Lowe Alpine goes lightweight

It can be hard for longtime backpackers to break away from a feature-rich pack and move into the lightweight category. But with its new packs, Lowe Alpine can help ease the way. The company’s Zepton and Nanon packs are designed for anyone trying to make that exact transition — they are marketed as packs for people who want to go lightweight but don’t want to break the bank.

Lowe Alpine men’s Zepton pack

Both packs use Dyneema — a very light, very strong fabric — to create packs that weigh less than 3 pounds when empty. That is considered to be lightweight by most adventurers.

The Zepton, designed for people that want to go most minimal, features a lithe hip belt, 10-millimeter-wide straps, stretch side pockets, an internal lid pocket, trekking pole tip grabbers to secure your poles, a hydration sleeve, and a ventilating harness.

The Nanon was made for backpackers who prefer a lightweight build balanced with more features. It has all the add-ons that the Zepton does plus there is an expandable lid, hip belt pockets, a front storage pocket, and an adjustable torso system. It weighs a few ounces more than the Zepton.

The company cites the exact weight of each pack as follows: Men’s Zepton, 2 pounds 9 ounces; Women’s Zepton, 2 pounds 7 ounces; Men’s Nanon, 3 pounds 1 ounce; Women’s Nanon, 2 pounds 12 ounces.

Capacity is adjustable with the Nanon — from 4,000 to 4,600 cubic inches — and fixed at 4,000 cubic inches with the Zepton. Both are made to carry about between 20 to 35 pounds, the company cites.

Lowe Alpine women’s Nanon ND 50:60 pack

The Nanon will come in blue, lime green and burnt orange for men and purple or green for women. The Zepton will come in blue and burnt orange for men and purple or emerald (tealish-aqua) for women. Both will be available in February. The Nanon will cost $220, the Zepton, $180. www.lowealpine-usa.com

—Ryan Dionne

Stephen Regenold

Stephen Regenold is Founder of GearJunkie, which he launched as a nationally-syndicated newspaper column in 2002. As a journalist and writer, Regenold has covered the outdoors industry for two decades, including as a correspondent for the New York Times. A father of five, Regenold and his wife live in Minneapolis.