User Review: Marmot Diva 45
Design: top loading
Size: aprox 2500 (size small women)
Number of Pockets: 2 zip, 2 side water holders on main bag
Max. Load Carried: 25lbs (with water)
Height of Owner: 5'5"
Price Paid: $150
I live in Hawaii and we have very limited gear shops, so we are left to reading reviews and specs hoping that we can believe everything we read. I did a bit of research,thought this pack would "be the one". I like that it does not have a lot of bells and whistles, is top loading and seemed to have padding in all the right areas.
When the box arrived, I got all my gear (tent, sleeping bag, general stuff) and filled my bag to about 20 lbs. I was sad b/c I could not seem to adjust the bag. It felt like the top portion (from the mid shoulder area) was leaning back way too far. I re-adjusted my load, straps and attitude, and tried again. Some improvement.
I have another go-to pack but was determined to make this one work. I decided to try it out on a 4 day trip to Kalalau on Kauai. It held everything I needed with room for more.
I started off OK, but after only 3 miles (out of 11, one way) the bag was digging in to my shoulders like you would not believe! I took my shirt, borrowed another from my daughter and wadded the shirts under each shoulder. This helped greatly, but the damage was done, my shoulders were already bleeding! I wanted to fling my bag into the Pacific Ocean from the next cliff!!!!
Finally at camp, I took a hard look at the bag. I noticed that it had velcro on the hip belt that allowed for adjustment up the back of the pack (I re-read pack description when I got home, did not find this feature listed anywhere). I was so relieved, hoping for some major improvement. I tried, re-adjusted, and got better results. I did have a lighter load going back, and with my new found pack (and attitude) adjustments, I made friends with this pack.
The bag has ROOM, it packs well. Again, I really like that it is basic, just 2 pockets on the back. The lid (which is removable) has 3 pockets. The hip belt is padded deluxe, with 2 zipper pockets. I only wish the shoulders were a bit more padded. (you can always use your extra shirts for padding!)