Since April 2016 I’m a satisfied owner of Vaude Nevis 30 backpack. Before that for almost 4 years I was using 35 liter Karrimor hiking backpack, which I bought for Camino de Santiago hike.
At the time when my old Karrimor backpack broke I was visiting Langkawi island in Malaysia. Unfortunately there aren’t any large sports outlets in Langkawi. But as I needed a new backpack urgently, I decided to try and find one in Langkawi.
At first I checked out knockoff Deuter, Lafuma and North Face backpacks. But quality of these things were horrible. And I needed a durable backpack. So I decided that I can’t buy a backpack which will fall apart after a month, especially if I plan to hike in Himalayas and Siberia.
After visiting nearly every store which sells backpacks I choose… a snowboarding backpack – Vaude Nevis 30!
Yes, a backpack for snowboarders! Why? It’s very simple – because after trying out 100+ backpacks it was the only one that I really liked. And not only because it looks good.
I noticed that it has a hard back support and wide hip belt. It’s small enough to be used as a carry on backpack, but big enough to fit in all of my stuff. And the most important thing – the backpack is front loading! Which means – the backpack can be opened all the way down like a carry on suitcase. It’s a cool feature, that more and more travel backpacks nowadays have.
Vaude Nevis 30: Technical Details
Dimensions: 11.5” x 6.7” x 22” (29 x 17 x 55 cm)
Weight: 2.75 lbs (1.25 kg)
Available colors: Blue, Green, Black
Material: 100% Polyamide
Why Do I Really Like Vaude Nevis 30 Backpack So Much?
1. It’s a Very Comfortable Backpack
The hard back support and the wide hip belt makes this backpack more comfortable to use. The weight of the luggage is transferred to the hip belt. And thanks to the hard back support the pack doesn’t sag heavily against the back.
One more reason to love this feature (hard back support) is that because of it, backpack doesn’t fully press against your back. So thus it increases airflow, and your back isn’t sweaty all the time. The pack’s back has comfy soft padding, so the weight doesn’t hurt your back.
To make the pack smaller it is possible to take out the hard back support. It’s easy and could be done in seconds.
Another cool thing is that the pack’s sternum strap’s height is adjustable.
2. It’s Easy to Organize Your Stuff
The front compartment with zippers on each of its side is really handy. Originally it’s designated for a snow shovel. Obviously, I don’t put it in there. But I use it to carry my shoes or flipflops. Two zippers on its sides and a flap with a self-adhesive strap makes it really easy to open. And thus one wouldn’t need to dig through all the pocket’s contents to find desirable thing.
The Vaude Nevis 30 has a helmet holder (hood) on the top. It can be easily attached and detached. This features has helped me a lot during my travels.
In Nepal, when trekking in Himalayas, I used it to attach my sleeping bag to the pack. When there was no free space left in the pack, I used it to attach my shoes and thick fleece jacket. I also have carried my day-pack attached this way.
As I mentioned before, this backpack is a front loading (panel loading) travel backpack. That makes it easier to find and also take out desired items. As there is no need to take out all the stuff just to find that one piece which got lost somewhere between the rest.
Vaude Nevis 30 has an opening for hydration system, too. I don’t use this feature myself, because I don’t have a hydration system. Usually I just attach my water bottle using one of the straps on the pack’s sides. It’s not the best solution, though. Once I lost my bottle – it fell in a river when I was walking over a bridge. Oh well.
3. The Backpack Has Several, Not Just Few, Attachment Points
- two straps on each of its sides for skis or camping mat;
- four small attachment points on the top of the pack for the helmet holder;
- two self-adhesive straps for attaching hiking / ski poles;
- two straps at the bottom;
- two straps in the front of the pack for attaching snowboard, snowshoes or skateboard.
4. Big Enough for Adventures, Small Enough to Take on the Airplane as a Carry On Luggage
The pack’s dimensions are 11.5” x 6.7” x 22” (29 x 17 x 55 cm). So it is allowed to take it on-board for free (carry on luggage) with most of the airlines globally. Including all the most popular budget airlines as well.
However, WOW Air and Wizzair in Europe have different free cabin baggage allowance rules. The packs one can take on board for free with them should not exceed 16.5” x 12.5” x 10” (42 x 32 x 25 cm) limit. And here Vaude Nevis 30 unfortunately is too high.
Vaude Nevis 30: Drawbacks
– No pockets on the hip belt.
– I would prefer wider shoulder straps and more padding on them for extra comfort.
– A couple of extra pockets would be great, too.
– There is no plastic / padded soft fabric handle on the top of the pack, only a narrow strap. However I solved this problem – I took one from one of my old packs.
Vaude Nevis 30: Bottom Line
I have traveled with Vaude Nevis 30 pack both in Europe and in Asia. And I used this backpack when I was hiking in Himalayas, in Nepal. While traveling with it I understood a few things about Vaude Nevis 30. It is very comfy. As I mentioned before, it has a hard back support and a wide hip belt. These two things make the pack seem lighter than it is.
Vaude Nevis 30 is roomy enough for a long term travel – there is enough space for everything I need. When fully packed it weights between 8 to 10 kilos.
And it’s also big enough for hiking something like Annapurna Circuit trek or Camino de Santiago. But it’s not big enough, if you need to carry camping gear and food with you as well. In Nepal it was just the right size for me. When I packed my clothes, some snacks, toiletries and some other hiking accessories, backpack was full.
So I attached my sleeping bag (quite a big one) to the pack using helmet holder and bungee cords, which was fine in this situation.
But it was definitely to small for the Baikal hiking trip, that we did in summer 2016. Because then we needed to carry all the food for several days with us.
Even though Vaude Nevis 30 is a backpack for snowboarders I was able to adapt it to my needs. For instance, in the compartment for a snow shovel I put my footwear. I use the helmet holder to attach a jacket or hiking shoes to the pack. I use the gear straps to attach a sleeping mat or a bottle.
In few words – I’m satisfied with my choice.
Are you currently looking for a new travel backpack? Check out our guide to the best carry on backpacks!
Author: Una Baufala
Una is a traveler and travel blogger from Latvia. Apart from traveling and exploring new places she loves to read books. And she adores cats. Together with Kaspars they have been traveling – volunteering – working abroad since October 2013. WeAreFromLatvia.com is where she shares her travel experiences.