- Buyer's Guide
Best Active Backpack – The Sixth Annual Carry Awards
Triple Aught Design Spectre Carry System
Triple Aught Design build gear to help you live a more adventurous lifestyle. And when it comes to outdoor performance pinnacles, they don’t get much better than the Spectre Carry System. Carefully designed to keep carry weight to a minimum without sacrificing durability, the agile system provides a modular platform that builds out or shrinks down to adapt to changing needs. Three backpacks and a core harness form the base of the system, intended to accommodate minimalist loads, day trips, weekend adventures and extended journeys, and additional carry rigs (including a hydration carrier and chest rig) can be secured to the packs or harness to customize and nail different scenarios.
The LS-42 and VX1 fabrics are cutting edge, the builds are rugged yet clean, and the modularity is intuitive and exceptionally adaptable. Maybe you enjoy trail running. Perhaps your passion is fly fishing or kayaking. Or multi-day treks and day hikes may be your preferred way to explore the outdoors. However you want to get out there, and whatever you need to bring, this system caters to your needs. And in an elegantly simple way that will withstand years of adventuring.
Massive props, TAD, this is an outstanding achievement!
These are the pieces that just missed out, and in most cases, by the smallest of margins. To them, we award a High Commendation. The below were of outstanding quality, displaying fine craftsmanship and design flair. With honor, we bow our heads in the utmost respect and kudos. If this were a dais, they’d be biting their teeth into silver medals, while their flags were hoisted into the horizon – a feat not to be overlooked. And we’re sure they’ll be back, to take it one notch higher, next year.
EVERGOODS was founded with a focused aim: to create crossover gear without compromise that adapts to multiple environments. And the MPL30 is an accomplished offering that does just that. Designed with an outdoor mentality, but adaptable to urban and travel use, the MPL30 is a stellar option for users seeking a solid all-rounder. The access is on point, with the full panel opening allowing easy packing and gear retrieval throughout the bag, as well as the flexibility to reach gear from the top or side of the pack on the go. The ergonomic fit hugs the body and provides comfortable load stability on the move. And its hydration bladder compatibility, quick-access pockets and rugged, weather-resistant build keep you prepped for an active day out. EVERGOODS are a relatively young brand, and the MPL was born from their very first collection. And if this is a starting point, then look out. Their potential is immeasurable, and expect a fine tuning and more accomplishments to come.
Exceptional work, EVERGOODS!
Hill People Gear Aston House Backcountry
You won’t spot a Hill People banner following you round the Internet. Or a feature in a leading lifestyle mag. HPG are too busy building rugged load-bearing gear for that. To find them, you really have to dig, locate someone ‘in the know’. And that’s part of their charm. But only a part… their product, engineered in the field, and built not to fail, is truly why they’re special. Enter the Aston House Backcountry. A no-nonsense backcountry panel loader, built to last, adapt to your carrying style and needs, and carry your gear, inside and out, day after day.
Big enough to support big daytrips and long overnighters, the Aston is reinforced with dual full height aluminium stays and a hdpe framesheet for ultimate load transfer. Internal and external PALS allow for modular packing and gear attachment. And with its handy panel-loading access and well-placed pocketing you can quickly reach items without rummaging. All in all, it’s well-executed combination of flexible organization, rugged durability, access and adaptability. This is a fine pack built by a team who walks the walk. So we commend you, Hill People Gear!