From the moment I knew we had one in to test , I had to get a hold of it. I was not disappointed in my lust for it either as it truly turned out to be the best trail pack I’ve had in years. Deuter have definitely put a great deal of care and thought into what exactly riders need out of a pack.
Putting the bag on it is one of the lightest and most breathable feeling bags on the market with its special air comfort design. What is air comfort design? It’s the frame mesh that sits off the main body of the bag which allows air to flow through to your back whilst riding. An innovative feature for many of you who are used to walking around with a heavy sweat patch in the centre of your back, post ride. Despite how the bag sits off the body it is still remarkably stable under the general bump, rattle and roll of some trail time.
The kidney belt like waist strap, adds plenty of extra support and the main shoulder straps are surprisingly light and comfortable on those long rides.
As for the pack itself the German pack makers have jammed in heaps of handy little and big features. Spec’ed to hold an already generous 12 litres of your finest mountainbike essentials, it can push out an extra three with a flick of a zip. Although you would have to be considering a little multi day riding to max out the already available space, it’s a nice option to have on the side.
Like wise the front compartment is broken down into several smaller pouches, perfect for your phone, wallet or quick access to some house keys.

Also on offer and quite handy are the easily fold/stuff away options of the rain cover and helmet holder. This along with simple things like zippers that lock together, create a nice clean look, not to mention a snag free environment, to keep you safer in close quarter singletrack.

The bladder is not included with the pack , although I did pick one up for the full experience. Space is made fully available for the bladder within the pack, including routing for the tube and mouth piece (This also came in handy with some night lights). In addition the cover for the mouth piece is another one of those features that helps get Deuter over the line, preventing the mouth piece from becoming all manky.
Of course if bladder hydration isn’t your go to there are also some easy access drink bottle holders on either side of the pack. Covered.

I’ve had this pack for several months and it is yet to let me down. Durability wise it still looks as new as the day I got it (that may have something to do with that rain cover) and I seriously have struggled to find any fault with it. Damn efficient Germans.

The Deuter Race Exp. Air is available for $129.95 rrp bag only and is available in the black colour seen below as well as a bright red and a bright green. The bladder is sold separately and is $59.95rrp.
Deuter is distributed in Australia by Velo Vita, so ask your local bike store to order one in for you if they don’t have it.

Words : Jon Odams (pictured) Photos : Robert Conroy
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