The Osprey Exos is a solid middle-of-the-road pack, or one for a first-thru-hike. It has all the necessary features and is quite durable. But it is not on the same level as some of the cottage brand ultralight backpacks. It is a great pack for its cost and is definitely a great one to get you started with backpacking or thru-hiking.
A ventilated design that reduces back sweat
Available in a range of capacities
Great durability and longevity
Multiple pockets and compartments
Many features, probably more than you will likely use
Not as lightweight as other thru-hiking backpacks
The mesh back panel can get holes easily
So may straps and pockets that some feel useless
The Osprey series of packs is one of the most popular on the PCT. It combines a great price point with durability, being inexpensive, supportive, and the right size. If it is your first thru-hike and replacing a backpack in the middle of the PCT sounds like a nightmare, then the Osprey Exos is a great option. If you have more of a budget and think it is worth the weight savings, the Hyperlite backpack may be a better fit. The best thing about REI is the ease in returns.
Comfort: The Osprey Exos has a great ventilated design that helps to keep you cool and comfortable. The gap between the pack and the wearers back allows breathability. The back panel is mesh-lined to increase breathability and reduce sweat buildup.The shoulder straps and hip belt are adjustable, along with many other cinches and ties to store and carry things however you want. It is a very comfortable pack, especially when carrying a bear can or a little more weight.
Capacity: The Osprey Exos is available in a range of capacities, from 38 liters to 58 liters. This makes it suitable for a variety of thru-hikes and backpacking trips. the different sizes mean the same pack is available in the capacity that fits your needs. The capacity is further highlighted by the numerous pockets and straps to store gear. This pack has some of the best storage options of any that we have reviewed.
Durability: The Osprey Exos is made from high-quality materials and is built to last. The backpack’s main body is made from 100-denier nylon, which is lightweight but durable. The zippers and buckles are also high-quality and built to withstand regular use. It really is one of the most durable backpacks we have tried out.
Other Features: The Osprey Exos has several extra features that add to its usefulness for backpacking. The backpack has a hydration sleeve that can hold a hydration reservoir of up to 3 liters. The backpack also has an integrated flap cover that protects the backpack from the elements when the top lid is removed.
Overall, the Osprey Exos is the perfect first backpack for a new thru-hiker or backpacker. It is fairly versatile and can carry heavier base weights without too many issues. It is a great value pack and is more than suitable for a Pacific Crest Trail thru-hike.