We like it when an award winner is clear. Early in our testing, we noticed the performance to cost ratio of the Flash 22. The more we tested, the more our admiration grew. The Flash 22 was a natural choice for our Best Buy award. It is good, but not perfect. You compromise some comfort and a fair amount of durability to save half the cost of the Editors' Choice winners the Osprey Talon 22 and Stratos 34. A close comparison could be made to the similarly priced and similarly durable Marmot Kompressor 18. The REI, however, is more comfortable with more features, while the Kompressor is more straightforward and lighter. The Kompressor earned our Top Pick award for its unique application as a backpacking sleeping bag stuff sack that can be deployed as a backpack for day trips from your remote camp.
The Flash 22 is available in some new colors since we tested it. The rest of the features of this Best Buy winner remain the same (as of Fall 2018).