Osprey Farpoint 70 Review (4 Year Review)
After a passport, a good backpack is arguably one of the most important things to have for anybody travelling. So, it is worth spending some extra time researching which one is the right one for you and going for the cheapest available might not be the best idea. The Osprey Farpoint 70 backpack is the first proper backpack that I invested in and 4 years later I am still using it to this day.
Osprey managed to fit so many useful features into this bag and it really seems like they designed it from a traveller’s perspective. The backpack is split into a 55l main bag and then a 15l daypack (The updated version is 57l and 13l) which was the perfect size for me. I used this daypack almost daily whether it was a day trip to visit temples or 4-day trek to see Machu Picchu (admittedly I did struggle to pack for 4 days of hiking but it’s doable). The day pack has 1 main compartment and then a small front pocket which is ideal for storing things you need quick access to while travelling like your passport.
The best thing about it, is that it can be attached to the main pack in 2 different ways. Firstly, it can be attached to the front with a zipper and 2 buckles that keep it securely in place while there is a pocket at the back for the straps to be stored in. The second way, which is very useful is while you are wearing your main pack on your back, the daypack can be clipped onto your chest using 2 clips located on the main pack’s shoulder straps. This is how I carried it most of the time as its ideal for travelling to and from airports/buses when you will want to keep the day pack with you but store your main pack separately.
I have used this bag on countless plane, bus and ferry journeys and to this day my bag has withstood the test. It is made of 210D Nylon Mini Hex Diamond Ripstop and it is extremely durable as there are no rips or tears to be seen. I have seen first-hand that the staff working on transport will not always treat your bag with the same care that you would, so durability is essential. One thing I will say is that for 2 of my zippers the cord is starting to come away and will need to be replaced soon but for what it’s been through that can be expected.
Also, the good thing about buying an Osprey bag is that it comes with guarantee that covers your bag for any defects which they will repair for free and is valid for “the reasonable lifetime” of your bag. It says this is judged on a case by case basis so the actual period of time covered is unknown. While this is nice to have, it’s unlikely to be of any comfort to you if your bag breaks mid-trip so I am glad they are built to last in the first place. You can also order replacement parts for your bag like belt buckles if they are damaged and need replacing.
It doesn’t matter how many features a bag has if it isn’t comfortable to wear. It’s going to be seen as a big annoyance whenever you have to wear it for a long period of time (which will be a lot if you are going to use this for the backpacker lifestyle). This bag has a mesh padded back and straps for extra comfort and adds some breathability to it. It also has a hip strap and sternum strap on both the main pack and day pack. The hip strap on the main bag is a lot better as it is padded and thicker while the daypack one is just a thin nylon strap although it does help. These straps allow the weight to be distributed more evenly across the body to take some strain off the back and make it easier to carry.
Other notable features
One feature that was useful to when taking planes and to increase the lifespan of the bag is that the shoulder straps can be zipped away. Some airlines will class your bag as irregular shaped if it has straps so this is very useful and helps to protect them while in transport.
Both the sternum straps for the main pack and daypack have an emergency whistle sneakily placed in the clip. Although I have never had to use these, I can imagine if I ever was in the situation where I did then I would be very grateful for these being there.
Although I can’t recommend this bag enough, there are still some cons to it that should be considered before making a choice. Firstly, the price of the Osprey Farpoint 70 is quite high compared to some other bags of this size. It all depends on your budget and how much you are willing to spend. I convinced my friend to buy this bag at the same time as me when he was considering buying the cheapest bag available. One year later he said it was the best purchase of his life (Maybe he was slightly exaggerating but you get the gist).
Secondly when you test the capacity of the main pack then it can be a little difficult to zip the day back onto it. I have never failed to do so but sometimes I have to use the technique of pulling the two sides of the zip close together first and zipping slowly. The bag will also be shaped like a big tortoise shell when both bags are attached at full capacity.
The last downside is that the day pack is that it is not lockable unlike the main pack. I store my valuable items in this while travelling on buses and planes so that I have them close by but it would be nice to lock it for some extra peace of mind.
Overall, I would say that the Osprey Farpoint 70 would be a great backpack for a variety of travellers but it is especially suited to the backpackers travelling for a longer period of time. The durability and the guarantee gives you some extra confidence while travelling and the list of features would be difficult to match for any bag. I would not hesitate in recommending this bag to anybody in the market for a backpack of this size.
The version of this bag I purchased has been replaced by an updated model which is available here from amazon. It has almost identical features to my version except they have chosen to distribute the size differently between the main pack and the day pack. It is now a 57l main pack and a 13l day pack whereas before it was a 55l main pack and a 15l day pack.
For any girls out there, Osprey have decided to create a female version of this bag called the Fairview 70l which is available here from amazon. It is essentially identical to the updated Osprey Farpoint 70 version except they have modified the fit to suit a female body. While I can’t personally vouch for this bag, my sister has been using this bag for the last 18 months and has had no complaints so far.