The ‘V2’ is a 2018 backpack from Pa’lante and, IIRC, their fourth(?) iteration of a backpack. First was the Simple, then the Simple Cuben, then the Dx version, and now the V2 – maybe I missed one in there, but I think that is right. With each generation, Pa’lante has been refining the design of their backpack. In some ways, they have gotten away from their initial core idea of a backpack (a simple backpack) in order to meet the mass demands they never expected, but at the same time, that drive has caused them to really put in the effort to bring to market a more refined backpack, while staying as true to their dream of a simple pack as possible.
I have had the chance to use all of their backpacks with the exception of the Dx version, so getting a chance to try out this newest V2 has been a special treat for me.
It is always important to take a look at the market for which a backpack is designed for.
The Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack, like all of their backpacks, is primarily designed for the long distance, big mileage hikers that are out there. In that, it is going to excel. It has everything that is wanted/needed by this group of hikers, without any extra fluff.
While that does not need to be the exclusive market for the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack, it is certainly the market that Pa’lante Packs designs their packs for.
For weekenders, it should, of course, be said, there are less expensive options out there, and options that are something you can order today and have shipped out pretty much the same day, and that will tick off most of the check-boxes you would probably want in a mid-volume (~40 liters) backpack. That said, if you want an exceptional backpack and are willing to wait for one, and put down the extra money for it, the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack is worth it.
When it comes to the suspension system of the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack, there is not much.
The only option for shoulder straps is J-style straps. They are very wide at the top and become very narrow at the bottom.
The Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack is a frameless backpack, so expect all of the Load Weight Distribution to be, well, there really is not any, duh, it is a frameless backpack.
One interesting feature of the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack and an optional feature is a new “Stashable hipbelt”. The pack that I got to test did not have this feature so I cannot comment on it. It would certainly be a neat feature if you think you might be pushing more then about 12 pounds or so. I think for the extra few ounces that it adds, it would be worth it, and I would certainly choose that option if I was buying one.
When it comes to features of the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack, well, there is not a whole lot, and that is a very good thing, after all, the V2 is not designed to be a fully-featured backpack.
You have two side pockets that I found to be of very good size. I was able to get a standard peanut butter jar inside of them.
On the left shoulder side of the bag is a removable compression cord that will allow you to secure an umbrella. Very neat approach to this.
It has an adjustable sternum strap. It has one of those stupid little whistles on the snap buckle, which I just always find annoying because it interferes with an easy unsnapping.
The shoulder straps have one pocket on each side. Good amount of room inside each of the pockets. My iPhone 8+ fit inside of one with a lot of extra room. I kept my headlamp/torch and my beanie in the other one.
The Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack features a roll-top design. It has standard hardware connectors with two snap buttons. No velcro.
The collar on the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack was, I have to say, surprising short. This, I feel, is a good thing. You really want to try to limit the amount of bulk/weight you have sitting above the top of the shoulder straps of any backpack.
And, of course, the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack features their bottom pocket. I freaking love a bottom pocket. I wish all of my backpacks had one. The V2 has the nicest bottom pocket of any of the backpacks that Pa’lante has released thus far. Deeper, wider, and a stiffener in the opening. They nailed this one.
Honestly, this is one of the nicest backpacks that I have encountered in a few years. Pa’lante seriously stepped up their game with this ‘V2‘ backpack.
Sadly the J-style straps caused me some pretty intense shoulder pain. This is not a fault of the backpack, just me. Wide J-style straps are just something that I can no longer use.
If there was one thing that I would like to see Pa’lante add to the backpack, it would be load-lifters. I struggled, and struggled way too much, to keep the top of the backpack close enough to my clavicle that it just got to a point where I was frustrated trying to adjust the backpack to fit me in a way that the backpack was not pulling (falling) exclusively backward. That is never good, as it results in counter-productive weight distribution and center of gravity issues – this is why load lifters exist and have a place on just about every backpack, even ones designed for max load weights of 10-15 pounds.
Here is my ‘Initial Look’ video in which I go over the features of the Pa’lante ‘V2‘ Backpack.
The 2018 Pa’lante ‘V2‘ backpack is one of the finest backpacks that I have seen in a long time, for those looking for a mid-volume backpack that is designed for those looking for a backpack with just the minimal amount of features need. The production quality is also impeccable.
If you happen to be one of those hikers that are looking for a ~ 40-liter backpack that ticks off all of the check-boxes for a simple backpack, yet one of the highest quality, you owe it to yourself to try to get one of these Pa’lante ‘V2‘ backpacks. If they offered an alternative option for shoulder straps, and if they added load lifters, I would be including myself in one of those trying to get one of these backpacks.