Review: Granite Gear Kahiltna 29
The Kahiltna 29 is the quintessential multi purpose backpack. This pack will function optimally in a variety of situations. I like products that have the ability to kill two birds with one stone, and the Kahiltna 29 nailed it! Many technical features are universal and can be utilized in just about any situation. However other features can be a hinderance in particular applications. Hip belts are a good example for this dilemma. One option is to not have a hip belt. Some packs even have a small strap that hangs down like a limp tail when your not using it. The Kahiltna 29 has opted to use a third option that is far superior to the rest. The Kahiltna 29 has a removable hip belt that lacks nothing yet can be removed when not needed. The front pocket has an organizer for quick and easy access to small supplies. The pack features a sleeve that will accommodate a 17″ laptop for trips to the local coffee shop, or a hydration pack for hiking and biking with a velcro loop that allows you to fasten your bladder in the upright position. A high vis rain fly is located at the packs base for easy access to insure your gear stays dry during those unexpected rain showers.
Design and Aesthetics ★★★★
The overall design of this product is good. There are multiple exterior pockets are constructed out of stretchy twin power-mesh material giving this pack a sleek design without sacrificing carrying capacity. Multiple compression straps are conveniently located on the sides of the pack to keep everything tight. This pack features reflective tabs to provide visibility.
I don’t care how cool your gear is; if it doesn’t hold up, I don’t want it. Functionality is rendered useless if the product is not durable enough stay intact during prolonged use. The challenge is to balance strength and weight to provide the needed durability without adding unnecessary bulk. Granite Gear packed a lot of functionality into this 96 kg pack raising some concerns as to how well this pack will hold up under extreme conditions. Personally I’m not overly concerned given that this pack was not intended for use in extreme conditions. While the hardware may be lightweight, the construction of the pack had no flaws to speak of making this a great pack for everyday use.
This pack’s value comes from it’s multi use design. The Kehiltna 29 has all the bells and whistles for whatever activity you might be doing. The ability to remove the hip belt when not needed adds a lot of value in and of itself making this product a great buy. This is true especially for individuals who occasionally like to get out and explore, yet don’t want to spend a great deal of cash on a pack that is one dimensional.
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