CiloGear 45L worksack

 In gear review

I’ve owned an Osprey alpine climbing backpack for years but from day one I didn’t like it. It was quite uncomfortable when carrying heavy loads and felt ever less comfortable when climbing, always getting in the way of hips and shoulders movements. I bear with it for about 2 years until I couldn’t stand it anymore and decided to go for a CiloGear 45L worksack.

Overview

Cilo Gear 45L worksack

Fabrics

  • 210d Cordura with Dyneema Ripstop main side panels
  • VX21 (210d Cordura and Kevlar X-Pac) bottom sides
  • VX42 (420d Cordura and Kevlar X-Pac) center panel and bottom

Manufacturer's data

  • removable framesheet with aluminum stay, bivy pad
  • removable strap set
  • removable lid
  • removable hip belt
  • Volume range: Normal: 45L | Expanded: 75L | Compressed: 32L | Closed: 22L
  • Weight: 790g (1.6lbs) stripped | 1870g(4.1lbs.) max with all options

Advantages/Drawbacks

  • Highly versatile
  • Weight/volume ratio
  • Available only by ordering online from the manufacturer
  • Expensive compare to similar products from other brands
  • Many people have issues with shoulder straps

Opinion

What attracted me with this pack is that, as pretty much everything is removable, it is a very versatile backpack that you can customize based on your needs and load and whether you want to go ultralight even if it means less comfort or the opposite. It is one of the most if not the most versatile pack on the market.

With all the straps feature, it is easy to fix gears if needed on the outside and compress the pack to spread the load properly (see the below videos).

CiloGear WorkSack Straps

CiloGear WorkSack Straps 2

I also gained in comfort when carrying heavy loads but most important I really gained in comfort when climbing. This pack gets far less in the way of climbing motion than my previous Osprey pack. But although it improved from my previous pack, I think it could be better and that there are others packs which perform better on that aspect.

However, with the 45L and more Cilogear packs, there are many people complaining about the shoulder straps and seam quality and durability. Doing many varied mountains activity, I am not using this pack intensively so I am not suffering from these problems yet. But these are concerns, so if you’re looking for a pack that you can abuse, it might be better to look for something else. Note that there is a full dyneema version, the 45L W/NWD WorkSack, which should be more robust and is lighter, but costs more than twice the price.

Finally, it is more expensive than most similar packs from other brands and as packs are made when ordered, you’ll have to wait a while (Cilogear website says 8 weeks) to receive it.

If you are looking for another more detailed review you can check Outdoor gear lab very detailed review.

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