User Review: REI Mars 80
Price Paid: $165
I purchased this pack for a 4-day 3-night backpacking trip along Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in early spring. The threat of rain and snow was present in the Upper Peninsula, so I needed a pack which would hold all of my gear (including a 25-year-old The North Face synthetic bag and an original Therm-a-Rest pad) including foul weather gear, tent, clothes, extra clothes, cooking system, and the 10 essentials.
Seeking value in this investment was important to me, as my budget is limited, but I want to invest in long lasting gear.
All that said, I was VERY comfortable with the Mars 80. Not being in prime shape (duh) this pack ensured my comfort during hikes between 6 miles (after 7 hours in a car) and two to eight miles a day on relatively flat trails.
I will continue to update this review as I go winter backpacking, another round at PRNL, and all great areas around America's High Five!