Rated 4 out of 5 by Thomas both good and bad
Its a good pack - the set up with how the pockets and everything work well - its never hard to get what i need when i want it - cant see the point of the internal divider though - its quite narrow and difficult to fit a standard synthetic bag in side ways but can be done. - You can load a lot of gear and food in it no problem. Top lid comes off to use as a sumit pack or day pack if walking out of a base camp. The suspension system is nice and the hip pockets are handy for snacks and bugspray etc.
THe zips where shocking! on the top lid useless - had to be closed whilst being gripped by pliers and even then would come apart so made it useless.
Im 6'4" and the pack is very difficult to get comfy i think the sizings are wrong with the support system. I also had it fail on day 1 of a 7 day trek - same problem as pointed out in other reviews here. I found i was constantly adjusting the straps as it was never comfy with a full load (15-20kg) for very long. Due to problems with the pack i bought i got a replacement one from customer services who where excellent - not had the same problem with the zippers but the pack is the wrong shape for me i think. - its very hard to get it so the weight is off the shoulders.
Adjsuting the height of the waist band is a pain! difficult to get to - but was handy to remove it when traveling on airlines - make sure you dont loose the allen key.
I want to like this pack more as the way it is set out is great in terms of putting gear in and is it but a few too many issues and uncomfortable when weighing more than 15kg for me to give it 5 stars.
July 12, 2015
Rated 1 out of 5 by Kenneth Want to love this pack, but too many problems
The suspension system is awesome. The hip belt on a ball joint is great. You can move around a lot and the pack stays put. The first thing I notice when wearing other packs is that this feature is missing.
Water resistance is great. Water beads right off in light rain or when walking through dewy brush. I use a rain cover in heavier rain.
The internal is very large. I can easily fit 7+ days of gear, food, water, and camera equipment in this pack.
There are mesh pockets inside the large front pocket and the main body of the pack. These are great for organization.
The fabric is high quality. My pack is often in the dirt and it doesn't pick much of it up or show wear easily.
The left shoulder strap has a bladder hose clip.
The whistle on the chest strap is LOUD.
The top zipper doesn't work great. I got some "zipper ease" (basically just wax) and it seems to help. For the most part if the brain is stuffed full you'll have a hard time closing the zipper. After my first pack replacement BD said this was fixed, but it seems that it wasn't.
"Water bottle" pockets on the side can't hold a Nalgene. Great for maps and guide books though.
The shoulder strap rubs against the hip belt and causes a significant wear.
The sizing of this pack is totally wrong. I am an average height of 5' 9" and have the large pack set to the largest setting. I don't see how anyone taller than me would be able to keep the weight off their shoulders.
THE BIGGEST PROBLEM WITH THIS PACK which makes it completely unusable in my opinion is that the aluminum stay that runs the length of the pack is held in place by velcro. I've gone through two packs where this velcro pops off when the pack is fully loaded, and once it pops it's impossible to fix. You can duct tape it in place temporarily but it's certainly not a long term fix. If you're on day 2 of 5 expect to have to stop and adjust multiple times.
1. The brain has a top and bottom pocket. The top pocket has a hook to hold a set of keys and not lose them. Either move this or add a second one to the bottom (less used) pocket.
2. Don't use velcro to hold the aluminium stay in place. It won't hold for a heavy pack (45+ lbs)
3. Fix the zipper on the brain.
4. Remove the divider for the "sleeping bag" compartment. This seems like a useless item that was included for the spec sheet. It's a waste of weight.
Overall I've had more problems with this pack in a year and a half than I had with my previous (non-BD) pack in 10 years. This pack is not ready for prime time.
For the record I do love all my other BD gear. Be sure to check out the Storm headlamp or any of their hiking poles!
June 8, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by Nathan great suspension system
This pack has the best suspension of all the high class giant bags I've carried in the last 25 years. After using this pack everything else feels like a walking backboard evacuation. The shoulder and hip motion is great for balance in steep talus and promotes good circulation in your neck and hips when spending long days on the trail.
August 18, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by Carlton Good Effort but no thanks
Returned with tags on. Waistband webbing much too narrow, all webbing used seems too thin. Excellent attachment feature with waistband at the back, freeing hips. Zippers stiff. The main bag is so narrow it barely holds a stuffed sleeping bag in the bottom. Pack appears best for very new light-weight small density gear. I'll stay with my 30 yr old internal framed older pack, ugly but honest....
August 2, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by Gunnlaugur good pack except for the zippers
I bought this pack 3 weeks ago to use on 5-6 day hiking treks and i have all ready done two as i am a guide in the Hornstrandir wilderness nature reserve in the north west of Iceland. I like every thin about it except for the zippers. It is nicely padded and it can carry a good load but the zippers... you really need to be in your best "Zen" mode to operate them, and you must avoid all tension on the zippers. so you can not really stuff it with your gear and just zip... zip with care and tenderness. i guess the idea with those zippers is to make the pack water proof but its not really water proof with a busted zippers. Luckily i have managed to fix them in the rain with counting to ten, and applying tender love and care and happy thoughts....
July 26, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Michael Very comfortable and functional
I just finished 25 miles in 2 days on a rough trail with this pack and it performed very well. As always with black diamond, the pack is well-made, design is well-thought-out and functional. Buckles and zippers work well. I'll never use another pack without the ergo suspension system ( I now own 3 BD packs).
May 27, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Michael Love it.
Love this pack. It carries exceedingly well, the stories of comfortable hips are true, compresses well, has classy features like the smooth webbing straps a sweet outer pocket, and full access to the inside through the outer full zip, and it does seem significantly water resistant thus far. The only weak point I've experienced is that the zipper on the brain/top compartment can split open if the brain is overly stuffed and you're not pretty tender with it. Not a deal breaker for me. Just makes me more graceful...
May 12, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by John Good back for 1 to 3 day hikes
I like the pack and how it fits. Very comfortable.
February 17, 2014