Rated 4 out of 5 by BikeSnobDC Hope this helps
I have been using this pack for one week. I bought this bag to replace a similar bag that I have flogged daily for probably seven years. I bought this bag to carry to work. Sometimes I walk to work, sometimes I ride the train, sometimes I ride my bike. So I need an bag that can carry a varying amount of gear in a variety of active sometimes bordering on athletic situations. So far I am happy with this bag, despite what some of the following narrative may suggest.
The build quality seems good. The material is thicker and tougher than I expected. This makes for a heavier bag than I was expecting. Not a prob for me. This bag will not have an easy life. It is my daily carry.
The bag has zero organizational pockets, loops, compartments etc inside its main pockets, except a key clip. It is barren. I had to put my small items, tools, pen, assorted cables and chargers, etc. into a small pouch that I carry in the main compartment.
I am five nine, 175 lbs. I bought the M/L size for the larger capacity, not for the fit per se. It fits fine. It is a little longer than I expected. it is comfortable. I have loaded it with probably at most fifteen pounds of beer+gear. The shoulder and waist straps are long enough for me to wear the pack over a heavy winter coat/parka.
I got the gray color with the yellow* accents. ("guide gold? if you are drinking the LL Bean cool aid.) The color of the bag is subdued enough for an urban environment. It is darker than in the video. I don?t think there are any reflective elements on the bag.
I have not tried to put a hydration bladder in it. The sleeve for the bladder is narrow and short. My Macbook Air 11 inch JUST fits in it. So if you are thinking of doing the old laptop in the bladder sleeve trick, only the smallest or a tablet would work. The sleeve does not extend to the bottom of the bag so the bladder would sit high. Too high for MTB use I think. No way 100oz would fit. 70oz? maybe. prob a fifty or smaller is the best bet. There is only one exit for the hose and it is the left side. I did not buy the pack planning to put a bladder in it, but if you are, I would look elsewhere. It seems like an underdeveloped area of the bag.
The sternum strap is not detachable. I wish it was. It should be on a pack at this price point that presents itself as being a technical pack.
The hip belt is not detachable. It is a real, usable hip belt, wide enough and padded enough to take some weight.
The BOA system is a gimmick I think. The wires can get in the way of the side pockets if they have slack in them and interfere with slipping stuff into these pockets. I would prefer regular cinch straps. Cinch straps have uses beyond cinching, in that they can be used to lash additional gear to the bag. You can?t do this with the boa. I have only had the bag a week, and admit I am just learning how to use the BOA system. Perhaps its charms will reveal themselves to me yet.
The side pockets are deep and and a little floppy. There is no way to close or cinch them The mouths of the pockets are not elasticized. I would not trust stuff to stay in there while running or during rough handling of the bag.
February 6, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by BeanBootBob Great, Versitile Pack
I purchased this pack for day hikes, camping and mountain biking. I was tentative to use this size of a pack for mountain biking, since I like to travel light, but the fact that it has the boa and compresses makes it so much more versitile. Being able to put your CamelBak in it was also an essential feature and it holds my 70 oz bladder well. It's also perfect for camping over the weekend and day hikes. The quality of the pack is very good and it is very comfortable.
February 2, 2015
Rated 4 out of 5 by BernSilv Quality Product
I actually didn't end up keeping this item, but it was a difficult decision. The pack is great. It looks great, felt great on, and was almost everything I needed.
In my opinion the pack was more narrow than I had expected. It is long (top to bottom) and that is how it gets the volume. I was looking for something a little shorter that had a larger base. I wanted something for day hikes, that I could also use everyday. This also didn't fit my 100 oz. Osprey hydration bladder, but it would fit a 70 oz fine I'm sure (i like to carry a lot of water).
Another great L.L. Bean product, I was really hoping it'd work for what I needed.
December 5, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by orca68 Great pack-few changes would make it even better
Just returned from a fall hiking trip to Co. with this pack. Positives: Right size, lightweight, well-made. Things that could be improved; 1) Ditch the Boa system. Backpacker Magazine may like it, but for this pack, I think it's useless and more of a gimmick than anything.2) The side pouches should be deeper. As they are, it's hard to put any kind of a water bottle in them. 3). Zippers on the two main pouches should extend further down the sides.
October 14, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by L0vet0h1ke Great Pack
I've loaded it a few times just for the sake of loading it and testing it out. The pack works well and I would recommend it for anyone. Heck, I even bought it for my son to use at school. Great Pack!
September 12, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by rupa78 Day Trekker 25 Pack
I'm a day hiker exclusively. At 66 the thrill of camping out is long gone. lol I live in FL, but spend my summers in NH, which includes hiking the White Mountains. On longer hikes I was having serious neck pain problems using the inexpensive llbean collapsible day pack. I finally drove down to the North Conway store and bought this pack. After separate hikes up Mt. Jefferson & Mt. Washington, I can say this is the best $99 I have ever spent on hiking.
More than ample room, convenient hiking pole storage, and the contact points with your back do not warm up an optional water bladder. The large waste band straps easily transfer weight to your hip area, and I have not had the slightest neck irritation using this pack.
I would be hard pressed to recommend this pack any higher.
September 5, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by llbeanshopperjohn5 New daypack
I ordered in april and it arrived in august. Nice looking pack, has a lot of pockets for storage and a few adjustments. every thing came set for a little person and I opened up the straps. Felt comfortable on my back empty. Haven't used it on trail yet. Still trying to figure out what all the connection points are for and how best to load it. Looks like it will serve me well for next decade.
September 3, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by TrekkingGrandpa Great choice for light hiking
Very comfortable and light. I like the BOA adjustment that makes for a tightly packed carry.
September 3, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Kateg22 Compact pack fits a lot
I bought this pack after seeing the video on the LL Bean site. It is easy to use and really does hold a lot. I am 5'1 and the Small is very comfortable on my shoulders and back. My only criticism is that I can remove my water bottles from the side pockets but need help getting them back in. I've even gotten compliments on the color. I am very happy with this purchase. N
July 16, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by BigDad1 Great backpack
It is exactly what I was looking for. Looks to be well made and is just the right size for my needs.
June 12, 2014