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Fifty Sense: Common Sense Ideas for Thriving after 50
Fifty Sense: Common Sense Ideas for Thriving after 50

Gregory Packs
Backpacks and daypacks

Fifty Sense Seal of Approval

Gregory Packs have been around for forty years. The expertise that goes into these packs is what makes the difference. The most important piece of gear is a great fitting backpack that is lightweight enough to not only carry extra weight, but also one that has enough support so the back is supported.

Not only do these packs have great support, but there is tons of knowledge on how to fit a pack correctly and how to decide what size torso one has. These packs can personalized with different size torsos, waist belts and shoulder straps.

Octal 55

We are so excited to review an ultralight woman’s backpack that has all the wonderful ventilated suspension and moisture wicking mesh that Gregory is famous for. There was no break in with this pack. I took it for a four day recreational hike carrying 35 pounds at the heaviest and had no sore spots. At over 70 years old, I have to have suspension yet this pack only weighs in at 2.4 pounds! Hurrah!

Octal was very easy to pack, and it comes with a rain fly which stores nicely in a zippered compartment in the brain (the zippered detachable top). If you prefer, you can take the brain off and use the ultralight weather flap instead. I prefer using the brain because it helps me stay organized. I put my emergency weather gear, lunch, meds, hat, any thing I need for the day in it.

There are lots of extras, a sunglass Quickstow system on the shoulder harness, a key clip, and hydration sleeve with the universal hanger and a pass through port. I love how the mesh material of the oversized front pocket and two large side pockets give so much flexibility when packing. Because of this, after over 20 years of backpacking, I’m finding better ways to pack according to the individual day or trip.

It looks like Gregory has embraced the lightweight concept of packs without giving up quality and comfort. Bravo!

Miwok 23 Men's
Maya 22 Women's

Gregory has come up with some awesome daypacks and we have fallen in love with the Miwak for men and Maya for women. It’s unusual to find a daypack with an adjustable torso length foam breathable backpanel and a body hugging flexible hip belt with dual zippered pockets. Even better, these features are wowen’s specific in the Maya. How nice to have companies realize that all day hikers are not the same size.

There are eight compartments to stay organized with dual side stretch mesh pockets and a large front stretch mesh pocket with a secure buckle closure and reflective webbing. Little details like comfort grip molded zipper pulls and a sunglass quick stow system on the shoulder harness for a secure and scratch free access to you shades make hiking so much more fun. there is a dedicated zippered hydration pocket with the hydration hanger keeps your bladder away from your other stowed items. The top zippered pocket with a soft touch liner to protect valuable items, an interior mesh zippered security pocket with key clip make items readily available. There is even a trekking pole/tool attachment with a bungee closure system.

The packs can be cinched for the amount you carry and we love the colors, especially the red! We don’t think we have ever had other hikers comment on the looks of our daypacks until we started using these. These are definitely quality packs, in and out!

Sage 45

The Sage 45 is very comfortable and fit great. Of course, the great fit is due in part to being sized for a Gregory Pack using their fit jig. The backpanel, harnesses and waistbelt are made of breathable molded foam. This helped to keep comfortable during the hikes we took this on. Intelligent design makes it easy to organize our gear for any trip. A 3-day backpacking trip on the North Country Trail to taking a stroll through the farmers market the Sage 45 is fantastic. This is a great size for a long distance hike. Since it only weighs a little over 3 lbs. it is barely noticeable.

The Sage 45 is designed specifically for a woman. From the Intuition 3D Suspension, molded waistbelt/shoulder harnesses, to the side and bottom compression straps they are all built for the female body. A roll top design that is water resistant is your access point on top. Gregory equipped you with a color matching built in rain cover that is easy to access. If it is just a light rain there is a quick access pocket on the outside of the pack perfect for rain gear. Our new favorite feature is the security pocket just behind the water bottle pocket…shhh! To get in to the main body there is a large zipper to access that area. Just open it up like a suitcase and dig in.

In review, the Sage 45 is great for overnight hikes, day trips, adventure travel, getting produce at the farmers market and anything you want to do. The color choices are lovely; it looks great and feels comfortable for all sorts of adventures. Wear it in good health ladies knowing you look good too.

Whitney 95 for men

In the parking lot at Redfish Lake, I looked forward to the weekend ahead of backpacking in the Sawtooths. As I shouldered my over stuffed pack, my arm strap broke, and it fell to the ground. After years of cramming gear that pushed its stitching to the limits, it finally gave. Then and there, I realized I needed a newer, larger pack.

When the Gregory Whitney 95 arrived at my house, it looked big enough, but was it comfortable? The Whitney comes with CFS technology (custom fit suspension). This keeps pack from moving about while staying flexible enough to move around freely. The ripstop fabrics, water resistant zippers, and bottom panel ensure this pack a long life in the elements. The large option can accommodate all my gear with ease. Finally I have a big enough pack that fits my frame.

Jade 50

I reviewed the Jade 50 and although it was a pound more than my other pack (3 lbs total), I could carry up 35 lbs all day, and could go up to 45 lbs with comfort. It can make all the difference between a bad, good, or great day! Their day packs even have a frame for comfort, can’t be beat!


...Fiftysense Product Review Panel

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