BlackWolf Maikoh 70
Very comfortable pack with plenty of pockets to keep your goods nicely stowed. Ideal for a weekender or multiday hike
- Affordable for those on a budget
- Lightweight under 2kg
- Plenty of external pockets means no need for excess carabiners
- Internal RFID pocket
- 3 access points to main compartment
- Plenty of compression straps to keep the pack tight
- Hydration bladder compartment could be a bit more spacious
Bought this pack when I decided to move into the long distance hiking game and it is proving to be a great decision. The Black Wolf Maikoh 70 is a very comfortable pack with plenty of storage options to keep your gear nicely stowed, ideal if you’re anything like me and hate bits and pieces dangling off your bag.
The main storage area has three entry points—top, middle and bottom—with the option of closing off the bottom section to make a separate compartment. Other compartments include two external on the top lid and one internal with RFID protection, two separate zippable front pockets, a stretch front pocket and two stretch mesh side pockets perfect for water bottles, although I like to use them for easy access to bars and trail mix on the go.
The only negative I can think of is the water bladder compartment is a bit tight even for the 1.5lt bag I use. There are plenty of compression straps to keep things tight and stable while on the move. The pack’s waist, shoulder, and sternum straps are super easy to adjust on the go, meaning it is always comfortable and supportive, important for me as I am recovering from a significant spinal injury.
Build quality seems very good although at this price point I guess something has to give, or maybe I’m just cynical.
UPDATE August 15, 2022
Hike over the weekend in arguably the worst weather I have ever experienced with rain and 100+kph winds buffeting the Maikoh. Despite pushing through light rain for the first hour finally decided it was time to use the built-in cover when the rain became heavier, which was compounded by severe winds once at the top of a range which continued for the next 3 hours. The Maikoh pack performed well with all contents dry after almost 5 hours hiking and despite the first hour spent uncovered. More reasons why I definitely recommend this pack.
I am a bit of a newbie at long distance hiking, so experience is something I’m still working on. Have completed four hikes with this bag to date:12km, 16km and 2 x 21km ranging from flat gravel roads to steep rocky goat tracks. Bought mostly entry level gear as I needed to be sure the body could take the rigours of walking long distances with the extra weight, so at 15kg including water I’m probably carrying more weight than I need to.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $189AU
A tremendous pack in terms of build and reliability, however, for someone like me that is quite boney and lacking hips and a decent backside, it is incredibly uncomfortable for extended hikes; anything beyond three hours is a problem for me. I have had three other BW packs and they were sublime in terms of comfort and I regularly hiked for 10-12 hours at a stretch with each of them.
- Very well built with excellent material strength-to-weight ratio
- Great access to packed gear and with so many pockets and hook on points it is remarkable.
- The harness padding and surface area is not a particularly good design if you tend toward skinny and lacking a few curves.
When I initially tried the Maikoh 70 I admit to having a few reservations about how the shoulder straps and hip belt were going to work out. However I figured it was just a matter of adjusting to the system.
As the years have gone by and I have become older (about 60 now) I have become very lean and lost a lot of bulk around the backside and the hips, it turns out that a person should account for this when upgrading to a new pack.
Generally I carry up to 19 kg in the pack when setting out on a decent hike and this has proved a real challenge in terms of my endurance with the Maikoh; I simply cannot get comfortable. I have sewn some padded wraps and installed these and they do help.
The pack is extremely well built and I cannot fault it in terms of its functionality, how sturdy it is and how easy it is to access anything I have packed. My take out is that I should have put more thought into how I am put together when considering this product.
I have owned three other Black Wolf packs during the last decade and have never had a problem of any kind. Generally, the BW gear lends itself easily to repairs on the run if and when required. I am a very experienced, dedicated hiker and commonly undertake walks of a week or more, often in very challenging terrain. Apart from the Maikoh, I am a great BW fan.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $200
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Reviewers Paid: $200.00
75 x 39 x 25 cm