For years, I carried a 50 pound pack. A few years ago, I traded my 6 pound Gregory for a 4 pound Deuter (both excellent packs) and carried 40 pounds. This year I wanted to shed more weight but still have room and support to carry essential conveniences and food for a week-long trip. That ruled out the smaller packs (50L) and rucksacks that lack sturdy stays and padded straps.
I used this pack on a 2 day hike along the Superior Hiking Trail. The only thing I didn't bring along was food for a longer period. I could have easily added a few more pounds of food and this pack would have handled it and felt great. I then used it on a day hike with our family and it was super light with our day gear in it. I carried everyone's food, water, and day supplies. The pack has great padding for as light as it is. I used to have a Gregory Baltoro 65 liter pack that weighed close to 6 pounds. With this pack I did not have to give up comfort thanks to the good padding and I shaved off 3.5 pounds of weight just changing my pack. Sweet! Things I don't like: I wish the side pockets were not mesh that hugged the bag so tight but instead were nylon that stuck out from the pack some so I could more easily stick a water bottle in the pockets with a fully stuffed pack. I also wish the pack has some nylon pockets on the belt strap. I had to buy a separate Granite Gear Belt Pocket which was okay, but bigger than I would have liked and an extra expense. Finally, the belt itself was supposedly a medium sized for 30-34" wastes. I am a 32" waste, right in the middle. All my pants are 32". But I had to cinch the belt buckles all the way down to the last millimeter to get the buckle tight enough. It's good I wasn't any skinnier otherwise the belt would have caused the bag to sag lower on my hips. I plan to get the small belt. Others have reported this problem, so you should take it seriously. But none of these cons warrant avoiding this pack. It is a great, lightweight pack that is very comfortable.
I'm a peak bagger and camper who frequents the San Gabriel, San Jacinto and San Bernardino mountains. I purchased this pack in moonmist/cactus color. Following the sizing recommendations I got the regular size for my 5'10" 195 lb frame. The sizes are spot on as the pack fit me perfectly.
I have been working to get my base weight down and my pack is where I started first. I picked this pack for several reasons.
This is the first pack I have used that is just plain comfortable all day. I am able to use the hipbelt effectively to take the weight off my shoulders and upper back. So far, I have been using it on day hikes with up to 18 lbs. By the end of the day, I cannot even feel that I've had a pack on my back. I love the simplicity of it, no unnecessary straps and add ons. It feels very durable and rigid for such a lightweight backpack. Only came with size Medium hipbelt and I may need to go to Granite Gear to exchange for a size Large.
Spoiler: I'm about to return this pack for something with more structure and better shoulder straps, likely the Granite Gear Blaze.
I only took this on one trip so far, a 3 day trip to the Presidential Range. I'm a new convert to minimal weight in gear and I shaved almost 3 pounds off of my previous backpack. The VC pack carried well near to the advertised limit of its weight.
I use the pack and another for backpacking. My other pack is my go to pack, this one is collecting dust. It is light, has shoulder pockets good for eyeglasses, and reasonably adjustable. Padding and support is minimal, as expected for an ultalight weight pack. The shoulder straps are very close together at the neck, and unless you have a neck as thin as a pencile, the straps rub against the neck and chaff, which is why I cannot wear the pack for long trips. The shoulder staps are not adjustable. No pockets on the hipbelt. Not waterproof. I recommend buying the smallest size possible because the pack tends to bow outward in the back without exta effort to force it against your back. But this will only decrease the with of the shoulder staps at the neck and increase chaffing. I regrete purchasing this pack because of placement of the shoulder staps so close together which chaff my neck.
I took the pack out on a 3-day, 30 mile trip through the North Cascades. I needed something lighter than my previous pack to reduce my base weight. The pack performed perfectly and was even comfortable with my 35 lbs total pack weight. It doesn't have a lot of side pockets, but I used my hydration bladder so that was no problem.
I just wanted to add my 2-cent's worth about this pack: I love it! I did a 2-week backpack on the Wonderland Trail, carrying between 25 and 35 pounds. I am 6"0', 150 lbs, and the "regular" size frame fit me well. The hip belt was almost cinched all the way down, but that's what I get for having 29" hips. :-]
Great pack. I have the crown 60 and a nimbus meridian. There is no beating the comfort, quality and ease of Granite Gear. The Crown 60 is comfortable for me up to about 32-34 lbs. the weight and durability of the pack feel unreal. Other packs of this weight feel like they'll disintegrate while the crown 60 feels like it could be dragged behind a horse fully loaded without a mark. The weight of the pack sits so close to the body, it becomes a part of your body and the pack is unnoticeable when carrying weights under 30lbs. Above that weight, the straps begin to dig a little bit. (nimbus meridian is comfortable for me up to 50lbs and becomes more invisible the longer you hike). The crown 60 is the perfect pack for summer. The 4 clip closure top is simple, but somewhat annoying if you need to access the internal contents often. However, the stretchy outside pockets are plentiful and efficient for quick access and stowing.
This pack is amazing: All you need to carry enough gear for multi days, and only weighs a little over 2 pounds. I've carried loads typically around 25 pounds, and sometimes up to 35 pounds. That range is comfortable.
So I just finished a five day trips in the Olympic Mountains carrying this pack and wow, very nice. I have carried top loading "sack packs" for years so I know what I'm getting into and they have their advantages and draw backs (if you want to call it that). I carried 27 lbs total starting out and I'm sure this pack could hold up to about 30-35 lbs but you don't want to carry more than that, the soft frame just won't handle the weight. However, at sub 30 lbs it road very well, comfortable, great hip belt. I am 5'10" tall and 150 lbs and the Regular fit my torso perfectly, do be aware that there are no torso length adjustments on this pack. The pack also "breathed" fairly well and every feature was well thought out. I was able to strap my Ridgegest Pad on top with plenty strapping left. The only draw back to this type of pack is you have to be smart about how you pack it; the stretch side pockets are minimal. I am so used to a sack pack I find it no problem and it's easy to open the pack up to access food, etc. I have backpacked for over forty years, have carried many, many backpacks and this is one of the best!! Enjoy and please, please drop pack weight as you travel, you will go further, have more fun, and have less injuries.
The pack is very flexible for shoving lots of gear in it. If you are doing a multiday hike with this back and doing a lot of overnight stays this pack is not the pack you want. You will have to pull everything out of this pack to get to it unless you strategically placed everything in the pack. It is very light and comfortable. For multiday hikes it is not what you want.
I am in my 50s and have been backpacking for at least 30 years, and I'm so happy that packs like this are now available through mass market retailers. Honestly, if you are willing to put some thought into what you carry, this pack is all you should need.
Excellent pack that I purchased for an AT thru-hike this year. Lightweight, easy to load, and sits on my hips fine. I really enjoy this pack and have only odne short hikes, but I know it will be fine when I complete my three and five day test hikes before my thru-hike.
I've taken this on dozens of trips and I love it. When correctly adjusted and used with good posture, it is amazingly comfortable. I'm a minimalist and almost never need the entire 60L, but its light weight and compression straps make it easy to adjust down to a small size. With the excess capacity, if I need to get into the bottom, I'm able to loosen the compression straps and reach, sparing me the hassle of pulling everything out.
Super comfortable pack. It’s easy to load and will accommodate a large volume.
I bought this pack early last summer for a week long solo trip in the Wind Rivers. It was wonderful--feeling as if it was part of my body for plenty of off-trail hiking, river crossings, rock-hopping. I didn't get the sore spots on my collar bones or hip bones that I've had on previous trips with other packs. I could carry all my food and gear for the whole trip--paid close attention to weight and volume. It contracts nicely for day trips.