For over 40 years, Osprey has been raising the standards for backpack comfort, functionality, and innovation. Luckily for us, Osprey has also been catering to the backcountry travelers that prefer to wear avalanche airbag backpacks. The technology has transformed and improved in the past few years and avy packs are becoming an essential piece of equipment for backcountry travel.
Tyson and I recently upgraded our avy backpacks and each got ABS Vario Base Units. Our favorite feature about the ABS bags is the fact that you can get different size zip-ons but only have one airbag deployment system. It is so versatile, cost effective, and most importantly safe. The base unit comes with a simple 8L zip-on and we both added on slightly larger zip-ons because we don’t travel light. I have a 32L and Tyson opted for the 24L. We both love these sizes, but wanted something a little bit bigger in case we wanted to do an overnight trip or much longer day trip.
That’s where the Kode 42 by Osprey comes in to play for us. It is ABS compatible so just like the ABS zip-ons, the Kode has an identical zipper on the back panel that attaches the Kode to your ABS system. What’s even sweeter than the Kode attaching to your ABS is the fact that while the Kode is ABS compatible, it also comes with it’s own zip-on straps and comfortable back panel. Now instead of having one pack for winter backcountry travel and one or two for your summer adventures, you can have one backpack for everything. The Kode 42 is a little bit bigger than something I would ski with in the backcountry everyday, but for someone who doesn’t want to pay to have multiple ABS zip-ons, it is a great option.
The Kode is a feature packed backpack and Osprey has gone above and beyond with their innovative design and comfort. With 42L of space, there is plenty of room for backcountry essentials and more. There is a separate pocket for avalanche rescue equipment, which is a huge bonus. If you are in need of your equipment, you should not be wasting time pulling out extra snacks and layers to try and find your probe and shovel.
The top closure is great for a helmet or rope. I love having a place to put my helmet while I’m hiking. The way that Osprey has designed this pack, your helmet will stay dry when stashed in the top pocket of the Kode.
As talked about in the video, there are numerous ways to carry your skis or snowboard. For skis, you can either choose a diagonal carry or A-Frame carry. With a snowboard, you can choose a vertical carry or horizontal carry. It’s nice to have options for different environments that you may find yourself in.
You can fit a ton of layers in the main compartment of the Kode but what is even more impressive is Osprey’s ability to have top load access and back panel access. This is key for me when traveling anywhere with a larger backpack. I find I lose things way too easily when a large backpack only has top load access. You can find all of your layers and snacks with a simple unzip at the back panel.
It’s exciting to be able to have a backpack that can be used multi-seasonally. It is very cost effective and packed with so many features. Summit 14ers in the summer and ski steep lines in the backcountry in the winter with your safe ABS system attached. With their experience in the industry, Osprey is only making more functional, more comfortable, and more applicable products. We can’t wait to see what they tackle next.
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