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dips · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2005 · Points: 25


John McNamee · · Littleton, CO · Joined Jul 2002 · Points: 1,690


Great review. You're going to put me out of my job!



crackers · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 0
... I highly recommend the V2.5 45L Worksack to anybody looking for a lightweight climbing pack that works great for ice climbing, all season mountaineering, alpine climbing, and good old rock climbing as well. If your needs include a multi-day trek in for climbing, you should check out the Cilogear 60L Worksack which shares all of the features I have reviewed here, but is expands to a whopping 90L with the spindrift collar all the way up. ...

Full Disclosure: I paid full price for my 45L worksack.


Just for the record, I make CiloGear packs and am the company. Uh, thanks for the fantastic review Doug. I'm always pleasantly surprised when somebody takes the time and makes the substantial effort to share a review like that.

A few notes: we're using made in the USA zippers now. They're really much much nicer. The panel the crampons go on is the same VX42 material we've used for the past three years for that purpose, and we've only seen real damage done by folks sitting down on top of the crampons and pushing them through the pack. The lid's shock cord was designed around my old HB el cap, so I'm sorry that it doesn't work better with your "helmet".

I think the Internal Lid Pocket works really well, but it's very nice to get your own strange ideas confirmed. I think that the framesheet might be getting loose because of the stiffness of the VX07 fabric used in the V2.5 45L packs...we use 210d SilNylon in the V3 packs and it hasn't been a problem on our test packs.

I think that pack might be lighter and larger than the packs you're comparing it to...;) If you really are using all 200grams of removable straps, I'd suggest that you aren't so interested in "fast and light"...

Anyway, thanks for the review, and thanks for your feedback so we can continue improving our product.
Sunny-D · · SLC, Utah · Joined Aug 2006 · Points: 700

I have a Cilo Gear 60 L work sack that I bought Spring 07 for a trip to Peru. I love it. I looked at most the packs out there for Alpine climbing and found the Cilo Gear top notch. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a excellent quality pack, That can really do it all.

A side note: On one of the peaks we were climbing one of the guys I was climbing with got sick and went down, leaving all his gear with 2 of us. I picked up his gear after our summit and hauled my stuff and most of his stuff down. My pack easily weighed 70 pounds. He had a lot of stuff... My Cilo Gear pack carried all the extra gear well despite the massive extra weight.

Lee Smith · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2003 · Points: 1,545

Great review! Damn, something else for the wish list.

crackers · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 0

Sold out.

We're making the V3 ones now. The pack bags of the V3 packs will be a teensy bit heavier, and the grey stripes are a bit darker. There are some other improvements, I think they're well covered on the blog.

We'll set up preorders for the V3 45L's next week.

Forgive me for posting this here, but since the review sent a lot of traffic to our site, I thought I'd post this here rather than waste folks' time and effort looking for something that's gone...

dug a · · Gardnerville NV · Joined Oct 2006 · Points: 65

I have the CG 45. It must be a bit earlier version? I dont have the inside small pocket. Strangely mine didn't come with the foam pad either. It came with the frame sheet and some sort of hard plastic thingy. Anyway, it didn't matter as I already have a foamy that came with my CCW pack a few years ago and just sits in the closet as this one would have. I use my 3/4 Z-rest for the frame in both these packs and it works great. It a bit of a tight fit in the CG tho. With a bit of experimentation I was able to rig the straps to carry a shovel on the back panel of the pack. My only complaint is the button hole type cord exit on the pack bag and extension. The one on the pack body is unraveling and I suppose that the extension will follow suit. I concur that this is an excellent alpine pack. I tried to use an older pack of mine for ice cragging the other day but just gave up and used my CG.

Steven N · · CO · Joined Dec 2004 · Points: 80

Great review.
I've got a V1 40L with the upgraded lid and love it. I've had it for 2 years now and its been around the world. the only issue I have it the tool attachment but get around that by wrapping the buckle end twice around the head of my nomics. If I were still using tools with hammers, it'd be no issue.
Someone on mentioned that BD packs may look better but the CG packs perform much better.
I totally agree.

crackers · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 0

Folks, forgive the bump, especially since it's basically totally self you should know, i more or less am cilogear.

I found threetwo of these V2.5 45L packs in our storage locker during inventory two weeks ago, and I need to pay my rent now. So, I'm having a mini 4th of July sale...

I've also got a few of exact same V2.5 45L pack in Dyneema on sale in size Large and Small. It's the same pack used by infamous trolls such as Boss McGillicutty (remember him?), sometime climber sometime editor Kelly Cordes and full time French Canadian Dynamo Maxime Turgeon...

Details are on my corporate whore blog

Thanks for reading, and again, apologies for the bump. I just want to pay my rent! I hereby promise that if somebody actually buys one of those dyneema packs, I'll make our upcoming rock packs available for testing here first...

Kai Larson · · Sandy, UT · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 436

Nice review. I own this very pack, and also like it a lot.

The one feature I wish it had is a plain web belt that you could use to replace the standard belt. Lots of times, I strip the belt off to save weight, but still wish I had a web belt to provide some extra stability.

KathyS · · Poughkeepsie, NY · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 125
Kai Larson wrote:Nice review. I own this very pack, and also like it a lot. The one feature I wish it had is a plain web belt that you could use to replace the standard belt. Lots of times, I strip the belt off to save weight, but still wish I had a web belt to provide some extra stability.
You could easily make one with some 2" webbing and a buckle. Most gear shops sell webbing by the foot and replacement buckles.
Iselin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2008 · Points: 0


I`m about to buy a new pack, actually my first one with climbing on my mind. But, to get the perfect one, I have to order it, and I need some help to understand what size I need.
Where on my back do I measure how long pack I need?
(I`m a girl, 169/170cm (66,5/66,9 inches), but long legged... Anyone with the same measures?)

I plan on going to a store to try on some packs and hopefully they have sizes similar to Cilogear :)

Tnx for any help, and I apologize if my English is bad;)

(By the way, I spent some of my summer in Lofoten in Norway, a climbing paradise!)

John McNamee · · Littleton, CO · Joined Jul 2002 · Points: 1,690

Over on there is some information from the outdoor trade shown regarding new packs that cilogear are about to release...

As far as sizing goes, if you can't find them locally, then I would suggest you contact Cilogear directly to sort the sizing out. Often a small size in one manufacturer doesn't mean a small from a different company will fit.

Link to outdoor show:

Jake O · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2008 · Points: 0

That's it! I've been hauling my old wild things rock sack around since I was 15. I'm 34 now. I'm tired of sewing the thing back together. I've been looking at the 45l worksack for two years. Time to drop the cash.

Iselin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2008 · Points: 0

Thanks John.
I think I will contact Cilogear when I have decided for a pack.
I should probably wait until they have released the new packs, just hope that there`s not to much price difference.
Limited pocket size ;)

Kai Larson · · Sandy, UT · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 436

A few more thoughts on this pack, now that I've used it a bit more.

The framesheet:

I find that the plastic framesheet with the aluminum stay is not needed. For even over-stuffed loads on overnight trips in cold weather, I find that the foam back pad (and careful packing) is all that is needed. I've left the framesheet at home the last several trips with this pack and haven't missed it at all. It still carries very well without the framesheet.

The framesheet weighs almost a pound, so I doubt I will bring it ever again. If I'm carrying a load that is so large that I need that much support, I'll likely just choose a different pack.

The foam backpad:

Initially, I thought that the foam pad would be better if it was folded at the bottom, so that it would be longer when unfolded. As it currently is designed, it's a little too short to insulate your torso during a bivi, and unfolding it only increases the width, not the length.

However, I now wonder if the stiffness of the pad (and its excellent performance as a frame component) may be in part because it is folded along it's vertical edge as opposed to folded at the bottom (like an Andinista.) This fold orientation makes the pad a lot shorter than an Andinista pad, but makes it significantly stiffer. I'm going to experiment with different foam backpad materials and fold orientations to see if it makes a difference in load carrying.


I made a simple waistbelt out of plain webbing with a little piece of Velcro in the middle to hold it in place. I can easily switch the padded waistbelt for the webbing belt and back again in about a minute.
The simple webbing belt works great for controlling the load on the climb, and gives me better access to the gear on my harness. Even after replacing the stock padded waistbelt, the pack is surprisingly comfortable to carry and still hip-loads pretty well, so much so that I typically just use the webbing belt unless I'm on a multi-day trip.

I'm not yet ready to say that I've joined the Cilo gear cult, but I'm slowly becoming converted. This pack is so versatile and does so many things well that it's becoming my go-to pack for overnighters and climbs where I'm taking a lot of kit.

Hartej Uppal · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2017 · Points: 0

I have tested expensive bag 75L W/NWD bag $1500 in the Himalayas on an expedition to Ama dablam for 1 month. This bag is the most uncomfortable bag I have worn in my mountaineering career. I wonder if you have field tested it? The shoulder straps bit into my shoulder, causing intense pain and caused the blood supply to stop to my hands. It's in fact a dangerous bag and can lead to accidents on the mountain.  I covered more than 80 miles on this backpack, so I know what I am talking. I spent lot of money on this and could have bought 3 backpacks which were more comfortable. I want modifications done on it or please take the return.

1: shoulder straps very short and not well padded and very uncomfortable. They even block blood supply in the axilla/armpit because it creates a tourniquet effect

2: there should be more padding over the sacral area for heavy loads

3. Side pockets are impossible to access while the bag is on my back anf it's  full.  They are also useless to store anything when backpack is full because they loose their volume. 

This bag is not waterproof!! 

It's not possible to shift the weight to the hips when the shoulders are getting tired! 

That's why I say, has this pack been field tested?

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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