The Contour III has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best weekend packs for 2020.
Historic Range: $119.95-$239.00
Reviewers Paid: $240.00-$350.00
I am not only a Scouter, I also train other Adult Leaders in outdoor skills. I own several packs but my Lowe Alpine Contour III is the best of the bunch, and my pack of choice when I am off to the deep wilderness.
Rugged and well-built, this pack has storage space for everything essential and then some, and its load control and adjustment are outstanding. I commonly load 40 to 50 pounds and the load rides exactly where it is supposed to.
This is not an inexpensive pack, but you will ultimately get what you pay for. For an exceptional outdoor experience, Lowe Alpine produces a very quality product in the Contour III.
Design: internal-frame high performance pack
Size: 70 + 35 cubic inches
Number of Pockets: LOTS! go see one!
Max. Load Carried: approximately 55 pounds
Height of Owner: 6' 1"
Price Paid: $240
Well, after six years, I've finally worn my pack out and so it's time to write up a review.
Right off the shelf I loved the pack with the sole exception of the two side "pockets." They were too small to contain my ski tails, tent poles, or av probe reliably--the newest models have fixed this problem.
The pack material has lasted without so much as a scratch through all the punishment I put it through.
This spring I carried about 70 lbs in it and discovered that the harness could no longer support the load properly. No matter what adjustments I made, the hipbelt kept slipping further and further down my hips. I suspect it's because the foam in the belt has broken down over the years. With the lighter loads (30 lbs) the pack still works reasonably well, but it's apparent that the harness isn't working the way it used to.
I'm not really too unhappy with the overall performance of the pack - it did give me six good years, but I would have expected the harness to last a little longer. Afterall, it rarely carried over 55 lbs.
The pack was a great pack for its time and I don't regret having bought it. However, there are now alot of packs out there with newer/better suspension systems and my next pack will be one.
I hope thats helpful.
Size: 70 litres.
Number of Pockets: top pocket only.
Max. Load Carried: 70 lbs
Height of Owner: 5'9"
Price Paid: $350-ish
This pack is the greatest pack I have ever owned. It has been on over 39 trips and is still going strong. It is still comfortable after carrying a 120-lb load while pulling a 27-lb sled.
I have only two complaints, the side pockets do not attach very well to the pack, and the elastic wand pockets at the bottom are hard to compress when holding a water bottle.
Design: internal frame
Max. Load Carried: 120
Height of Owner: 5'3
Price Paid: $264 with tax