We love backpacks. Especially in the context of mountain biking, even basic packs are practical. Then companies like Evoc come along and somehow manage to increase the usefulness of the backpack so dramatically that the term hardly seems to apply anymore. Take, for example, the Evoc FR Trail Team Protector Hydration Pack, as a prime example of what a cycling backpack can become.
For one, you've got a barrage of perfect materials for the job. A blend of highly abrasion-resistant ripstop ballistic nylons that are PU-coated for water- and debris-resistance make up the majority of the paneling, and a highly breathable Air Mesh back panel keeps you cool even on hot days. There's an easily accessible tool compartment and a deployable rain cover to whip out if the rains get particularly heavy. On the rear panel is a helmet carrier strap, and at the bottom of the pack are straps to carry additional protective gear. The pack can accommodate up to 20 liters of cargo volume, not including the hip pouch on the waist strap, along with a hydration bladder up to three liters in volume (not included), so it has room for supplies and tools to ride all day, every day. And, just in case those days turn into nights, a host of reflective details, from zipper pulls to areas of special webbing, keep you visible to passing vehicles at night.
But that's only half the story. No description of an Evoc FR Protector pack would be complete without highlighting the technology that gives it its namesake. All Protector packs are CE-certified with Evoc's Liteshield Back Protector, a system featuring a super-light plate of temperature-insensitive materials like an EPS core and foam damping layers that reduce shock to the spine by up to 95% in the event of an accident. In the case of the Trail-series Protector packs, the cargo/hydration compartment can actually be separated from the Liteshield, enabling you to wear on the back protection when necessary, like on race day. Completely replaceable in the event of being damaged, the ISP (Integrated Spine Protection) plate and its associated materials only add approximately 150 grams to each pack into which the system is integrated, making the decision just that much easier for riders who ride hard and push their limits.
The Evoc FR Trail Team Protector Hydration Pack comes in three sizes: Small, Medium/large, and X-Large. The recommended total height range for each is 155-170cm, 170-192cm, and 192-200cm, respectively. The pack comes in Evoc's special team edition Red/Ruby colors only, and it weighs approximately 1300 grams.