Osprey Comet Review

New for Spring 2011, Osprey introduces its Active Everyday series.  In specific, we have been testing out the Comet backpack.  If features it is you like, the Comet might just be the backpack for you.  Now I’m not talking about a backpack that has a ton of features that you don’t use, but features that actually help make your day/activity more enjoyable.

The feature that I have most enjoyed on the Comet is its handle on the center of the backpack.  When I first saw this handle, I thought to myself; “great, another useless feature…”.  After a few days use, I found that I was totally wrong.  Out of all the handles on this backpack, I find that this is the handle that I use the most.  This is primarily because my backpack is usually laying on the ground with the front facing the sky.  When going to pick up the Comet, I almost always use this handle.  It may sound pretty cheesey, but it is a cool feature that might just surprise you.  The Comet has two large pockets on the outside that are great for holding laptop cords, mice, small camera’s, food for hiking, and pretty much anything you typically need during the course of the day, whether you are heading into the office or out for a day hike.  There is one more zippered pocket on the outside of the Comet and this is good for holding things like keys and other small items.  I personally would have liked to see a fleece like pocket to hold sunglasses and not scratch them.

The inside of the Comet has a laptop sleeve that fit’s my 14.1 inch laptop well.  I don’t think it would hold more than a 15 inch laptop.  There is also a separate sleeve to hold a hydration bladder, but I wouldn’t feel to comfortable keeping my hydration bladder next to my laptop.  I image that’s not what the designers intentions were though.  The capacity for this bag is 1700 cubic inches, which is plenty big for most day hikes and commutes into work. The zippers on the bag are your standard YKK zippers with the outside zips having a water resistant material to help keep water from leaking in.  The zipper pulls are super easy to use as Osprey has added a small piece of plastic to the string, making it a little easier to zip and unzip.

The back panel of the Comet has three mesh pads that help you carry the load and allow for a small amount of ventilation.  There is a waste strap to keep the Comet from moving on your hips too much, but it is not a weight barring hip strap.  In this type of pack, a weight barring hip strap would be a little overkill in my opinion anyways.  If you like a sternum strap on your backpack, you are in luck!  The Comet has a sternum strap with another feature I look for, a buckle that has a whistle.  Last, to help carry the load on your back, Osprey has added load lifters to the to the shoulder straps.  I haven’t used these all that much, but I could see them being used from time to time.  Pricing out at $89, I find the Comet to be appropriately priced and find the pack to be a good value, one that you will have for years to come.  For more information on the Osprey Comet, please visit Osprey.com

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