A final stage prototype of the Bliss ARG 1.0 LD 121 Protector Backpack impressed the jury in last years Design and Innovation Award by ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine, and received the much-sought award. The final version of the waterproof Enduro backpack is now available – and we were keen to test it.
The ARG 1.0 LD backpack combines a backprotector made out of shock absorbing armourgel, with a backpack fabricated from waterproof material. The 12 litre volume, hydration system compatible, ‘from the outside’ accessible glasses case, as well as a foldable organiser pocket, are only some of the features. The bliss backpack is quite stealthy in black and comes without unnecessary extra designs. The inside however is BLISS bright blue – making the visuals of the backpack likeable, and it certainly feels like good quality
The waterproof material seems quite delicate on first sight, but so far it has survived all impacts including a few falls. It impresses especially on rainy days, there is no need for fiddling for a raincover. Even when it rained all day, the contents still remained dry. Additionally, it is easy to clean the muddy backpack – just wipe the mud off or even better: wait for the next rain storm! The test backpack still looks like new.
The bright-blue armourgel material was used for the protector and was able to prove its strength at the beginning of the year during our endurance test. The test in the laboratory made clear that the absorbtion of impact is excellent. Only the yielding zone of the knee protectors is too short. The yielding zone of the back protectors is far higher, considering the material is thicker. Unlike backpacks by Evoc, the Bliss packpack only comes in a universal size. This makes it more difficult for tall riders, because they are forced to accept compromises with the back protector. The back protector can be taken out if required.
The fitting of the backpack is excellent, the wide shoulder straps balance the weight without cutting in. Fastened hip- and chest straps help the backpack to remain in place while riding downhill. The slim fit lets enough air to reach the back, the segmented back part prevents the build up of heat.
The foldable organiser pocket makes it possible to store tools, a replacement tube, airpump, as well as small parts and tools. A wind and rain jacket can be easily stored in the main storage section. The Bliss LD 1.0 backpack has been with us on quite a few Enduro races and has always offered enough space for everything necessary. While the fleece pocket can hold sunglasses or the valuable smartphone, it is too small for googles – this will probably only annoy racers. Fullface and trail helmets can be easily fixed onto the bag with the help of a practical attachment loop.
Talking of loops: They created problems at two points of the bag. One can only find a single attacement loop at the top – a strap to hold onto would improve the handling of the Bliss backpack a lot. Another problem can be found in the inside, where a loop is used to help fix the hydration system. A velcro strip is missing. In the case that the hydration system doesn’t fit, some handcraft might be necessary.
Great design, clever storage divisions and a good fit – Bliss has incorporated some good ideas into the ARG 1.0 LD 12L Protector Backpack. The armourgel backprotector already proved its strength in the laboratory test, and we were impressed at the performance of the waterproof material.
The Bliss ARG 1.0 LD 12L Protection Backpack costs 149,99 Euro (UK SRP is £124.99). More information at blisscamp.com
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