As I told you before I’m a total novice in the back pack department. After some research and soul searching I ordered:
Highlander Explorer 60+20 (Raspberry)
Vango Freedom 60+20 (Purple)
I ordered both because I read a pretty damning review on the Vango and wanted to see a comparison first hand.
So here’s my thoughts on them both.
I’d say the Vango felt more secure, the zips are all big and strong, and the day pack is secured by a zip as well as clips, whereas the Highlander was just secured by a zip.
They seemed fairly equal in terms of comfort, the Vango seemed to suit my body/size marginally better but they both have similar straps and adjustability I would say.
I like that the Highlander has built in storage bits, like the space for toiletries. For me I prefer the way Vango is just one big space. I’ve bought my own storage organisers so soothe my need for OCD tidiness so I thought the highlander things might just get in the way.
There are additional zip compartments on the inside of the flap, the Highlander has one whereas the Vango has three. Vango wins.
Also the Vango day pack is compatible with hydration packs. Handy.
Something I disliked about the Highlander was that the storage at the bottom of the larger backpack was actually connected to the main storage compartment. It was separated by material which you can ‘close’ with a drawstring but I’m think I’m likely going to use it for shoes and I’d rather it was just completely separate.
Initially I thought I liked the Vango more, but with a bit more investigation I’m leaning towards the Highlander.
The Highlander colour is definitely better, and I think that without the daypack it looks tidier.