Me - 30 yr old female, 128 lbs, 5'7", size 4, athletic build w/ swimmers shoulders.
I've been searching for a pack that rides perfectly without crushing my back/hips/shoulders for entirely too long. The spectrum of packs has ranged from an EMS backpacking pack at about 60L, Osprey Xena 70, and now the Deuter Guide 45+. While the first two packs are made for backpacking, they are equipped to handle peak bagging. I never used the full expanse of volume the EMS or Osprey pack have even for multi day trips because my husband carries the stove. Even with the custom molded Osprey hipbelt and careful pack adjustment, the Osprey starts to hurt the iliac crest after a few miles.
The Deuter has been a great backcountry ski/winter mountaineering pack. NO hip problems. The frame properly places the pack weight against the small of your back and then distributes into the hip belt. The flexibility of the hip belt allowing it to move with you is also phenomenal. More recently, we were on Granite Peak (MT) which has class 4+ and low class 5 with the pack. I felt completely unhindered. Helmet - not a problem. Happy as could be sans pack free.
Volume - I had my 0 deg down bag, sleeping pad, 5 FD meals (2 servings), snacks, light weight down, synthetic hoody, extra socks/underwear, 2 wool layerings, hardshell top and bottom, softshell pants, headlamp, climbing harness and gear, and crampons in the pack with no problem. (Dropped some gear at BC). Trekking poles, ice axe, helmet, rope, and water bottle were attached to the outside. Compressions straps are in the perfect position. The avalanche pouch is great for probe, shovel in the winter (or a map in the summer). For winter use, the compression straps compress the pack way down. You can strap tent to the outside/bottom if necessary.
Basically - if you're looking for a pack that is awesome all around - winter skiing & summer mountaineering - this pack can get it done. Ladies-this pack will work for you too!