Reviewed by Solnick hiker from New orleans on Saturday, July 25, 2015
First off I want to say this bag is very lightweight and stretches to fit whatever you need , within reason. The back ventilation is great if you don't have to pack a bear canister or something super bulky. I found when I had my bag fully loaded with the beat canister and all my clothes, gear and full 2l camelback the vent support system didn't do much. It ended up pressing the mesh and the rest of the bag right against my back, leaving no room for airflow. The padding, if you can call it that, on the lower back is useless. I ended up having two huge sores getting rubbed on my back making it bleed. It made the hike extra painful. Also it pressed right into my sciatica making it swell and making the hike almost unbearable. Now that I'm done with the JMT I have some serious back problems. Same goes for the shoulder straps. I'm aware that with any bag there's going to be some sore spots on the hips lower back and shoulders but everyone I saw who had this bag on the JMT complained about how bad it rubs up against the skin. I never thought I'd have to put mole skin on my back. You can't really fit much in the waist strap pockets maybe some extra change and a cliff bar. It's almost impossible to get your water bottle out of the side pockets without taking the bag off. Lastly I'm glad there's a warranty because the seems on that hold the adjustable star on the top of the shoulder straps tore and kind of deformed the whole shoulder strap making it dig into my collarbone even more. I love the sleekness and ability to fit a lot of stuff in this bag. The rain cover is also great. I just wish where they cut wieght wasn't in the padding.
Reviewed by XIAOYAO from BEAVERTON on Saturday, May 9, 2015
I recieved my backpack recently,I'm very satisfied with it. It's great, but I think it will be more useful if it could provided more instruction about the backpack.,thus I could learn more about how to use it.
Reviewed by Ben Rickman from North Carolina on Thursday, October 9, 2014
I've taken this a couple hundred miles on the A.T. and in coastal/beach environments. It's a beast. Super durable and a great back. I really like the pockets on the waistband, and the accessibility pouches on top and side. I wish it was less weight, but it's a trade off in price and durability I think.
Reviewed by DCer from D.C. area on Thursday, April 17, 2014
I am writing a review after using this backpack in a week-long trip. First and foremost, I was looking for a backpack - big enough - to carry on a plane overhead compartment. Having read limited reviews on the ability of this pack to do that, I was pleasantly surprised to accomplish that. Big plus there!
Everything else about this pack is top notch - the ripstop nylon seems very sturdy, as well as the zippers and re-enforcement clips. The only reason why I did not give it 5 starts is its lack of a pocket on the underside of the top compartment. That pocket could be relevant to deter water, or to store documents in a more secure manner. Most other packs that I compared it against (in stores or while looking online) have a pocket there, including the same-year Z35 that I saw in a store. Other than that, I am very satisfied with this pack so far.
Reviewed by Backcountry Backpacker from Colorado on Tuesday, March 5, 2013
This is my second Z55 to purchase for myself over the last 7 years. I've also purchased the same model for a family friend, my daughter and my wife. These packs are made very lightweight, comfortable and durable. I'm tall and relatively slim and I've always had issues in the past with waist belts not providing adequate support and my shoulders have carried the brunt of the load. This has not been the case with the Gregory Z55. After 7 years of extensive backpacking in the Colorado back country I've retired my original pack to day pack use and have purchased a newer model. The newer model appears to be slightly higher capacity with much improved lumbar support. I've been wearing this pack on snowshoe treks for the last few weeks and you honestly don't know its back there. Its an amazing pack and I highly recommend it