Whether you’re out for a quick blast to clear the head from work, a catch up with mates, or off to explore the wild, there’s nothing better than jumping on your bike and hitting the trails. But we all reach a point when one drink bottle, a snack bar, and a spare tube in your back-pocket aren’t going to cut it for your next adventure. Eventually we need to bite the bullet and start looking at options for a good riding pack.
Just like mountain biking in general, the market for riding packs has rapidly evolved to have us covered no matter what our adventure entails. I’m stoked to be reviewing Osprey’s Raptor 10. With a 2.5 L bladder, weighing 650g, having a ton of technical features and costing $199 it sits nicely in the middle of this expanding market of riding specific packs.
As someone who spends a heap of time on bikes, I knew exactly what I wanted a good riding pack to offer. I have set the following three criteria as the basis of my review – capability, comfort, and features. When we start the journey of deciding on a pack, I look at its capability, what can the pack actually take? Fitness for purpose is the key here – is it going to keep us out of trouble for a few hours, or multiple days? For me comfort is a close second – I don’t want to be reminded through restriction and rub points that I have a pack on. Finally, the features – is it a cohesive design that works intuitively?
The Raptor is deigned as a light daypack – which makes the most of its 10L capacity. I found it was the perfect size for anything over a 3-hour ride. With a 2.5L bladder that was super easy to fill and a nice high flow nozzle, hydration was sorted. I really appreciated the neat layout of pockets designed to separate your tools, extra clothes and food supplies. Having the delineation that the pockets allow, means getting exactly what you want at any time is a breeze. The tool pouch was awesome, and snuggly fit my standard spares of 29er tube, pump, tyre levers and multitool.
The slim, forest green Raptor scored for me instantly in the comfort field. I love the bag being slim and tall as it allows me to stay dynamic and not constantly brush my elbows across the bag when I’m riding. The waist and chest straps were easily adjustable and offered nice support, which didn’t rub even after 6 hours on my back. The airspace ventilation panel on your back is pretty spot on also, allowing some ventilation, which minimises that sweaty, wet back we have all experienced.
I had no issues wearing this pack loaded up when the trails got more rowdy. It didn’t move around or interfere with my riding, which was great.
I really liked the layout of the bag and thoughtful design features, like the pockets on the waist straps, which perfectly hold a phone and wallet one side and a bunch of snacks in the other. Likewise, the bladder compartment, which zips fully open, is awesome to use and allows you to easily fill the big bladder mid ride.
The magnetised latch, which holds the mouthpiece of the hydration on the chest strap, was really easy to use, but I found that it often detached when I was being more dynamic on the bike. I ended up just tucking it under the chest strap and then pulling it out when I needed it, which was an easy fix for me. The bag didn’t have any elastic or velcro for tidying up the main strap adjustment which didn’t affect the function in any way, but just meant it didn’t look as tidy as it could have.
The Raptor is full of neat touches that I appreciated through my rides with it. The elastic helmet strap was cool for when you wanted an extended mid-ride break, and as I mentioned before, the number and layout of compartments was really nice.
Osprey have created a really solid range of riding specific packs, with the 10L Raptor being a top quality light day option for getting out on a longer mission than your jersey pockets will allow. It’s capable, comfortable and has a heap of neat design features, which make it well worth considering for your next riding pack. Having used the pack constantly for the past 6 weeks, it has held up flawlessly and I anticipate, with Osprey’s reputation, the build quality will give it top-notch longevity.