Why We Chose The Osprey Archeon 45 Pack: Versatile, stylish, eco-friendly
More info: osprey.co.uk
In terms of looks, Osprey’s Archeon packs, which are out in Spring 2020, represent a bit of a departure for the brand. Functional minimalism isn’t really something we associate with Osprey, whose rucksacks usually feature plenty of bells and whistles, with contemporary styling to match.
The Archeon series, which comprises a whole family of packs in various different sizes, are a little different, however. They take technical construction and dependable build quality – both hallmarks of the brand – and add a sustainable approach, through use of recycled materials. As such, the Archeon series is made with fabrics that are certified by the Global Recycled Standard (GRS). They are also treated with a durable water repellent (DWR) that contains no harmful PFCs.
The result is a great-looking pack with retro appeal, thanks to the classic styling and little design touches like the sewn logo patch. This is a rucksack that is clearly built to last, constructed with durable materials. It also seems to bear more than a passing similarity to Scandinavian brand Fjällräven’s excellent Kaipak rucksack – or is that just us?
Osprey describes the Archeon 45 pack as a versatile backpacking, travel, cragging and day hiking load carrier. It certainly has enough features to fulfil all of those uses, and the 45-litre capacity swallows everything from climbing gear to travel accessories.
Though the Archeon has visual echoes of those trusty old rucksacks from the 1960s and 70s, it incorporates plenty of the features you expect from a modern pack. That includes an adjustable and ventilated mesh back panel, a detachable rain cover (which is also made from recycled materials), dual access stretch side pockets, an internal mesh pocket and twin zipped hipbelt pockets. It’s also compatible with hydration systems thanks to an internal reservoir sleeve.
The suspension and harness system are similarly modern. The harness is adjustable, and the straps have an edgeless padded mesh for comfort. There’s a chunky and supportive belt to effectively transfer weight to the hips too. Structurally, an HDPE framesheet and lightweight aluminium alloy stays help to spread load across the entire back panel to ensure a comfortable carry, even with heavy loads.
Incidentally, though we trawled the product specs it’s not clear whether those internal elements are also made from recycled materials, but we’d hope that they are sourced in a similarly sustainable manner to the outer fabrics.