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Reviews > Packs > Frameless Backpacks and Day Packs > Gregory Z25 & Jade Day Pack > Test Report by Jennifer Pope

Gregory Jade 25 Daypack
Test Report
Last Updated: June 15, 2009

Biographical Information Product Information Initial Impressions/Product Description Field Report Long Term Report Summary

Gregory Jade 25 Daypack


Biographical Information
Name Jennifer Pope
Age 28
Gender Female
Height 5 ft 7 in (1.7 m)
Weight 145 lb (66 kg)
Email Address Jennifer.Pope@gmail.com
Location Los Angeles, California
Backpacking Background
Intermediate. I've been a car-camper as long as I can remember and started backpacking in Northern California when I was 16. I have backpacked for about 3 years but I am currently on a hiatus after giving birth to my first child in May 2008. I hike and car camp all over California; the deserts, the coast, alpine mountains, and lower elevation mountains. I sleep in a tent with my husband and daughter and I dayhike with a small daypack or with my daughter on my back.

Product Information (back to top)
Manufacturer Gregory
Manufacturer URL http://www.gregorypacks.com/
Year of Manufacture 2008
Size Women's Small (torso sizes 14-16" 35.5-40.6 cm)
Color Pistachio (lime green) - also available in orange & blue
Claimed Weight 2 lbs 11 oz (1.22 kg)
Actual Weight 2 lbs 6 oz (1.08 kg)
MSRP not listed



Initial Report
January 18, 2009


Initial Impressions & Product Description

(back to top)

This backpack is much more than I expected out of a daypack(especially the venting system in the back, which I will explain in greater detail below). I was very impressed with this pack when I took it out of the box the first time. I like the green (pistachio) color quite a bit and it appears slightly more muted in person than it looked online (I was expecting a more neon green).

Description

This pack is specifically designed for and marketed toward women. I never really know what these means except that it has separate sizing from the men's models and usually come in colors that the female sex might find more appealing. This a 25 L (1525 cu in) pack. It is the smallest of the daypacks in the Jade line and also the smallest women's packs that Gregory offers. Despite being a daypack, the Jade 25 offers many of the technical features that a larger backpack offers. I was impressed by all of the features it offered.

Storage options

There is a main storage compartment accessible through a zipper. This zipper only goes about 3/4 of the way down the sides of the pack. Inside the main storage compartment is a hydration pack sleeve on the inside wall of the pack. There is a small port on the top of the pack for the tube to exit the pack. On the outside wall of the pack is a slim mesh zippered pouch. This pouch is appropriately-sized for my keys, wallet, cell phone and a few other items.

mesh pocket

Interior mesh pocket with a point-and-shoot camera case inside.

There is also another small zippered pouch on the top of the pack that could be used for a small wallet, keys, and cell phone (my wallet won't fit) or an iPod for people that like to listen to music while hiking (Gregory calls this a "stash pocket").

stash pocket

Stash pocket and hydration port on the top of the pack (hydration bladder is not included).

On the back of the pack is an "expandable front pouch". This is an open pouch that is a quick place to shove items like extra clothing layers that might be nice to get to quickly. This pouch can be cinched down when empty or expanded with several straps so it can hold a significant amount of gear. There is also a clip at the very top of the pouch so its contents can be accessed easily. There are two water bottle holsters on each side of the pack as well. These are constructed out of a very fine stretchy mesh and can easily hold my Sigg 1 L bottle. These are also deep enough so I shouldn't have to worry about a water bottle falling out along the trail. The last storage options are the hip belt pouches. There are two located on each side of the hip belt and are large enough to hold a couple of energy bars in each pocket.

Adjusting the Fit

The pack has all the typical options for adjusting fit. There is a padded hip belt that can be tightened or loosened. The shoulder straps can be adjusted. There is a sternum strap that slides up and down and can also be tightened or loosened. There are also load lifters which can be adjusted. I had no problem putting the pack on and adjusting each strap to get a comfortable fit. There are also two straps on each side of the pack that connect the expandable pouch to the back frame of the backpack. These serve to cinch the pouch closed and also to keep the main compartment from accidentally come unzipped and spill out its contents. These can be tightened down or unclipped for quicker access. There are also two adjustment straps on the bottom of the pack that control the amount of space available in the main storage compartment. When cinched down, the main compartment of the pack holds a very limited amount. In fact, this confused me at first because I couldn't figure out why I couldn't fit anything inside the pack. Near these straps are also two ice axe loops, but these are basically useless for my needs.

JetStream DTS Suspension

I think most technical backpacks out there today claim to have some sort of system to keep some space between the user's back and the backpack for ventilation and the sweaty back problem that it seems all backpackers face. Maybe I've missed this from other companies, but I haven't seen anything like this before. There is a good 3" (7.6 cm) of space between the mesh panel that touches my back and the actual backpack in the small of my back area (just above the hip belt). This gap tapers down at the top of the pack, but the whole of the backpack sits off of my back. Gregory accomplishes this through two metal rods that crisscross around the small of my back and arch up to the top of the back as well as a very stiff "board" (for lack of a better word). There is absolutely no sagging or pushing of the backpack closer to my back. I cannot imagine a situation where I could get the backpack to come in contact with my back. My points of contact with the pack are at the hip belt, the shoulder straps and the mesh panel on the back (with very wide holes).

JetStream DTS Suspension

Workmanship

As far as I can tell the pack is perfectly constructed. I did not notice any loose threads, crooked stitching or any other imperfections. It appears very well made and sturdy.


Field Report
April 21, 2009

Field Conditions (back to top)

Over the Field test period I spent two days in Joshua Tree National Park. The backpack was exposed to the sand, rocks and dirt in camp and was used on one dayhike. On this dayhike I carried a full 2-liter bladder of water in the hydration sleeve as well as some basic supplies and gear. It was warm, in the 70s F (20s C), dry and clear.

I also carried the backpack on 3 dayhikes in the Santa Monica Mountains in Los Angeles County. This is chaparral territory with a lot of low bushes and rocky terrain. On all hikes it was temperate, in the 60s and 70s F (15-25 C), and dry.

Additionally I used the backpack for some urban use, mainly as a diaper bag to carry all of my daughter's gear. Including on several airline flights.

Field Report (back to top)

I have had a favorable experience with this pack over the test period. The pack contains a plethora of pockets. I prefer to keep things organized and in their place rather than thrown into a large empty cavern so I like these features. The hipbelt pockets are especially useful since they are so easy to access with the pack on. It would be nice if they were slightly larger so they could hold something like a small point and shoot camera, but their smaller size also has benefits. I've found the hydration sleeve to be helpful. I prefer to use a hydration bladder over a standard water bottle on all but the shortest dayhikes so a hydration sleeve is a necessity for me. This one as worked fine. My 2-liter bladder fills the sleeve. The hydration port is perfectly acceptable to me.

The side pockets have worked fine. I probably use these the least out of all of the pockets on this pack. They would be more useful if I carried a water bottle but I prefer to utilize the sleeve. Other than a water bottle, there's no much I want to store here since the pockets are open and items in them are not completely secure. The large expandable pouch on the outside of the pack has been helpful. It's perfect for shoving items in that I might want to get at during a hike (like a long-sleeved shirt or fleece). The pouch is only secured with an adjustable clip but I've found that if I stuff items in and clinch down the clip the items inside are secure. I haven't had any problems with items falling out and I wouldn't expect to encounter any. This was also useful to keep entertainment items for my daughter on hikes, or just in general. I could quickly get to things that she might need quickly without digging around inside the backpack.

The interior pockets are spacious and functional. Typically I use these to store my personal items like keys, wallet, cell phone, etc.. I have plenty of space in the large mesh pocket. The mesh has held up fine so far.

I really like the suspension on this pack. It's very successful at keeping the pack up and off my back. It hasn't been too warm yet so it hasn't gone through too strenuous of a sweaty back test. I look forward to testing this further as it gets warmer here. Thus far, my back has been nice and dry. The pack does still come in contact with me at the shoulder straps and hipbelt so I have had a minor amount of sweatiness there but overall the pack has done significantly better than other packs I've worn.

The pack has held up very well over the test period. I would say it basically looks like it's new still. Dirt seems to wipe off easily and I haven't had to do anything to keep it looking nice. Everything still appears to be in order with no loose seams or anything out of the ordinary.


Long Term Report
June 15, 2009

Field Conditions (back to top)

I carried the backpack on several dayhikes in the Santa Monica Mountains in Los Angeles County. This is chaparral territory with a lot of low bushes and rocky terrain. On all hikes it was temperate, in the 50s to 70s F (10-25 C), and dry. Additionally I used the backpack for some urban use, mainly as a diaper bag to carry all of my daughter's gear.

Long Term Report (back to top)

There's not much new information to report that I haven't already said. The backpack works well as I previously reported on. I can't find much of anything that I don't really like. In thinking about what to write about for this report, the only drawback I could think of was that the hipbelt sometimes gets in the way when it's not in use. Daypacks don't always carry full loads and often get non-technical use. In these cases, hipbelts aren't necessary. With the Jade, the hipbelts don't easily get out of the way. I've tried clipping the hipbelt buckles behind my back but that doesn't work comfortably. That has to be a very minor nitpick. I would also say that the pluses the suspension adds greatly outweigh this issue and I'd rather have two daypacks in my arsenal rather than give up the suspension this pack offers. I believe I will always reach for this pack in warm and hot weather and for all strenuous hikes at a minimum.

The pack has continued to hold up well over the remainder of the test period. I have literally done nothing to keep it clean or in good shape. This fits my laid back hiking style perfectly. The pack does not show any signs of wear at all.

Summary(back to top)

I love this backpack. It has a lot of features for a daypack and I really enjoying the JetStream DTS Suspension system.


Thank you Gregory and BackpackGearTest.org for allowing me to test this item.



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Reviews > Packs > Frameless Backpacks and Day Packs > Gregory Z25 & Jade Day Pack > Test Report by Jennifer Pope



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