Ultimate Direction Fastpack 15
Historic Range: $58.73-$119.95
Reviewers Paid: $100.00
A great pack for long days in the mountains; even a bare bones overnighter.
- Carries very nicely and stable
- Pockets are laid out nicely
- Low profile for off-trail travel
- Quality materials (Robic fabric for the main body) and stitching
- Roomy external stretch pockets
- Don't like the clasps used for the sternum strap
I've now had about dozen mountain runs in the 18-25 mile range with this pack and can state unequivocally, it's a keeper.
This is really a nice sized pack for an all day adventure; with its stretch pockets it's very close to 20 liters.
I typically have mine loaded with 6-8 lbs (about 1/2 that in water). Pack carries very nicely—no bounce or sway and it's very comfortable. The pockets are laid out nicely and easy to access. I was happy to see that my favorite water bottle (a repurposed Vitamin Water bottle) fits perfectly in bottle pouch. My iPhone 6 with a Lifeproof case fits perfectly on the opposite side. The flat compartment behind the phone holder is the perfect place to stash your map.
I really like the two big mesh pockets. They easily add 5 liters to the overall volume. I like the two-way zipper to access the main compartment (you can also access via the roll top). I think this zipper should be a water resistant one however as the main pack material, Robic, is highly water resistant.
I also own a Fastpack 30 that I use for multi-day trips. This packs shares the same attention to detail, same quality fit and finish and high end materials.
A few cons:
I don't like the new style buckles. They don't look any lighter than previous ones, but are difficult to close—almost have to be looking at them to get perfectly lined up.
The shoulder/harness straps need to be lengthened, when the pack is loaded (and a bladder used) I found that I was almost to the very end of the adjustment. This is with a M/L and I'm not overly large (~180 lbs with a 42-ish" chest. Someone larger could bump into problems. I like the double sliding sternum straps, but they could be improved in my opinion with one side being elastic webbing.
I'm planning on a bare bones overnighter with this pack and will report back with my impressions. While this pack probably wasn't designed with overnighters in mind, I think with the right selection of gear it will do the trick.
All in all, I very much like this pack!
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $100