Anybody tried the Exped Lightning 45 and 60
Display Avatars Sort By:
Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Exped Lightning 60 on 04/05/2013 10:56:52 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 12:23:59 MDT.

Jani Kikuts
(Enginerd) - M

Locale: Southern California
Bear Canister Fits on 04/05/2013 12:55:06 MDT Print View

Long time reader, just signed up for a membership. Anyhow, I received my 60 a few days ago and I can easily fit a BV500 in the bottom of the pack horizontally and vertically. I'm not sure yet if I will keep the pack or not, the center aluminum frame feels a bit strange against my spine when I bend forward but maybe I need to bend it a bit more to fit the curvature of my back. The frame does bend fairly easily for adjustments but I hope it would not go out of adjustment just as easily when carrying weight. I scored the pack on Campsaver with the recent 20% coupon they had for $199 and free shipping but I don't think that deal is still going.

John Harper
(johnnyh88) - M

Locale: The SouthWest
Re: Exped Lightning 60 on 04/05/2013 20:13:11 MDT Print View

Dave, the shoulder strap as I see it is split into 3 parts: the first part pads the back and connects to the stay, the 2nd part wraps around your shoulder, and the 3rd part goes over part of my chest then under my armpit and connects to the webbing. Parts 1 and 2 are equally padded, part 3 is very lightly padded (which is a nice touch).

Part 1: 4.5"
Part 2: 9.5 - 10"
Part 3: 7 - 7.5"

I also got mine at camp saver with the 20% off. Summit Hut still has them for $200

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Exped Lightning 60 on 04/06/2013 10:41:58 MDT Print View

Thanks John

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Exped 45/60 Frame on 04/08/2013 17:51:01 MDT Print View

I emailed some questions about the pack to Exped and they said the frame on both the Lighting 45 and 60 is 24 inches long. I should be trying one out soon.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Exped 45/60 Frame on 04/08/2013 18:26:28 MDT Print View

Right. The 24" will be to where the load lifters are, I presume.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Re Re Exped 45/60 Frame on 04/08/2013 18:34:04 MDT Print View

"Right. The 24" will be to where the load lifters are, I presume."

That would be my guess. My Torso length is 20-22 depending on the hipbelt. Some hipbelts ride lower on my hips while others need to go a bit higher. My guess is I'll only have 2-3 inches sticking up which should be acceptable for me. Remember I would probably only fill this pack up to full capacity once or twice a year. For people carrying a packraft or a bear canister my nitpick over torso length is probably a non-issue.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re Re Exped 45/60 Frame on 04/08/2013 18:38:06 MDT Print View

So are you going for the 60 or 45? Based on specs, it looks like the 60 is just a smidge taller with a little more depth.

Avery S
(Aveman)
Lightnight 45 showed up today on 04/10/2013 00:07:11 MDT Print View

My lightning 45 showed up today, and it's a pretty neat pack.

The suspension does a really, really good job of getting all the weight onto the hip belt, which is big and cushy. I also was initially annoyed by weird pressure of the lumbar pad, but the sensation went away completely when I loaded it up with climbing ropes and gear.

This 45L version weighed 38.7 oz on my scale (with tags), so not much lighter than the 60L. There is a 0.70 oz top strap and 0.35 oz ice axe bungee that can be removed.

It would be possible to remove the hip belt completely if I cut the end of the webbing that snugs the bottom of the bag to the hip belt. As many webbing ends are, it is sewn bag onto itself to keep it from slipping through the ladder lock. This double layer of webbing is too thick to go through the lightweight ladder locks on this pack. The load lifter straps are not sewn back, and as such they can be switched to the higher set of load lifter ladder locks. The bigger problem is that without the hip belt, there is no anchor point for the stay, and without the stay, the shoulder straps lose their main connection to the pack. So while the hip belt can be completely removed, the pack can't be used without it. Why do I care? I'd like it to function as a "bag with straps" for climbs with a long approach in the Sierras. My opinion is that it is unusable without the hip belt and stay. My fault for trying to get the bag to do something it was definitely not designed for!

With the hip belt as separated as I could get it without cutting the pack, it weighed 9.5 oz. The stay is 2.55 oz.

The side pockets seem as difficult to use as they looked with the compression straps tightened. These straps are very light webbing. I'm a little bit worried about the plastic rings that they thread through over long term use. I was able to secure a Z-lite (full length) to the side of the pack by putting only 3 of the 4 diagonal straps over the pad, and the other one under. I had to work to get the 3rd part of the strap over. In general, I don't think these straps would be good for heavier or sharp things, like snowshoes.

Overall, I think it's a really good pack, and a bold design. They have gone one step further than I've seen in terms of eliminating EVERYTHING that doesn't contribute to the load carrying ability of the pack. Obviously I haven't tested it, so this is somewhat meaningless, but I think it's only competition in terms of carrying capacity to pack weight ratio are the HMG packs (from what I have read) and probably external frame packs.

Since I want to avoid bringing a daypack for climbing trips, I won't be keeping the pack. The extreme design of the Lightning 45 is very cool, and I think that having toyed around with it for an evening has helped me understand what compromises I am and am not willing to make for my next pack. If I wasn't a climber, it might be a different story!

If anyone has any questions about the pack, I'd be happy to try to answer them.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Anybody tried the Exped Lightning 45 and 60 on 04/20/2013 20:53:36 MDT Print View

Anyone had a chance to use one of these in the field yet?

John Harper
(johnnyh88) - M

Locale: The SouthWest
Re: Anybody tried the Exped Lightning 45 and 60 on 04/20/2013 21:17:38 MDT Print View

Not here - I ended up returning mine. The hipbelt proved to be too big for my waist.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Exped Lightning 45 and 60 Hipbelt on 04/20/2013 22:00:23 MDT Print View

I unfortunately predict that will not be an issue for me.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Exped Lightning 45 and 60 on 04/21/2013 22:47:29 MDT Print View

John. What size Evernew bottle is in the pocket?

That's good news Jani. Also the answer to my next question.

Edited by kthompson on 04/21/2013 22:51:11 MDT.

Leigh Baker
(leighb) - F

Locale: Northeast Texas Pineywoods
re: Anyone had a chance to use one of these in the field yet? on 04/22/2013 07:26:19 MDT Print View

I ran into Luke this weekend on the trail and he was trying out the 60. My bet is he'll share his thoughts soon. I got to try it on and I'm interested enough to order the women's 45.

Edited by leighb on 04/22/2013 07:27:17 MDT.

John Harper
(johnnyh88) - M

Locale: The SouthWest
Re: Exped Lightning 45 and 60 on 04/22/2013 08:10:37 MDT Print View

That's a 1.5L Evernew in the side pocket. It barely fit.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
The Exped 60 on 04/22/2013 08:38:51 MDT Print View

I tried out an Exped 60 as Leigh mentioned. Here are my initial thoughts. First its a big pack, I think it might actually be more then 60 liters. Second even though it was not loaded up with a heavy load it was very comfortable. Once I had the adjustments dialed in I don't think I changed it for the remainder of the trip.

This may be more pack then most UL hikers need but if you want a UL pack that can haul more then 40 pounds this is one of the few options out there.

I'll put together more info later.

Jani Kikuts
(Enginerd) - M

Locale: Southern California
New video by Exped on lightning packs on 05/06/2013 08:30:17 MDT Print View

An overview video by pack designer now on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nKX3m8BnovY&feature=youtube_gdata_player

John Finney
(guavarex) - M

Locale: Z├╝rich, Switzerland
Any trail use feedback yet? on 05/17/2013 05:33:06 MDT Print View

Hi all,

My current pack is a 2002 Mountainsmith Auspex which is finally worn out; here in Switzerland (limited UL options), trying to make up my mind between the Lightning 45 and a Laufbursche huckePACK. The latter is lighter, while the Lightning clearly sports extra load transfer capability with the T-frame.

I'm interested to hear a field report on the Lightning 45 (or 60), esp. from someone who has similar experience with a frameless pack like the huckePACK.

My intended use: my US trips are nearly always 5-7 days, 25 pounds or so, about 1/2 of time with a bear canister.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Exped Lightning 60 on 05/29/2013 22:24:41 MDT Print View

24" stay per Exped FWIW.

Keith F
(hamerica) - M

Locale: Northern Virginia
Re: Lightning on 06/03/2013 19:36:17 MDT Print View

I picked up the 60 on sale at campsaver for $200 a little while back and I just took it for a 35 mile packrafting trip. The pack carried 30lbs of gear like it was nothing, all the weight is transferred to the hips and the load is very stable. I hardly felt anything on my back since the only contact points are the shoulder harness and the lumbar pad, in 90+ temps it kept my back pretty cool. I have a 20" torso and I had to set this between small and medium so if you have a really small torso I don't see how this pack would work for you. I did notice at first the stay was above my head and thought it would bother me but it really was not an issue. The pockets could be much better, I can get a water bottle out without taking the pack off but it is really tough to get back in. If they made the pockets a little larger and angled them forward a bit it would help. The compression system makes using the pockets difficult as well but not impossible. All of the contents in my pack stayed dry for the trip, however I think if this thing used a more waterproof fabric it would be the ultimate packrafting pack. All in all I think this is a great pack, definitely the most comfortable heavy weight pack I have ever used. If you need to haul 30+ pounds I recommend trying the lightning and if you can find it on sale it is really a bargain.

Just wish they sold the black in the US.

Edited by hamerica on 06/03/2013 20:52:06 MDT.