Overall: Five Stars for a skimo race pack that is perfect for skimo racing with only a negligible amount of extra weight for enhanced utility for “real” ski mountaineering.
Background on product familiarity: I used my Rapid Racing pack during the 2014-15 season on many ski mountaineering tours (both winter and spring) even loaded up with sharps (ice axe, boot crampons, ski crampons) and avy rescue gear. I’ve also used CAMP’s very similar Rapid 260 pack for four years of racing and training, plus some touring. Competitor packs I’ve used include the Trab World Cup Aero, Dynafit RC 20, and Dynafit Broad Peak 28.
First, the first impressions out of the box: Despite the minimal weight, the fabric feels substantial, and the feature set is anything but minimal. By carrying water on the outside with CAMP’s own Action Bottle and Holder, the 20-liter capacity is true enough to carry a full load, although all my gear was very compact (e.g., CAMP Race 290 crampons, ARVA Ultra shovel, ARVA Carbon 240 Compact probe).
Second impressions, in use: The features work very well as designed, especially CAMP’s unique (?) integrated partner towing system (lacking only a faster partner). However, if you retain the lasso-style ski attach system (as opposed to the hook version), then you need to wrap a bit of tape around the sides of the clip, otherwise its excessively pared-down cross section will allow the clip to fall off and dangle about when it isn’t kept taught by carrying skis. Also, the waist “belt” clip (on the wearer’s left side of the pack) would often pop open and thereby allow the belt to go entirely slack, although this ended up not being a problem because …
Third impressions, for long-term durability: … the sewing on the waist belt attachment to the center buckle came entirely undone, but this was easily replaced with a nearly weightless “single bar slide” that now both secures the strap to the buckle and substitutes its adjustability for the popping-prone original clip (which I now have set up to let out as much strap as possible, so its open versus closed position is moot). The sewing also started coming undone at the shoulder strap’s attachment to the safety box, but it’s stayed fine after a few stitches with a Speedy Stitcher Sewing Awl. The interior of the side-access bottom compartment might be suspect with boot crampons and ski crampons, but I protected it with a nearly weightless cut-up blue foam pad (secured in placed with sticky velcro) so as to also provide an emergency insulated pad.
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