Osprey Tempest 20 Review Facts
Manufacturing backpacks for a variety of purposes: hiking, daily travel, and even cycling, Osprey exemplifies pride in workmanship. With its focus on quality, the company was founded and is still currently run by Mike Pfotenhauer who tests each and every item produced in his facility, even moving across the globe to oversee operations. While Osprey outgrew its US location, the expansion to Vietnam continued to see the company using top-notch materials and highly skilled technicians and processes. Osprey performs rigorous testing on its products and offers a lifetime guarantee. In addition, understanding that there are intrinsic differences in men’s and women’s bodies, it introduced its first women’s fit backpack in 1993. The Osprey Tempest continues this tradition with the 20 model. The male counterpart to the Tempest 20 is the Talon 22 and both have been, unsurprisingly, very well received by adventurers all over the globe. It is built to carry a good amount of gear with its 18L-20L pack and all the attachment options so one never need feel ill-prepared to explore the great outdoors. And with its well-balanced approach to efficient carrying and the comfort of lightweight, breathable fabric, the Osprey Tempest 20 creates a system that allows for adventuring even at a quick clip – a trait most anyone on the trails will appreciate. But it is not only trail enthusiasts that benefit. This backpack is truly multisport as it also includes a tool for carrying a helmet for avid cyclists as well as a trekking pole bungee attachment for mountaineers. With its reputation staked in excellence and earning accolades from some large names in trail adventuring, Osprey delivers a versatile, solid contender in the day packing arena with the Tempest 20.
Intended for a 1-5 hour adventure, this customized fit pack can take you almost anywhere. Though a reviewer claimed it is ideal for a 4-day through hike of Machu Pichu, many find it best for daily commuting. It may all depend on what each terms essentials but most seem to have agreed on the Tempest 20's comfort and ability to distribute weight load. For each that feels it is not large enough for an extended day tour, another sees it as absolutely suitable and impressive for shorter periods of hiking, cycling, commuting, and mountaineering, including some shorter endurance trail races. While its capacity is 18-20L, it is surprisingly light and meant for those who wish to move quickly through the thick of it, regardless of duration. Its ventilation allows it to stay comfortable even when its warm. The fabric is durable and its attachment options allow for mountain or cycling adventures with ways to attach hiking poles
for the inclines and carry a helmet. It is said to be so versatile and offer so many options, Osprey even offers a video on their use!
Cited as well ventilated, the Tempest 20 is comprised of mostly nylon with breathable mesh strategically placed throughout for greatest effect. With these side stretch mesh pockets and harness slash pocket, Osprey has delivered a relatively breathable daypack that can keep you comfortable and cool even in warmer conditions
The BioStretch harness and the continuous, seamless wrap-around lumbar to hip belt hold the pack securely to the wearer for a more stable and comfortable ride. The updated AirScape panel has become simpler for an easier, more breathable fit. When properly sized, the customized women's fit seems to hit the mark for comfort almost across the board. Most notably for some was the placement of the harness and hip belts, demonstrating fit specifically for women - a feature many enjoyed.
The women's fit is available in extra small/small and small/medium. The extra small/small features an 18L volume while the small/medium offers 20L. Reviewers seemed to find the fit to run small (accommodating waist/hips from 24 - 45 inches to 26 - 45 inches) and the fact that the only options available run up to medium, this precluded many women from being able to wear the pack comfortably. Many felt it met their needs but some felt the pack itself was small as well. Though some were turned off by its waist pouch's inability to accommodate phones the size of an iPhone 6S, most found other ways to carry larger phones within the other provided compartments. Smartly packed, it can accommodate necessities for everyday commuter use, the day hike, or 1-5 hour outing as the Osprey site indicates. Osprey does offer other compartment sizes such as a Tempest 30 or 40 if one is looking for more volume with the same fit.
For US customers, Osprey offers the ALL-MIGHTY guarantee. This lifetime guarantee states it will repair or replace any pack it has ever manufactured at no cost to the consumer. With the outer fabric comprised of ripstop nylon, it is meant to be tough. It also repels water to an extent as well. And while most are tremendously pleased with their purchase of the Tempest 20, there were a handful of concerns with the waist wrap in that it could develop small holes in the mesh. It should say something that while even those consumers that found the pack too small for their needs, felt it was highly durable
and found ways to enjoy using it with shorter excursions.
While the Tempest 20 does not come equipped with accessories aside from a safety whistle,
some are available through Osprey. Options include protective liners, rain covers (also available with reflective detailing and a blinker), and airport travel covers. For items in the pack, there is an assortment of organizational supplies such as a map wrap and camera cover. In addition, hydration bladders
are sold separately.
The Tempest 20 is offered in a variety of colors and sports only light detailing. Its Osprey logo rests at the top of the upper panel pocket and on the sides of the stretch mesh panel face of the pack. With the only extra design being two wave-like designs on the face, the Tempest 20 appears classic and speaks to functionality with its clean lines and simplicity
. It is available in mystic magenta, black, iris blue, and lucent green.
The Tempest 20 enters the backpacking market at a comparable rate to similar models from other retailers. Discounts seem routinely applied online and with this advantage, it is a favorable
option. Though some consumers balked at the price given its smaller size, most found it to be money well spent - especially given its impressive versatility and craftsmanship. Not inexpensive, but it won't break the bank either to load up some gear and hit the trails with this model.
- Custom women's fit
- Intended for 1-5 hour excursions
- AirScape backpanel
- Seamless wrap-around hip belt
- Very versatile
- Separate hydration pouch
- Ability to accommodate trekking poles
- Ice tool carry loop
- Top lid storage for easier access
- Stylish color choices and understated design
Maximizing space, the Tempest 20 offers many compartments for carrying all the gear one could need for a short trail, mountain excursion, a simple day-hike, or commute. For its smaller size, it offers much versatility in its compartments. While a few reviewers feel it is overkill and intimidating, most are pleased with the wide breadth of options available. Seasoned hikers and newbies alike seem to enjoy having the ability to carry what they need without feeling overwhelmed. With stability and comfort as a key component in its manufacture, the load is well distributed feeling lighter and easier to carry without wearing one down thereby reducing injury potential. This balanced approach courtesy of the BioStretch harness and the wrapping lumbar to hip belt, in addition to the lightweight fabric and breathable materials, making for a quick moving pack that can cover the distance. Being voted one of the best all-around day packs, many are singing its praises. Though some feel it is overpriced for their needs, the majority of reviews seem to indicate that it is an acceptable expense. So at a more reasonable price point than some other similar options on the market (and marked down still widely online) and despite its non-inclusion of the bladder, this one is definitely a solid go-to contender. With it, you can confidently go "take a hike."