We check out Gregory's new packs, due in the shops next February.
We've just had a scoop audience with what's new from Gregory Packs for spring 2009
and we thought you might like a quick look at their completely revamped
'Active Trail' range
The Active Trail sacs are aimed at the good old 'fast mover' category,
so runners, mountain bikers, orienteers - runners with maps in other
words - and fast-moving lightweight walkers. The idea is that they
should sit stably on your back without swaying around, stay comfortable
and crucially, not restrict your mobility.
Stretch straps promise extra mobility even when cinched down
The packs come in four capacities - 18 litres, 12 litres, 8 litres and
6 litres - and in both men's and women's versions in each size. The
stand-out feature is that both the shoulder straps and the hip-belt
have built in stretch both to improve fit and allow for movement while
wearing the pack. They should, for example, eliminate the process where
pack belts shuffle up over the hips with the motion of running.
The new packs look a lot nicer than the existing Reactor model as well,
though they borrow some of its pluses, sitting nice and low, for
example. Lots of nice features include a zipped opening in the back
panel for easy access to the hydration bladder, an internal compression
system operated by a simple pull cord, two compartments and a
fleece-lined top pocket for, say, a phone or MP3 player.
There's also hydration tube neatness, with a Velcro fastened guide that
you can rip on and off for ease of drinking, mesh belt-pockets
and side stuff things plus an expandable back pocket that uses a zipped
gusset to give extra capacity when needed.
The women's versions, as you'd expect, have a slightly shorter back
length, a harness that's more closely spaced and some neat little
internal compartments where you could stow small things that you don'tw
an to lose in the bottom of your pack.
The fabric is light with a nice soft feel, though overall the packs
aren't super lightweight, they're not heavy either - the 18-litre Miwok
in the pictures, which has taken up residence here - weighs a genuine
Prices range from £40 for the 6-litre Diablo through to
£60 for the Miwok and its pinker female equivalent, the Maya - that'll eb the pink one above.
The new packs are available early next next year and we'll be using a
couple between now and then, so full report to follow.
More Gregory Pack information at www.gregorypacks.com