The most comfortable carrying system we’ve tested (so far), pleasant aesthetics and a set of useful solutions, such as stretch side pockets. Sounds good, right? Unfortunately, the Tasmanian Tiger TT Tac Pack 22 shows that something more is needed to make a good backpack…
The backpack was made from olive Cordura 700D and coyote-coloured “T-Square Rip” ripstop fabric. Unfortunately, none of the materials was properly impregnated and just after a few days of use, during a ight rain, water could easily pass through the fabric. It wouldn’t be an issue if the manufacturer included a raincover, but unfortunately the Tac Pack 22 doesn’t feature one. On the outer surface of the backpack there are several laser-cut MOLLE cells, which I haven’t used.
The main compartment of the Tasmanian Tiger backpack is opened up to 1/3 of its height using a two-way YKK zipper with paracord pullers. Unfortunately, the backpack can be opened smoothly only when it is completely filled. Otherwise, the flap covering the zipper gets in its way and opening the pack becomes a rather unpleasant experience.
Some places within the compartment had the edges of fabric secured with trimming, but in other it wasn’t, and because of that the fabric shreds and threads come out. The only possibility of organizing contents is provided by the pocket for hydration insert. TT Tac Pack 22 has no mesh pockets which would prove useful for the smaller items carried inside the main compartment.
On top of the TacPack 22 the manufacturer placed a wide and very comfortable carrying handle, which was additionally covered with a rather durable rubber cover with anti-slippery properties. Right under it there is an opening for tubes of hydration systems.
The smaller compartment is opened with a reversed two-way YKK zipper which can be opened on the entire length of the backpack.
Inside there are two spacious, zipped mesh compartments which are very comfortable to use. In the lower one I keep a small first aid kit and the upper one comes in handy in carrying EDC elements which don’t fit into the pockets of my pants. In the compartment we can also find a plastic carabiner with markings suggesting that it is meant for attaching keys.
It is worth to mention that when the backpack is filled, the only things that will fit in this compartment are the objects placed in mesh pockets. It was quite problematic when I needed to take more gear with me.
Its capacity also depends on how stuffed the TT TacPack 22 is. When there are fewer things in the main compartment, it is possible to carry a climbing helmet inside, but with a filled backpack beaver tail will have enough space for a small jacket at most. When empty, the beaver tail doesn’t stick out and is indistinguishable from the TT’s shape, which is a big advantage. This solution definitely improves the overall aesthetics of the backpack and is much more pleasant to eye than the appearance of the recently-reviewed Helikon-Tex Raider backpack. A good solution in the Tasmanian Tiger’s beaver tail design is a strap with a buckle, allowing to secure its contents from falling out (though, I’d avoid carrying smaller items in it).
The ‘Padded Back’ carrying system is undoubtedly the best part of TT’s Tac Pack 22 design. It is built from two types of mesh – a large-eye one in places, where the backpack touches the skin and denser one, where it doesn’t. This solution and the ergonomic design of the carrying system make it so that walking with the backpack is a real pleasure, which is further enhanced by good airflow that provides comfort even on warmer days.
The shoulder straps are padded with a denser mesh, and are as comfortable as the padding on the back. It is worth mentioning that they don’t have a quick release system, which can matter to some users.
The well padded waist belt is another of the Tasmanian Tiger’s Tac Pack 22 design’s pros. It can be removed when it isn’t needed and atteched when you plan to go on a longer trip with heavier load. Under the left arm there is a mesh pocket, which can hold a pack of tissues or another smaller item. Under the right arm we can find a MOLLE panel, allowing to attach a pouch or carabiner with gloves. These solutions make it so, that the belt has more utility than just stabilizing the TacPack 22 on your back.
The elastic side pockets are another well-made component of the Tasmanian Tiger backpack. They are very spacious and hold their contents confidently. Asides from keeping water bottles in them, they are also fit for carrying sunglasses or trekking sticks. What is important, the pockets were sewn in a manner which allows accessing them without taking the backpack off.
Elastyczne kieszenie boczne to kolejny dopracowany element plecaka Tasmanian Tiger. Są bardzo przestronne i pewnie trzymają zawartość. Poza przenoszeniem w nich butelki wody, świetnie radzą sobie z okularami przeciwsłonecznymi czy kijami trekkingowymi. Co istotne, zostały naszyte w taki sposób, że można do niech sięgnąć bez zdejmowania plecaka.
Paski kompresyjne znajdujące się po bokach plecaka niestety nie spełniają swojej roli. Są krótkie i wykonane z taśmy, która bardzo ciężko chodzi w klamerce i w rzeczywistości utrudniają tylko dostęp do komory głównej.
Compression straps placed on the sides of the backpack unfortunately don’t fulfil their role. They are short and mate from fabric, which moves very poorly in the buckle and in reality, they only make access to the main compartment more difficult.
The carrying system is what makes the Tasmanian Tiger Tac Pack22 stand out. It almost feels as if the backpack was getting on your back by itself and when it’s there you just want to keep wearing it. Why? Firstly, comfort, the thick padding makes turns the kilometres passed with this backpack into pleasure. The second advantage of the carrying system is the back ventilation. I don’t like having a large sweat stain on my back while stopping for a break or when entering a hut. Solutions used by Tasmanian Tiger significantly reduce the occurrence of such „attractions”, which deserves some praise. Comfort of wearing the backpack on longer trips was also increased by the wide waist belt. The padding makes it also much more difficult to get abrasions than in case of simpler designs (especially during summer time, when usually there is only one layer of clothes between the backpack and the skin).
The volume of the TT Tac Pack 22 allows me perfectly to pack for a single-day mountain hike or forest ‘walk’. However, when more gear is needed, a problem arises, “where to fit it all” – the smaller compartment has a very limited capacity, and the beaver tail isn’t very spacious either.
The side pockets are another great feature, using them is very convenient. The elasticity of the stretch fabric, makes it so the pockets have a surprisingly large capacity, while they can still securely hold smaller items.
Considering the aesthetics and the fine-tuning of such details as markings on the key carabiner or the hydration exit, it could seem that the same care was shown in the rest of the Tasmanian Tiger’s backpack design. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case, and the TT TacPack 22 is troubled by jamming zips (if the backpack isn’t fully filled) and negligible waterproofness.
I’m also wondering why all of the edges of fabric inside the backpack weren’t trimmed. In case of the Tac Pack 22 it is easy to see, that it is important – in places where the manufacturer secured fabric’s edges it is in good condition, while in untrimmed places you can see protruding threads.
After a more thorough inspection, however, it turns out that the trimming isn’t a guarantee of anything. The one within the compartment started to unravel in 4 places. That doesn’t sound like quality of craft worth 120 Euro.
The Tasmanian Tiger Tac Pack 22 definitely stands out with its good-looking design and the incredibly comfortable Padded Back system. There are however many elements, which should be fixed. They are e.g. impregnation of the fabric (or adding a raincover), quality of internal finish or protecting both zippers with a flap. It would be also good to improve the performance of the main compartment’s zipper.
I’d really want to see an improved version of the Tac Pack 22, however, the current price and quality make it so, that (even despite the great level of comfort) this Tasmanian Tiger’s design can be considered decent at most.
Many thanks to the Tasmanian Tiger Poland for giving us a chance to test the Tasmanian Tiger Tac Pack 22 backpack!