Customer Reviews Of:
Kelty Redwing 50 Backpack

Closeouts. With features like a large zip main compartment, ample accessory pockets and a padded waistbelt, Kelty's Redwing 50 backpack remains the proven trail classic its always been, just with a stylish face lift.

Average Rating based on 29 reviews 4.413793 0 5
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  • Reviewed by Climber Guy from Northern Cali on Monday, November 16, 2015
    (In my opinion,) the Kelty Redwing 50 backpack is one of the most versatile and comfortable packs I have EVER seen. Why...? Let me try and explain. First off, the main compartment has a long surrounding zipper so you can instantly get to ALL the items in the bag, including the stuff at the bottom. Unlike a top loading bag where you need to pull everything out before you can get to the bottom. Secondly, having multiple large SEPERATED pockets is a GREAT idea, why? So you can keep a messy camp stove separate from your clean clothing, or food separate from undergarments, or electronics separate from fluids, or base camp items separate from the stuff you need ASAP. Multiple pockets are the ONLY way to go, if for no other reason than organization and finding what you need FAST! The Redwing 50 has four separate pockets outside the main compartment.

    The TOP pocket is plenty large enough to stuff a down jacket into, or food for the trip, or a tablet if you want to keep it safe on top of the pack and free from bumps.

    The side pockets are large and zip all the way open. But in addition, they EACH have a hidden hollow sleeve underneath them allowing you to secure any long item that might be too long for the pack… fishing pole, tent poles, trekking poles, tripods, you name it… you can see my home made stick clip in image H to see what I mean. You would not believe how useful those sleeves are. Use them to stuff a jacket in them, maps, gloves, etc… any item in the side sleeves reaches all the way down to the water bottle pocket so you know your item is secured. Think of it as a two foot long pocket that adjusts too whatever you stuff in it. (Love em’)

    The large pocket on the back (opposite the shoulder straps) has multiple layers for organizing the smaller items you need. Just see (Image I) for example. In that image alone I have a tablet, sunglasses, wallet, camera, snack bars, multi-tool, locking blade, pens, sharpie, medic shears, iPod… and there was still more room, as those were just the organization pockets that were filled. There is still the main pocket that is empty to stuff some PB&Js in or a few paperbacks. Some of the organization sleeves have soft backing to keep items scratch free, others secure with fasteners to keep items locked in place. A key clip helps to make sure your valuables are still there after your trip is done.

    The back and shoulder padding is thick and well ventilated. The waist belt is also well padded and wide for all day comfort. The waist belt has webbing loops that are far more versatile than those silly pockets you see on expensive packs. The “silly pockets” seem cool in the store, but when on the trail they prove to be a pain… why? Well, the one pocket means you dump all your items into one tight hole… Keys, knife, snack, camera… so when you need to grab ONE item, you need to juggle everything in the tight tiny pocket. But… web loops allow for everything to be right at your fingertips. Ask yourself, if you need your knife/camera/phone fast… do you really want to dig for it? Plus, loops allow you to expand with whatever you need… add a dog leash to walk Fido hands free. Or…If you like a pocket, just add one to the loops. I keep two snack bars in my added pocket and I still have room for a pocket knife and cell phone, all… instantly grab-able on the web loops. Try that with a dinky zipper pocket.

    Flexible expandability is the name of the game with this pack. Pack just the middle… and throw a rope over the top (using the rope straps as seen in image G) if you want to make a light and fast push for the summit. Or fill er’ up to the brim for multiple day adventures. If you need extra space, the web loops on the bottom of the pack allow for attaching a bed roll, tent, sleeping pad, flotation device or any large object with just the cinching of two webbing straps or old belts.

    In addition there are carabineer loops and a large handle on the back of the pack. Clip, haul, hang or secure the pack in any number of ways. Hang the pack at night and keep it free from critters and bears. Secure the pack on a hook when not in use or while traveling on boats, roads or rails. Use the handle to easily grab the back like a duffle bag… just for moving it around. The designers really thought this pack through.

    The compression straps on the sides allow you to secure your load whether fully loaded or running light. Plus they allow you to quickly stash a wet rain jacket, for drying (see the N image) or an extra coat when the weather changes quickly and you want to be ready or you have to carry one of the kid’s jackets.

    The pack is hydration compatible, (because drinking early and often keeps you going MUCH longer) and the tube can be run down either shoulder strap for lefties or righties. (See image K) Plus, the load lifter straps on the top of each shoulder allows a perfect fit as your gear gets used during the day.

    The Kelty Redwing 50 is so versatile it is my GO TO pack for a day hike or a multi-day multi-pitch climb in the mountains. JUST MAKE SURE YOU GET THE RIGHT SIZE. A Medium/Large, If you are short and skinny like me, a M/L pack may be too “long” for you, if so… look for a SMALL, but if not just make sure you have the correct torso length as it only comes in two sizes. I would give the pack more stars if it was more adjustable for torso length, but affordability means sometimes you give up a little adjust-ability. Hope this helps someone. Thank you.
  • Reviewed by Richard *UT* from Salt Lake City on Saturday, March 1, 2014
    I use this for school and it sees occasional use for summertime over-nighters. For school it is perfect, lots of room and pockets for everything, plenty of padding. I did notice that a different review mentioned that there was no place (hole) on the pack for a water hose from a bladder to get to the hiker. Mine did have a place right at the top. Kelty at a great price, well thought out design, I love it.
  • Reviewed by bert from ct on Thursday, June 20, 2013
    excellent pack, great price
  • Reviewed by Travel lover from Idaho on Tuesday, June 18, 2013
    I am a smaller person and the frame was much to large. It said it was a small but I could not use it I sent it back.
  • Reviewed by Wilbur the Fire Ant Wrangler from Barrow, AK on Thursday, May 30, 2013
    Awesome product, replaces my well-worn 5 year old Redwing 50
  • Reviewed by Sky Dancer from Arizona on Monday, May 20, 2013
    I bought one of these for doing extensive day hikes. It is great!! I love the full round zip main compartment, is so easy to get to things and find them quickly. I like this style much better, than the typical packs, that have a drawstring at the top. The side pockets are a great added feature. Usually I have to buy separate side pockets as an accessory to add on to my previous day packs. The mesh pockets at the bottom, are great for putting your sun hat in, and taking it out, as soon as you need it. It is comfortable, and rides well. It is built to carry skiis, and / or a snowboard.

    I liked it so much, I bought two more, before they were sold out, or discontinued. I like the Orange Color, much better than the standard blue or black.

    Get this backpack and you will be happy for a long time. P.S. It might be big enough to carry your gear for an overnighter, but if you are planning on going backpacking for a few days, you probably will want something larger, and with a bigger frame.

    Happy Trails. :-)
  • Reviewed by Old Scouter from Texas on Friday, May 3, 2013
    I have always been a Kelty's fan. The one disappointment was the lack of a hydration tube hole around the top of the shoulder straps. It has a pocket that will hold a bladder, but there is not a good way to get a tube out of the pack to use while you are hiking. I got it primarily for my bicycle commute to work, so it should work out great for that.
  • Reviewed by DEE from Georgia on Tuesday, April 23, 2013
    This is a very well built pack with many great features. The pack is a little heavy but the quality makes up for it. The big side pockets with pass through design are one of my favorites. The kelty redwing fits like a glove. Sierra trading post was great to deal with. They processed my order and shipped it very quickly.
  • Reviewed by Will from North Carolina on Tuesday, April 16, 2013
    I bought the kelty for a daypack and a bear hunting pack. It has worked well for the dayhikes other than it is a little high capacity. My sister has used this pack for a one day overnighter with sufficient room for gear. High Quality pack that works well.
  • Reviewed by Piedmontman from Virginia on Thursday, April 11, 2013
    Well made, too big for carry-on. Good for a couple nights out and I am not an ultralight backpacker.Comfortable.THe orange can be see from a long way off if off trail during hunting season.
  • Reviewed by CShines from Indiana on Friday, April 5, 2013
    We haven't used these yet, we haven't even packed them but we are extremely excited about them. I ordered these because of the other reviews and the killer price. When we showed them to my brother in law he was floored at the price we go them for; he was already aware of the quality of the packs.
  • Reviewed by unknown from unknown on Tuesday, April 2, 2013
    I got this to replace a 8 year old Kelty 50 that someone stole last summer. I liked the old pack as a carry on, or for 3 day trips. I was happy to find a new one for a great price.
  • Reviewed by Inbred Mountain Boy from North Carolina on Wednesday, March 27, 2013
    I sent it back because it was not large enough for my needs; however this was with regret, as it was a great pack, otherwise. Obviously, it was well made and a good size for many applications.
  • Reviewed by Stickman from San Diego, Ca on Friday, March 22, 2013
    First, I have an 18" torso and figured the M/L would be a good fit...wrong. I returned it for a S/M instead after trying out that size at a local retailer, much better. The back is well made but it has a "U" shaped aluminum stay running right down the center of the pack and the very first time I bent over to tie my shoe it just dug into my spinal cord. There was just no adjustment to make it not contact my spinal cord. I removed the stay and the pack fit MUCH better. I would not try and carry much more than 30lbs in this bag as it will just sag down onto your butt but otherwise very comfortable bag. I will use it for 3-4 day backpack trips in the low desert.
  • Reviewed by Rob from Colorado on Monday, March 18, 2013
    I use this mainly for long day hikes but I'm sure it would work for short backpacking excursions also. I was able to put everything in it from my old Osprey Talon 33, which I also liked very much, plus so much more. It is very comfortable on long day hikes, and is much easier to get to things I need in the field than the Osprey, which is a big plus. It even had a place to attach my old camelbak bladder, yippee. Time will tell as to the longevity, but the material does feel more durable than the Osprey.
  • Reviewed by Walker from Michigan on Wednesday, March 13, 2013
    I am very pleased with the quality of this pack. It is the perfect size for travel on a 2 to 3 day trip.
  • Reviewed by em from Boston, MA on Saturday, February 23, 2013
    I officially love the Kelty Redwing 50. I bought it to replace a 15 year old travel backpack that no one has ever heard of made by American Tourister, which was essentially a large squishy, boxy carry on size suitcase with two backpack straps. That old pack, boxy as it was, spoiled me for travel packs forever and went around the world with me several times over. It recently developed a terrible smell from getting something spilled on it in a cargo hold somewhere then marinating on a tarmac - anyway, time for a replacement.

    My main criteria for a pack was that it had to fit two weeks of clothing (though I travel pretty light) so >3000 cubic inches of volume, but also be carry-on friendly, and be easy to pack/unpack quickly - which effectively meant front/panel loading, and be sturdy enough to get thrown on & off bus roofs and the like, get wet on camping trips, get dragged around a bit, but not SO sturdy that it weighed > 4.5 lbs or so. Tough order to fill!

    I got the Redwing 50 in size small (torso size, all the packs have the same load volume regardless of what torso size you order) in the Apricot orange color. When I pulled it from the delivery box I already knew it was going to be good - the material is sturdy but light, the compression straps are well-placed and solidly made, the padding is just enough to keep you comfortable without being too puffy. The velcro on the pack is TOUGH. It's an effort to pull apart, but this is exactly what you want for the purpose on this pack (the velcro is behind the side zip pockets, effectively forming another pocket, or can be used for carrying walking sticks/poles as a pass-through). The design, pocket placement and interior material have all been well thought out. There are some organizational compartments, but the bulk of the interior is just clean space to pack in. I will probably never use the internal bladder/hydration feature, so can't comment on that except to say that it's not intrusive of the internal space. Don't let the shape of the pack fool you - this is not "school backpack" size, but "internal frame weeks-long backpacking trip" size. It's big.

    Packed with all my gear and cinched with the compression straps, it makes a tight, small bundle perfect for carry on. But the front pocket - organized quite a bit like a school backpack - makes it easy to remove things for airport security (so the remainder can stay compressed and unopened if possible). I have a small laptop, so managed to fit it in that front pocket. It fits in the upper airline bin space perfectly, with room to spare. The daisy chain loops on the bottom of the pack are great for hanging extra shoes or a rolled up blanket and pillow.

    There are so many well thought out thumb loops, pull loops, grab handles and the like, that each time I reach for something there is a perfectly placed loop to grab. The zippers are solid and zip freely with big pull tabs. It can be locked with an airline friendly lock if you need to (just the main compartments, not side). And to be completley shallow for a minute - the orange color is just right! Not so bright that it screams "new backpack!" but eye catching enough that I can spot it immediately in a batch of other people's luggage. It already looks very much like a favorite "old faithful" even though it's still relatively new. I've just bought another one for my daughter from Sierra Trading and the sale price makes this an unbelievable bargain.
  • Reviewed by frank the tank from W.C. Pa on Wednesday, February 20, 2013
    Great pack for day pack or up to 2 day excursions. Surprisingly large yet light weight. Doubles as a carryon for the plane. Lots of straps and side pockets are great!
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by G from Boise on Wednesday, February 20, 2013
    All around great backpack!!
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by Dragon30 from Up-State New York on Tuesday, February 19, 2013
    This pack provides lots of space and pockets for all kinds of items. I was amazed at the quantity of things that can be fit in it. I have used it more for travel commercially than anything else and it is just the right size for multiple day trips. Carry on.... no problem.
    The orange color makes the pack quite easy to identify (hadn't really thought of that prior to purchase).
    It would be a convenience if the metal brace were removable. Then the pack would be even more suitable to be used as carry on and easier to clean.
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by Tommyboy from Cliffside Park, NJ on Monday, December 24, 2012
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by Jimbo from Portland, OR on Monday, December 17, 2012
    Big bag with plenty of room and pockets.
  • Reviewed by Abode from Kimberley, BC CAN on Tuesday, November 20, 2012
    This pack holds alot!! Easy to access, fully opens, sleeping bag can fit inside easy enough. Has plenty of daisy chain loops for attaching extra gear, plenty of cushioning in shoulders and on the waist strap, would have been nice to have some extra storage pockets on waist strap for smaller items. Only negative was there was very little play for torso adjustment. But its a great pack for the price so I'm happy!!
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by Scott from Chicago on Monday, November 12, 2012
    Kelty is a well-regarded maker of outdoor equipment, and this pack demonstrates why they have earned that reputation. The design is sensitive, the manufacture is flawless, and the color is surprising! Loved it a lot.

    Sadly, it was too small for my purposes (an alternative to a duffel for the gym), so I had no use for it and returned it. It was such a thing of beauty, though, that I really considered keeping it just to have it.
    • Best Uses: Short trips
    • Pros: Adjustable, Comfortable, Cool, Roomy
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by Gromit76 from Portland, oregon on Tuesday, November 6, 2012
    I use this pack everyday for work. It is easy to keep organized, and very comfortable to carry long distances.
    • Cons: bulky, Heavy
    • Pros: Easy to Organize, Great Shoulder Straps, Lots of room
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by Brady the Climber from Rapid City, SD on Tuesday, November 6, 2012
    I bought a Redwing 50 a year ago because I was going on a trip and didn't want to check luggage. The bag compresses well so your stuff doesn't jiggle around while you walk around. I later used the backpack to tote sound equipment around. I've also done a few short hikes with it - I love the exterior drink holders and the five main compartments. I started rock climbing and needed another backpack to hold all that gear. After looking at reviews of the Redwing and a few others, I was pleased to find out the bag has rock climbing in mind (as well as many other uses.)
    • Best Uses: Carrying Things Around, Rock Climbing, Travel
    • Cons: Not Bladder Compatable
    • Pros: Comfortable, Durable, Functional, Great price, Great Zippers
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by wallywalls from sandpoint, ID on Monday, November 5, 2012
    A nice pack. Great for a week of travel.
    • Best Uses: Camping, Travel
    • Pros: Nice size
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by Alda from Sterling, VA on Sunday, November 4, 2012
    I bought this bag for my husband and wish I had bought one for me too. I will go back and get mine too. Excellent product as always. Thank you Kelty!
    • Best Uses: Travelling
    • Pros: Beautiful Color, Durable, Manu Pockets, The Perfect Backpack, Very spacious
  • Verified Buyer Reviewed by TigerCubDenLeader from Kansas City Mo on Thursday, October 25, 2012
    I am a Cub Scout Den Leader. I plan to use this bag during our campouts (mostly car camping) and when hiking with my cub scouts to help carry supplies. ( first aid kit, flashlights, etc) 3300 is a LOT of space for just a day hike, but you dont have to fill the pack.
    • Best Uses: Car Camping, Hiking, Overnight bag
    • Pros: Long Torso Support, Suspension
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