User Review: JanSport Rainier
Design: Front Loading External Frame
Number of Pockets: 4-Rear main pocket has smaller organizer pockets within it.
Max. Load Carried: 80 pounds
Height of Owner: 5 foot 6 inches
Price Paid: $99
Reviews of this pack vary the widest I have ever seen. This pack is no longer made but was around for years from Jansport. Either the reviewers seem to love it or hate it. If you are new to backpacking and reading this, then you need to try on internal and external frame packs before buying. They are apples and oranges as far as fit so don't even compare the fit of an internal to the fit of an external. Both kinds have their pros and cons and each has its place..
I own 7 packs of both internal and external and this Jansport Rainier was my second pack to own. For an entry level or intermediate backpacker, this is a great pack. I have been in a downpour of rain with 70 plus pounds of gear carrying it with no pack cover and it held up well with very little leaks...something it was not even designed to do without a rain cover.
It fits well once you properly adjust the back brace bar and straps. If you do not fit it to your back by adusting the back horizontal bar to your back, then yes, it will be a painfull wearing pack. It has tons of room and is ventilated well. It will also carry a ton of stuff attached to the frame, the beauty of external frame packs over internal. The Rainier is a front loading pack and it is as easy as they come to pack because of that....but it is also its downfall and this is my only major quirk against this pack! The front zippers that open the massive front panel on the back of the Rainier pack are just about TOO easy to open. I cannot tell you the number of times I have had this pack stood upright against a tree (with the zipper slightly pulled down after accessing stuff) and the zipper on the front compartment slides completely down from the weight in the pack and it literally DUMPS my entire contents of the pack out on the ground! Geeze that is so aggrevating...I lost an expensive small flashlight on one trip because of this....so always zip it completely up when "parked" at camp or on the trail.
Other than that quirk, this is a good pack. Straps allow good fit to your back for an external type pack and again, a horizontal bar can be slide to complete the proper fit. The fact that Jansport carried it for years tells you something. It was a popular pack! The current Carsen model is the newest Jansport pack that takes after the Rainier. If you find a good deal (Going price was around $100 while it was made) on this pack, then I don't think you will be disappointed.