INDIGO ROX 18 $79
My penchant for long day climbs makes me particularly interested in backpacks I can carry on route, especially since I’ve destroyed three of them in the last year. So, obviously the Indigo Rox 18, a new 18-liter (1,100-cubic-inch) backpack designed for climbers, caught my eye. Several features immediately stood out, foremost being its obvious durability.
On long routes, wide stuff is to be encountered, and when you leave the pack on, as is common, rips and scuffs abound. The Rox 18, a one-pound, eight-ounce bastion of high-tenacity nylon, has gone head-to-head with toothy Black Canyon rock and skin-shredding Eldo sandstone.
The other feature I love about the pack is its compression straps, which are strategically placed for clipping a coiled rope over the pack’s top. I hate (really) carrying a butterfly coil on my back in addition to a day pack; the Rox 18 solves this problem.
The Rox 18 comes with stiff plastic frame sheets for support as well as to create the Cafe Pocket. This latter feature is a cylindrical pocket for stashing water bottles and/or storm shells, and is accessible while wearing the pack. I thought the plastic sheets made the pack less comfortable while climbing; luckily, they are removable (which also sheds a noticeable amount of weight).