Lowe Alpine Contour Event 35
Features: Back panel with 'Body Comnfort' fabrics, internal
hydration system pocket, padded wrap-around hip belt with pockets,
removable bivy / sit mat, three external mesh pockets, side
compression straps, shock cord accessory system, quick access,
zipped-opening, contour-shaped body for stability.
Contoured to fit, loads of
designer Peak District grit is extra...
Lowe's Contour Event 35 might be designed as a multi-day adventure
race pack, but it's also a great all round day sack, particularly for
any activity involving fast movement like running or mountain biking.
The key to the design is clamping everything into your body as firmly
and snugly as possible with the emphasis being on the lower back
area. Hence the multiple compression straps, hip belt, shock-corded
back and hip and chest straps.
The good news is that it works brilliantly. The compression system
means that it carries as well half empty as it does stuffed to
zip-busting full capacity and it really does feel like an extension
of your own body - as opposed to feeling like an extension of someone
else's body I guess... The feel is softened by the removable bivy pad
which sits inside the sack cushioning the load
Neat hydration system exit
You'd expect the body-hugging design to be hugely clammy in very
hot conditions, but Lowe's wicking back panel works well, not as
effective as an air gap -type trampoline system, but certainly better
than you'd expect. I used it on one of the hottest days of this year
with no major worries.
Build quality measures up to Lowe's usual high standards - they
boast that they use 3-ply bonded Nylon thread to sew their packs
together, triple stitch major seams and strengthen stress points with
five lines of sewing - and despite sustained abuse, nothing has given
way in over six months of regular use, despite the ultralight fabric
used for the main body of the sac. The base section is a tougher,
heavier SRN210 and is also surviving well.
Userful pockets on hip belt -
ideal for choccy snacks
Neat, functional touches abound: there's a hydration system pocket
and opening built in, which we reckon should now be standard on all
packs, neat zipped pockets on the hip belt which are idea for
carrying snacks, a compact camera, compass or anything else you might
need quickly - be warned though, they can brush the top of your thigh
when cycling - and mesh pockets that take water bottles or wet
clothes quickly and neatly.
Oh, and wonder of wonders, the hip belt ends can be neatly tucked
away in the tunnel behind the pockets. Excellent. If this sounds like
a vile, gushing stream of praise, then it's simply because this is a
genuinely good product. You wouldn't want to use it for any climbing
which involves the possibility of abrasive contact with the rock, or
for carrying heavy loads, but for just about any other activity you
care to name, the Contour Event is spot on.
Verdict: Great sack for
fast-moving and not so fast-moving activities. If your life
includes regular mountain biking, runnng and walking
episodes and you want one sac to do everything then this is
it. Hard to see how Lowe cold make it better
Take my fast-moving butt and deposit it on the Lowe
Alpine web site
Pushed for time: A
lesson to anyone who thinks adventure racing has absolutely
nothing to offer to the rest of us. The Contour Event makes
a fantastic sac for biking, runnng and walking, or any other
activity where stability counts. Multiple straps pull the
load into the lower back and hold it there in a controlled
fashion. Features are excellent and include a hydration
system pocket, twin-zipped pockets on the hip belt, mesh
exterior pockets and shockcord accessory string. And despite
the lightness, durability seems good as long as you don't
drag it against sharp and pointy rocks. A winner.
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