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Osprey Aether 60

in Backpacks - Internal Frame

Average Rating
4.45 / 5 (11 reviews)

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Mark Verber
( verber )

San Francisco Bay Area
Osprey Packs Aether 60 on 08/02/2005 08:42:29 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

Reasonable weight / carry capacity. Super comfortable carry up to 35lbs. A great pack for people transitions from heavy weight to light-weight packing. Lots of user friendly features. Compression system works well for volumes between 1600-3900ci. Great for backpacking... a bit too stiff and tall for climbing.

Edited by verber on 08/02/2005 13:11:29 MDT.

Price comparison from GearBuyer: Osprey Aether 60 - Men's priced at: $180.91 - $249.00
Kenneth Knight
( kenknight - M )

SE Michigan
Good load carrier; tough fit on 08/02/2005 14:23:24 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 3 / 5

While I agree with Mark that this pack can carry heavy loads quite well (I'd bump that value up some actually; a friend just used his Aether 60 on a 12-day trek in Alaska and was carrying initially 37-38 pounds - though the pack was absolutely stuffed and he wasn't initially happy) I am less sanguine about the overall fit of the pack.

Even if the pack fits you fairly well as you increase the weight the fit becomes progressively worse. This is true for most packs, but I think it happens a bit faster for me with the Aether 60. I was never really comfortable with this pack even at modest weights. Having said this, if the pack does fit you well then you have a trooper on your back.

I agree with Mark that this is a pack best suited to people who are transitioning to ultralight hiking and are still unwilling to go with the lighter fabric packs. This pack also has a comfortable niche for off-trail work where a light-fabric pack is not appropirate.

However, for me, when I need to shove heavy loads into a pack for a long off-trail trip I will still select a different pack than the Osprey because I can find packs that fit my body shape more comfortably.

Price comparison from GearBuyer: Osprey Aether 60 - Men's priced at: $180.91 - $249.00
Mitchell Keil
( mitchellkeil )

Deep in the OC
Excellent, Durable, "Light" Pack on 08/03/2005 10:54:52 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

I have owned this pack for 4.5 years and used it for everything from overnights to 6 day hikes in the Sierras. I am 6'3", 175lbs and 57 years old. I have a 34" waist. This was my first light pack. At 3lbs 2oz for a size large it is a pack that can comfortably hold a lot of gear and cinch down a small overnight load. It has bombproof construction for a light pack and for someone with my physical characteristics this is one easy carrying pack. For me this pack has an excellent suspension system and in particular a great waist belt. (I believe that this pack works best with someone who has a waist like mine. Heavier or girthier packers may not find the belt as comfortable) I have carried up to 35 lbs with utmost ease and as little as 20lbs. (Although now I use a much lighter pack for my light loads.) I can recommend this pack without reservation to anyone looking for a really great light pack who may not be willing to lose all of their less that optimal gear.

John Adams
( scsjohn )

Osprey Aether 60 on 08/04/2005 07:41:49 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

This is my new go-to pack. I am one of those wanna be ligthweight backpackers. I have gotten my total weight including 2 nalgenes of water, to around 27 pounds. If my wife goes along, I can pack more stuff so that both our trips are nicer. The pack does not have a hydration pack, but you can put your bladder in the top pocket or just carry water bottles, as I do. Tough contruction. Good suspension. If you only carry a small amount, the pack compresses super tight. If you need more room, you can always add one of Osprey's accesory packs to the back of the Aether.

David Lisak
( davelisak )

Grand Canyon hiker
Comfortable/mod. wt./durable on 08/05/2005 13:49:18 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I have used the Aether 60 on a series of Grand Canyon hikes, with decreasing loads as I trim my base pack weight. At the outset of a 6 day hike, carrying 2+ qts. of water, I now carry about 25 lbs. I am 6'2" and 200 lbs. The Aether 60 carries this load beautifully. I have considered lighter weight packs, but I am fearful of what the desert underbrush and rocks will do to silnylon and other lightweight fabrics. The Aether shows no signs of degradation after several hikes.

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Greg Vaillancourt
( GSV45 )

60 on 07/14/2006 22:24:40 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

The whole composite rod frame setup of the 2005 (and older) Aether makes this one pack you have to try on with a load.
I can't imagine buying one any other way.

I really like mine. I'm not an ultralighter and I go off trail too much to consider a silnylon pack.

FWIW I'm 6'1 and 210 lbs 35" waist and the belt fits me fine.

Cons: not H20 bladder friendly and the top pocket does not convert to a lumbar pack. (Both of these issues were fixed in the newer model)

Bruce Tolley
( btolley )

San Francisco Bay Area
Excellent Winter Pack on 09/24/2006 15:30:54 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

While other reviewers have noted that this pack is not truly lightweight, some of that extra weight is due to features that come in handy for winter treks. This pack has shovel pocket that you can actually fit a shovel into, straps to attach snow shoes, crampons, climbing helmet, ice axe and not to forget, the wag bag.

On the minuse side, this 2006 edition's stretch elastic side pockets have started to show some wear which I will watch closely. The in-the-store fit is important since the hip belt is very stiff. I recommend fitting by use of the heat treatment contraption the Osprey dealers use.

While there are much lighter packs in the 40 to 50L range, this pack has served me well in snow conditions in the Sierras.

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Stephan Vrudny
( So-Cal_Hikers )
Good, with a few minor flaws on 12/20/2006 14:19:22 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

First, know I only review a backpack after I’ve used the heck out of it. We’ve carried my pack (2006 Aether 60) and my wife’s pack (2006 Ariel 65) eight-weeks hiking through Europe’s Alps, and on countless hikes and climbs throughout California; we’ve used them with loads ranging from only a few pounds up to forty pounds of gear, through rain and snow both at sea level and at 15,000 feet. We know the pro’s/con’s of these packs.

Summary: Aether 60 is a good pack, but not best-in-class because it lacks a zippered access at the bottom forcing you to inconveniently remove everything from the pack just to reach an item at the bottom, and it becomes somewhat uncomfortable when loaded up. I’m slightly overweight at 6’ tall and 210 pounds and found the hip belt wasn’t as comfortable as many claim. When loaded with more than about 25lbs (admittedly above the “recommended carry range” for this pack) the hip belt has less cushion than optimal (cuts into the hips somewhat) and tends to slide down over the hips, even though the pack was custom-fitted and belt heat-molded at time-of-purchase. Somewhat more expensive packs (compare to Gregory products, for example) have hip belts more comfortable for bulkier body types like mine, but those suspensions also increase pack weight. Hikers with leaner body types, with a more well-defined hip outline may find the Aether hip belt to be very comfortable. While the Aether 60 has no fatal flaws, hikers should also evaluate competitor products, or within the Osprey line consider the Aether 70 because it does have a zippered main bag access at the bottom, and comes with a detachable Top Pocket/Lumber Pack. Also, if you’re seeking a pack to carry everything for a multi-week trip, you’ll need the extra storage of the Aether 70, or something even larger. We found both the Aether 60 & Ariel 65 too small for a backpacking trip through Europe, and I should note we did not carry any tent or sleeping gear.

Additional Comments:
• I did NOT have the problem noted by another reviewer: “At the bottom of the pack where the seam joins together there is a piece of plastic for support. This piece of plastic presses against you and makes for a very uncomfortable ride.”
• Another reviewer complained about the Aether’s non-removable “sewn-in-hip belt.” This is incorrect because the Aether 60 has a removable hip belt, which I have in fact removed and replaced already on my pack with a large sized belt.
• The deep elastic side pockets + side carry loops on the Aether are very handy, securely holding even large items such as 22” (collapsed) camera tripods or a pair of 28” (collapsed) hiking poles.
• This pack’s camel pocket is a perfect match to the Camelbak products and we found the Stoaway/ UnBottle 100 oz to be a perfect companion to the Aether 60/Aether 70.
• It is true as many of written that the Aether series is exceptional not only for lightness but for flexibility in holding its shape as a day-pack, not flopping around when under-loaded with as little as a few pounds.
• We did buy the Airporter LZ, thought the product somewhat overpriced, but it did work well as a cover to protect our packs when checked as luggage during air travel.

Travis Hohn
( JustAGuy )

Pacific Northwest
bomber on 01/07/2007 18:45:06 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

I own an older '04 version of the pack (the lighter version :-) ) and use this pack for the majority of my trips..for 30 lb loads or 20lb loads. It compresses well and is built to last. After losing 25lbs ( way cheaper then buying new gear ) I had to switch to a medium sized pack because the non-removable belt on the large pack was too big.( The old style Aether packs -pre 2006 - had sewn in belts )

The medium fits me like a glove and as I continue to take my kids and need the extra space and load support this pack will continue to be my number 1. I've also always used the pocket on the backpanel to hold my 100 oz platypus bottle....I thought thats what the deep pocket was for.

Edited by JustAGuy on 01/07/2007 18:47:14 MST.

Justin Riddle
( riddler )
2006 Aether 60 - great pack! on 02/11/2007 19:38:20 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

I just got the 2006 Aether 60, size Medium. (Disclaimer: as of Feb 07, it hasn't been on the trail, but it has been worn around the house and I have spent several months researching this and several other packs).

Bottom line: If you only own 1 pack, this could be it. It's not a true ultralight pack. Great size for a weekend to week long hike.

Things I like: adjustable torso, simple design, sturdy fabric that seems like it will take years of abuse, custom moldable hipbelt, a real suspension that can handle 45 lbs, but doesn't weigh a ton.

Things I'd design differently: the hydration bladder pocket could be slightly larger. This is because the top of the framesheet is curved (to provide head clearance when wearing the pack). Getting my 70 oz Camelback Unbottle isn't too hard, but it could be a lot easier if the pocket had about 2 more inches of stretch.

Other packs I considered before I purchased this pack: Aether 70 (too big), 2007 Gregory Z-55, Gregory Balatoro, Osprey Atmos 65. The Z-55 was the closest competitor in my opinion, but the Z-55 does not have an adjustable torso/shoulder harness. The Balatoro had too many bells and whistles, too heavy/bulky, and I just didn't like the way the Atmos 65 fit.

Price comparison from GearBuyer:
Osprey Aether 60 - Men's priced at: $180.91 - $249.00
Osprey Aether 70 - Men's priced at: $202.95 - $279.99
Osprey Atmos 65 - Men's priced at: $189.95 - $239.99
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David Levy
( survivordave )
Best Pack I have Ever Used! on 08/19/2009 18:58:05 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

Yup, wouldn't part with it. It is the most comfortable pack IMO for long hikes.

The only suggestion is to have a way to get at the side pockets for H20 easier as I don't use a Platy or Camelbak tube system..

Edited by survivordave on 08/19/2009 18:59:56 MDT.

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