It hunts, hikes, skis, and travels. The Stone Glacier Avail 2200 is the go-to daypack for just about anything.
I’ve taken this bag everywhere. It’s been turkey hunting, deer hunting, bird hunting, and shed hunting. Did I decide to make an irrational attempt at summiting a melting glacier in Iceland? I sure did, and the Stone Glacier Avail 2200 was on my back.
This backpack also carries additional bear spray and water on my guiding hikes in Yellowstone. It’s been in the overhead compartment of nearly every airplane I’ve been on in the past few years. And I’ve eaten lunch on the edge of an active volcano, packed in by the Avail. Really, I’m not exaggerating when I say that I’ve taken it everywhere.
If you haven’t picked up on it yet, my overall review of this backpack is pretty glowing. Stone Glacier nailed it with this one.
Stone Glacier Avail 2200 Review
At first glance, it’s just a backpack. What isn’t immediately apparent is the capability and adaptability of this bag.
The Stone Glacier Avail 2200 ($289) is a 2,200-cubic-inch backpack that weighs just a hair over 3 pounds. It comes as a complete pack with its own suspension system and internal frame. There are several straps and attachment points, including the outer compression panel.
This spot is great for carrying things that are too large for the inner compartment or securing items you just don’t want inside your pack. And the pack itself is compatible with a hydration system, but one isn’t included with the bag.
I bought the Avail to go on short day hunts where I didn’t have to pack in camp gear or a large amount of food. That initial purchase was made with the idea that this would just be an upgrade from my cheap daypack that would be a bit more comfortable and more durable. That was it.
After several months of carrying it, I realized that the bag was far more multipurpose than I’d planned.
What Makes It Different
This is a huge point that I don’t think many people notice when they first consider this pack. I’m embarrassed to say that I initially had no idea that the Avail could be removed from its frame and attached to any of Stone Glacier’s other frames.
Essentially, what that means is that this small, relatively simple backpack can be reconfigured to haul just about anything, on multiple frames. From my perspective, that makes it the ultimate utility backpack.
I love when the gear we invest in is truly multipurpose, and the Avail really is. It’s small and lightweight enough to be your personal item bag on a flight. But with a few tweaks, it’s capable of being reconfigured to haul meat out of the mountains or pack enough gear for a multiday backpacking trip.
The external straps can secure skis, camera equipment, trekking poles, and more. The compression panel is great for holding elk sheds, climbing equipment, or anything that’s just too gross to put in the main compartment. Internal pockets help keep things organized, and a slim front zipper pocket can store a laptop or other thin items away from the main compartment.
You can strap a compound bow to the outside with the available straps. And with a bunch of available accessories, you can really customize this bag to work for whatever your outdoor fancy is.
Where the Avail 2200 Could Be Better
I really had to dig deep to find an aspect of this backpack I didn’t like.
The only issue I have is a personal preference when it comes to water. It’s compatible with a hydration system, and it has internal side pockets capable of holding water bottles. But there are no external side pockets, so you can’t securely fasten a Nalgene to the pack without the dreaded swing-and-slosh.
It does have a small lip on one side of the pack exterior, where you might find a water bottle compartment on a typical daypack. Unfortunately, it just isn’t wide enough to keep a full-size bottle from slipping out when you really get after it.
Stone Glacier does offer a Hydro Sling, which does look like a solid solution. I’d just love the option of being to quickly access a water bottle without adding another accessory.
Is the Stone Glacier Avail Worth It?
Yes. This is easily my favorite pack. It goes everywhere with me. With a price point that doesn’t break the bank ($289), this is a good purchase for anyone who spends a ton of time outdoors. It’s made in the USA and durable, without being bulky or heavy. I love the dang thing.
Pro tip: When I’m traveling to hunt and need to cut down on weight and space, I take my Stone Glacier Sky 5900 pack off its frame, load it with my gear, and check it at the airport. I then attach my Avail 2200 bag to the X-Curve (from my Sky 5900) and use it as my personal item bag.
Depending on the airline, that still leaves me the ability to bring a roller-bag-style carry-on. Doing this gives me two packing options without having to travel with two frames.