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Designers have had a field day on the Osprey Stratos 50. On first review you may think they've gone too far, but test the Stratos, and you'll soon realise they got it almost spot on.

osprey stratos
Overall Score
Size, weight and adaptability.
Unreachable side pockets, whilst wearing pack.

The Osprey Stratos 50 is a light weight, yet robust, multi use mid-sized backpack - as perfect for day trips as it is for short expeditions. The Stratos 50 features the extremely comfortable and fully adjustable AirSpeed™ ventilated back system.

The Osprey Stratos 50 is very compartmentalised, making for a very adaptable backpack, with a seemingly endless combination of entrances and storage space adjustability; great for stuffing layers into as you heat up on a hike, but a little confusing when trying to locate smaller items in a hurry.

The Osprey Stratos 50 Airspeed back system is a well vented mesh that keeps the pack away from your back, helping to keep your back sweat free. The venting works really well (and even runs onto the hipbelt), whilst the main pack is supported by two thin metal bars - the only downside being that when the pack is empty, it can't be folded.

The main storage is accessed by a standard adjustable top flap, which has inner and outer zipped pockets, and also a very useful side zip which runs the whole way down one side of the pack.

There's a small bottom compartment, accessed by a zip on the front, which can be unclipped on the inside; this makes the thin dividing fabric sit flat, turning the bag into one large single main compartment.

The detachable raincover has its own zipped pocket at the base on the pack, and proved useful on a very wet hike we took.

There is a thin grab handle at the top of the pack, which we used to lower the bag off a crag when climbing; it proved itself to be robust enough, if a little hard to locate when the pack is full.

The two side mesh stuff pockets have access from the top and side, with the idea that you can grab things whilst the pack is on - but unless you're Mr Tickle, you'll simply get frustrated trying to reach anything.

The front of the pack has a large flap pocket, with enough space behind it to stuff a down jacket into.

The Osprey Stratos 50 is a much loved edition to the AT closet, being used for family day trips, climbing weekends and even for the odd ski touring trip.

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