Sadly, I have not invested in foreign real estate. However, I HAVE purchased what will be my home away from home. My backpack. So. Freakin’. Excited!!! I can’t even tell you how many blogs I read, videos I watched or reviews I combed through. It was exhaustive! I had originally decided on the Osprey Porter 46L for a few reasons:
- excellent reviews
- satisfies most carry-on dimension requirements (lost worldly possessions, dodgy buses and shady tuk tuk drivers? no thanks, I’ll keep my bag with me)
- opens like a suitcase (back vs. top loading)
- and a ridiculously funny YouTube video review by a hapless traveler that shall remain nameless lest we embarrass him
I read that it is important to try them on, have them weighed down and walk around the store for a while. I suppose that makes sense as its your new home for the next… oh… forever. So, I headed to REI to play. The uber helpful and infinitely patient Marco strapped me in and… I HATED IT! Wha?!?! 😦 It was really uncomfortable and bulky. The frame was too long for my torso so the thing was up against the back of my head, the strap pads were not comfy AT ALL and the sternum strap… well… (how to put this delicately?) it smooshed my lady lumps.
I tried on a few different makes and models ala Goldie Locks (too big, too small, too heavy… ) then Marco took my measurements and fitted me with the Osprey Kyte 46L. (I’m 5’2″ with a 15″ torso measurement so the XSML-SM worked for me) I was in love* it was juuuust right. I swear I heard angels sing. No, really! Chubby little diapered warblers. This one is made for women and fantastic for us shorties. The hip belt didn’t cut in at all and the adjustable sternum strap was perfect. Or as this articulate Amazon.com reviewer said: “…oh and it is made for a woman in one essential area; the straps don’t squash your boobs.” very.important.stuff.
I don’t have much more to offer at this point as they only had the demo model and I had to order online. For now, I’m pacing the front porch waiting for the delivery guy. I’ll be trying it out for my upcoming cruise, a practice run if you will…
I will leave you with THIS bit of advice tho: TRY BEFORE YOU BUY!!! I’m planning to cover a LOT of miles and want to focus on the scenery and people rather than a shitty errr… I mean “ill fitting” backpack. OH! I also found out that there is a BIG difference between 10 and 15 lbs when it’s strapped to your back, an incentive to keep the crap down. I’m down for traveling light but this guy has won the prize for it. So, yeah. Go try them puppies on and have some fun.
*The only thing I DON’T love is the color. It was either the teal I chose or a girlie pink/purple-ish. I’m not going to get all feminist on you, Osprey, but come ON!!! Is there something wrong with a nice grey and girlie accent colors??