User Review: Deuter Aircontact 75+10
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $225 on sale
The Deuter Aircontact 75+10 is extremely comfortable, especially when it comes to ventilation for such a large pack. It has a huge carrying capacity, easily capable of hauling 60+ lbs for multi-week or week long treks. Multiple compression straps let you adjust the pack for anything from expeditions sized loads to weekend getaways. The X-frame stays also do an exceptional job of distributing weight to the hips.
- Bombproof construction that should last a lifetime
- Huge carrying capacity
- Multiple external lash points
- Integrated rain cover
- Easy on-the-go adjustability
- Very comfortable
- Not enough external organization.
- A little on the heavy side at 6 lbs 6 oz
I'll start by saying; 1) this is not a pack for ultralighters since it's a bit large and on the heavy side for that purpose, and 2) I have a Kelty Coyote 4750cu/80L and the one thing I love about it is multiple external pockets that make organization so easy — a feature lacking on the Deuter. Okay, I have the only negatives I could come up with out of the way, so on to the good stuff...
Capacity: This pack is the equivalent of a walk-in closet and will easily hold all your gear. Even better, it will hold all that gear with excellent weight distribution and comfort, making 60+ lbs feel more like 40 lbs.
The lid alone holds my water filter, first aid kit, camera, rain gear, a book and a small pair of field glasses, with room to spare. The sleeping bag compartment easily holds my bag, a 3-man tent (with fly and footprint) and a Big Agnes insulated air mattress, and the main bag compartment holds everything else. And beware - with so many lash points on the outside, you might be tempted to bring along the kitchen sink too!
Construction: I've always liked it when my packs get that slightly used, broken-in look, but the construction of the Deuter is bombproof and shows no wear after a full season-and-a-half of backpacking (nearly every weekend from May through September). I've rubbed against decomposing granite while scrambling, had it roll about 60 ft down a 45% incline before being stopped by a tree, and had it soaked during a creek crossing, and it still looks new! I expect it will last forever.
Comfort: Wow - and I thought my Kelty was comfortable! The Deuter has incredible adjustability thanks to the multiple compression straps, the Variflex hip belt that moves with your hips, the v-shaped channel that pumps air up your back, ample padding and mesh on the back, hip belt and shoulder straps, and the super-easy Variquick adjustment on the harness (I've adjusted it with my bag stuffed to capacity).
Misc: I like the integrated rain cover although some people might not. It detaches from the pocket on the bottom of the bag so you can go with or without it. I'm not a big fan of the map pocket since it's difficult to access with the bag stuffed and the compression straps cinched tight. However, the pocket on the hip belt is big enough for sunblock, lip balm, multi-tool, compass and a trail bar.
All in all, the Deuter Aircontact 75+10 is worth every penny of the suggested retail of $289 but you can find it for closer to $200 if you shop around. This is a super load hauler that surprised the hell out of me with its comfort and quality. Way to go, Deuter!