User Review: Osprey Aether 85
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: £160
A tough bag packed with clever features for both summer and winter use.
- Everything has been thought of when it comes to stowage of tricky items including ice axes, trekking poles and waterproofs.
- My particular model has a removable chest strap that removed itself at a really inconvenient moment. This looks to have been addressed on the latest model.
- Also, lack of a rain cover which is available on European models. Does it not rain anywhere else?
- Fairly pricey compared to like for like bags.
This is a great bag! I have used the Osprey Aether on several big trips to various areas of Great Britain in all weathers and all seasons including full winter conditions on the Cairngorm plateau. I tried several bags in the store and this proved to be the best fit.
It was easy to adjust once on my back. I am able to fit everything I need in the bag for me and my wife (she is on the petit side) and organize items effectively inside. The ability to section off the bottom of the bag or use the whole bag as one single compartment is a useful feature as is the front zip which allows alternative access to the bag other than the top.
There are several compression straps that work well to stabilize items stored in the bag. Other adjustable straps on the shoulders and hips are easy to use. Other than the chest strap clasp losing itself at a critical moment on a mountain leader course the bag performs well.
The after sales service is brilliant. I contacted Osprey UK about the problem with the chest strap and it was replaced straight away. Construction quality is high throughout and everything has been thought of. There are many ingenious ways of storing items such as trekking poles, ice axes and waterproofs. This is a bag that has the potential to last me many years to come.
I like the low key colour which blends in well on British hills. I have not used the removable lid which acts as a small bag. This seems to be unnecessary and simply adds weight and clutter to the bag. I would have preferred a second lid pocket and a rain cover instead.
Over all I would recommend this bag for its quality of construction and clever features which add up to make time out on the hill easier and more enjoyable. Check which model you are purchasing as several stores still have old stock (which lacks the upgraded chest strap and rain cover if it is a European model) sold at the full price.