User Review: Osprey Kestrel 28
Design: Top loading rucksack
Size: 28 liters
Number of Pockets: 3
Max. Load Carried: 25 lbs
Height of Owner: 6'3"
I always liked top loading packs. The 25 liter range is difficult to get a good supportive yet light pack. I tried the Kestrel 28 as it is the ideal size for many of my long day hikes. I typically carry 20-25 lbs with me. The 28 is a nice pack with nice features. There is however one serious drawback to this pack -- it has no stay or wire system to give the back panel a little rigidity.
I have used the Kestrel 32 and like that pack but wanted something a little smaller so I tried the 28. The 32 has a wire system in the pack panel to give it rigidity and load transfer. The 28 does not. I like to carry as much weight as possible on my hips.
I loaded the pack with my typically carry and went off on a day peak climb. While the pack initially seemed comfortable the lack of any framing system really took its toll on me. The following day my back was very sore. If Osprey reads this, please develop some sort of wire or stay system for this pack like you have on the 32.
An overall nice pack with nice features but it needs some rigidity to transfer weight. Therefore, I can only give this one a 3.