Gossamer Gear has made a few minor changes to the Gorilla. Most of these updates are in the hip belt, improving load transfer and comfort. The updates include a longer frame, a stiffener added to the belt, and improved pockets.
Scroll down for a more detailed comparison of the new Gossamer Gear Gorilla vs. the older 2015 version.
Additionally, the feature set of the Gorilla is exactly what we want in an ultralight backpacking pack. A large and stretchy main exterior pocket accommodates lots of clothing for quick access. Two side pockets made of durable pack fabric easily carry large water bottles or a JetBoil stove. Two hip belt pockets fit our smartphones or a handful of snacks. To top it off, the top closure of the main pack is top-notch. The unique closure flap provides a better weather seal than most others and the small zipper pocket is perfect to secure items you may want to access quickly, but have stowed securely. Each of our award winners fits a load carrying niche, and the Gorilla is the best for total weights between 15 and 25 pounds.
While we love everything about this pack, expert ultralight hikers may prefer our Top Pick Award winner, the ZPacks Arc Blast 55. The Arc Blast is a full 8 ounces lighter! It isn't as comfortable when loaded down, but folks that rarely carry weights above the 'teens will love its class-leading light weight. Our Best Buy winner, the Osprey Exos 48, is the most featured pack we tested, carries 30 pounds or a little more better than any other, and is the most affordable model with a high overall score.