Even though the REI Co-op Flash 18 isn't explicitly designed for rock climbing, we included it in this review because it's popular and our daypack testers suggested we give it a shot. We're glad we did too, because this pack fulfills most of the roles of a rock climbing daypack, but at less than half the price of the other options. At just 10 oz, the Flash is the lightest weight pack we tested and compresses down tightly to be stuffed inside a crag pack or overnight rucksack.
For these reasons, it took home our Best Buy award. Take care though, because its low weight comes at a cost in durability; the 140-denier nylon it's made of is fragile and susceptible to abrasion. However, with a $40 price tag, many shoppers may be able to overlook these deficiencies. We recommend this bag to casual climbers searching for an affordable multi-pitch daypack, just be sure to avoid chimneys or hauling.
The Flash 18 is no longer available in the green we reviewed, but you can currently find it in a host of other jewel tones, like the red pictured above. Rest assured that none of the technical aspects of the pack have changed.