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29

Oct

2010

GoLite Peak Pack review
Written by Alex Strickland   
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GoLite Peak Packimages/GoLiteThe GoLite Peak backpack is many things, but more than anything else it is astonishingly, insanely, incredibly light. This nearly 2,200 cubic inch (36 liters) pack weights less than two pounds despite its size and considerable list of features, meaning no matter what you put in it, you've got a head start.

Despite its minimal weight, the pack features a detachable hip belt with zippered storage, sturdy mesh back panel and shoulder harnesses and plenty of straps to attach extra gear. Compression straps on the sides look to make attaching skis a breeze, making this a capable backcountry touring setup.

The top-loading pack does sacrifice some organizational amenities in the name of lightness, with the primary compartment as a single large sleeve and a small outer compartment that doesn't contain any sort or pockets for smaller items. Instead of a traditional lid up top, the pack makes do with a cinch cord and roll-top that's secured by a buckle strap. Getting a good roll with a full pack isn't easy, so if the heavens open be sure to have a pack cover handy to keep your gear dry.

On the trail, the pack is comfortable and does an above average job at keeping back sweat to a minimum. The recycled nylon exterior is tough and should wear well judging by the lack of scuffs after repeated slides down Utah granite during a hurried descent. Straps offer tons of adjustment and with the hip belt and sternum strap, it's easy to get a good fit to distribute weight across your body.

GoLite LogoSide water bottle pockets - a feature sorely lacking from many ultralight packs - and a hydration bladder sleeve inside with hose routings over the shoulder straps give choices for hauling water up the hill. And with all the weight you save thanks to GoLite's economy, you can probably afford to stash a celebratory brew or two for the summit and never know the difference. The GoLite Peak pack retails for $125.


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Alex Strickland

Alex StricklandAlex Strickland was born and raised in possibly the least mountainous and outdoorsy city in America – Memphis, Tenn. Despite the lack of trails and people to enjoy them with, he became a hiker, mountain biker and runner. Today, he's traded up for the Wasatch Mountains of Utah and added skiing to the mix, once someone explained what snow was.

A former newspaper editor in small-town Montana, Strickland enjoys freelance writing and photography for publications around the Mountain West and sharing his love for the outdoors through his work.

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