After a solid week of climbing in El Potrero Chico (EPC), I can now say with confidence that the Osprey Mutant 28 pack is now my new favorite crag pack!
My old favorite crag pack was the Mammut Neon Gear 45L, and I still have it as a larger backup. I do like that I am able to fit a 70 meter rope, harness, draws, hydration bladder, snacks and other random bits all inside the larger pack. It’s comfortable backplate and straps makes it a solid winner for a pack that swallows everything for a day of cragging.
But in my search for lighter-faster-stronger I find myself reaching increasingly for the Osprey Pack 28. I received this pack as part of the Steph Davis Crack Climbing Clinic, but I haven’t really put it through it’s paces – till my EPC trip.
The pack has thoughtful details, such as a useful top compartment for things you need to reach easily, or easily stuff things into:
My pet peeve is a bad zipper that gets stuck repeatedly, or break down. Osprey nails this with solid zipper action:
From what I understand, this pack was built mainly for ice climbing, with ice tool attachment straps, but those straps can also serve a dual purpose such as strapping a windbreaker to the side, or hanging ‘biners or other extra gear on the sides.
What I really like is the straps for hanging the rope off the top of the pack:
The Osprey Mutant’s smaller profile (28 liters vs the Mammut’s 45 liters) makes it lighter, but also requires placing the rope on the outside of the pack. I kind of like this configuration – it leaves the rope available to quickly setup, and then leaves sufficient room inside the pack for the rest of your equipment, such as your harness, draws, belay device, climbing shoes, and jacket – with room to spare.
This size also makes it a reasonable multipitch pack – about as large as I personally would go for multiple pitches, but with compression straps it can have a slimmer profile. There’s even a stretchy gear mesh above the top compartment that can be used for your helmet!
I don’t think you’d have any regrets in purchasing the Osprey Mutant 28 pack as a day crag pack, and it’s size makes it also useful for taking with you up a multipitch as well.
- Day Cragging