Osprey Daylite Daypack
With the color and styling suitable for both men and women, the Osprey Daylite Daypack is people’s favorite for many good reasons. Even with its smaller size of 13L, it is capable of carrying a lot of your stuff. The large zipper offers quick access to all the pockets and compartments inside the bag, and there are smaller pockets on the outside to help you carry more. It actually manages to strike a perfect balance between keeping the setup simple and yet having the right features needed to get you through short hikes.
For longer hikes, you’d need to carry more stuff, and need a larger but heavier bag, and that is when the Daylite steals the show. You will be happy with your purchase if you’re out in the market to buy a small daypack that is comfortable and efficient, as that is exactly what the Daylite is with its padded shoulder straps, front zipped pocket, hydration compartment, and water bottle pockets.
- Merely 1lb of weight
- Extremely comfortable to wear around your shoulders and carry around, thanks to the
- shoulder and sternum straps
- Comes with extremely comfortable narrow webbing waist strap that serves the purpose well
- Shoulder pads come equipped with accessory loops giving you more options to carry gear
- Addition of the hydration port makes it a much more impressive option as compared to its competition
- May not be the largest daypack in the budget category with only 13L of capacity
- Does not have large enough side pockets to store your standard water bottle
- Comes with only two compression straps that limit its lashing capabilities
Another notable feature is the presence of a removable back panel cushion. You can certainly remove it if you want, but leaving it in place will help you pack it in a larger Osprey back you may already have.
Connected securely together to make one single piece, the shoulder straps are particularly durable and stand out superior to the thin nylon webbing type usually seen straps these days. Being fully adjustable with foam-backed mesh means they are very comfortable.
You will find many good reviews for this pack, especially in terms of durability. There is no need to worry about tearing it while on your trekking expedition, as the fabric is quite good. However, it does show some signs of wear where the logos rub off. Other than this, the bag holds up amazingly well, even compared to many of its competitors.
However, for a pack with this price tag, you are going to get reasonably good space to manage most of your stuff. You can easily carry snacks, a rain jacket, a small med kit, and a headlamp with some room to spare. Its size suits the short hikes or summer hikes where bulky rainwear is not needed.
The Daylite comes with side water bottle pockets, which is a good addition, but these pockets could have been bigger to hold a standard 1L water bottle. The absence of the front stash pocket is another drawback because it makes you store small things like your phone, sunscreen, and keys in the top zipped pocket instead.
The hydration reservoir is okay but without a loop or hook to attach the top of the reservoir bag is another missed opportunity. However, it is possible to secure the hose under a loop on the shoulder straps. If you want pockets the Daylite Plus is a better choice with more pockets on the front and an extra padded pocket inside. The outer pocket on this daypack has some smaller pockets – you can call them organizer type pockets and use them to organize most of your smaller items. It would have been nice though to have some external gear loop as well that could be used to clip other items.
However, many users have confirmed that it has a degree of water resistance going for it, as it keeps things dry if you spill something on it by accident, and it is extremely easy to clean the fabric without having to worry about any stains.
Compared to Other Brands
For size and function, the Daylite is quite comparable to the Deuter Speed Lite 2.0. If your focus is on functionality, going for the Speed Lite may seem to be a better bet, which is mainly because of its additional external lashing options. The reconfigurable straps give the Speed Lite an edge over the Daylite. Interestingly, the Daylite is still a relatively more popular option because it attaches to most other larger Osprey backpacks that you may already own. Moreover, if you love hydration reservoirs, you will simply love the Daylite too.
The Marmot Kompressor 18 is considered another close competition. For daily commuting, the Kompressor 18 is a good choice, as it is not bulky, but it may not be as comfortable as the Daylite, mainly because the shoulder straps have no padding whatsoever. There are actually complaints about the Kompressor 18 shoulder straps giving rashes to hikers. Similarly, the REI Flash 22 is a good budget option with three main compartments and a wide array of pockets as well as hydration reservoir storage. The overall comfort is where the Daylite comes out victorious.
The Osprey Talon 22 is a popular buy, and it is, in fact, a better all-round pack as compared to the Daylite, but the Talon 22 is more of a sports daypack than anything else. You may favor it in winter though because it’s bigger than the Daylite and is therefore capable of carrying more layers. Again, it comes down to the type of traveler/hiker you are, and of course, the amount of money you can spend to get a reasonably good daypack.
You may also consider using the Daylight for overnight hikes, but you have to realize that it will work only if you are cowboy camping with compact and lightweight gear. It will certainly allow you to be agile as compared to how you'd move with a larger pack. Depending on how much stuff you carry, it may serve you well from day hikes and cross-country skiing to snowshoe trips and shop around town.