A sturdy overnight pack from Macpac, the 40l Weka will adequately take all you require for a weekend in the hills. With careful packing and attention to what’s really needed, you could stretch that out to at least three days.
Constructed with Macpac’s Eco AzTec fabric, a certified organic cotton that is, according to Macpac, ‘fairly traded to internationally recognised standards’, it feels built to last and to take some punishment.
At around 1200g, it is a great boost to bring your packed weight down on weekend trips. The simplified harness system – a return to basic padded straps and belt with sewn-in shoulder and lumbar pad – and lighter weight fabrics also help keep weight down. This does tend to make the pack a bit floppy, particularly when lightly packed, but if you are trying save weight it’s worth the compromise.
Another feature of the Weka is something that is increasingly being added to packs of this size – a front stash pouch in which you can place your ready to use items. This allows you to keep your sleeping bag and dinner gear in the main pack to access when you get to the campsite or hut. This feature works well, as long as you don’t overfill it.
The Weka comes with several other stowage pockets; top flap, map and a front pocket. This last one can be a bit of an issue to manage if you have stowed too much in the pouch.
Despite my concerns regarding the sewn-in lumbar pads, and thinking I needed to be really careful about how I packed the Weka, I was pleasantly surprised at the level of comfort the pack provided when fully loaded.
One drawback is the rather frustrating main bag straps. These come up out of the stash pouch and can be difficult to locate at times and don’t work well when the pack is only half full – you just cannot get it to close up tightly. I feel this feature lets the pack down a little.
A great tramping pack for a quick trip to the hills and reasonably priced too, especially when considering Macpac’s pedigree.