EBERLESTOCK V90 BATTLESHIP PACK REVIEW
A large, internal frame, hunting or expedition pack designed to carry heavy loads. With a base weight of just over 8 pounds the V90 Battleship has a capacity of 99 Liters or over 6000 cubic inches including full rain cover, stored in a pocket on the bottom of pack. The V90 has the capability of keeping you out on the mountain for extended periods of time. It can handle just about anything you choose to cram into it.
Divided into one or two main compartments the Battleship gives you the option of separating the two by utilizing an internal drawstring closure halfway down the pack, if you wish to isolate the bottom half for your sleeping bag and perhaps sleeping pad. You can choose between Eberlestock’s Western Slope or Rock Veil colors. The fabric is made of a tough nylon featuring ripstop stitching with plenty of heavy duty compression strapping and daisy chains for lashing on extra gear if you need it. The V-90 is build for both top loading and front loading, making it easy to locate specified gear stowed within the pack. Extremely practical, Eberlestock has developed a bombproof unconventional backpack with many useful details. The load bearing system is comfortable, and built for the serious hunter or backpacker needing a lot of loadbearing capacity.
I spend a lot of days out on the mountain each year and the backpacks I use really take a beating. I’ve always like Eberlestock packs so when they came out with what I perceived to be a larger traditional internal frame backpack I wanted to try it out in a no holds barred field test.
Upon receiving the Destroyer in their grey, green Rock Veil color I immediately liked how it looked and appreciated the fact that the material appeared to be very durable. The exterior is very rugged with the internal storm collars and divider made of a much lighter water resistant nylon.
One feature I always look for in a backpack is the compression straps and attachment daisy chains. The V90 has some great compression straps to cinch up your load and there were enough of the Molle type attachment points to keep me happy just in case I wanted to strap on additional gear. I found the 3 external pockets situated laterally on each side of the pack adequate although they were a little small. It is always my preference to use the lateral pockets on packets for my spotting scope, tripod and hydration bladders. I’m not a big fan of “mesh” material pockets on any pack because I feel they rip out easily so I wasn’t overly thrilled with two of these pockets attached on the uppermost outside pockets of the pack.
It’s really important to me that a backpack’s internal frame be designed so that it distributes the weight evenly over the crest of my hips and is comfortable to wear when packing heavier loads. The V90 Destroyer is built with two lightweight aluminum alloy bars passing between multiple anchor points mounted along the rear of the pack. Attached to these is the shoulder harness. As is the case with most packs these pressure points are susceptible to tears when dragging the pack over an abrasive rock surface with heavy weight. I did find that the internal frames stabilizing stays/rods would bend and flex to fit my build. This was a nice feature and I liked the fact that I could adjust these anchor points easily.
While packing some heavy, 80+ pound loads last fall I found that the shoulder straps were relatively well padded so that they didn’t bite into the tops of my shoulders. When needed, I could adjust the shoulder straps by moving them up or down on the Eberlestock adjustable ladder system to accommodate my build. Above the shoulder harness, the load lifter straps were quite easy to adjust down and forward so that I could pull the weight of the pack closer against my back for a more comfortable fit.
With over 6000 cubic inches of space I found the V90’s top lid to be easily expanded by adjusting 2 straps connected to the backside of the pack. Once adjusted, this gave me extra length in height, making more room in the main compartment. However, with the expanded height the pack felt a little top heavy to me, especially if I had any heavy items on top. In regards to the backpack’s top lid it was large enough to hold items that I wanted to get at quickly such as rain gear or a light, warm down jacket.
Accessing the main compartment featured the larger internal compartment as well as 4 smaller pockets along the back of the pack for storing various gear. With the draw string closed in the bottom half of this compartment the internal space within the pack was separated with the bottom space more just large enough for larger cold weather sleeping bag and other gear such a tightly compressed sleeping pad. Although the fit was tight I was able to make this system work. In many instances I housed my one man tent in the upper compartment instead of strapping it onto the bottom of the pack where it could get torn during all the butt sliding I do through abrasive sandstone ledges.
Overall, I liked this pack. The v90 Destroyer is priced at around $400. If you do some heavy duty backpacking this pack is very capable of meeting your needs.
What They Could Do Better
• Get rid of the mesh pockets attached to the outside of the lateral pockets and replace them with a different material.
• The external pockets on the side of the pack need to be larger with a double zipper system to allow you to utilize a tripod.
Eberlestock v90 Battleship Pack Review