One hell of a bag for day-long rides - cool, secure, ergonomically superb
Sep 16 2017
Sits secure on your back even on the roughest and jumpiest of trails
Lots of features, pockets galore and a well thought out lid carrying system
Breathable back panel keeps things cool
Feature to secure excess waist and shoulder straps leaves a loop of material, not ideal
A waterproof cover would be the cherry on the cake
You are looking for a day pack that looks great, is a pleasure to use and stores your kit neatly
Osprey are a brand name in the bag world, they’ve been a welcome companion for outdoor enthusiasts for years from weekend walkers to week long biking epics. The Osprey Raptor 10 is no freshman to the biking backpack party, with several iterations of this classic already under their belt, how did the newest edition stand up?
It's a sleek and professional looking rucksack, not loud and in your face, more functional with subtle suggestions of its more extreme side. At a slight 650g, it's pretty light too, barely noticeable when carrying minimal kit. It features Osprey’s Airscape Backpanel which utilises foam ridges covered with mesh to increase breathability which it achieves surprisingly well. Even after a big day in the saddle, I stayed quite cool in the back department, all things considered.
The Raptor uses an asymmetrical hydration sleeve with a zipper that starts on one side of the bag, zips across and down one arm strap, housing the bladder hose perfectly, ergonomics at its finest.
The hose then has an attached magnet clipped to it which then magnets to its, well, opposite bit, on the chest strap. A great little invention but not as secure as I’d like, it did unfortunately drop off occasionally on rough trails which left the hose hanging and banging under my arm. However, a quick tuck through the stretch loop on the chest panel en route to its magnet home and problem solved.
Osprey packs have always had effective little internal pouches and sleeves for tools, snacks, pumps and phones or electrical items. The Raptor doesn’t break this regime, plentiful little stashes are on offer, including a double-barrel double-zipped front pocket, once for phone, and then in again for keys or the like - the choice is yours.
The breathable hip strap has pockets on it of decent size, I do love a hip strap pocket for those on-the-go necessities. Osprey’s unique Lidlock system uses an oval shaped piece of flexible plastic attached using short bungees which when needed, can be passed through an air vent on your lid and then holds your open or full face helmet securely for the climb - genuinely simple, fantastically innovative, it works great.
At the bottom of the pack is an (included) tool wrap for you to tuck those allen keys, spares and equipment neatly away in separate mesh pouches. I would’ve liked to see a little waterproof cover included in here for a bag of this stature and purpose. The stretchy front pouch has drainage holes so you can stash wet kit on the move or use it on nicer days to keep layers that are required quickly with minimal fuss.
The bag fits well and due to its hydrostatic plate, water pressure is always there for drinking and it sits snugly to the back. Where other bags move around when riding anything other than a fire road, the Raptor sits firm with very minimal movement, even on the roughest and jumpiest of trails, pretty unique for a bag of this capacity and with a full 3l water bladder.
My real only niggle is the strap adjustment design, where other brands have sorted the excess with velcro or other means, Osprey use plastic hooks that hold the excess to the strap itself. Whilst this does prevent the tails flying around, it results in a loop of excess material on the shoulder and hip straps. If you’re of a small frame, there can be a fair amount flapping around or getting occasionally snagged on things. Not a deal breaker by any means, but a shame on a bag of such quality - Osprey say a solution is already in the mix, watch this space!
To conclude, the Raptor is one hell of a bag for small to day-long local rides only limited due to its size, but then Osprey offer all sorts if you’re going out for longer. It's cool, secure, ergonomically superb and with all the features you’d expect plus some. At circa £80 - £90, it is of comparable price, but even if it wasn’t, I’d still buy one, it's that good, now my go-to bag for nearly every ride, despite its annoying excess strap loop faux pas!
A self confessed bike geek, Adam has been riding bikes for over two decades and breaking things for nearly as long. With more facial hair than on his head, his appearance is one of a hard paper round! He's friendly, approachable, critical and fair - loves a good stoppie and a turnbar tuesday, real ale and long bikes.