I bought a giant bulky Jansport backpacking pack over ten years ago off the discount rack at REI. It was huge, had extra pockets and straps attached all over the outside of the pack, and it was uncomfortable. I didn’t climb at the time, but figured it would give me good options for backpacking and traveling.

Flash forward a handful of years and I stubbornly used that pack as my primary bag for everything, including climbing. It sucked, but whenever I looked into a new pack specific to climbing, it was expensive with all sort of features I wasn’t sure I needed. I suffered on until the Trango Crag Pack came along.

Rating

★★★★★ (5 out of 5)

Review

The first thing that struck me about the Trango Crag Pack was it’s price that came in right under $100. How could this be? Even day-packs that see more action at high schools than they do crags cost upwards of $100. It made me question if this was too good to be true.

To my surprise the pack delighted me from when I first used it up until today. The most obvious observation about the pack is its simple but utilitarian design. While it looks like a haul bag with straps, it remains comfortable-enough and has some nice simple features that make it a great crag pack option.

Pros

Cons

Final Verdict

This is a great pack (assuming it holds up for a handful of years). You really can’t beat the simplicity and ease of use of the pack all while spending less than $100. I’m sure there are more ergonomically friendly designs from other brands that fit better, but I’d be willing to guess the incremental utility and comfort isn’t proportional to the incremental price.

I’d recommend the Trango Crag Pack to anyone making the hike in for a day of climbing. It would not make a great multi-day backpacking or alpine pack. I’d get something more technical for that. But in terms of a simple outing to the crag, this is the pack. It’s no wonder I see more and more at Smith Rock with every visit.