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August 2017 Issue
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Osprey Aether 70 AG

Price:

$429

Our Rating:

The Aether 70 AG updates Osprey’s classic Aether line of packs with its Anti Gravity (AG) harness.

Comfort is probably the pack’s standout quality. The ‘Anti Gravity’ suspension system consists of a curved outer metal frame and a centre stay with a mesh panel that sits apart from the pack for ventilation. Even loaded up with 20kg, the harness distributed the burden evenly and didn’t create pressure points.

The hipbelt is padded with isoform foam, which can be heat-moulded in store to conform to your body. The shoulder straps are equally well cushioned.

The pack’s feature list is comprehensive: internal and external reservoir pouches, dual-entry stretch mesh side pockets for easy access while walking, zippered hipbelt pockets, and a large stretch mesh panel with compression straps, ice axe and walking pole attachments and ‘sleeping-mat’ straps at the base.

One minor criticism on this note is the height of the ice axe attachment, which makes an axe more likely to get caught in foliage while bush bashing.

A large J-shaped zipper provides access to the main compartment, but the most innovative aspect of the Aether is the removable lid, which can be used as a daypack. It can also be left at home if you want to save weight.

With 200D nylon on the body, and 500D on the bottom, the main pack should hold up to abuse, although its various mesh pockets and attachment points are vulnerable in some conditions.

The pack weighs 2350g, which, while not light, is accounted for by its many features and seeming durability.

This pack is an improvement on previous Aether models and is a good option for those looking to do longer tramps where heavy loads need to be carried in comfort.

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