For the serious hiker
The first thing I noticed about the Osprey Exos 58 was not only the size of the backpack but especially how light. With a capacity of 58 litres, it is slightly smaller than the backpack that an average backpacker travels through Australia. Because of this size, it is not a backpack that you simply take with you for a day trip or where you can put your sports equipment or groceries. Which by the way is good, although it is not very handy for groceries due to the opening at the top. If you mainly do day trips/hikes, the Exos 58 is just a bit too big. Unless you are five people away and want to carry the stuff for everyone.
Both the Exos and the Eja (women’s version) were developed for hiking all year round, on long trails and for backpacking with a light backpack. Ideal for when you want to take your entire household effects on your back!
In addition to the size, the Exos 58 also stands out because of its colours, but especially loose straps. If you do not fill the backpack to its maximum, the many straps hang loose, like fringes around the bag. If you want to take the plane with it, it is highly advisable to purchase the Osprey rain cover or to have it wrapped in at the airport. The backpack is just too big to carry as a carry-on bag even if it takes the top off.
The shoulder straps are quite narrow. I did not expect it would be comfortable. The foam padding makes it comfortable and does not cut into the shoulders. If you use the chest strap, the Exos is comfortable. Because of the loose strings and straps, it took me a few minutes to puzzle what everything was for.
I picked up the backpack during a 100-kilometre bike ride, the last 40 of which with the Exos 58 on my back. I also used the backpack a lot during day trips. Because of the preformed inside, with a mesh layer over it, you don’t have a sweaty back like with regular backpacks. Which of course is ideal when you have a full, bulky backpack.
This “benefit” made the Exos my “fixed” backpack for cycling, even though there was very little in it every time. I also used the backpack a lot for sportswear/gear when I was on the motorcycle. I ride a lot on the bike (only not when it’s stormy, or slippery.) The light weight of the bag and the extra strap over the chest makes it a very nice bag.
Would I recommend the Exos 58? Yes, as an extra bag that is just that little bit larger for the longer hikes/tours/walks. As an extra bag alone, I find the bag quite pricey (€ 189.95), but to be honest, you also have a bag that will last a long time!
All in all, the Exos 58 is an ideal backpack that is especially suitable for the serious hiker. A super light backpack that is sturdy enough to take a lot with you, and is not too warm on the back.