Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Osprey Exos 58 litre (Large)

I got my Osprey Exos 58 litre as a special order from Outside.co.uk – they had a limited supply of the large backs.

IMG_2998 Exos 58

My rational for going from the Atmos 50 litre (L) up to a pack that has 61 litres capacity was simple. I can do simple. The Exos 58 (L) is lighter than the Atmos 50 (L). The larger capacity Exos can allow me to transport a larger load than the Atmos. The Exos can be compressed down so that there is no excess material.

I’ve had the Osprey Atmos since 2006, and it has been my overnight pack, my weekend pack, my long-distance-walk pack (West Highland Way, Southern Upland Way). It is very comfortable, and a great load-carrier. But I’ve often had to strap the Akto’s fabric on to the outside of the pack in it’s compression sack. It just doesn’t look nice. I don’t go climbing, so am not concerned about dragging my pack up cliff-faces on the end of a rope.

First impressions of the Exos. Light. Straps are thinner. More ways to pack items on the side. Belt pockets seem easier to reach. Pocket under the lid is useful, and is now home to a XSS Exped waterproof bag.

I don’t like the official “backpanel sleeve” for hydration bags (loads move as the bag is emptied), and hung mine from the wee strap in the main compartment, and down through the zip into the frame space. I did this on the Atmos, however that was designed to do it, the Exos is not. The zip in to the airspace compartment is on one side only, so cannot fully close (hmm, not neat).

The manual is up to the usual high standard, and the whistle is still present on the chest-strap (and confuses birds no end).

More to follow over the Summer.


peewiglet said...

I got one too, in Scotland! Only mine is the 46L. I really like it: tres comfortable. I particularly find the little side pockets useful, as I can get a small water bottle out without taking off the pack.

Have you tried the pole-carrying device yet? That was also very useful, I found.

Alan Sloman said...

Hi Dunc - I love mine and find it more comfortable than my old Atmos. I too bought the 46 litre version - which Shirl tells me is actually 48L. I am finding that my kit is actually shrinking: the Exos 46 was more than big enough to cope with all my TGO Challenge kit for two weeks allowing for shitty weather clothing and four days of food all stashed inside. My tent slips comfortably into the rear pocket (or is that the front pocket? - that one always confuses me).

With the tiny size of my (full length) NeoAir I now have loads of room compared to when I used to pack the full length Exped Downmat 7.

Still - this way you will have more room to carry the extra bottles of beer.

Cheers Duncan!

AktoMan said...

@Shirl - Yes, I used the pole-carrier, but only with Mike's help. I'd put my Aquagear bottle on the left-side (as normal), but that was the side that the pole-carrier was on.

My peripheral vision was then distracted by the heads of the PacerPoles or 'nodding donkey' moving up and down.

AktoMan said...

@Alan - I can't swear yet that it is more comfy than the Atmos. Verdict later.

I find that I overpack food (I'll await the witty comments). It is still a bulky part of my kit. But my overnight kit is enough for a long weekend, with extra food. I hope to get out for a while in the Summer. Not sure where yet. Just away.

Oh, the only alchohol I take is the thumb-flask of malt and, rarely, a small platy with sake or wine.

Gayle said...

Mick seems to be in the minority in that he's finding the Exos to be less comfortable than his old Atmos. He likes everything about the pack, except for the lack of support/padding on the hipbelt (and it's not like he was carrying a massive load - between 8 & 11kg).

I rather like the look of it myself. May have to try it out for a weekend and then, if I like it, try to claim the old "what's yours is mine, dear..."!

AktoMan said...

@Mick via Gayle.

I found the shoulder straps a bit springier. But didn't notice anything up with the hipbelt, except that I unclipped my trouserbelt once thinking I was unclipping the hipbelt. Those thin straps will get me in trouble.

Hendrik M said...

I tried the Exos 58 on, and liked it a lot. However, currently I am also considering the Mariposa Plus, as it seems to be a very versatile backpack. But because I can't try it on, and I can try on the Exos, I tend to lean towards the latter. As I am not in a hurry, I will wait and see what you think of it.

AktoMan said...

The only reason I bought the Exos by post was that I had had a proper fitting with the Atmos. I think packs, like footwear, are very personal. But I'm probably stating the bleedin' obvious here ;-)

Hendrik M said...

Had a third look at the Mariposa, and took some measures of myself. I will need to get the 2009 model of the Mariposa, which would probably end up being more expensive (considering shipping and customs) then buying a Exos, plus I don't know 100% if it fits. So this, plus stating the obvious ;) makes me think I might be better off with Osprey's newest masterpiece.

AktoMan said...

Was that the model that Jason Klass was reviewing, Hendrik? Have you had a word with him?

Hendrik M said...

I left him a comment, Duncan, and I think it is the Mariposa 2008 with the new aluminum stay. Might be the 2009 model, though. I'll go downstairs to my Outdoor store and test fit the Exos once more next week, and then I can make a decision. Maybe just leave the Mariposa for the future =)

AktoMan said...

Maybe find a supplier with a good returns policy?

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AktoMan said...

Thanks for the kind offer, Hua, but - as I'm not getting out just now - I'll give it a miss. I'm not exactly a picture of health at the moment. A vicious circle, I know, but the money that I have saved has gone on other things.