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  • Writer's pictureJason Moore

Light & Fast, Fast & Light (Gregory Zulu 40 Hiking Backpack Review)

Updated: Sep 29, 2022

When you're an avid backpacker, your most important piece of gear is your backpack! A good one should be comfortable and durable, so how did the Gregory Zulu 40 hold up to our test?

This is Jason with WiseBuysGuys. As always, real people talking about real stuff and how we use it. Hence everything we talk about is tested because we only review stuff we use and abuse.

Hiking Backpack Review

I’m writing this review on a backpack trip right now, about nine miles into some great wilderness here in Arizona, and I want to talk about a great pack that already has about 250 miles on it. It's the Gregory Zulu 40, which is a 40-liter pack that's designed for two to three-day hikes, and it is fantastic!

I've found the Gregory Zulu to be very versatile and comfortable. But, what you have here is a pack that has been desert hiking and camping, high mountain camping, and as I mentioned, it already has 250 miles on it, so it's been quite a few places.

On the outside of the bag, you'll find a few external pockets that are really helpful. It also has a great hip belt with a few pockets that are easily accessible and make for a great place to store a snack, phone, chapstick, or whatever else you need to grab without taking your pack off. The side pockets are great for water bottles, which you can also reach with the pack on.

Gregory Zulu Hiking Backpack

However, you may not need this because it also has a bladder system, and that's what I have hooked up today. It is a light pack, but not an ultralight pack. On a two to three-day hike, I usually load it up with between 20 and 25 pounds. Though I could go lighter, I want to be comfortable hiking.

The Gregory Zulu 40 also features some really good shoulder straps that are comfortable and load lifters designed to keep the load off your hips when there's too much. However, I will say there's one negative with this bag, which affects my rating. And this is that if you're preparing for a four or five-day hike, you'll reach the weight limit, which is suggested between 25 and 35 pounds. I've found that this bag's limit is indeed about 35 pounds because, over that, it does become less comfortable.

In the end, I gave the Gregory Zulu 40 a 4.5-star rating. I think it's a great pack for those just getting into backpacking or simply going on short weekend trips. Don't forget to comment to let us know what you think about the Gregory Zulu 40.

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