've never been a big bladder fan. Not a big deal, I'll adapt. It is set up for holding ski's and I guess you can't have the ski loops and water bottle holders. Also, on the hip belt, the right side has a pocket, the left side has a gear loop of some kind, just like you would have on a climbing harness to hang a string of biners or cams off of. Don't know what it's "intended" uses is.?. Also, on the shoulder straps, there are two five or so inch loops of webbing hanging down, one on each side. Just to the side of the sternum. Never seen this on any pack before and have no idea what they are for.
So, anyone know anything about these packs, have any experience with them?