User Review: Gregory Baltoro 65
Source: bought it used
Price Paid: $139
Wow! After 33 years in the British Army, I wish I had something as comfortable as this to carry 100lbs on my back. With semi-prolaxed discs at 3 and 4 this pack is awesome. The extra weight is more than made up for in comfort and the durability, pockets, and style make this an easy access pack for everything I need for pretty lightweight packpacking. My wife can carry 20-25 lbs and I can carry everything else in this great rucksack and still keep it under 40Lbs.
- Back support and design
- The strap locks take a bit of getting used to and the waist belt pouches are too small to be worth it.
- Also the side pouches are constricted when the main pack is full.
Only a year away from retiring from the British Army and at my final tour attached to the U.S. military in DC for 3 years, my wife and I have taken up trekking and are slowly moving into lightweight packpacking.
I am determined to keep my carrying weight under 40lbs and my wife can manage about 25lbs. We see ourselves out for no more than 5 nights at a time, covering 15 miles per day.; Therefore my pack must be comfortable and easy to load.
From my younger days carrying heavy packs in the Army, I am amazed at what can now be bought commercially. I have tried many packs over the last few months and already had the Gregory Baltoro 65 in my top 3. Imagine my surprise when at REI's used sale, there it was, unused!!! and returned because it was not bigger enough!! selling for $139. It is now mine and has been used today for a 14 mile, 5hr hike.
It is great. It has easy access to all that you need when hiking, maps, water, cooker, rainwear, dry layers, snacks on the belt and then for the night, tent and sleeping mats come out of the main compartment. The material is strong and durable and the zips are sturdy. The frame itself is great with both the pack load, chest straps and waist straps adjustable. It is very comfortable and I really like the shoulder straps design, they fit really well.
On the downside the belt pouches are too small (I am used to a webbing belts with pouches all round. I used the front two for snacks etc). They need to be deeper and longer on this pack. Also the side pouches, are difficult to use when the pmain pack is full. They should have been bigger or with an extension zip, like on many overnight travel bags.
All in all, a great pack that keeps the pressure off my lower back. I have my alcohol stove and now just need cookware, tent and sleeping mats and we will hopefully retire back to UK with the AT behind us!!