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Osprey Rook 65 Review

An entry-level pack at an entry-level price, but without any standout features
osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review
Credit: Osprey
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Price:  $180 List | $179.95 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Inexpensive, bottom access, included pack cover
Cons:  Difficult top lid access, minimal features, heavier than expected
Manufacturer:   Osprey
By Ben Applebaum-Bauch ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 5, 2019
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
67
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#13 of 16
  • Suspension and Comfort - 45% 6.0
  • Weight - 20% 8.0
  • Features and Ease of Use - 20% 6.0
  • Adjustability - 15% 8.0

Our Verdict

The Osprey Rook 65 is a basic pack that carries smaller loads well. We think this pack could be right for those who don't need to carry heavy loads or don't need to take their packs very far. It has many of the basic features we look for in a backpack: top lid pocket, water bottle pockets, and bottom compartment access. It can be adjusted quickly and has Osprey's airspeed ventilation system to keep you fresh. However, it's not the most comfortable, and many components feel stiff. There are other inexpensive starter options that are more comfortable and have better features.

Compare to Similar Products

 
osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review
This Product
Osprey Rook 65
Awards   Best Buy Award   
Price $179.95 at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
$240 List
Check Price at REI
$199 List
$119.39 at REI
$220 List$149.96 at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
Overall Score Sort Icon
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72
Star Rating
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Pros Inexpensive, bottom access, included pack coverVery lightweight, comfortable suspension, good value, great featuresLight-weight, comfortable, easily personalized, inexpensiveWell padded, slightly lighter than average, very durable, more torso height adjustment than most, stout suspensionGood balance between features and weight, comfortable suspension, inexpensive
Cons Difficult top lid access, minimal features, heavier than expectedNot very adjustable torsolacks durabillity, not made for heavy loadsNot quite as many pockets as other models, soft padding was less comfortable with super heavy loads, warmest pack in the reviewLess volume than packs of similar weight, attached lid
Bottom Line An entry-level pack at an entry-level price, but without any standout featuresThis is an awesome lightweight pack that can carry a heavier load and has a very comfortable mesh-trampoline back panelIt may not be a heavy load hauler, but for moderate loads, this pack is comfortable and has an amazing set of features, all at a great priceA simple but versatile pack that offers plush padding, a stout suspension, and quality durabilityThis is a comfortable pack for mid-range trips and medium loads
Rating Categories Osprey Rook 65 Gregory Focal 58 REI Co-op Flash 55 Deuter Aircontact L... Gregory Zulu 55
Suspension and Comfort (45%)
6.0
8.0
7.0
7.0
7.0
Weight (20%)
8.0
10.0
10.0
6.0
7.0
Features and Ease of Use (20%)
6.0
7.0
9.0
7.0
8.0
Adjustability (15%)
8.0
5.0
5.0
10.0
7.0
Specs Osprey Rook 65 Gregory Focal 58 REI Co-op Flash 55 Deuter Aircontact L... Gregory Zulu 55
Measured Weight 3.6 lbs 2.7 lbs 2.6 lbs 4.4 lbs 3.7 lbs
Volume 65 L 58 L 55 L 65 + 10 L 55 L
Access Top Top Top Top, sleeping bag compartment Top, front U-shape, sleeping bag compartment
Hydration Compatible Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Materials 600D nylon ripstop 100% Nylon Main Body: 100D ripstop nylon
Bottom: 420D nylon
35% Polyester, 65% Nylon 210D Honeycomb Cryptorip HD Nylon / 210D High Tenacity Nylon
Sleeping bag Compartment Yes No No Yes Yes

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Osprey Rook 65 lands in the lower tier of overall scores because of its only mediocre performance across the board. This pack offers a simple set of features at a good price point. Its suspension system across the back is robust but lacks a lot of the comfort of cushier models in the shoulders and waist belt. We generally found the features of this pack felt a little stiff and its form a little bloated. Its lower weight is a plus, but we think there are better backpacking packs in our best backpacking backpack review for the average loads this pack is designed to carry. It didn't fail in any specific regard, but it also didn't overly impress us.

Performance Comparison


osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review - this inexpensive pack can go the distance with smaller loads.
This inexpensive pack can go the distance with smaller loads.
Credit: Ben Applebaum-Bauch

Suspension and Comfort


This model is in the middle of the pack for comfort. The shoulder straps are ergonomically shaped, but they don't offer quite enough padding, and the fabric on the underside of the waist and shoulder straps is abrasive after a few miles.

It carries 30-40 pounds by design. It takes small loads well, so if overnights are in your future, this could be one to consider. In practice, however, we found that carrying comfort began to diminish after about 35 pounds.

osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review - the trampoline suspension evenly distributes weight across your back...
The trampoline suspension evenly distributes weight across your back and keeps the pack away from your body for good ventilation on hot summer days.
Credit: Ben Applebaum-Bauch

We appreciate the effort put into the suspension on this budget pack, but there are better options out there. The airspeed back panel provides superior ventilation, and the wireframe does do an excellent job of transferring the load to the waist belt, so it's a practical design, we just didn't find the waist belt to be particularly comfortable.

Features and Ease of Use


In the spirit of its minimalist muses, this pack comes with a basic feature set. It has two mesh water bottle pockets with 'on the move' side access. The sleeping bag compartment zipper makes it easy to grab something from the bottom of the pack mid-hike. There is a flap on the inside of the main compartment which can separate the bottom from the top which is helpful if you have a wet bag or a tent that you need to keep separate from the rest of your gear. The side compression straps on the top and bottom are handy for trekking or tent poles, and there is also a separate set of straps that could be nice for a foam sleeping pad.

osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review - this pack has pockets that enable you to grab your bottle while on...
This pack has pockets that enable you to grab your bottle while on the move.
Credit: Ben Applebaum-Bauch

We found that the lid was a toss-up. On the one hand, its narrow opening means that gear isn't spilling out all over the trail. On the other hand, it's just difficult to see into the pocket to get what you are after. Because the lid integrates into the main body of the pack, the opening is rather tight as well making for much more of a fishing expedition than we would want from a lid.

osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review - the lid is unfortunately difficult to get into and search in.
The lid is unfortunately difficult to get into and search in.
Credit: Ben Applebaum-Bauch

Weight


This sub-four-pound model is one of the lighter packs in this review. However, we found ourselves wanting a little more 'weight value' — that is, we think there should be more here for what it weighs.

Adjustability and Fit


The adjustability of this pack is adequate for most people but also limited in some ways. It comes in one fixed size with a 4-inch range on the torso, which is pleasantly simple to adjust. There is no 'like super glue' velcro to separate, just a peg on each side that pops out of a webbing loop, enabling the shoulder straps to slide up or down. The sternum strap similarly has discrete cord loops that secure it at different heights on the shoulder straps.

osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review - on each side of the back of the pack, you can see green loops that...
On each side of the back of the pack, you can see green loops that allow the wearer to adjust the height of the shoulder straps.
Credit: Ben Applebaum-Bauch

On the flip side, our testing revealed that our particularly skinny reviewers had trouble cinching down the waist belt. They just about ran out of strap before they could get it properly secure.

osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review - we found that the one-size-fits-all is actually one-size-fits-most...
We found that the one-size-fits-all is actually one-size-fits-most. Some testers ran out of waist belt to tighten before the pack weight was distributed properly.
Credit: Ben Applebaum-Bauch

osprey rook 65 backpacks backpacking review - we like this pack for overnights and light load trips.
We like this pack for overnights and light load trips.
Credit: Ben Applebaum-Bauch

Value


The biggest selling point of this pack is its price. It lacks some of the features and performance that we have come to be spoiled by with some other models. However, if you aren't thrilled with the idea of dropping more money than you have to, this model could be worth a look.

Conclusion


This budget pack will get you from start to finish, but you won't necessarily get there in style. Its basic feature set feels minimalist, but it doesn't come at a minimalist weight. If your bottom line is your top priority, this is the least expensive pack in our review; however, for a few more dollars you can get a significantly more comfortable, more capable pack.

Ben Applebaum-Bauch
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