28 February 2008

Weird or Wonderful? Ergon BD2 backpack

After finishing our review of Deuter's excellent Race X Air 1 pack- and accidentally breaking a zipper- it was time to look at what was new and interesting in the world of mid-size riding packs. Germany's ergonomics-obsessed Ergon (makers of some very interesting grips) have brought out a pair of very unusual riding packs that use an eternal frame and free-rotating shoulder harness to direct most of their contents' weight to the rider's hips. This is intended to lower the rider's center of gravity, spare the spine and allow for greater movement in technical situations. We got the lowdown from Ergon's brand representative and endurance racer Jeff Kerkove at 24HitOP and a week or so later, the BD2 was at our door. There are some neat features, including waterproof zips, a floating external pocket that could hold a helmet or some body armor, and of course a massive nylon frame/waist strap. We'll let you know how it feels on the trail, but for walking, it feels eerily not-there...

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