User Review: REI Cruise UL 60
Design: Top loading internal
Size: 3,300 cu. in.
Number of Pockets: 6 counting the "shovel" pocket and net pockets
Max. Load Carried: 35 lbs.
Height of Owner: 5' 10"
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $129
The REI Cruise UL 60 is a very well designed lightweight backpack (but not really ULTRA Light). That's because it has an internal frame of two oval aluminum rods which enable it to carry up to 40 pounds. With the side pockets and their straps (explained below) my pack weighs 3 lb. 7 oz.
This pack is the second version of the UL60 and its fabric upgrade from light ripstop Silnylon to Dyneema reinforced ripstop was needed. REI thankfully did it with no added weight. Both versions have the easily adjustable Velcro-on shoulder harness, great for fine tuning the comfort.
My max weight carried for a 6-day Grand Canyon trip was 35 lbs. with 3 1/2 qts. of water. BUT, even with a men's size Large, I had to add REI's "aftermarket" side pockets to get enough space and easy access to toilet, 1st aid and water treatment gear.
I do wish REI would have made the lid so it could be taken off and used as a fanny pack for side trips. And they also need to make the two hip belt pockets large enough to hold more than just coin batteries.
I still have this pack but had to get my shoemaker to sew the belt back on where the lumbar pad is. He did a great and nearly invisible job.
Also I noticed the vertical tubular aluminum stays were wearing a groove where the top of the waist belt rubs against them. My fix was to wrap a strip of Gorilla duct tape around each one. So far so good.
Yeah, I could have taken it back to REI for a refund due to those problems but I really like this pack.