Follow Exeter Shop’s Amy as she takes on Osprey’s deluxe day pack and gives her thoughts.
I’ve been trialling the Osprey Sirrus 24 pack (the smallest literage of five in the family) since mid-April, and have found it to be perfect for day hikes due to its size, weight, and carrying capacity. It’s a definite upgrade from my previous pack, which was great for chucking everything into it, but there was no back ventilation system and no internal organisation.
The Sirrus packs feature an AirSpeed suspension system, allowing for much appreciated ventilation during recent hot months. The tensioned mesh sits comfortably against the back whilst still allowing good air circulation. This system has been upgraded from previous pack iterations as it allows for easier adjustment; rather than fiddling with lengthening/shortening straps you instead have small plastic buckles which fit through gaps along the back. I was initially sceptical as to whether these would dig into my shoulder blades, or would easily come loose after extended use, but was pleased to be proven wrong.
For such a supportive back system with waist straps, the pack is quite light, weighing in at only 1.2kg. In terms of weight to support ratio, the Sirrus packs sit between the Eja and Aura AG families. If you don’t want to use the waist straps you don’t need to buckle them up, just leave them loosely around the hips. On the waist straps you’ll find two pockets which are the perfect size for tissues or small snacks. One downside of these pockets is an inability to easily put a phone in them – if you’re not wearing the pack then a phone will go in alright, but then it won’t allow the waist belt to bend around your hips. Furthermore, it’s a tight squeeze to then get a phone out when you’re wearing the pack.
There are several sections to the pack, so it is easy to organise your belongings. You have your main compartment which features a hydration reservoir sleeve that doubles up as a document sleeve. The front section has a long vertical strip down the middle. This section is separate to the main compartment and is perfect for stashing items you might want to access quickly, like maps or waterproof trousers. At the top of this vertically zipped section there is a horizontal zipped section. This little pouch is not available in the 26-litre option (instead replaced with a rucksack lid and zipped pocket) and you can’t store much in it; delicates, like glass cases, are suitable for this space. At the very top of the pack, you’ll find a little mesh pouch where you can conveniently store items like keys and wallets. Side stretch mesh panels with reinforced material bases allow for storing of multiple water bottles and are less likely to wear through the bottom compared to other bags on the market, whose side pockets are comprised solely of stretch mesh material.
Day hikes with this pack are a pleasure. The comfortable, supportive system means I am not left with sore shoulders or a crooked neck at the end of the day. When engaging the hip straps, it corrects your posture as the straight frame encourages you to keep a straighter back. Another useful feature is the Stow-on-the-Go trekking pole attachments. Poles can be a pain to stick away if you quickly need the use of your hands, and you don’t want to stop to put them in your bag or attach them to the front. The Sirrus quick pole stash option was very easy to use and now features soft-touch tubes so no damage is caused to the poles.
I’ve used this pack not only to go on day hikes along the coast in Hampshire, Dorset, and Devon, but also as a traveling bag. Due to its taller, wider frame, it can easily slip down in front of a car or train seat, meaning you can have your valuables to hand when traveling. A weekend’s break worth of items will easily fit in this pack. However, due to the extra width and height of this pack, there is not much depth, meaning you have to be thoughtful with your packing. The tough 210D Nylon fabric gives me reassurance the pack won’t rip when placed on tougher surfaces, even though it is made from 100% recycled materials. One thing I love about this pack is the included rain cover made with PFC/PFAS- free DWR material, as you don’t always get this included with packs. Not only will this keep your bag dry when it rains, but the bright colour enables you to be noticed by cars more easily if you walk along lanes.
While I’ve only used this pack in the warmer months, I know I’m going to enjoy using it during the winter months too. The wider carry handle at the top and the larger pulls on all the zips mean I’ll be able to easily access and maneuver my bag even with thick gloves on. This carry handle was also perfect for hanging a solar battery pack to the outside of the pack when the sun was out.2
All-in-all, I highly recommend the Sirrus 24 pack to anyone wanting to go for lengthy day hikes due to its lightweight yet supportive structure. Traveling by train and car is made easier thanks to the taller shape and the amount of separation in the pack allows for the clear organisation of your items. I can’t wait to use this pack during the upcoming cooler months and on future adventures!