The Henty Enduro Backpack feels like a hug and holds like a holster. Mixing a retro fanny-pack, hydration bladder, backpack and tactical quality, the result is a lightweight alternative that keeps the essentials at easy reach. The genius of the construction is moving the hydration bladder lower on the back and distributing the watery mass horizontally, acting as impact protection around the sides of the kidneys. It accommodates standard 3L bladders, thought it doesn’t include a bladder, the only disappointment considering the $110 cost.

Like many small independent makers, the attention to production and quality is the priority. Constructed of Cordura 500D nylon, the backpack is tough. Straps and nylon elastics are mixed with molly webbing with double-stitched seams and closures. It really is a well-built piece of gear and was designed using the test bed of the roads and trails of Tasmania, Australia’s island state.

Hug Yourself

In use, the Enduro Backpack is very comfortable. The back pouch is accessible while riding with either left or right hand, but the flap has enough weight to keep gear from spilling out. The elastic bands on the side are really convenient in practice allowing for nutrition without having to go for the reach around.

Stuffed to the Gills

Fully loaded is where this piece of kit shines. Its use on the bike is really well thought out. Typically, the position of back-worn gear brings the bulk of the gear to a part of the back that’s already stitching forwards to accommodate forward handlebar reach. Adding a bunch of gear and weight puts pressure on this area, leading to sweaty back suffering.

With the Enduro Backpack, the carried weight occupies a lower place on your body, making for a less awkward experience of body-carrying gear while riding the ups and downs of your local mountain. Moving the mass to the waist and supporting it via breathable shoulder straps is an obvious evolutionary change, yet we haven’t seen anything like this.

And if needed, it can be absolutely STUFFED with gear by utilizing the strapping on the rear pouch. The weight is carried low and the waist belt keeps it supported above the hips, without any discomfit while riding, or just spending a day exploring your local dirt pile by bike. ($110)