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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Review: Granite Gear Crown X60

Massdrop had a Granite Gear Crown X60 for $120. The Amazon price appears to be $200, so this is a significant discount. My old Lowe Alpine Contour IV was a 6.5 pound pack, though it carried a lot more, while this one was 40 oz or 2.5 pounds. The pack comes in Regular or Long, and if you're 5' 10", you're as tall as you can be before you must switch to the long, which weighs just an once more.

The pack is a single compartment with no separation, which means you can efficiently pack clothing, etc. around irregularly shaped items. The hip belt (removable and adjustable) has 2 zippered pockets, which are big enough to swallow the G7X Mk II)The lid has 2 slim pockets which are just the right size for cycling gels or little packets of peanut butter, and can be detached easily.

On our backpacking trip I carried 2 sleeping pads, 2 sleeping bags, both our clothing, lunches, pillows, and all assorted camping gear for a 3 day trip. It's an effective carrying system and had external straps for tying sandals, tent, and quite possibly a bear canister or sleeping bag. Compared to my old backpack all the buckles are a lot smaller, as are the straps. The main weight savings must come from the frame: it's now a plastic stiffener rather than metal. Nevertheless, the item comes with a limited lifetime warranty, which means that the smaller size didn't mean that the items were more fragile.

After carrying for 3 days, I was quite impressed. I think if I had to do it all over again, I would have gone for the longer version of the pack, but the pack itself was cheap and light and I'd buy it over again with no regrets.


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