Deuter ACT Lite 40+10 2010

If you are out for more than one day while walking between huts, hostels or B&Bs, then your rucksack demands will be different to those of campers, day-trippers or mountaineers. The Deuter ACT Lite 40+10 is specifically designed for people who need a 40 litre sack for multi-day trips.

While a single main compartment is all many mountaineers and day-trippers need, a rucksack with a main and a base compartment is ideal for multi-day trips. That base compartment can be used for overnight gear, or wet gear that you want to isolate. Deuter ACT Lite 40+10 has a zipped external entry to the base compartment and a removable divider inside. The main compartment can also be extended by 10 litres thanks to a deep snow lock extension coupled with a height adjustable lid. But what really sets this sack apart from many of similar size is that it also benefits from a back system that is adjustable and designed to increase airflow. There is also plenty of padding and integral support within the back system to ensure a stable and very comfortable carry no matter how badly the sack is packed or how heavy it is … within reason!

On the hill
The Deuter ACT Lite 40+10 is not a sack that is going to excel when hill-walking and scrambling, because it is not designed to. It is designed to do more than that. So load it up with gear for more than one day and suddenly its advantages are clear. Thanks to that great back system this is by far the most comfortable here with heavier loads. I used it for camping. That base compartment was ideal for a sleeping bag, but equally I could have used it for wet waterproofs and dirty gaiters. Side compression straps with quick-release buckles combined with mesh wand pockets were ideal for trekking poles and tent poles. But most importantly for me was the lid. This allows the sack to be overstuffed or under filled and yet retain a high level of water resistance as the lid has a baffle at the back that ensures rain does not creep in between lid and body of the rucksack. The lid also gets two external zipped pockets, plus a third pocket on the underside. These are all a good size, if you prefer a multi-pocket approach to packing. I’d say just one external and one internal pocket was enough personally. This sack is a little heavier than some, but it is also more comfortable and lower in price too.

Capacity 40-50 litres
Fabric Ripstop 210, Duratex Lite
Features Vario adjustable AirContact back system; base compartment with external access; front accessory bungee; extending lid with baffle; compression straps; wand pockets; external and internal lid pockets; twin ice axe/pole attachment points; hydration system-compatible
Back sizes adjustable
Weight 1500g
Made in Vietnam
Stores in the UK 50
Stockist details tel. (0191) 296 0212;

The Deuter ACT Lite 40+10 boasts a good price; good airflow from Aircontact back padding; adjustable Vario back lengths; base compartment ideal for hut-to-hut use; extendible lid with extension baffle to keep rain out. But it’s heavier than some; back system will tend to hold snow and water more than others. Overall, excellent performance and price for walking between huts or hostels. It won the ‘Best Value‘ accolade in our test.

Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine April 2010