Osprey Stratos 24 Backpack Review
The Osprey Stratos line-up has received an update for the Spring/Summer 2017 season. Here is our take on the day-hiker, the Stratos 24.
Fit & Comfort
Osprey packs excel in this department, and the Stratos 24 did not disappoint. The Stratos 24 is available in one size and has an easy to adjust torso length and can be modified to fit 18″ to 22″ torso.
To adjust, follow these simple steps:
- Flip the pack over and loosen the load lifter straps
- Slide your hand between the back panel and the shoulder strap harness to disengage the velcro
- Slide the shoulder strap harness up or down based on your needs and line up with the arrow
- Firmly press the shoulder strap harness and back panel together.
The Stratos 24 features the same suspension system as the larger, light-weight backpacking oriented Stratos 34, 36, 50. The Stratos 24 features Osprey’s LightWire™ alloy frame, which provides structure to the pack and integrates with the AIRSPEED™ Suspension backpanel. This system helps to create space between the pack and your back, while keeping the weight distribution even. This system helps to keep you cooler on your ascents or if you live in a hot and humid climate. Osprey adds to the breathability and comfort with the inclusion of Spacermesh, which in laymen’s terms is a ventilated die-cut foam, in all of the contact points of the shoulder straps and hipbelt. This material is soft on bare skin, for example while wearing a tank top, and dries quickly in dry climates.
In addition to being able to adjust the torso length, there are numerous ways to fine tune the fit of the pack. The sternum strap easily slides up and down along a track, the shoulder straps quickly adjust, and the hip belt adjusts evenly thanks to the ErgoPull™ hipbelt closure system, which directly attaches the backpanel.
As its’ name suggests, the Stratos 24 features a carrying capacity of 24L of storage with a recommended load of 10-25 lbs. The Stratos 24 measures 22″ x 12″ x 12″ and weighs in at 2.75 lbs. I have carried 25 lbs of gear in this pack and really didn’t notice the difference between carrying 25 or 15 lbs. The pack provides structure, support, and distributes the weight easily without feeling the load with every step (on foot or on skis).
Osprey has you covered if you like to organize your gear too. There are two large mesh side pockets that are deep and can accommodate large water bottles, including our beloved Yeti Rambler. The mesh pockets are stretchy and feature an elastic top. To ensure your items don’t pop out, there is also a side cinch strap that you can adjust or loop a carabiner to. Along the front panel, there is a vertical zip pocket that is perfect for stashing your map, hat, gloves, or an extra layer. On the top of the Stratos 24 there are two zippered “slash” pockets, as Osprey calls them. The pocket closest to the back is a large mesh pocket with a key clip inside. The smaller front pocket is perfect for your headlamp, sunglasses, sunscreen, etc. Along the hip belt, there are two generous zippered pockets that are ideal for snacks, camera, knife, and other highly used items.
The main compartment of the Stratos 24 has dual zippered access, making it easier to find items at the very bottom. Osprey also made the lining of the pack lighter than the pack itself, which always helps to find things.
Osprey has included an integrated rain cover that lives in its’ own storage compartment at the bottom of the pack. I am not going to lie, this is an excellent feature for the sudden afternoon thunderstorms that are quite common in Colorado. Admittedly, I don’t always remember to bring a raincover with me on each outing, but it is nice to know that my added layers and perhaps even my camera, will always be protected with this pack despite my lack of planning.
The Stratos 24 also features an internal hydration reservoir sleeve or compartment. I found this sleeve to work best with Osprey or Platypus bladders as they easily slide in and out. Using an old Camelback or Hydropak meant that there was much more pushing and shoving to get the water into the compartment. No matter the reservoir, I struggled with getting the tubing or mouthpiece through the tiny opening in the back of the pack. I understand that Osprey is attempting to limit the amount of moisture that may enter the pack, but I found trying to put the hose in and out of this small opening to be maddening. I miss the traditional “hooded” water exits on my old packs.
The Osprey Stratos 24 also features a trekking pole loop and bungee fastening system for easy storage. On the left side of the pack (looking from the back), there is also an ice-tool loop and bungee tie off on the front of the pack. These added features allows you to use this pack in a variety of seasons.
The Osprey Stratos 24 retails for $130 and is a solid day-hiking pack. This pack is designed and carefully constructed to last for many years to come. In fact, I still have my original Osprey backpacking pack from 15 years ago and it still looks ready for the next adventure. Osprey’s attention to detail and use of rugged 420HD Nylon Packcloth along the body and bottom of this pack, means that it can handle the elements. The Stratos, as mentioned above, is available in three additional sizes: 34, 36, and 50. The Sirius, is a women’s specific pack line up that is quite similar to the Stratos, and is available in a 24, 36, and 50 sizes.