Review of 2013 Advanced Skin S-lab 12 Set
Good: More like a cropped waistcoat than a pack, the high ride and front strapping (twin link) system make it feel part of your body so you forget it’s there even when fully-loaded. The front strapping system (which replaces chest and waist straps and buckles) expand as you breath, without losing pack positioning. Underarm routing of liquid makes access easier. Attention to detail on storage, with internal zippable compartments: handles compulsory gear on runs like UTMB – comes with fitted emergency blanket and whistle. Multiple compression points to maintain fit.
Bad: Because it’s more like an item of clothing, you need to factor its ‘warming impact’ as an extra layer. Although you can work out what most things do/ are for, features like pole carrier are poorly explained; things like the spare velcro gel pocket for switching at aid stations are genius in a small way. As with all packs, a certain degree of double-jointedness required to access bottom rear pockets on the run. Slightly small 1.5l bladder, but substantial front access bottle holders compensate. High-end pricing.
Price from: £150/$180