To airbag or not to airbag; that is the question.
The Osprey Kode ABS 42 Backpack is big-time ski-season pack with a serious trick up its sleeve—the standard thermo-molded back panel zips off and allows you to attach an ABS Vario Base Unit, transforming the Kode from a top-shelf ski pack into a fully functional airbag pack in seconds. If you're staying away from high-risk terrain or otherwise don't want the airbags, the Kode's standard LightWire frame, HDPE framesheet, ErgoPull waistbelt, and EVA foam shoulder straps comfortably carry up to 50lbs, enough for overnight hut trips, and the Kode's top and back-panel access options make it easy to fish out gear from the deepest, darkest recesses.
No one really likes to bootpack, but sometimes its necessary, and the Kode's kitted out to make things on the booter go a little more smoothly. It offers diagonal and A-frame ski carry options, a vertical snowboard carry, and a hideaway helmet-carry system so it's easy to throw your gear on your back and start marching up that gnarly couloir. There's a dedicated avy pocket to keep your probe and shovel easily accessible, along with a rope-compression strap under the lid and an insulated hydration sleeve in the shoulder strap, so your special sending juice won't freeze during those five-a.m. alpine starts.
- 420HD nylon ripstop
- Compatible with the ABS Vario Base Unit (sold separately)
- Top and back-panel access
- LightWire frame, HDPE framesheet, and thermo-molded back panel
- ErgoPull padded waistbelt
- A-frame and diagonal ski carry and vertical snowboard carry
- Avalanche tool compartment, goggle pocket, and internal zip pocket
- Insulated hydration sleeve, helmet carry, and rope-compression strap
- Item #OSP001X
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
I like this pack for the most part. I have only used it a couple of times because I bought it as my backcountry ski pack and it's summer and difficult to ski in summer. However when I did use it I decided to put in all my Avalanche gear into the Avalanche specific pocket. While it's advertised as being an easy access pocket without having to unzip anything, it still was somewhat difficult to access with all the straps connected. The top orange straps are what was holding my skis on the pack, and those are the ones that were in the way of opening the pocket with ease. It was still mostly easy to get into this pocket, but it could be an issue in the most dire of times when you need it most.
Other than that issue, this pack has worked out great so far. I really do like the access to the main pocket through the back. It makes it really easy to get at things that may be packed away at the bottom of the pack.
Kode ABS 42 Pack
Killer review on the ABS compatible Kode 42