Osprey Raven 10
Osprey Raven 10 review
Cycling specific back packs are an essential for most Mtb riders. We tried out the Osprey Raven 10, which is a female specific bag.
The Osprey Raven 10 bag is the women’s version of The Raptor – the differences being the women-specific length and positioning of the straps which meant that it felt very comfortable, didn’t shift around while riding over bumpy ground and it didn’t even feel heavy when fully laden.
Straps and clips
The AirScape back panel allows for air flow so you don’t end up with a sweaty back and the straps are well positioned to keep the bag comfortable and secure over the bumpiest terrain. The sternum straps sit above the boobs and don’t squash you and the shoulder straps seem to fit perfectly too. I’d advise you to practice doing up and undoing the sternum strap clip before you go out riding. It fastens with quite a strong magnet and you need to give it a sharp twist to undo it. I didn’t realise this until I was beyond hungry and contorting myself in desperation trying to reach a banana from the outside pouch pocket!
The hydration bladder is easy to fill because it has a wide opening with a slide-on closure; you drop the bladder into the bag and instead of then faffing trying to thread the tube through little holes you just pull the zip over the bladder and tube and you’re ready to go. Marvellous! And it’s easy to put a full bladder into an already loaded bag, so you don’t have to repack anything. The bladder holds 2.5 litres. I did find that the water/energy drink I put in the bladder and tube tasted plasticky. I’d sterilised the bladder and thought this was the taste, so I soaked some bicarbonate of soda and lemon juice in it for half an hour, and then washed it with washing-up liquid and this seemed to work.
The bag is capacious and it’s tempting to carry too much because there is room for everything. It’s big enough for a change of clothes, spare gloves, jacket, food. I even fitted a notebook laptop in the bladder pocket (without the bladder, obvs). There are inner pockets to make sure you don’t lose things, but I could never remember which pocket I’d put something in, probably because my commuting bag is a bigger Osprey but with fewer pockets.
There is one main compartment – with a mesh pocket and key clip, another mesh pocket and two slots for pump/shock pump. There are external pockets – at the top (useful for snacks, but I see that Osprey intended this for sunglasses and phone and has given it a scratch-free lining), at the bottom (with detachable tool roll), two small hip pockets and an external pouch with a clip instead of a zip which is perfect for bananas where they won’t get mashed (it’s also useful for carrying a bottle of beer home). The top (sunglasses) pocket has a helmet clip on the outside, but I fount that if you’re carrying the helmet on the bag it’s a bit tricky to access that pocket and the outside pouch.
The bag is strong and smart and the “blue emerald” colour still looks pretty good after getting muddy. There are lots of well thought out features that make the bag easy to use and also ensure you don’t wreck it. For example, the strong and secure zip pulls, the main carry handle, the adjustable straps, compression straps, fastening clips and the tool roll. There’s no rain cover but the bag is waterproof, and to clean it you can run the shower over it.
The bag will probably last for a few years and it comes with the Osprey All Mighty guarantee – that it is good quality, but it there is any defect thy will repair it or replace parts (eg clips). This means that the cost, at around £110, is good value for money. Overall, the Osprey Raven 10 is a comfortable and good quality bag that is perfect for many long days riding.
Take a look at the Raven 10 on the Osprey website.