While the materials used are lightweight, they aren't so thin that we are concerned about durability. It’s true that the Hyperlite is lacking some of the organization options of the Flash, and it doesn’t have anything resembling the unique Packmod compression system. Backpack. The shoulder strap padding is nice and long, meaning that even on broader chested women, there is enough padding to wrap under the arms. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. With any backpack, getting the right fit is crucial. heavier than the Flash). The Competition. Diana Gerstacker. Available at REI, 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed. (Photo: REI Co-op) REI Co-op Women’s Flash 45 ($149) Given its two pound 11-ounce weight and low price, our expectations for comfort were low with the Flash … Gear Review: REI Flash 58 Women’s Pack. Additionally, the padded foam added significant comfort and support in places where I really needed it: along my mid-back, lower back, and hips—something I can’t say for many other ultralight models. How can we improve GearLab? The pack has two mesh side water bottle pockets and a rear mesh stuff pocket for storing loose layers or wet gear that you want to segregate from dry gear inside your pack. However, the Mariposa 60 comes in at an impressively light 1 pound 12 ounces (for a small frame with small belt, comparable to my women's medium Flash 55)—a whopping 14 ounces lighter than the fully featured Flash. It is hydration comp… We tested the top women's... How to Choose a Women's Backpacking Backpack. REI Flash 55 Backpack Review This is a great backpack that is highly customizable. The 1.5-inch webbing on the hip belt is better than thinner webbing but will still dig in uncomfortably if the gap between the hip padding is too long. The Flash 45 ($159) retains most of the features of its larger sibling, but comes in different colorways, sacrifices some of the Packmod features, and doesn’t have the roll-top closure that we love. The reinforced heel and front help mitigate moisture migration into the down from wet snow. Fall overnight trips are a great use for the REI Flash 55. Backpack. Fully accessorized, the 55-liter women's model comes in at 2 pounds 10 ounces (the men's version in a size medium is the same weight). For example, the Granite Gear Crown2 60 has a customizable two-piece hipbelt that uses Velcro to tailor the fit, while the Gossamer Gear Mariposa 60’s hipbelt is sold separately so that you can choose the right size for your waist. At 2.68 pounds, this model is lighter than most but still has a strong enough frame to carry moderate loads up to around 30 pounds. We tested the women’s Flash 55 for this review, which REI also makes in an almost identical men’s version. The Flash 55’s backpanel and hipbelt allowed plenty of airflow thanks to generous use of mesh. In today’s backpacking market, there’s no shortage of ultralight, minimalist packs for those looking to cut weight on the trail. All in all, we like the Trailbreak for those just starting out, but the Flash is much more well-rounded option for $50 more. It is, in our opinion, the best overall daypack, with a score of five out of five stars.. Price is relative, but the Trailbreak 60 is a standout: it’s a fully functional, surprisingly comfortable backpacking pack that retails for $149. During testing, one area of concern with the line was durability: the 100-denier pack body of our men's Exos suffered multiple tears from granite and rough rocks. Our testers feel that the padding is adequate but rigid and can cause discomfort when you aren't used to it. The details To save weight, organization is minimal: The lid has a single compartment, and there are two mesh side pockets that are angled so you can reach bottles without removing the pack, but there are no interior pockets. New for spring 2009, the REI Flash backpack series consists of four packs with volumes of 18, 30, 50, and 65 liters. The Flash not only has the pockets, but many of them are removable for trips where you want to shave off every ounce you can. Read more about us. The nice thing about having an optional top lid is that you can add it when it’s needed, in cooler w… When you click on links to buy products we may earn money to support, Lightweight, easy to access side pockets, removable pockets and straps, Fixed torso length, rigid feeling hip belt. If you are looking for a lightweight pack to go with your weight-conscious tent and sleeping bag, the. You do sacrifice two exterior pockets with the Mariposa, but we think it’s the most complete ultralight pack on the market and worth the extra $71. Ready to go backpacking? In all of our testing over the years, this pack has done the best job with an angled bottle pocket. I’ll start off by saying that I’m usually hesitant to max out a pack’s capacity and weight recommendation. Organization versatility is where the Flash shines. All trademarks property of their respective owners Maine-based Hyperlite Mountain Gear... Cozying into your sleeping bag at the end of a long day on the trail is one of the simple pleasures of backpacking. In other words, make sure to use a pack cover or waterproof any essential gear and electronics before heading out. The pack features a sizable top lid with a zippered compartment, front mesh pocket that allows easy access, and a cavernous bucket-style main compartment. Compression straps and attachment loops allow you to tighten your load and attach extra gear to the outside of the pack. I was comfortable hiking all day with 25 lbs (11.34 kg) in the pack. REI Co-op Flash 45. We use affiliate links and may receive a small commission on purchases. Got feedback? The Osprey Talon 22 is lightweight at only 624g, but still manages to pack a solid 22l of capacity along with 7 exterior pockets into the design.. The Flash is a comfortable pack that carries a medium load well but is not intended for loads much over 30lbs. However, for our trip into the Grand Canyon, I made some sacrifices: I didn’t weigh every item on my scale, I packed comfy camp shoes, and I didn’t skimp on warm layers given the questionable forecast. After a thorough round of testing, we had few complaints with the Mariposa: namely, the SitLight pad along the backpanel was prone to bunching and we would have liked a few more cinch straps to secure external gear. REI simply offers the Flash 55 in three separate sizes depending on your torso length and hip/waist size. Comfortable, plush padding, wide range of fitting options and adjustments, good number of pockets, easy-to-remove top lid, Ultralight, large stow pockets, comfortable even when fully loaded, Non-ventilated back panel, less organizational features, Dark material makes pack contents difficult to see, hip belt difficult to adjust, rigid padding might not last over time, Large, spring loaded waist band is hard to get into, suspension can feel bulky, expensive, hip belt can sag uncomfortably on some users, Minimal padding, fixed torso length, side pockets hard to load, When pack weight is a priority, the REI Flash 55 keeps the pounds and ounces low and works well for weekend trips and ultralight adventures, Comfortable suspension for all day use, all the right pockets, and durable fabric make the Circuit a top choice, The Granite Gear Blaze is built for hauling heavy loads over vast distances with comfort and ease, The Aura 65 AG is a comfortable pack that is fully featured, well ventilated, and sleek in design, This ultralight model ranks at the top for lightweight design and is perfect for women who have pared down their gear and are ready to go light and fast, Lid, double side pockets, front pocket, hip belt pockets, shoulder strap phone pocket, main compartment, Side pockets, front pocket, hip belt pockets, main compartment, Lid, front pocket, side pockets, hip belt pockets, main compartment, Lid, front pocket, side pockets, dual front pockets, hip belt pockets, main compartment, Lid, side pockets, front pocket, main compartment, Ripstop nylon; Oxford nylon (bluesign® approved). lighter than the fully accessorized Flash), we give the nod to the Flash 55 for its superior carrying comfort on the trail. This pack is light and extremely versatile thanks to its smaller size, but it still brims with features. This review focuses on the Flash 50 and Flash 65, two popular sizes for lightweight backpacking, sometimes referred to as “weekend” and “week-long” backpacks, respectively. Sierra Designs Down Moccasin. All told, we prefer the more feature-rich (and $21-cheaper) Flash that carries a load better and can be stripped down if we need to shave weight. Even when pushed 5 pounds past the recommended weight, the Flash 55 was extremely comfortable. However, they are not quite as light as the recently reviewed Osprey Exos 46 and Exos 58. The REI Co-Op Trailbreak 60 is part of a new line of REI gear that focuses on high quality, sustainable materials, and a lower price point. 8.5 oz.). Editor’s note: We usually provide a live price comparison table below our outdoor gear reviews, but the Flash 55 is sold exclusively by REI Co-op. The REI Co-op Flash 55’s claim to fame is its Packmod system: a variety of compression straps and organizational features that can all be removed to shed significant weight. This daypack is quite similar to the Kompressor in many ways, though it is a little heavier and has more features. If you choose to forego the lid, you can secure the roll-top in the same fashion—the buckles are interchangeable on the pack, so there are many options for configuration. The build quality is great, with thoughtful touches like a heel pull that works well with winter gloves (field verified). A horizontal aluminum stay bisects the perimeter frame to help support loads up to 35 pounds. –Seth Orme is a founding member of the ‘Packing It Out’ crew. This latter pocket seemed a bit unnecessary to me—I found it more annoying than useful—but I loved the convenience of the hipbelt pockets. (men’s medium) Sizes: medium (fits torsos 17-19 inches) and large (50L/3,051 c.i., 2 lbs. The REI Flash 55 is an ultralight-style roll top backpack with an optional top lid. One unfurled from its stuff sack, though, the Flash fluffs nicely to full loft in mere minutes. Privacy | Cookies | Terms, The world's most in-depth and scientific reviews of gear, The REI Flash 55 pack is a good option for quick overnights and ultralight expeditions where weight matters. They tend to tear somewhat easily, so be careful what you rub up against. Both packs are impressively light, versatile, and value-priced. The mid-range price on the Flash offers entry into ultralight gear for those not yet willing to drop the big bucks to save a few ounces. The Flash 55 puts REI solidly on the ultralight map. However, despite the full 35-pound load (about 5 more pounds than REI's maximum recommended weight), the Flash carried wonderfully. 12 oz. (women’s small)Fabric: Nylon (100D & 420D)Capacities: 45, 55LWhat we like: Lightweight, highly customizable, and a great value.What we don’t: Hipbelt and torso length aren’t adjustable, which can make it tough to dial in fit.See the Women's REI Co-op Flash 55  See the Men's REI Flash 55. One of my favorite additions to the pack’s construction was the seam-taping along the water-resistant top lid and shoulder strap pocket, which helped protect against light precipitation. $55-$140 $42-$105. Incorporating all the latest Callaway technologies, the Epic Flash Fairway Wood produces increased ball speeds with impressive forgiveness – plus the added bonus of stellar looks. Stripped down, the Flash does lose significant storage space, but that’s to be expected with any lightweight pack. 30 lbs (13.61 kg) is the maximum weight that REI recommends for the Flash 55. GearLab is reader-supported. You can see the Flash 55 page here and support us in the process. While the padded section of the hip belt isn't extendable, the 1.5-inch wide webbing is nice and long leaving a wide range of fit. Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. Well-integrated suspension adds carrying comfort. This is useful if your load expands and shrinks during a trip, like when you resupply your food in town on a thru-hike or section hike. My only complaint is that the shoulder straps didn’t ventilate nearly as well as the backpanel and hipbelt, but I happily traded this for the added cushioning. The women's REI Co-op Flash 55 pack offers options to keep your load stable and steady no matter how you hike—fast and light or fully loaded. By. While there are lighter packs on the market, this one serves a niche of people who appreciate the low 2.68-pound weight but don't want to sacrifice organizational pockets and straps. The REI Flash 45 is a top loading backpack with a floating top lid that can be raised higher if you need to overload the pack. The Flash 55 handles loads well. 5.8 oz. And the best part, in my opinion, is that shedding all the Packmod features doesn’t impact the Flash’s support or carrying comfort in any way. Some users love the prominent lumbar curve and find it supportive, while others feel like there is a watermelon pushing into their backs. We took the... Spanning two countries and covering an area of over 400,000 square miles, the fabled land of “Patagonia” encompasses everything from desert and pampas to coastline and towering mountain ranges... Hyperlite Mountain Gear 2400 Southwest Review. Right off the bat, the Southwest is in a different stratosphere price-wise at $345. I tested these features during sustained rain in the Grand Canyon and was pleasantly surprised that the items in my pack’s lid stayed dry—not to mention, this upped the protection for gear I stored below in the main compartment. The only major discernible differences between the two are in the pack’s fit, including torso length and waist/hip measurements. Extremely customizable: keep the lid, compression straps, and hipbelt and shoulder pockets on for more storage or strip them off to shave 7 ounces. Reproduction without permission is prohibited. These shoes have some grip, but stay on flat terrain. Seamlessly integrated suspension makes your hike cool and comfortable. ... Fjällraven Friluft 55 Multiday Pack Review. For virtually the same price and similar weight (the women’s Crown2 comes in 4.2 oz. Backpack. When fully loaded with up to 35 pounds, the weight is well distributed to the hips and doesn't sag onto your shoulders. ), Gossamer Gear Mariposa 60 (1 lb. 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