- Backpacks & Waist Packs
I was pretty much sold on The North Face Enduro 13 as far as running backpacks go. However, a discussion on Facebook alerted me to the Salomon XT Wings 5 backpack and I decided to check it out. The XT Wings 5, unlike many of Salomon’s recent vest style offerings, is a minimalist backpack.
There are a number of similarities between the XT Wings 5 and the Enduro 13. Both are fairly minimalist, 8 litre capacity backpacks. Both are bladder friendly and both include 2 bottle holders, providing easy access to bottles.
Having used the Salomon XT Wings 5 backpack for a number of long runs now, the points that I have found to favour the Salomon XT Wings 5 are as follows:
A number of Salomon accessories can be easily added to the pack to increase functionality & pack volume. I have added two Salomon zipped pockets on either side of the waist strap.
When I first received the Salomon XT Wings 5 backpack the only obvious drawback in comparison with The North Face Enduro 13 was the lack of side pockets.
The Salomon zipped pockets resolve this issue are quite a bit bigger than the built in ones of the Enduro 13. If no additional storage is required, the zipped pockets can easily be removed.
Both the Salomon and North Face packs have an 8 litre capacity. The Salomon XT Wings 5 splits the capacity over 2 compartments and I have found that this is useful in that you can better organise the content of your pack.
Inside the top main compartment is a zippered organizer pocket, reservoir sleeve and water drainage ports. The lower zippered pocket is located between the two water bottle holders for a lower center of gravity. I would use this lower pocket for heavier items such as a head torch, camera etc. I have also found it is fairly easy to access gel bottles and food items stored in this compartment.
Two mesh pockets with security clips, located at either side of the lower compartment, give fast access to food or small items.
The latest versions of the pack come with an extra shoulder pocket for more storage. Located on the right strap, the pocket is versatile enough to carry anything from a spare bottle through to a phone or food. I have found it to be placed quite high on the strap but this is likely down to my positioning of the pack overall.
(Specs taken from Castleberg Outdoors)
I didn’t think that I would find a pack that was comparable to The North Face Enduro 13 but, with the Salomon XT Wings 5 SS12 backpack, I have done just that. The packs are very similar in so many ways and, as such, it is a close call. Both packs are super lightweight, comfortable to wear, easy to clean, minimalist packs with easy access bottles.
However, the following things edge the Salomon in front as far as I am concerned:
Retailing at approximately £62.00, the pack sits in the mid price point area relative to other packs and is approximately the same price as The North Face Enduro 13.
@rodeoboy155 hope the weather is fine for Loch Muick this weekend. Have a good run :o)
@rodeoboy155 difficult to say. You do pay a premium for them. There are a lot of other good barefoot shoes out there. Down to preference :o)
@rodeoboy155 Be sure to try on 4 size if poss. My Spyridons fractionally 2 big, ideally need a perfect fit. The original minimalist shoe :o)