An eco-friendly daypack with an unusual entry system for everyday use and day hikes
The head-turning and highly aesthetic design of the Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24 Pack is up there with the most eco-friendly daypacks on the market. With a unique and innovative 4-way zip to access the main compartment, this sleek and durable pack is as well suited to a day on the trail as it is to everyday use.
Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24 Pack: The stats
|Weight:||870g / 1.9lbs|
|Size:||53 x 29 x 20 cm|
|Eco-consciousl:||100% recycled fabric. BLOOM shoulder straps and back padding made from algae, a renewable biomass feedstock. bluesign certified.|
Features of the Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24 Pack
FabricThe outer fabric of the bag is not only highly pleasing to look at and touch, but it’s also 100% recycled. The Diamond Cross 300D polyester ripstop is super robust and durable and is available in some striking colour combos!
Access to the main compartment is done via a 4-way zip. This opens up the whole bag or you can just open up either the top half or bottom half (or anything in between), to give access directly to the piece of gear you’re looking for.
There’s a single zippered pocket on the side of the pack. This is virtually hidden, so a good security feature for commuters in busy areas. The discreet pocket is big enough to hold a phone, keys and a slim wallet.
Water bladder / laptop sleeve
Inside the main compartment is a water bladder sleeve which also doubles as a sleeve for small laptops. Despite the lack of hole for a bladder hose, the system actually works well as the main zip can be adjusted to close wherever the hose needs to exit the bag. There’s also a velcro tab inside the bag to keep the bladder in place.
The back panel is flat and flexible with a body-hugging fit. The padding of this, and the shoulder straps, is made from algae, a renewable biomass feedstock. This is called BLOOM. Though the back panel is designed to fit against your back, it still manages to provide a good amount of ventilation on the warmer days.
At the base of the pack there is a small zippered pocket which contains the rain cover. This is attached to the pack via a simple buckle, but it is fully removable if you would rather. The bottom pocket is also large enough to store a spare layer or waterproof trousers, if you need. Remove the rain cover fully and there’s even more space to stuff in some extras.
Many unisex backpacks fall short when it comes to the positioning of the sternum strap up and down the shoulder straps. However, this sternum strap has a good range of adjustability for ladies as well as gents. The straps can be removed completely if you don’t need the extra stability when hiking. This streamlines the back a little, for everyday use.
The waist belt is slim and low profile to suit the simplicity of the bag. Its length can be adjusted at the buckle as well as at the point at which it attaches to the bag. It doesn’t win any prizes when it comes to comfort but it provides an extra element of stability when carrying a fully loaded pack.
Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24 Pack review
Running Cool of the Wild means that I get to try out a lot of daypacks, which suits me rather well as I really love a good backpack! However, most of the bags I test are designed for hiking or climbing and are not necessarily that well suited to everyday use. They either have far too many features and straps or their suspension systems make them a little inflexible. So it has been a delight to try out the new and eco-friendly Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24, for many reasons.
Firstly, this bag stands out from the crowd. I’ve had comments about it every time I’ve carried it. The striking colour combo certainly helps with this, but the unique design and diamond cross fabric also contribute. And though the looks of a hiking daypack shouldn’t matter that much, it’s still important to some. I really love how the bag looks and because of this I use it more, and not just for day hikes.
Secondly, the 4-way zip is a dream if you are constantly in and out of your pack. You can access all your stuff easily without having to root through all your stuff to find something. On the trail this is useful as, more often than not, I pack things I probably won’t need, like waterproofs. But on the occasions when the heavens open and I need to whip out the rain protection, I can do so in record time without the entire contents of the bag getting a soaking. Additionally, this easy internal access is excellent for everyday use. It has fast become my go-to backpack for popping to get groceries or for an afternoon at the beach. Plus, it’s a great gym bag for indoor climbing as you can easily see and access your rope and harness etc in the main compartment.
For short day hikes and everyday use the Ecoloader provides ample comfort levels. Yes, there are certainly more comfortable daypacks out there which are better suited to heavier loads and longer days on the trail. But for more casual use there is very little to complain about in this department.
What makes the Ecoloader eco?
Jack Wolfskin is constantly striving for better when it comes to their environmental commitment. Every season more and more of their products are made from more sustainable alternatives. But the Ecoloader is a notch up. Firstly, 18 recycled post-consumer plastic bottles are used to create each pack, but this seems to be nothing especially new in the outdoor world. In 2020, so many outdoor brands took a big step towards more sustainable practices, including the use of recycled fabrics, which is wonderful. However, Jack Wolfskin have taken it a step further than most with the introduction of BLOOM foam in the shoulder straps and back padding. This is made from algae, which is a renewable biomass feedstock. A big benefit of using such algae is that during the algae harvesting process, water is cleaned and recirculated back into the environment. This means that for every Ecoloader that is created, 47 litres of filtered water are returned to the environment. The fabric is also bluesign approved.
What I love the most about the Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24 Pack
Aside from how smug I feel about its environmental impact, I’m a very big fan of the 4-way zip. I thought it was a complete gimmick to start with! But I really love it. I love that I can fully open the main compartment up to see the entire contents of the bag. But I also really like the ability to just open up a section of the pack. Great when you’ve packed your waterproofs at the bottom and need to access them quickly.
The streamlined, colourful and sleek design of the backpack also score high on my list of likes.
What I don’t love so much about the Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24 Pack
When I’m hiking I really like to keep things organised in my daypack. So for me, the biggest negative is the lack of storage options. No side pockets is a big negative for me as I love having instant access to stuff when hiking. That said, I do rather like the simplicity of the bag for everyday use.
It’s also fairly expensive.
For a non-technical daypack, the Jack Wolfskin Ecoloader 24 Pack has a somewhat hefty price tag. However, when you consider the innovative and ground-breaking eco-credentials of the pack, the price is well worth it and is much easier to swallow. Price aside, this is a super usable, highly aesthetic and durable backpack that is best suited to short day hikes, travelling and everyday use.
Disclaimer: Cool of the Wild received this product free in return for an honest review. We only recommend gear that we love from companies we trust and we are under no obligation to give a positive review. All thoughts and opinions are that of the reviewer and we are in no way influenced by the brand or company.