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IR - Deuter ACT Lite 60+10 SL Backpack - Kathy Waters

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  • Kathy Waters
    Ryan, Below is the text for my very tardy IR. It s been crazy here the last couple of weeks between babysitting in Denver and trying to get things done at our
    Message 1 of 3 , Sep 11, 2013
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      Ryan,

       

      Below is the text for my very tardy IR.  It’s been crazy here the last couple of weeks between babysitting in Denver and trying to get things done at our house construction site.  Today is it raining so I actually am sort of stuck at the computer and getting some paperwork done for a change.

       

      Anyway, you can find the test file at:  http://tinyurl.com/o8rhfq3

       

      Thanks for taking on this test and I hope I don’t make you work too hard!

       

      Kathy

      ____________________________

      DEUTER ACT LITE 60 +10 SL BACKPACK

      TEST SERIES BY KATHLEEN WATERS

      IR

      September 11, 2013

      TESTER INFORMATION

      NAME: Kathleen Waters

      EMAIL: kathy at backpackgeartest dot com

      AGE: 62

      LOCATION: Canon City, Colorado, USA

      GENDER: F

      HEIGHT: 5' 4" (1.60 m)

      WEIGHT: 125 lb (56.70 kg)

      Living in Colorado and being self-employed, I have ample opportunities to backpack.  There are over 700,000 acres/280,000 hectares of public land bordering my 71-acre/29-hectare "backyard" in addition to all the other gorgeous locations which abound in Colorado.

       

      Over the past 15 years, my husband John and I have also had the good fortune to hike/snowshoe glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in exotic locations, including New Zealand, Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley.

       

      My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight.  I use a tent (rainfly if needed).  Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) excluding food and water.

      INITIAL REPORT

                                                 

      PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

      Manufacturer: Deuter Sport GmbH Company

      Year of Manufacture:   2013

      Manufacturer's Website: http://www.deuter.com

      MSRP: US $199.00

      Listed Weight: 3 lb 11 oz (1680 g)

      Measured Weight: ?? oz (?? g)

      Listed Volume:  3660 + 610 cubic inches (60 + 10 litre)

      Listed Size:  31 / 14 / 12 (H x W x D) inch (78 / 36 / 30 (H x W x D) cm)

      Colors Available:  Emerald-Silver/Midnight-Coolblue

      Color Tested:  Midnight-Coolblue

       

      Other details:

       

      Materials Used:  Deuter-Microrip-Nylon, Deuter-Duratex-Lite & Deuter-Ripstop 210

       

      INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

      Opening the box from Deuter was like Christmas in August!  What a neat-looking backpack!  Better even than the website photo which though accurate, doesn't do the size to weight ratio any justice at all.  I immediately started to explore all the nooks and crannies of my new pack.

       

      Deuter's ACT Lite SL series of backpacks are featured as backpacks for women and/or any gender backpacker with a slim frame.  According to the Deuter website, what makes the SL different from the rest of the ACT Lite line is  the more narrow SL shoulder straps  and conically shaped hip fins which are wedged-shaped padded insert to conform to the curve of a woman's hips.

       

      When I received my pack, I was immediately able to see what that means.  These are the most non-bulky shoulder straps I have ever seen.  However, that doesn't mean the straps are "skimpy".  They are nicely contoured straps which curve to the sides of my "curves" (not squishing down over the top of them) and have padded, what Deuter calls "3D Air", mesh covers with soft edges.  There is a hydration hose hook-and-loop fastener on the right side which is removal so as to be able to put it on the left shoulder strap if I so desired.  An adjustable sliding chest strap will allow me to snap it shut wherever I find it most comfortable.  I tend to try to have the chest strap rather higher on my chest than a lot of other women, so having the strap movable is a big plus for me.

       

      The hip belt is well-padded and has the same mesh covering over it as the shoulder straps.  The padded portion of the hipbelt pretty much "ends" at my sides with the webbed-strap closure stretching across my abdomen.  This is quite different from all of my other backpacks where the hipbelts are so large as to practically have the ends of the padding meet in the middle of my stomach with the adjustable straps pulled to the max.  There is a zippered pouch on the right side of the hipbelt padding large enough to hold my cellphone or Canon A520 point-and-shoot camera but not both.  I might also be able to squeeze in a tube of lip balm or a gel pack as well.

       

      But if the hipbelt pouch is not all that big, the ACT Lite really delivers elsewhere in storage options!  First off, there is a stretch front compartment about 12 x 12 inches (30 x 30 cm) on the top half of the pack.  This has a compression strap in the middle to prevent (I assume) gear from falling out when the compartment is stretched and also to compress the main body of the pack when needed.

       

      The top lid pocket is actually connected to the pack body and covers the pack's top opening via twin lid buckles.  It does not come off the pack but rather only covers the top of the pack.  There is a zippered main compartment accessible from outside the lid pocket as well as a zippered  valuables pocket accessible only from the inside of the top lid pocket.  There is also printed emergency instruction on the underside of the lid should I need them.

       

      Continuing on with all the ACT Lite SL's storage options; a feature I am very excited to try out is a very large separate bottom compartment which is accessible from both outside and inside the pack body.  It appears to be quite large and I'm hoping will be a great organizing tool for the compulsive neat-freak-type person that I am, even on the trail.

       

      The main body of the pack is top-accessible via a pack-wide opening which can be closed by a drawstring cord secured with a barrel-type closure.  This is where the "+10" of the ACT Lite 60+10 SL comes in.  The "neck" of the pack can be extended upward for an additional 10 liters of volume and still can be concealed by the lid.

       

      Inside the pack is a roomy compartment that has a separate hydration pouch.  The elastic top hydration pouch will keep my hydration bladder from touching my gear and at the top of the back of the pack is a centrally located port for my hydration tube.

       

      Lots of loops!  Further carrying options are provided on the ACT Lite SL with top gear loops on lid compartment, front gear loops said to be for  attaching a sleeping pad or bag on the outside and ice axe loops as well.

       

      Two stretchy mesh side pockets on each side are provided for water bottles and of course, there are lots of compression straps to keep everything stable and well, compressed.

       

      The ACT Lite SL series has Deuter's Aircontact Lite System which is designed for comfort and stability according to the website.  This system consists of several features such as stabilizer and compression straps for positioning, regulating the pack load and increasing stability.  Also, the pack is loaded with  breathable padding with ventilating hollow chamber foam on the back frame and in the hipbelt as well as in the contoured shoulder straps.  There is an aluminum adjustable  anatomic profiled X-frame with Deuter's Vari-Quick system for a perfect back fit to round out the pack's construction.

       

      READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

      Deuter provides a plethora of instructions for sizing the ACT Lite SL for proper fit, how to properly balance gear in the pack for proper balance, how to properly lift the pack, how to care for the pack and more.  There are pages of valuable information on the Deuter website, including an informational video.

       

      Attached to the ACT Lite SL was a retail hangtag, chock full of most of that same information in abbreviated form in five different languages.  For the vision-impaired folks like me, a magnifying glass was a great help - er, make that a necessity!  I won't even try to summarize all the information here - Deuter does a much better job than I ever could.

       

      However, very briefly, to fit the pack, Deuter instructed me to:

      1.)          Fill the backpack with a realistic weight. Loosen all straps. Shoulder the pack.

      2.)          Position the middle of the hip belt over the hip bones and tighten.

      3.)          Now tighten the shoulder straps, but not too tight.  The main weight should be on the   hip belt.

      4.)          Once I  have found the perfect back length, fix and close the height adjustable sternum strap.

       

      One thing I did find of interest was that while the pack is water-resistant, using pack or stuff sacks is recommended (or a rain cover) and " impregnation (spray and bath impregnation) in the strap's material can lead to skin irritation."

       

      I found it rather funny that Deuter needed to specify no machine washing for the pack!  But rather they recommend placing the backpack in a tub or shower filled with water and using a ph-neutral soap when necessary.  Everyday dirt and stains should be cleaned with a soft brush. Salt stains (sweat stains)  can be removed by washing with soap and plenty of water.  Lastly, the pack should be always stored in a dry place.  I think I can handle that!

       

      SUMMARY

      I haven't yet gotten the ACT Lite out on the trail or even yet packed it up, but that will change this coming weekend when my hiking buddies and I get together for our first (hopefully) fall outing.  The weather has cooled down nicely this week and I'm hoping for a great couple of days in crisp - well, at least not broiling - cool air.  I'm excited about the possibilities of the ACT Lite and am hoping it will solve a lot of my packing nitpicks.

       

      Please check back in two months' time to see if the pack's ACTs draws rave reviews and an encore.

       

      Thanks to Deuter and to <<HYPERLINK GOES HERE - "http://www.backpackgeartest.org" LINK TEXT = "BackpackGearTest.org">> for the opportunity to try out the ACT Lite 60 + 10 SL backpack.

       

      Kathleen (Kathy) Waters

    • bigdawgryan
      Kathy, Sorry for the delay in getting edits to you; life has been hectic for me. But, not as crazy as for you and the others impacted by the crazy rains and
      Message 2 of 3 , Sep 17, 2013
      • 0 Attachment

         Kathy,


        Sorry for the delay in getting edits to you; life has been hectic for me.  But, not as crazy as for you and the others impacted by the crazy rains and flooding in Colorado.  We've had lots of rain too, but not to the extent you all have.


        Im headed to Denver on Sunday for a week-long business trip.  Hope I don't have any issues.


        Nice report.  Just one minor thing to address and you are good to post in the appropriate folder.  Please delete your file from the TESTS folder.


        Edit: <The hip belt is well-padded and has the same mesh coverin> - I do not beleive well-padded needs to be hyphenated in this instant.  Correct as you see fit.


        See you in about two months.  


        Ryan




        --- In backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com, <backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

        Ryan,

         

        Below is the text for my very tardy IR.  It’s been crazy here the last couple of weeks between babysitting in Denver and trying to get things done at our house construction site.  Today is it raining so I actually am sort of stuck at the computer and getting some paperwork done for a change.

         

        Anyway, you can find the test file at:  http://tinyurl.com/o8rhfq3

         

        Thanks for taking on this test and I hope I don’t make you work too hard!

         

        Kathy

        ____________________________

        DEUTER ACT LITE 60 +10 SL BACKPACK

        TEST SERIES BY KATHLEEN WATERS

        IR

        September 11, 2013

        TESTER INFORMATION

        NAME: Kathleen Waters

        EMAIL: kathy at backpackgeartest dot com

        AGE: 62

        LOCATION: Canon City, Colorado, USA

        GENDER: F

        HEIGHT: 5' 4" (1.60 m)

        WEIGHT: 125 lb (56.70 kg)

        Living in Colorado and being self-employed, I have ample opportunities to backpack.  There are over 700,000 acres/280,000 hectares of public land bordering my 71-acre/29-hectare "backyard" in addition to all the other gorgeous locations which abound in Colorado.

         

        Over the past 15 years, my husband John and I have also had the good fortune to hike/snowshoe glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in exotic locations, including New Zealand, Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley.

         

        My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight.  I use a tent (rainfly if needed).  Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) excluding food and water.

        INITIAL REPORT

                                                   

        PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

        Manufacturer: Deuter Sport GmbH Company

        Year of Manufacture:   2013

        Manufacturer's Website: http://www.deuter.com

        MSRP: US $199.00

        Listed Weight: 3 lb 11 oz (1680 g)

        Measured Weight: ?? oz (?? g)

        Listed Volume:  3660 + 610 cubic inches (60 + 10 litre)

        Listed Size:  31 / 14 / 12 (H x W x D) inch (78 / 36 / 30 (H x W x D) cm)

        Colors Available:  Emerald-Silver/Midnight-Coolblue

        Color Tested:  Midnight-Coolblue

         

        Other details:

         

        Materials Used:  Deuter-Microrip-Nylon, Deuter-Duratex-Lite & Deuter-Ripstop 210

         

        INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

        Opening the box from Deuter was like Christmas in August!  What a neat-looking backpack!  Better even than the website photo which though accurate, doesn't do the size to weight ratio any justice at all.  I immediately started to explore all the nooks and crannies of my new pack.

         

        Deuter's ACT Lite SL series of backpacks are featured as backpacks for women and/or any gender backpacker with a slim frame.  According to the Deuter website, what makes the SL different from the rest of the ACT Lite line is  the more narrow SL shoulder straps  and conically shaped hip fins which are wedged-shaped padded insert to conform to the curve of a woman's hips.

         

        When I received my pack, I was immediately able to see what that means.  These are the most non-bulky shoulder straps I have ever seen.  However, that doesn't mean the straps are "skimpy".  They are nicely contoured straps which curve to the sides of my "curves" (not squishing down over the top of them) and have padded, what Deuter calls "3D Air", mesh covers with soft edges.  There is a hydration hose hook-and-loop fastener on the right side which is removal so as to be able to put it on the left shoulder strap if I so desired.  An adjustable sliding chest strap will allow me to snap it shut wherever I find it most comfortable.  I tend to try to have the chest strap rather higher on my chest than a lot of other women, so having the strap movable is a big plus for me.

         

        The hip belt is well-padded and has the same mesh covering over it as the shoulder straps.  The padded portion of the hipbelt pretty much "ends" at my sides with the webbed-strap closure stretching across my abdomen.  This is quite different from all of my other backpacks where the hipbelts are so large as to practically have the ends of the padding meet in the middle of my stomach with the adjustable straps pulled to the max.  There is a zippered pouch on the right side of the hipbelt padding large enough to hold my cellphone or Canon A520 point-and-shoot camera but not both.  I might also be able to squeeze in a tube of lip balm or a gel pack as well.

         

        But if the hipbelt pouch is not all that big, the ACT Lite really delivers elsewhere in storage options!  First off, there is a stretch front compartment about 12 x 12 inches (30 x 30 cm) on the top half of the pack.  This has a compression strap in the middle to prevent (I assume) gear from falling out when the compartment is stretched and also to compress the main body of the pack when needed.

         

        The top lid pocket is actually connected to the pack body and covers the pack's top opening via twin lid buckles.  It does not come off the pack but rather only covers the top of the pack.  There is a zippered main compartment accessible from outside the lid pocket as well as a zippered  valuables pocket accessible only from the inside of the top lid pocket.  There is also printed emergency instruction on the underside of the lid should I need them.

         

        Continuing on with all the ACT Lite SL's storage options; a feature I am very excited to try out is a very large separate bottom compartment which is accessible from both outside and inside the pack body.  It appears to be quite large and I'm hoping will be a great organizing tool for the compulsive neat-freak-type person that I am, even on the trail.

         

        The main body of the pack is top-accessible via a pack-wide opening which can be closed by a drawstring cord secured with a barrel-type closure.  This is where the "+10" of the ACT Lite 60+10 SL comes in.  The "neck" of the pack can be extended upward for an additional 10 liters of volume and still can be concealed by the lid.

         

        Inside the pack is a roomy compartment that has a separate hydration pouch.  The elastic top hydration pouch will keep my hydration bladder from touching my gear and at the top of the back of the pack is a centrally located port for my hydration tube.

         

        Lots of loops!  Further carrying options are provided on the ACT Lite SL with top gear loops on lid compartment, front gear loops said to be for  attaching a sleeping pad or bag on the outside and ice axe loops as well.

         

        Two stretchy mesh side pockets on each side are provided for water bottles and of course, there are lots of compression straps to keep everything stable and well, compressed.

         

        The ACT Lite SL series has Deuter's Aircontact Lite System which is designed for comfort and stability according to the website.  This system consists of several features such as stabilizer and compression straps for positioning, regulating the pack load and increasing stability.  Also, the pack is loaded with  breathable padding with ventilating hollow chamber foam on the back frame and in the hipbelt as well as in the contoured shoulder straps.  There is an aluminum adjustable  anatomic profiled X-frame with Deuter's Vari-Quick system for a perfect back fit to round out the pack's construction.

         

        READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

        Deuter provides a plethora of instructions for sizing the ACT Lite SL for proper fit, how to properly balance gear in the pack for proper balance, how to properly lift the pack, how to care for the pack and more.  There are pages of valuable information on the Deuter website, including an informational video.

         

        Attached to the ACT Lite SL was a retail hangtag, chock full of most of that same information in abbreviated form in five different languages.  For the vision-impaired folks like me, a magnifying glass was a great help - er, make that a necessity!  I won't even try to summarize all the information here - Deuter does a much better job than I ever could.

         

        However, very briefly, to fit the pack, Deuter instructed me to:

        1.)          Fill the backpack with a realistic weight. Loosen all straps. Shoulder the pack.

        2.)          Position the middle of the hip belt over the hip bones and tighten.

        3.)          Now tighten the shoulder straps, but not too tight.  The main weight should be on the   hip belt.

        4.)          Once I  have found the perfect back length, fix and close the height adjustable sternum strap.

         

        One thing I did find of interest was that while the pack is water-resistant, using pack or stuff sacks is recommended (or a rain cover) and " impregnation (spray and bath impregnation) in the strap's material can lead to skin irritation."

         

        I found it rather funny that Deuter needed to specify no machine washing for the pack!  But rather they recommend placing the backpack in a tub or shower filled with water and using a ph-neutral soap when necessary.  Everyday dirt and stains should be cleaned with a soft brush. Salt stains (sweat stains)  can be removed by washing with soap and plenty of water.  Lastly, the pack should be always stored in a dry place.  I think I can handle that!

         

        SUMMARY

        I haven't yet gotten the ACT Lite out on the trail or even yet packed it up, but that will change this coming weekend when my hiking buddies and I get together for our first (hopefully) fall outing.  The weather has cooled down nicely this week and I'm hoping for a great couple of days in crisp - well, at least not broiling - cool air.  I'm excited about the possibilities of the ACT Lite and am hoping it will solve a lot of my packing nitpicks.

         

        Please check back in two months' time to see if the pack's ACTs draws rave reviews and an encore.

         

        Thanks to Deuter and to <<HYPERLINK GOES HERE - "http://www.backpackgeartest.org" LINK TEXT = "BackpackGearTest.org">> for the opportunity to try out the ACT Lite 60 + 10 SL backpack.

         

        Kathleen (Kathy) Waters

      • Kathy Waters
        Ryan, Thanks for the once-over! You should be fine in Denver next week. It hasn’t rained for a couple of days now and it doesn’t take much to dry out
        Message 3 of 3 , Sep 18, 2013
        • 0 Attachment

          Ryan,

           

          Thanks for the once-over!  You should be fine in Denver next week.  It hasn’t rained for a couple of days now and it doesn’t take much to dry out here.  Hope you have a nice visit.

           

          See you in two months.

           

          Kathy

          PS – could you please put “EDIT” in your subject lines when editing a report.  I hate having to open and read each e-mail.  <g>

           

           

          From: backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com [mailto:backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of bigdawgryan@...
          Sent: Tuesday, September 17, 2013 8:02 PM
          To: backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [backpackgeartesters] RE: IR - Deuter ACT Lite 60+10 SL Backpack - Kathy Waters

           

           

           Kathy,

           

          Sorry for the delay in getting edits to you; life has been hectic for me.  But, not as crazy as for you and the others impacted by the crazy rains and flooding in Colorado.  We've had lots of rain too, but not to the extent you all have.

           

          Im headed to Denver on Sunday for a week-long business trip.  Hope I don't have any issues.

           

          Nice report.  Just one minor thing to address and you are good to post in the appropriate folder.  Please delete your file from the TESTS folder.

           

          Edit: <The hip belt is well-padded and has the same mesh coverin> - I do not beleive well-padded needs to be hyphenated in this instant.  Correct as you see fit.

           

          See you in about two months.  

           

          Ryan

           



          --- In backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com, <backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

          Ryan,

           

          Below is the text for my very tardy IR.  It’s been crazy here the last couple of weeks between babysitting in Denver and trying to get things done at our house construction site.  Today is it raining so I actually am sort of stuck at the computer and getting some paperwork done for a change.

           

          Anyway, you can find the test file at:  http://tinyurl.com/o8rhfq3

           

          Thanks for taking on this test and I hope I don’t make you work too hard!

           

          Kathy

          ____________________________

          DEUTER ACT LITE 60 +10 SL BACKPACK

          TEST SERIES BY KATHLEEN WATERS

          IR

          September 11, 2013

          TESTER INFORMATION

          NAME: Kathleen Waters

          EMAIL: kathy at backpackgeartest dot com

          AGE: 62

          LOCATION: Canon City, Colorado, USA

          GENDER: F

          HEIGHT: 5' 4" (1.60 m)

          WEIGHT: 125 lb (56.70 kg)

          Living in Colorado and being self-employed, I have ample opportunities to backpack.  There are over 700,000 acres/280,000 hectares of public land bordering my 71-acre/29-hectare "backyard" in addition to all the other gorgeous locations which abound in Colorado.

           

          Over the past 15 years, my husband John and I have also had the good fortune to hike/snowshoe glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in exotic locations, including New Zealand, Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley.

           

          My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight.  I use a tent (rainfly if needed).  Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) excluding food and water.

          INITIAL REPORT

                                                     

          PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

          Manufacturer: Deuter Sport GmbH Company

          Year of Manufacture:   2013

          Manufacturer's Website: http://www.deuter.com

          MSRP: US $199.00

          Listed Weight: 3 lb 11 oz (1680 g)

          Measured Weight: ?? oz (?? g)

          Listed Volume:  3660 + 610 cubic inches (60 + 10 litre)

          Listed Size:  31 / 14 / 12 (H x W x D) inch (78 / 36 / 30 (H x W x D) cm)

          Colors Available:  Emerald-Silver/Midnight-Coolblue

          Color Tested:  Midnight-Coolblue

           

          Other details:

           

          Materials Used:  Deuter-Microrip-Nylon, Deuter-Duratex-Lite & Deuter-Ripstop 210

           

          INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

          Opening the box from Deuter was like Christmas in August!  What a neat-looking backpack!  Better even than the website photo which though accurate, doesn't do the size to weight ratio any justice at all.  I immediately started to explore all the nooks and crannies of my new pack.

           

          Deuter's ACT Lite SL series of backpacks are featured as backpacks for women and/or any gender backpacker with a slim frame.  According to the Deuter website, what makes the SL different from the rest of the ACT Lite line is  the more narrow SL shoulder straps  and conically shaped hip fins which are wedged-shaped padded insert to conform to the curve of a woman's hips.

           

          When I received my pack, I was immediately able to see what that means.  These are the most non-bulky shoulder straps I have ever seen.  However, that doesn't mean the straps are "skimpy".  They are nicely contoured straps which curve to the sides of my "curves" (not squishing down over the top of them) and have padded, what Deuter calls "3D Air", mesh covers with soft edges.  There is a hydration hose hook-and-loop fastener on the right side which is removal so as to be able to put it on the left shoulder strap if I so desired.  An adjustable sliding chest strap will allow me to snap it shut wherever I find it most comfortable.  I tend to try to have the chest strap rather higher on my chest than a lot of other women, so having the strap movable is a big plus for me.

           

          The hip belt is well-padded and has the same mesh covering over it as the shoulder straps.  The padded portion of the hipbelt pretty much "ends" at my sides with the webbed-strap closure stretching across my abdomen.  This is quite different from all of my other backpacks where the hipbelts are so large as to practically have the ends of the padding meet in the middle of my stomach with the adjustable straps pulled to the max.  There is a zippered pouch on the right side of the hipbelt padding large enough to hold my cellphone or Canon A520 point-and-shoot camera but not both.  I might also be able to squeeze in a tube of lip balm or a gel pack as well.

           

          But if the hipbelt pouch is not all that big, the ACT Lite really delivers elsewhere in storage options!  First off, there is a stretch front compartment about 12 x 12 inches (30 x 30 cm) on the top half of the pack.  This has a compression strap in the middle to prevent (I assume) gear from falling out when the compartment is stretched and also to compress the main body of the pack when needed.

           

          The top lid pocket is actually connected to the pack body and covers the pack's top opening via twin lid buckles.  It does not come off the pack but rather only covers the top of the pack.  There is a zippered main compartment accessible from outside the lid pocket as well as a zippered  valuables pocket accessible only from the inside of the top lid pocket.  There is also printed emergency instruction on the underside of the lid should I need them.

           

          Continuing on with all the ACT Lite SL's storage options; a feature I am very excited to try out is a very large separate bottom compartment which is accessible from both outside and inside the pack body.  It appears to be quite large and I'm hoping will be a great organizing tool for the compulsive neat-freak-type person that I am, even on the trail.

           

          The main body of the pack is top-accessible via a pack-wide opening which can be closed by a drawstring cord secured with a barrel-type closure.  This is where the "+10" of the ACT Lite 60+10 SL comes in.  The "neck" of the pack can be extended upward for an additional 10 liters of volume and still can be concealed by the lid.

           

          Inside the pack is a roomy compartment that has a separate hydration pouch.  The elastic top hydration pouch will keep my hydration bladder from touching my gear and at the top of the back of the pack is a centrally located port for my hydration tube.

           

          Lots of loops!  Further carrying options are provided on the ACT Lite SL with top gear loops on lid compartment, front gear loops said to be for  attaching a sleeping pad or bag on the outside and ice axe loops as well.

           

          Two stretchy mesh side pockets on each side are provided for water bottles and of course, there are lots of compression straps to keep everything stable and well, compressed.

           

          The ACT Lite SL series has Deuter's Aircontact Lite System which is designed for comfort and stability according to the website.  This system consists of several features such as stabilizer and compression straps for positioning, regulating the pack load and increasing stability.  Also, the pack is loaded with  breathable padding with ventilating hollow chamber foam on the back frame and in the hipbelt as well as in the contoured shoulder straps.  There is an aluminum adjustable  anatomic profiled X-frame with Deuter's Vari-Quick system for a perfect back fit to round out the pack's construction.

           

          READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

          Deuter provides a plethora of instructions for sizing the ACT Lite SL for proper fit, how to properly balance gear in the pack for proper balance, how to properly lift the pack, how to care for the pack and more.  There are pages of valuable information on the Deuter website, including an informational video.

           

          Attached to the ACT Lite SL was a retail hangtag, chock full of most of that same information in abbreviated form in five different languages.  For the vision-impaired folks like me, a magnifying glass was a great help - er, make that a necessity!  I won't even try to summarize all the information here - Deuter does a much better job than I ever could.

           

          However, very briefly, to fit the pack, Deuter instructed me to:

          1.)          Fill the backpack with a realistic weight. Loosen all straps. Shoulder the pack.

          2.)          Position the middle of the hip belt over the hip bones and tighten.

          3.)          Now tighten the shoulder straps, but not too tight.  The main weight should be on the   hip belt.

          4.)          Once I  have found the perfect back length, fix and close the height adjustable sternum strap.

           

          One thing I did find of interest was that while the pack is water-resistant, using pack or stuff sacks is recommended (or a rain cover) and " impregnation (spray and bath impregnation) in the strap's material can lead to skin irritation."

           

          I found it rather funny that Deuter needed to specify no machine washing for the pack!  But rather they recommend placing the backpack in a tub or shower filled with water and using a ph-neutral soap when necessary.  Everyday dirt and stains should be cleaned with a soft brush. Salt stains (sweat stains)  can be removed by washing with soap and plenty of water.  Lastly, the pack should be always stored in a dry place.  I think I can handle that!

           

          SUMMARY

          I haven't yet gotten the ACT Lite out on the trail or even yet packed it up, but that will change this coming weekend when my hiking buddies and I get together for our first (hopefully) fall outing.  The weather has cooled down nicely this week and I'm hoping for a great couple of days in crisp - well, at least not broiling - cool air.  I'm excited about the possibilities of the ACT Lite and am hoping it will solve a lot of my packing nitpicks.

           

          Please check back in two months' time to see if the pack's ACTs draws rave reviews and an encore.

           

          Thanks to Deuter and to <<HYPERLINK GOES HERE - "http://www.backpackgeartest.org" LINK TEXT = "BackpackGearTest.org">> for the opportunity to try out the ACT Lite 60 + 10 SL backpack.

           

          Kathleen (Kathy) Waters

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