Rated4out of5byCatahoolaJackfromBetter than advertisedThis is advertised as a tried and true favorite of big mountain guides so I'll write this for the guy/gal who is in the position I was ... needs a load hauler and is unsure if this is the one. I'll also try not to repeat what REI has already included on the spec list.
Pros: I couldn't find a picture of this thing that didn't have me desperately trying to find another pack. Most shots of the BMG don't do it justice. It appears to have an odd shape and no practical use unless fully loaded (a big annoyance of mine and common characteristic of most larger packs). Still, when it arrived I was real impressed with a few things: the "wings" or bulbs that seem to jut out from the bottom of most pictures are actually large, pockets that can be cinched down (with a really nice combo of compression strap and integrated bungee cord) tight against the pack body for a more streamlined profile. This thing is also rigged to carry just about anything you can imagine due in large part to a set of three side compression straps, two of which can be extended out and around the entire pack body even when hauling sleeping pads, tents, or other items on the sides of the pack. There is a nice big pocket in the lid and another on the front of the pack that big enough for personals or a few layers each depending on how you organize your kit. Finally, this is a very lightweight pack that cinches down very small when carrying lighter and smaller sized loads: good for summit pushes, or peak bagging from a base camp.
Cons (little ones): the tool attachment points can end up being positioned a bit too high if you're carrying a traditional straight-shaft ice axe, although there are other carry options. I'm also not sure how much I buy into the attachment cord under the lid which is meant for attaching a rope. I haven't used it yet, but it looks pretty feather thin.
Overall: Sound investment.
Date published: 2013-04-24
Rated4out of5byGreg the WalkerfromBIG MASSIVE GIANTThis is a great pack for extended-day backpacking. I've taken it on many hikes around the Whites in NH and it is simply a fantastic bag. Room for everything and then some.
The padding is on the low side, but you get used to it and likely won't suffer from it.
Minus one star because of a design flaw on the outer front pocket: It's made of super bomber waterproof material, making it a great pocket to store some extra layers in, but there are FOUR LARGE HOLES on the sides where straps come out that make the entire pocket not waterproof. Why use this bomber material if there are plenty of holes for water to get through?
Still an awesome pack. Can't wait to take it out in the winter.
Date published: 2012-10-29
Ask a question and have it answered by REI product experts and fellow outdoor enthusiasts. Need immediate assistance? Use Live Help.