Rated 5 out of 5 by John This pack rocks!
I bought this looking for a more versatile small pack than what I had at the time. No disappointments here. Big enough to lug out a light rack, jacket, rope, and shoes to the mountains for a fast push. Small enough and light enough to hardly be noticed when you're climbing. Has been durable and made it through a Sierra and Patagonian season unscathed. Rad pack.
February 23, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Eythan Clean, Simple and Effective - Small improvement would make it even better!
Bottom line, I've found the Speed 22 to be a well-designed, clean and utilitarian pack for a range of missions - a day at the crag; a full-on alpine climb; or ski touring. A few small improvements, however, would make this pack even more durable and versatile without compromising weight or its no-frills design.
First, while part of the pack's appeal is the simplistic design, I've found that it just barely has the capacity for a light, over-night alpine climb. Without wanting to jump up to the next sized pack, adding a couple small attachment points to the outside of the Speed 22 would help open up some space in its interior (for example, clipping stinky climbing shoes or a helmet to the outside#. While I rarely like anything clipped to the outside of my pack, having these points could make this pack even more versatile #I ultimately fashioned something myself to accomplish this#.
Second, again to add some versatility to the pack and give it greater options for lashing gear and compression, I'd recommend switching around some of the buckles on the side compression straps. That is, swap out the "male" end for a "female" one so that the straps can not only be used to compress the sides of the packs but - if the long ends of the webbing are joined - they can be used to lash items, especially crampons, to the back exterior of the pack. In this mode, too, you'd have the option to carry the rope on the flat back of the pack if you didn't want to use the strap below the lid or, in a pinch, you could lash you skis in a similar manner, instead of in "A-frame" mode. No extra weight for this small tweak in design!
Third, the ice pick pocket design is novel but doesn't work all that great in practice in terms of keeping two tools snugly aligned against the back of the pack. With a full pack, the tops of the tools tend to push outward a bit, even with the retention bands, and the quick clip strap at the bottom of the pack isn't totally solid in keeping two tools secured. My recommendation would be to have two simple ice ax loops, which might also end up shaving weight...
Finally, I've had the pack now for about 6 months and it's holding up well after at least 45 days "in the field." The one area that showed poor quality was around the extendable sleeve. Within a few weeks of repeatedly stuffing gear into the pack, the stitching on the extendable sleeve #near the small pocket for the rope strap# blew out. Perhaps some reinforced stitching in that area could be the solution...
All in all, a great, simple, do-just-about-everything pack! Get one!
October 3, 2013
Rated 5 out of 5 by Jon Summer Grade IVs - Sweet Ride!
Three Grade IVs in three days, and the Speed 22L was perfect. Temple Crag approach from basecamp, I fit water, shell, insulation layer, the rack and draws. While climbing it fit the approach shoes, layers and guidebook and kept everything handy. (One constructive point, if not hanging from the anchor, the brain can tend to dump your apple, sunglass case and power bar!) Is light, but fought off chimney scuffs pretty well. Then Fairview dome for a pretty comprehensive test of the pack. Partner jealous, it's the perfect size, and it is pretty strappy with bells and whistles but that makes it much more adaptable then the old bullet packs. Did not try out the axe rigging. Thanks BD!
July 26, 2013
Rated 4 out of 5 by Kimmy Perfect long ascent pack
This bag has all the great features of the Speed series packs in that perfect size for longer alpine ascents. It holds extra layers, water and food for two for all day pursuits without any unnecessary bulk. This is always my go to pack for long multi-pitch routes or ridge traverses in the alpine. Love it!
May 30, 2013