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Highlander Discovery 85L backpaking and travel backpackHighlander Discovery 85L backpaking and travel backpackIt's time for the review of my new Highlander Discovery 85 liter travel backpack, that I bought a couple of months ago. I was able to use it while backpacking only on short trips so far, so I'll need more testing on the long run for durability.
After over 10 years that I've been using my Ferrino Young 90 liter backpack,  it was time for him to take a rest and a well deserved pension period after so many adventures we had together.
I did search for a long time for my new travel backpack, I mean for months. I was looking for a good quality backpack, affordable and light, and it wasn't an easy combination. And  while I was looking for it I was in Italy and the options available in the shops weren't too many. So I eventually decided to buy it online, even if it was risky, since I couldn't try it to see if it was fitting my body.

And in fact a first time I bought a High Peak Cirrus 75 (I will review it shortly), but I had to send it back, since despite being a good one, was too small for my needs. And yes, the second try was the final one, and I'm totally satisfied so far with my Highlander Discovery 85 liter backpack!

Given the size I would consider it a very good choice for backpackers into long travels or trekking trips, while it might be too big as an hiking backpack or for short trips in general. Even if for many backpackers 85L might looks like a lot, I'm (unfortunately) not an ultralight backpacker. Highlander Discovery 85 liter backpack: extensible topHighlander Discovery 85 liter backpack: extensible topMy standard equipment (Laptop, Camera tripod, hiking boots, sleeping bag, etc.) weights about 12 kilos (26lb 7.3oz), and I usually end up carrying about 15 kilos in my main travel backpack, plus some more stuff in my daypack. That's why I prefer to have a big rucksack rather than fitting everything in a 65 liters bag, and then having to hang things on the exterior. I rather prefer to have a bigger backpack and to carry the extra 300 grams weight, and to keep my things protected.

And the Highlander Discovery 85 liter travel backpack, is actually even bigger than 85 liter: I would rather call it an 85+10 or 80+10 or even 90 liters, as other companies would do for marketing purposes. In fact it has a very nice extensible lid, that give the possibility to fill up also the extra space on top, in between the first and the second draw cords. Just to be perfectionist and to include all the pros and cons in my review, there is a small detail that might be improved: the extensible lid is fixed on the side by two strings, one on each side: this mean that when the backpack is not full, the frame on the back is passing in between the two strings and the lid is staying in front of the frame rather than on top. This could be solved just by adding an extra string in the center.

Highlander Discovery 85 L travel backpack: extensible capHighlander Discovery 85 L travel backpack: extensible capCompared to my previous Ferrino backpack, what I like the most is the waist belt. I'm very skinny, and when I'm travelling for long time I usually lose even more weight. This meant that my Ferrino belt was passing through my hips, and I couldn't really distribute the weight as I wanted. With the Highlander Discovery 85 L backpack instead, I have no problems at all, since I can make it really tight, and I still have some extra space.

The weight of the backpack is really competitive: in my kitchen scale it's showing 2.066 kilos (72.876oz) slightly lighter than what is advertised (2.1 kg). Compared to the 85L+ volume, it's a really light rucksack, but still very resistant and with good and thick materials.

Another feature that I really appreciated, was that the two side pockets are quite long so that I can fit my camera tripod inside one of them, rather than carrying it on the exterior.
The internal space is divided into 2 compartments with separate accesses. The lid of the bottom compartment is elastic, so that it's wrapping around the content leaving no gaps. I like this attention to details.Highlander Discovery 85 front view when fullHighlander Discovery 85 front view when full

There is no front pocket, that for some might be a disadvantage, but I got used quickly to it. There are instead 2 very solid straps, that I thought were going to be useless, but instead they revealed to be a really nice extra feature. It's perfect when the backpack is full, or for temporary storing your jacket or anything else.

The adjustable back system is an ABS model with ventilation and soft pads, that can be adjusted in a minute to several sizes. I feel it very comfortable on my body and there are many straps (front, top, waist) to adapt it perfectly to your body.

And even if not technically relevant for the review, the Highlander Discovery rucksack does look nice! It's not easy to find a good looking backpack, but I think I managed to choose very well.Highlander Discovery 85 liter backpack: back viewHighlander Discovery 85 liter backpack: back view

And last but not least, it can be bought at a fraction of the price than the popular brands: a very good news for moneyless backpackers like us!

To conclude my review I'm totally satisfied with my new travel backpack, and I hope it's not going to disappoint me and to last at least as much as my previous Ferrino lasted!

Note: This review is authentic, and we have no affiliation with the company. I paid from my pockets to buy the backpack!

Below the main characteristics:

  • Volume: 85 Liters (available also 65 liters)
  • ABS (Adjustable back system)
  • Chest straps
  • Two compartments separated with a draw cord divider
  • Extensible top lid for extra space
  • Lid external pocket and internal zip pocketWaist belt with integrated pocketWaist belt with integrated pocket
  • Extensible side pockets
  • Shock cord attachments
  • Padded waist belt
  • Rain cover
  • H20 Hydration port
  • Fabric: 210D Hex Ripstop Polyester.
    • 900D Polyester PU Coating
    • 600D Polyester PVC Coating
  • Dimensions: H85 x W35 x D31 cm
  • Weight: 2.1kg
  • Colours available: Red/Grey or Black/Grey
Davide VadalàDavide Vadalà
In 2009 I quit my job to chase my dream of exploring our planet in a sustainable way and I haven't stopped yet. I love nature, sustainability, travel photography, handicrafts and hiking, and I never stop dreaming. More about Davide Vadala'.

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 Oti e Davide Long Avatar We travel as cheap as possible, hitchhiking, and hosted by people. Our only expense is food: if you want you can help us with a free donation. Thank you, Davide & Oti  ♥ Contribute 


 Where are we now: Spain, Italy

 Going to:  New Horizons

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Davide and Oti

We are Davide and Otilia, two friends with itchy feet, living a non conventional life traveling around the world and learning everyday something new....
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