PDF - Osprey Packs


PDF - Osprey Packs
April 9, 2015
Featuring: Kode 42
URL: http://tinyurl.com/kgh7qvp
Osprey’s Kode 42 is billed as a technical backcountry snow pack with a 42-liter capacity for hut trips or ski patrol
missions. With one last hut trip on our calendar for the season, we thought it’d be a great opportunity to check out
the packs as they sounded pretty ideal on paper for a few days in the winter woods above Basalt.
The drawstring, top-loading opening to the main compartment is great for stuffing the pack to capacity, and the
zippered back-panel access is a fantastic feature when it comes time to grab that extra pair of gloves that were
stuffed down between the gallon-sized bag of frozen burritos and a puffy jacket. Granted, the large lid pocket would
be a much better spot for gloves, and would still have room for a hat, goggles, and an extra baselayer. The lid also
features a helmet compartment that covers enough of the helmet to keep it from filling with snow on the ascent, as
well as a smaller stash pocket that’s great for maps and other similarly-sized items. If a helmet doesn’t need to be
carried, we found that the compartment is also a great spot for a sleeping bag. Otherwise, there are four loops on top
of the lid that allow bulky things like bedding to be strapped there (something I did with my bag, via a $3 purchase of
two velcro straps). Two very large, zippered hip pockets are roomy enough for sandwiches and bars, and the
dedicated sleeve for avalanche gear still had room for hut slippers and a roll of duct tape in addition to a shovel and
probe. Hannah’s shovel handle fit nicely into her S/M Kode, but my rather large Voile’ shovel handle had to be
strapped to the outside, which conveniently fit perfectly into the ice tool loop on the back panel.
Comfort was impressive for both of us while the pack was full and minimally-loaded, going both up and down. The
buckles are all easy to adjust with gloves on and held solidly, even while tumbling downhill a bit – in the name of
testing, of course. The Kode isn’t gender-specific, but at 5’7”, Hannah felt it fit her very well, and I thought the M/L fit
my 6’3” frame nicely, too.
Though the A-frame ski straps are solid and work well for their application (and would
make great purchase points for hauling a sled), both Hannah and I were missing stash
pockets that are sometimes housed here, as there’s no easily-accessible stash pocket for
a water bottle or hat/gloves/etc. The abundance of zippered pockets are great, however
all but the hip pockets require taking the pack off to access, and while those hip pockets
are impressively big, they’re not big enough for bottles or a pair of winter gloves.
Overall, the Kode 42 is an excellent option for exactly what Osprey says it’s made for –
hut trips and skiers/boarders who need to carry more gear than usual. As a multi-day hut
trip pack, it’s more of a minimalist’s size that will make you think twice about what you
really need, versus what you want to bring. But, it’s comfortable, stable, well built, and
has just the right amount of bells and whistles (literally, on the sternum strap) to fall into
the “thoughtfully designed” category, instead of being obnoxiously techy.
Sizes S/M and M/L Colors Nitro Green (tested), Hoodoo Red, Black MSRP
$170 ospreypacks.com