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Exped Lightning 60 litre Backpack - Review after 2 year's use and abuse!

I use my Exped Lightning 60L for bikepacking mainly. It doesn't list that as one of it's uses on the Exped Website but it serves me very well. I've given it a hard time, and I hope this review from a user of the product is useful to you. An ultra lightweight pack, at 1.15 kilos it's no hassle to carry at all. It is said to be able to cope with up to 52.9lbs (23 kilos) of load, which is pretty impressive. The shoulder straps and hip straps are well padded, so it's comfortable if adjusted correctly.

I've used it for bikepacking, as luggage when flying, carrying shopping, in fact for all sorts of things for over two years now. Generally I'd say I carry around 6 - 8 kilos in it when bikepacking. It's had some abuse, two big falls of my bike, with no damage to any of the straps or main body. The worst it's suffered, whilst getting dragged along the gravel, at speed, during a heavy fall, is a small hole in one of the side pockets.

A hole in the side pocket of the rucksack
The only damage, a skuff on the hip pocket and a small hole in the side pocket, after being dragged along the gravel at high speed!

The pack has an aluminium spine, of which a shorter spine is provided with the woman's spec of the product. What's great about this pack is that it can be adapted to your body shape using the multiple adjustment points:

  • Hip to shoulder

  • Hip strap

  • Chest strap height

  • Chest strap

  • Shoulder strap to backpack body distance (important for helmet or large hats)

  • Hip strap to backpack body distance

  • Shoulder strap tautness

I've been able to fully adjust the pack to my body shape on my own, it would be easier with someone else but I didn't find it a big deal. You can see my video of me adjusting it here.

It has many straps and loops for carrying on the top, bottom and sides and back, so many options in fact.

There's a few pockets, but not so many as to be annoying, one each side on the outer body, great for carrying water bottles, one each side on the padded hip strap, both zipped and great for carrying things you want on you in case of emergency such as a whistle, phone etc. There's a large water resistant zipped pocket on the top, but discreetly hidden, accessible from the outside, and another zipped mesh pocket with key ring accessible from the inside, which I use for important documents and money, Apart from the one flat zipped interior pocket, it's one big cavity!

The Exped Lighning 60 litre
The Exped Lighning 60 litre

There's only one thing I don't like about it, and that's that the side bottle pockets have two straps in each, which sometimes get in the way, but it's only a slight annoyance and doesn't in any way deter me from using the backpack.

The pack has a roll top, with an over-the-top securing hooked strap, plus it has a strap and clip to clip it down each side. I don't use those clips, I clip the two clips on the roll top together, forming a loop, that way I only have to undo one clip when I want to get into it.

Back of the backpack showing the good padding on the hips and shoulders
There's plenty of good quality padding on the shoulders and hips

All the straps have a lot of adjustment, including the zig zag straps, and all are secured by a velcro loop so as not to dangle all over the place.

The pack is water resistant, made from 210 D HMPE ripstop nylon, PU coated, with a 1'500 mm water column. I have ridden in torrential rain, but always have a poncho over the top of the rucksack, so cannot vouch for it's water resistance, but would suspect it does what it says on the website!

I'm actually surprised I'm writing this as it's fared much better than I thought it would, so my conclusion is that this is not only a great, robust backpack but also an ultra lightweight robust backpack! But wait, there's more! It also has a five year guarantee!!

Well worth the money, nice one Exped👍

Check out the Exped specification here

Thank you for stopping by, I hope you'll subscribe and read some of my other blogs.

*** update ***

Nearly a year later, I used my backpack to carry my snowshoes, and a full snow camp loading. I didn't hike far with it, it was more a test to see if I could do it. The Exped was absolutely full. I'd probably have to strap my Snowfeet skis onto the outside as I couldn't get my electronics in it. You can see what I put in it here

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