We’ve had the Osprey Daylite 13L pack for almost 9 months and although we are big fans of Osprey neither of us want anything to do with the Daylite 13L.
Our Use We purchased the Osprey Daylite to be a lighter pack for smaller days or to supplement one of our more technical packs that are in the 20-24L range. We have used the Daylite for a bunch of the hikes over the last 9 months. I think the Daylite might be a solid everyday use pack for work, gym, school, etc. but we have not used it in that capacity, but instead as a hiking pack. We got our Osprey Daylite from REI here in Albuquerque for $50 which is the retail price. There are a plethora of color options available now, 8 to be exact, but ours being a 2019 model is no longer available. I would call it a blue and black model. This review is not paid and we have not been compensated in anyway for writing it.
Overview The Osprey Daylite has a capacity of 13 liters. The pack has two main pockets and a separate water bladder pouch. A water bladder is not included with the Osprey Daylite. The water bladder pocket sits right behind the mesh back panel which makes it very easy to take a bladder out to refill while the pack is full. The large main compartment has a stretchy pocket that is pretty similar to most packs water bladder pouch but is there to help keep gear somewhat organized. The smaller of the two main pockets has two small mesh pockets for organizing small items like Clif Bars or a headlamp. There is also has a bight red clip for keys which is one of the features I love, but it is a common Osprey feature and hardly unique to the Daylite.
On the outside there are mesh water bottle pockets on either side and two straps for cinching down the pack when not completely full. The Osprey Daylite 13L has a removable waist belt and a siding sternum strap with a whistle integrated into the buckle. Osprey claims 1 pound exactly for the Daylite and it came out to 1.01 on my scale.
Good zipper pulls
No outside shovel pocket
No trekking pole attachments
Water bottle pockets don’t hold bottles in
Summary I feel like Osprey meant for the Daylite to be an accessory pack to larger packs or an all around school backpack that can be handle short to medium days on the trail. In a lot of ways on paper the Daylite hits everything you would look for in such a pack. It is lightweight, relatively cheap, comfortable, and 13L is a solid size for such use. But this is where long term reviews have a HUGE advantage over shorter periods; the flaws with the Osprey Daylite only show themselves after repeated use.
The Osprey Daylite just doesn’t work well compared to the competition. The water bottle pockets won’t hold a bottle in for anything. Literally even a small bend over and your bottles will probably go flying. We’ve taken to running one of the compression strap through the lid of a Nalgene bottle to try and keep it in place. Size wise I think 13L is a great place for short to medium hikes in decent weather. But the Osprey Daylite lacks a few technical features that are in Osprey’s product arsenal to round out the size. Some great examples would be an external shovel pocket for a rain jacket or even a mesh or bungee strap system. There are no attachment points for trekking poles or tools. I love the stow and go trekking pole system on my Osprey Stratos 24L pack. Even just a few lash points on the bottom or sides of the Daylite would make it more versatile. Although the Daylite is lightweight it is not a particularly compressible pack for stowing it in a larger overnight pack to be utilized for short summit bids.
Overall, the fundamental problem of the Daylite is a functional pack but there are just other packs that fit into a similar space and do it better. For example, the Patagonia Ultralight Black Hole 20L Pack (Link to our Review) or the REI Flash 18 or 22L. We can’t really comment on the Osprey Daylite as an all around everyday backpack but when it comes to hiking it leaves quit a bit to be desired. We have basically replaced this pack in our lineup with the 16L Ultimate Direction Adventure 4.0 Hydration Vest on the low side and the Patagonia Black Hole 20L Pack on the higher side.
The below link is a direct link to Osprey’s page for the Daylite so you can check it out if interested. It is not an affiliate link: Osprey Daylite 13L