Ortovox Peak 45
- Full side access zip from one shoulder to opposite hip
- Adjustable lid height
- Lightweight for its size
- Side access zipper runs underneath lid
- Thinner material than its counterparts
- No hydration hose sleeve
The Ortovox Peak 45 is spacious and highly functional while maintaining a minimalist feel without sacrificing much in the feature set. Yet, it is the second lightest pack in this test. The side access is compromised by being under the flap lid but it was otherwise perfect for snowy nights spent deep in the backcountry.
The Peak 45’s rigid, sweat-wicking back panel and cushy hip straps provide plenty of comfort and support under a heavy load. The pack skied great and also has adequately padded shoulder straps.
The Peak 45 is capable of both carry options. A-frame carry comes standard and the diagonal carry utilizes a thick tail loop and metal hook and attachment point up top that can double as a rope strap. It will also carry a snowboard.
The most interesting feature of the Peak 45 is the side access zip, which runs from the right shoulder all the way around the bottom of the pack to the left hip. This allows for the entire pack to be folded open from the outside. One flaw is the top of the zipper runs underneath the lid, so it must be unclasped in order to open and close the side zip. A dedicated avy pocket, axe attachment, helmet carry, and hip belt pocket round out the feature set. Note that the Peak 45 lacks an insulated hydration sleeve.
Ease of Use
The Peak 45’s waist belt adjusts from the hips by pulling straps inwards towards the belly button, which made for an easy and secure adjustment method. The straps and zippers are straightforward and easy to use.
It’s clear the Peak 45 sacrifices on strap (particularly the A-frame carry straps), and fabric thickness to save on weight. However no specific issues were noted during testing.
How We Tested It
The packs in this test were used on multiple long day trips and overnight trips throughout the Colorado Rockies, including in Rocky Mountain National Park, Yankee Boy Basin near Ouray, Mt. Sneffels, “Peak N” in the Gore Range, and Savage Peak in the Holy Cross Wilderness.
For more reviews beyond this 2017 test, check out our Best Insulated Ski Jackets of 2017 and Best Ski Shells of 2017, along with our ski helmet tests, ski goggle tests, and other related snowsports gear tests.
The products featured in this test have been loaned to the Gear Institute. For more on our policies regarding editorial objectivity and sample returns, see here.
About the Author
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- Type of Backpack: Overnight Pack
- Volume (unverified): 45 liters
- Ski/Snowboard compatible?: Both
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