Hands-on Gear Review

Montane Habu 22 Review

An expensive but basic pack.
Montane Habu 22
By: Cam McKenzie Ring ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Aug 28, 2017
Price:  $129 List
Pros:  Two sizes available, durable
Cons:  Expensive, poor ventilation
Manufacturer:   Montane
72
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 12
  • Comfort - 30% 6
  • Features - 30% 8
  • Weight - 20% 7
  • Adjustability - 10% 8
  • Durability - 10% 8
RELATED REVIEW: Best Daypacks For Women
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Our Verdict

Habu 22 Discontinued
Montane discontinued this daypack as of 2017. Head over to our complete Women's Daypack Review to see which ones topped the charts!

The Montane Habu 22 is a fairly basic daypack with a hefty price tag. It does have a few good features, but compared to some of the more innovative models out there it falls a little flat. We did appreciate that it comes in two sizes, and it's made with a thicker material for added durability. Overall, we were just more impressed with our Editors' Choice winner, the CamelBak Sequoia 22. And if you're looking for a backpack that works well for commuting, our Top Pick for Around Town, the Osprey Tempest 20, is another great option.


Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

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The Montane Habu 22 comes in two sizes: S/M (15-17 inch torso length) and M/L (17-19 inch torso length). Its 210D "honeycomb" nylon construction weighs about 32 ounces.

Performance Comparison


Sightseeing on a stormy day in the Habu. This pack was fairly simple in its design but on the expensive side for what you get.
Sightseeing on a stormy day in the Habu. This pack was fairly simple in its design but on the expensive side for what you get.

Comfort


The Habu wasn't a particularly comfortable pack. There is ample padding on the shoulder straps, hip belt, and back, but that padding has no cutouts or mesh covering it, which means that it doesn't have as much airflow as the packs that do. There is only a little bit of internal framing, which meant that when the pack was full or we had a water reservoir in it, the back of the pack distended inwards and pushed the contents into our backs. This never happened on models like the Deuter Futura 22 or the Osprey Sirrus 24, as they have frames that keep the contents of the pack away from your back.

The back didn't give us as much airflow as an open mesh back  and there's little structure to it  so your gear pushes into your back if it's packed full.
The back didn't give us as much airflow as an open mesh back, and there's little structure to it, so your gear pushes into your back if it's packed full.

Features


There are some good features on this pack and we gave it an 8/10 overall in this metric. Both hip belts have pockets that can accommodate a smartphone, there's a nice top pocket for organizing smaller items, and there are double compression straps on either side. There's dual ice axe/trekking pole attachments, and a solid grab handle on the outside of the pack.

We liked the two hipbelt pockets  and they are large enough to fit a smartphone.
We liked the two hipbelt pockets, and they are large enough to fit a smartphone.

Weight


This pack weighs 32 ounces, making it quite a bit heavier than our Top Pick for a Summit Pack, the 19 ounce Mammut Lithia Speed 15. If you're looking to shave some weight on all of your gear check out that bag instead.

Adjustability


We also gave the Habu a high score for adjustability. More than anything, we were just happy that it came in two sizes, and that the M/L size we tested it in fit our 5'6 inch tester well in both the back and the hips. Many of the models that we tested came in one size only and the hip belt barely covered our hips, so having options for both smaller and larger ladies is greatly appreciated.

The hipbelt gave us enough coverage in the M/L size that we tested.
The hipbelt gave us enough coverage in the M/L size that we tested.

Durability


We like the quality construction on this pack, and the thicker 210D material will resist snags and wear more than a thin 70-100D nylon. The bottom is made with an even thicker material for extra longevity in that high wear spot.

The bottom of the pack is made with a thicker material  and the ice axe loops are reinforced for added durability.
The bottom of the pack is made with a thicker material, and the ice axe loops are reinforced for added durability.

Best Applications


The Montane Habu 22 is a good choice if you need to carry two ice axes but don't want a full-sized pack.

We liked using this pack for sightseeing days where we weren't carrying much gear.
We liked using this pack for sightseeing days where we weren't carrying much gear.

Value


This pack retails for $130, making it one of the more expensive packs in this review, without the extra features like an included rain cover or a water reservoir. It's almost twice the price of the REI Co-op Trail 25, our Best Buy winner, and performed similarly in our tests.

Conclusion


The Montane Habu 22 is not a "bad" daypack, but there's not much that stands out about it either, particularly compared with some of the models out there that really make use of new technology and design. While we'd gladly buy a simple bag that was priced accordingly, this one seems overpriced for what you get.

Cam McKenzie Ring

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Most recent review: August 28, 2017
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:  
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 (4.0)
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