Mountain Hardwear Scrambler RT 35 Outdry Backpack Review

Skiing in Revelstoke Mountain Resort with the Scrambler RT 35

Skiing in Revelstoke Mountain Resort with the Scrambler RT 35

Bottom Line:

A light, versatile and durable backpack that’s, more importantly, waterproof! Perfect for anything from rock climbing, ice climbing, skiing, hiking… etc.

Observations:

Two years ago we tested the Scrambler 30 Outdry pack. You can see our review of that here: Scrambler 30 Outdry Pack Review.

Back then one of my main concerns with that backpack was the lack of a roll-top closure. The main compartment was constructed from waterproof materials but it only cinched close at the top, meaning that water could still get in via this cinch point. In my mind I thought if only the pack came with a roll-top, then this would be a game changer; a light, waterproof backpack that is functional in all weather situations and for a variety of different activities.

Then along comes the Scrambler 35 RT Outdry backpack, the “RT” standing for “Roll Top” I guess. Not only does it now have a roll-top closure, it’s also fixed some of my other concerns with the older Scrambler 30, namely the lack of stretchy side pockets for water bottles and hip-belt pockets. Awesome!

I tested this pack through the winter, in snow and rain and water never got inside. The stretchy mesh material on the side pockets and front are excellent. It accommodates large nalgenes or wet jackets and gloves that you don’t want to put on the inside of the main compartment.

I found it comfortable and the well designed system of compression straps allowed me to go on some trail runs without it bouncing around too much.

This is my go-to pack now that I grab when I need something for a day in the mountains that has varied activities. Whether I’m shooting photographs near a waterfall or hiking on a day with rain in the forecast I don’t need to worry about the contents, usually dry layers and lenses for my camera, getting wet. It’s awesome having this peace of mind. I definitely recommend this backpack.

Switching into downhill mode, the Scrambler RT keeping the spin drift out.

Switching into downhill mode, the Scrambler RT keeping the spin drift out.

Pros:

Light: Empty it weighs about 900g’s (1lb 16oz). Considering it has waterproofing built into the fabric this is pretty awesome.

Versatile: This pack has enough features and straps to allow it to be used for pretty much anything you could get up to in the mountains. Whether it’s climbing, running, mountaineering, canyoneering… you name it. If you only want to have a one pack quiver then this is the pack you need to get.

Waterproof: It should be emphasized, this pack is waterproof. No need to carry the weight of an extra rain cover when using it.

Maximum storage while sport climbing at Skaha Bluffs in Penticton

Maximum storage while sport climbing at Skaha Bluffs in Penticton

Cons:

Small Waist Belt Pockets: The zippered pockets on the waist belt could be a bit bigger. I found I was really squeezing a granola bar just fitting it into them. If they made those pockets from the same material as the side mesh pockets it would be perfect!

Buy It If:

You need a versatile backpack for being in the mountains and don’t want the worry of all the contents getting wet if it starts raining.

Links:

Website: Mountain Hardwear

More Pictures:

Concealed daisy chain loops allow cord to be added to hold additional items outside of the pack (crampons... etc)

Concealed daisy chain loops allow cord to be added to hold additional items outside of the pack (crampons… etc)

 

The back sleeve for a waterbladder

The back sleeve for a waterbladder

 

Getting up close with Wapta falls, no worries about my camera gear getting wet from the spray

Getting up close with Wapta falls, no worries about my camera gear getting wet from the spray

 

The Scrambler RT keeping my gear dry in a blizzard on the Icefields Parkway

The Scrambler RT keeping my gear dry in a blizzard on the Icefields Parkway

 

Skiing off the Icefields Parkway in Alberta.

Skiing off the Icefields Parkway in Alberta.

 

Shooting the last of the blue skies on this day before the snow started. The Scrambler RT kept my camera gear dry

Shooting the last of the blue skies on this day before the snow started. The Scrambler RT kept my camera gear dry

 

Author: Leigh McClurg

I grew up in County Dublin, Ireland and moved to British Columbia, Canada with my wife in 2010. I fell in love with being in the Backcountry and Mountains that are all around me here and try to spend all of my free time exploring those wild places. My main goals are to chase happiness, see as much of this planet and its cultures as possible and grow every day through knowledge and experiences.

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4 Comments

  1. Nice! thanks for the heads up on this pack.

    Just a bit of feedback: I’d like it if you also included prices on your gear reviews. And where to purchase, locally, for those of us in the Sea to Sky neighborhood.

    Post a Reply
    • Hey, thanks for commenting. The general reason we don’t include prices is that they tend to change rapidly as new products are released. But we can definitely start adding a cost at time of publishing to future reviews.

      In regards to where to buy locally in the sea-to-sky, that can difficult as a majority of our readership isn’t actually in Canada, funnily enough. We include a link at the bottom of our reviews to the item on the manufacturers website. From there it is easy to search local dealers if there is any.

      Post a Reply
  2. what does the inside of the backpack look like? Any internal pocket or pockets?

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Josh,

      No there are no internal pockets inside the Scrambler, it’s a basic single compartment alpine pack. The pockets on the outside, are very handy though for storing anything that you want quick access too.

      Post a Reply

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