Deuter Spectro 28 SL Pack Review
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Being a female and short in height, it can be hard to find a pack that fits and fits comfortably. I already accepted that I fit in kid’s sized hats, but I wasn’t ready to give in and use a kid size backpack. My body was getting used to knots and pain in the shoulder and back area after carrying a heavy pack, but then I was given the Spectro 28 SL to test.
The Spectro series of packs was a new release for Deuter this year. The 28 SL offers great features without the added weight. I noticed just how light it was the first time I picked it up- a mere two pounds and a few ounces to be exact. I think I tested the 20lb weight capacity and surpassed it. But, if you want the pack to last trip after trip, I would stay within the specified limit.
When I put the pack on for the first time, I only had to make a few quick adjustments to tighten down the shoulder straps and hip belt. I now understood how the right size pack should feel! Amazed at how great the pack felt, I chalked it up to the woman’s specific fitting hip belt and shoulder straps. I finally had a pack that fit me and I was a hunchback no more! I should have kicked myself for not trying a woman specific pack years ago.
My favorite feature of the pack was the front-entry panel. It has a two way zipper and allows the user to get easy access to what is packed in at the bottom of the pack. For me, this was a big plus as I tend to always be in a rush to pack things up. I would rather be out playing than spending time neatly packing my bag according to what I will need access to and when.
The stretchy large pocket in the front also came in handy to stuff itinerary, a jacket and some munchies. If you arms are long enough, you can access what you need from the pocket while still wearing the pack. The pack also has stretch side pockets, which fit various types of water bottles from bike bottle size to wider Nalgene size with the ability to grab and load when the pack is on. A top zipper pocket is also accessible, if your arms reach, even when wearing the pack to grab out a camera, phone or anything else you may need.
Hiking through Jackson in the summer heat, I was surprised just how much the Aircomfort Flexlite back system kept the perspiration on my back away. A nickname given to me when I was a baby was the “eternal sweat ball”, as I tend to sweat more than others. After circling town a few times, I took the pack off at a restaurant to find my back surprisingly dry.
The pack is made of a tough nylon material that held up to weeks of on the go travel. Bushwhacking, bag handlers, shoving it in the overhead bin – nothing was too much for this pack.
A unique addition to the pack is the safety information that you can find on the inside of the top small gear pocket. It gives you the emergency contact number for major countries from the US to Germany and Austria. It also details how to signal aircraft for help and how to signal an alpine emergency using mirrors, whistles, flashlights and shouting.
One feature I wasn’t able to test since I took the pack out in the summer was the ice axe attachment. The attachment can also work for collapsible trekking poles, something I am not a big user of. The pack is also hydration bladder compatible.
I give the Spectro 28 SL two thumbs up for fit, durability and design. This pack retails for $139. It also comes in a 30 pound capacity (36 SL) for woman for $149. Stop by deuterusa.com for more info on this and other Deuter products.
- Volume: 1700 cubic inches
- Torso: 16-21 inches
- Weight: 2 lbs, 7 oz.
- Weight Capacity: 20 lbs
- Dimensions (HxWxD) 25x10x7 inches