Osprey Aether 85 Backpack



Known for its ability to be taken all over the world, from the summit of Everest to a backpack trip through your local wilderness, the fourth generation of Aether pack builds upon its reputation for combining clean design, custom fit and outstanding load carrying comfort. Amongst a plethora of upgrades, the new IsoForm⁴ CM™ hipbelt adds stiffness and padding for even better performance with heavy loads. Amazingly, all this comes with no increase in weight.  Great for multi-day climbing and backpacking trips, and a perfect lightweight pack for a Rainier Summit Climb.

Specs Sizing Reviews


  • External hydration sleeve in backpanel simplifies refilling and protects pack contents from spills
  • Large stretch mesh front pocket for quickly stashing extra gear
  • Wide-mouth access sleeping bag compartment with divider
  • New zippered hipbelt pockets provide secure storage
  • Dual access stretch mesh side pockets
  • Dual side compression straps
  • Removable sleeping pad straps
  • Two ice axe loops and handle wraps
  • Stow-on-the-Go™ trekking pole attachment
  • StraightJacket™ compression secures any size load

J-zip access

  • Strong J-zip on front panel provides quick access to gear in main compartment.

Convertible top lid

  • The removable top lid converts to a quality lumbar pack for side trips. The built-in waistbelt stores behind the fabric lumbar pad when not in use.

Hipbelt and side pockets

  • New hipbelt pockets provide secure storage that’s easily accessible while hiking. Perfect for digital camera, GPS, snacks, etc. Stretch mesh side pockets handle water bottles, tent poles and more


  • LightWire™ peripheral frame effectively transfers load to hipbelt
  • New Airscape™ backpanel with smooth spacer mesh lumbar fabric
  • New IsoForm⁴ CM™ hipbelt balances firmness and cushioning for optimal carry
  • New spacer mesh IsoForm⁴ ™ harness provides comfortable fit
  • Single 6061-T6 center stay maintains backpanel shape
5004 cu in 4 lbs 9 oz 82 L
Medium 5187 cu in 4 lbs 13 oz 85 L
Large 5370 cu in 5 lbs 0 oz 88 L
XL 5553 cu in 5 lbs 4 oz 91 L


Pack Frame Size
Your correct frame size is found by measuring your torso from the seventh vertebra (the big bump where the shoulder slope meets the neck) down the spine to the point in the small of your back which is horizontally level with the top of your hip bones (iliac crest). To find the iliac crest, use your fingers to trace the hip bone upwards until you can feel the point where the top edge of your hip bones curve inwards, on the side of your hip, creating something of a shelf. Holding your finger on the seventh vertebra, measure down your back to the point in the small of your back level with your iliac crest. The measurement is most easily obtained using a string or a cloth tape and help from a friend. This is your torso length, and using it, you can now select the correct frame size.

Torso Length Pack Size
22 - 25" XL
20 - 23" Large
18 - 20.5" Medium
16 - 19" Small


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Reviews for the Osprey Aether 85 Backpack

5 out of 5 stars based on 7 reviews.

On 2012-04-02, Frantz B wrote


Awesome pack. Very confortable with a heavy load.

On 2012-03-31, Stan wrote


Comfortable. Carries a lot and with several exterior attachments, carries even more than a lot. I stuffed it to 60 lbs (I'm training for Denali), hiked a multi-mile snow trail above 8K ft, camped overnight, carried everything out, and it was still comfortable, much more so than any other pack I've owned.

On 2011-12-13, Jared wrote


Finally replaced my pack of 17 years with this and what an upgrade. Very comfortable and lots of great features. I have had 2 other folks buy Osprey packs after seeing mine in action.

On 2009-10-13, Geoff Moore wrote


I used this pack on a 12 day backpack carrying 60lbs in the Wrangell/St Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. Volume is great, harness adequate for full load (until some of food gets eaten - then it's downright comfortable) and it compresses well for stability as volume decreases. It's also great for winter backpacks, zips worked when frozen. Overall a sound choice.

On 2009-09-18, John Scott wrote


I have traveled with backpacks on extended overseas trips for over 20 years and this pack is probably the most comfortable I've ever worn. I bought this pack for a recent climb on Mount Rainier and it performed extremely well. It has a separate storage area in the bottom for your sleeping bag which allows you to access it w/o taking all of your other gear out first. If you don't like that option, you can unclip the partition from inside and use the whole bag like any top-loader. Note that it will not hold much over a 2 liter bladder. I had bought a 3 liter which was too long so had to replace it with a 2 liter which worked fine.

On 2009-03-12, Erika Wilhelm wrote


I'm a large-framed 5'10" female - I tried a woman's version first, but found this one to fit my body much better - plus the hip strap is totoally adjustable! With my last pack on it was hard to turn my head, but this one gives great range of motion. It gobbles up gear! I took it on a 6 day in the Sierras and there was plenty of room for everything. There aren't very many zippered pockets, though - which is something I kind of miss.

On 2008-08-16, Ben wrote


Took it to the top of Ranier- Nice pack, light weight and form-fitting to the body, very comfortable to wear with nearly 40 pounds for 12 hours. One of the strap snaps broke on me half way up the mountain and I was impressed that it still was able to snap in place and remain pretty secure. I would buy it again. BWS

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