Osprey Skimmer 16 Hydration Pack for women is an ultra lightweight 450 g (1 lb) versatile tool for light and fast day tours, biking, and travel.
- Hydration bladder included.
- External reservoir sleeve.
- Ultra lightweight.
Osprey Skarab and Skimmer series
The Skimmer 16 is a part of a larger Skarab & Skimmer series of packs for men and women. The series includes Skarab 32, Skarab 24, and Skarab 19 for men, and Skimmer 30, Skimmer 22, and Skimmer 16 for women. They all share a number of features but there are also some differences.
Skimmer 16 pack – description
The Skimmer is obviously the smallest pack in the series, yet it is big enough for quick and light day tours, ideal also for biking and for travel. This is a hydration pack and it shares the same features with the version for men, the Skarab 18 pack.
Compartments and pockets
This is a panel loading pack, so you have a long zipper that runs on the sides and on the top. The main compartment is without any internal organization, just a single space.
The pack is with a separate external sleeve behind the harness, so this is a great feature, you have an easy access to the water bladder which comes with this pack, a Hydraulics 2.5 liters reservoir, and this is clearly a great bonus with this pack. You should know that this reservoir alone costs $34 on Amazon.
The water hose can be routed either side. Note that you have a magnetic bite valve, so again a small nice feature here. The magnet is on the sternum strap, as you can see in the picture below.
On both sides, you have really big stretch mesh pockets, big enough for 32 oz (0.9 liters) bottles, visible in one of the pictures below. One small padded zippered pocket is on the top, for glasses or media.
You do not have any real metal frame here, this is why the pack is so incredibly lightweight. You have a back panel with a foam sheet and a stiffener, with some cut-outs for increased ventilation, and all covered by a breathable suspended mesh visible in the picture above. The whole structure is flexible but you still have some rigidity and shape.
The shoulder straps are with the same foam and cut-outs, all very pleasant and breathable. The sternum strap is adjustable, for this purpose you have rails on both shoulder straps.
The hip belt is really simple and removable, you can see it in the picture below. It makes no much sense to me as it is, and I am not impressed with it.
There is a compression strap on each side, see the picture above, to cinch the pack or to fix any elongated object stored in the side pockets. This is very useful to have indeed.
On the front, you have a long bungee cord with a toggle, for jackets or anything similar to store on the go. So this is all you have here.
Here is a short video by Osprey, about their Skarab and Skimmer series:
- Gender: for women.
- Best use: day hiking, biking, travel.
- Volume: 16 liters (976 cubic inches).
- Weight: 1 lb (0.45 kg).
- Maximum carry weight: 25 lb (11.3 kg).
- Fit torso: 15 – 19 in (38 – 48 cm).
- Waist fit: 25 – 50 in (63 – 127 cm).
- Dimensions: 16 x 10 x 9 in (41 x 25 x 23 cm).
- External reservoir sleeve.
- Reservoir: Hydraulics LT 2.5L reservoir included.
- Frame: foam frame sheet and stiffener.
- Loading: panel.
- Material: 210D Double Diamond Ripstop w/ 600D Packcloth.
- Warranty: limited lifetime.
- Removable 20 mm webbing hip belt.
- Pockets: 3.
- Bite Valve Shut-Off Switch.
- Quick Disconnect Tubing.
- Wide-mouth opening.
- Magnetic sternum strap bite valve attachment.
- Upper side compression straps.
- Side stretch mesh pockets.
- Front panel bungee cord.
Pros & Cons
Here is my summary:
I love the fabric of this pack, the reservoir gives it a lot of value, and the pack is versatile. But I would love to have a rain cover here and a few more options for attachments. The pack panel is completely flat, so do not expect too much ventilation here.
Rating of Osprey Skimmer 16 backpack for women
Comparison with competitors
See the Skimmer pack compared with yet another ultra lightweight tool by Kelty from their completely new 2017 Riot series:
The prices at the moment of writing this text are $80 and $70, respectively. In view of the reservoir included, no doubt the Skimmer is a better option. Kelty is usually without a match when it comes to prices, but not this time.
Both packs are ultra lightweight, but this is only due to the absence of any metal frame for both packs, bear this in mind.
To conclude this Osprey Skimmer 16 Hydration Pack for women review, this is a pack built from nice materials, ultra lightweight and truly versatile. It comes with the top quality water bladder as a great bonus, and in view of this (and, in fact, even without this) the price tag is simply exceptional. Note that this bladder you can use with your other packs as well. But bear in mind some of the objections pointed out above.
As I mentioned above, this series includes several bigger packs. The Skimmer 30 pack is described in my separate text, this is a bigger pack and with far more features. But if you need something more technical, please see this Exped Skyline 15 pack with some exceptional features, from a completely new 2017 series.
Thank you for reading, It will be great to hear from you, so let me know if you have any question or comment, there is a comment box below. Have a nice day.