"This a weird pack that does not really fit into any category and doesn't do much well."
I won this pack in a raffle and I think I paid too much. It really does not have a reason to exist. Not a good school pack, not a good climbing pack, not a good day hiking pack, it really does nothing well. For example, there is an ice axe loop but no place to attach the top of the axe. There are pockets on the side but they are too small to hold much of anything. There is a waist belt but the pack is not long enough for this to actually be of use. It contours to your back well enough, but so do many others. Adventure racing is the stated purpose, but I've never seen anyone wearing one of these in a race. Skip it.
I use this pack to bike about with. If you pile things in, they sit at the bottom and make the pack really uncomfortable on the lumbar. Wedging a big u-lock in the back to act as a frame solved that nicely. The straps are thin and cut in after a bit, even when the pack is very light. The side pouches do not hold a nalgene.. period. Waist strap is silly
Have you ever heard the phrase "function before style"? This is it. Very comfortable pack that contours to your back but does have a unique look. I would not recommend for school, but this pack is for specialized trips such as adventure walking.
If youre looking for a school pack look elsewhere. This is mainly for specialized trips such as adventure walking and maybe some light rock climbing. Conforms to contours of your back for confort while carrying but also makes for odd styling. The bottom line is this backpack puts your function over your style.