Why We Chose The Osprey Skimmer 28: A versatile, functional pack with great storage solutions.
When it comes to the world of quality backpacks, it’s no news story that Osprey are kind of a big deal. Over the years, they’ve built up a loyal base of users, providing backpacks for backpack enthusiasts but also, and it’s important to stress this, backpacks for people who just want a good bit of kit for their gap year, their commute, or their trek along the Camino de Santiago.
Osprey were born in California, back in 1974. Since then, they’ve been creating and evolving packs of all shapes and sizes and for any activity. The new Skimmer, equipped with a rain-cover and AirScape backsystem, is a women’s-specific daypack (the men’s version is called the Osprey Skarab)that merges a clean, simple, aesthetic with a distinct sense of practicality.
“An innovative Bump-Foam back panel ticks all the boxes in terms of comfort and ventilation”
What else? Well, we’re big fans of the Skimmer’s simple top-zip access point; a feature that makes packing and unpacking a piece of cake. That external hydration sleeve, meanwhile, is very handy – allowing you to slide your reservoir in and out of the pack without having to unload it first. Speaking of hydration, the dual zippered side pockets on the Skimmer are easily big enough for one-litre water bottles.
We also think the dual hipbelt pockets on this thing, while nothing we haven’t seen before, are user-friendly and a great place to store snacks, head-torches, and/or your Swiss army knife. Elsewhere, the front shove-it pocket makes for rapid access to your waterproof jacket when the heavens open. The zipped pocket at the top, which is made from a soft sunglass-friendly fabric, also means you don’t ever need to worry about where you’ve put your valuables.
Clearly designed with versatility in mind, the large daypack capacity here means it’s perfect for those day-long adventures – no matter if that day-long adventure is going down in spring, summer, autumn or winter. An innovative foam back panel ticks all the boxes in terms of comfort and ventilation while the low-profile harness and nicely padded hipbelt provide decent load-transfer even when the pack has been well and truly overstuffed. The backsystem, it’s worth pointing out, has been designed specifically for women. This, like so many aspects of the pack, underlines the intelligent behind-the-scenes thinking at Osprey headquarters.