Just In – EVOC Stage 12l Pack

by Brian Mullin on December 1, 2015

The Evoc Stage 12l hydration pack is part of their Technical Performance Series and has a capacity of 12-liters and can accommodate an optional 3-liter water reservoir. The well-made pack had quite a few useful features including a suspended mesh and padded ventilated back panel, floating shoulder straps, multiple pockets and a quick-access tool compartments. Additionally it has a helmet attachment net for a normal helmet and two quick-release loops to carry a full faced helmet, along with a bottom of the pack compartment that holds a rain cover and flip out attachable armor loops. It comes in four color schemes and retails for $135.


Features

Their back panel Air Flow Contact System provides ideal load carrying capabilities and comfort and ventilation. It utilizes a raised or suspended mesh backing that features a large underlying section of their Air Circulation ventilation channels combined with specially grooved and perforated EVA foam pads. This design synergy transfers the load to the backs center of gravity and keeps the conformable pack close to the body and optimizes airflow and comfort. The hip belt wings use the highly durable Airo Flex mesh material that incorporate horizontal ventilation slots and offer a close-fit design for load transfer and comfort.

Their neck brace compatible Brace Link is an automatically adjusting system in which the shoulders straps are attached through their webbing onto a set of D-rings on the main pack, so the entire system is free-floating, allowing for varying shoulder widths and sizes, and pack and body movement.

It has quite a few useful pocket and compartments, including an upper padded one for phones and sunglasses and smaller items, the quick-access front tool compartment with a zippered pocket and five pocket sleeves, two side mesh pockets and the main compartment with one zippered pocket with key clip. The innovative quick-access front compartment utilizes a double zipper system with an across the pack pull strap to help open and close things.

First Impressions

 

The back panel was quite comfy, and the raised and suspended mesh kept the brunt of the pack directly off your back and provided exceptional ventilation. The deep channeling and grooved and perforated EVA foam pads worked well together, helping with airflow and comfort, and it decreased the dreaded sweaty and wet back. The free floating Brace Link shoulder strap system provided effective articulation for improved fit and comfort and movement.

The pack is built with a wide footprint, so you need to spread out your contents within the main compartment else the back panel can bow outward slightly. This design does make the packs load sit closer to the back and pulls in the center of gravity, but it does make the packs capacity seem smaller than 12-liters, and it necessitates judicious organization of things.

I liked the quick-access front compartment with its double zipper system, and I found the across the pack pull strap easy to use and the upper Velcro closure kept its contents secure. The top most pocket was extremely useful for phones and quick access items, and its dimensions were large enough for plus sized smartphones. The mesh side pockets were great for gloves, small towels, and other items and could be reached with some slight arm contortions without taking the pack off. The bottom compartment contains an easy to use integrated rain cover that I got to test during a couple of rain and snow storms and the separate armor or gear carrying straps were nice for bulkier items. Although I didn’t use them much, the packs have a functional XC helmet carrying net and full-faced helmet straps.

Final Thoughts

The Evoc Stage 12l is a comfortable pack with an excellent suspended and padded ventilated back panel that provides highly effective airflow. It carries its 12-liter load close to the back, and the back panel conforms nicely to the body with assistance from the free floating shoulder straps. It has helmet and armor carrying capabilities and an integrated rain cover and has some useful pockets with highlights going to the quick-access tool compartment.

Specs

Volume  12 liters / 732 cu in
Weight  900 grams
Dimensions  28 x 50 x 9 cm
Material  Nylon 210/D Ripstop PU coated, P600/D PU coated, 3D Air Mesh, Air Mesh, Airo Flex
 Support/Suspension  Air Flow Contact System
Waist Belt  Adjustable
Shoulder Straps  Brace Link
Hydration  3 liters
Access  Top
Pockets  1 main compartment, 1 tool compartment, 1 sunglasses, 1 cell phone
Rain Cover  Integrated
Helmet Carry  Full face or XC
Gear Loops  Protection gear carry

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