Osprey Kyte Review

Alice from our Taunton store took the Osprey Kyte on a hike on the Quantocks and discovers all the features.

The test

The Osprey Kyte is a highly versatile backpack which is suitable for most hikes and travels. The Kyte is the women’s specific version of the men’s Kestrel, and it comes in three sizes. I have the 36ltr, and I’ve tested it on day walks on the hills and as a travel bag for trips away.

The pack and fit

This backpack has a tough outer fabric and strong but sleek straps to minimise snags – it’s fantastic for rugged use outdoors. When hiking, the weight in the backpack is spread over the hip pads rather than the shoulders, and the women’s specific fit means the straps are more shaped, and the pack has a chest strap to keep the shoulder straps from slipping. It has an adjustable back length via simple-to-use velcro, allowing you to get a good fit over the shoulders.

Access and storage

For accessing gear whilst hiking, there is a quick-access pocket on top of the hood, a bottle pouch on each side, and a stretchy front pocket for storing a coat or fleece. The main storage is one large compartment with a detachable separator for a ‘sleeping-bag pocket’, accessible by an upper draw-cord, side-zip and curved zip at the bottom. There’s a mesh pocket under the hood for valuables, and a water-bladder sleeve behind the back system.

The features

The Kyte 36ltr can hold a decent-sized sleeping bag, tent and warm layers, and so is perfect for day and overnight adventures. There are compression straps to reduce the pack size if you aren’t carrying as much, and gear loops down the sides to strap on extras. Other gear holders include trekking pole and ice-tool attachments, sleeping mat loops, and pockets on each hip pad large enough for jelly babies. All these features fit into a 1.47kg backpack (…unloaded).

The back panel uses AirScape technology – foam ridges to allow airflow between the pack and your back, and to provide padding for comfort.

There is a shrill emergency whistle on the chest strap, and a detachable bright green raincover for when it’s wet or you want to be seen, which has its own storage pocket on the base of the pack.

For travelling, the features in this bag make it easy to separate your belongings, and as the backpack has no bulky structure, the pack can be stored easily when not in use.

Alice, from our Taunton store, is regularly out hiking on the Quantocks and enjoys indoor climbing, cross fit, camping and water sports.

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