Well-Featured Weekender

The Maven and the Paragon are versatile options best suited for hikers that like most of their trips somewhere in the 2 to 3 day range. With this in mind, their highly adjustable fit and middle-of-the-road carrying capacity are well-suited for a variety of excursions, ranging from lavish overnighters to ambitious trips where weight is more of a consideration. This is significant to those who tend to pack a little heavier, as the most you’d want to carry is somewhere around 40 to 45 lbs.

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:


Things we like:

  • check-mark
    Very versatile backpack that can handle a week or a weekend
  • check-mark
    Slim profile keeps the weight close to your body
  • check-mark
    Well-executed side zip for central compartment access
Click to see more

Things we don't like:

  • check-mark
    Their support system doesn’t do much to help with heavier loads
Click to see more
Click to see more


While heavier loads are outside the capabilities of these packs, they manage carries within their capabilities very comfortably. This is largely thanks to their robust metal perimeter frame supported by fiberglass cross-stays. Ultimately these design choices distribute weight very effectively, and with a proper fit and reasonable weight, savvy hikers should be comfortable on trail from dawn to dusk.


On the note of fit, the Paragon and Maven have a slick and streamlined fit that rides close and tight to your center of gravity. This trim fit opens up many more possibilities for hikers who want to get off the beaten path. Things like low-angle scrambling and skiing become much more viable without the bulk of a more traditional pack dragging you backward.



Though the build is perhaps a little understated compared to busier (and heavier) premium packs, Gregory’s managed to cram quite a few amenities into the Paragon and Maven. Most notable is the full-length side zip that grants you easy access to the main compartment of the backpack without the hassle of rooting around shoulder deep in food and extra clothes. A couple of lid compartments, hip belt pockets, and a high-capacity mesh pocket on the back of the bag are there for your on-the-go needs; along with other standard storage options.

See the complete list of the best Hiking Backpacks here!


The Gregory Paragon 58 has 100D and 210D nylon in the body. Without beating around the bush, it’s lightweight and has low tear resistance. The ideal denier for a bombproof bag will be 450D at least. But the downside? It’s heavier. Its nylon rating of denier might be low, but nylon is still more robust compared to polyester.

The “perfect” hiking backpack doesn’t exist. Pros and cons always need to be weighed.

420D polyester supports the base to make the bag’s body more durable. It’s a rigid material ready to take some rough terrain abuse. Coupled with sturdy stitching, you can take it to multi-day hikes without your Gregory Paragon 58 messing up the fun.


One of the most comfortable hiking backpacks we tested. Why? Let’s start with the alloy frame and cross-stays. These two created a panel for optimal airflow between the bag and the frame. Pair it with thick padding and 3D mesh suspension. You have a large backpack that provides maximum breathability.

Gregory’s FreeFloat mesh system adapts to your movement. No scratching against your hips and lower back. There’s also dense foaming at the shoulder straps and hip belts for an extra comfy fit.


Custom the Fit

Tailoring Gregory Paragon 58’s fit is easy, except in the load lifters (hard to pull). It’s got the typical torso length adjustment tab, and tightening the shoulder, sternum, and hip belt webbings run smoothly.

This large backpack model’s edge over its brother Zulu 55 hides in the hip padding. You can customize its length via Velcro closure, with white markings to help you even out both sides. It’s a feature almost identical to Osprey’s  Aether 65’s.

Clips, Loops, Straps

With Gregory Paragon 58, you have all the basics, plus more. Lash points on the top lid, loop for your trekking pole, and compression straps everywhere. There are even extra loops on water bottle holders if you want to attach a carabiner or gear.

The shoulder straps of this large backpack also provide lash points. The right strap has a bungee string as well, so you can stow away your sunglasses while hiking. In the sternum strap, you’ll find a built-in whistle on the left and the hose clip on the ride. Both simple design ticks make your outdoor life way easier.

Want reflective lash points? Then you need to see Jack Wolfskin Highland Trail 55. It’ll aid in nighttime visibility.



This large backpack from Gregory serves you with 58 liters of capacity. Let’s take a closer look at the Paragon 58’s storage space.

Main Compartment

The main pack is traditionally accessible via top drawstring closure and zipped side-loading. The side opening is a significant plus. If you need to get an item, you don’t have to struggle to find it. A side hauling loop would also be nice to complement this feature.

Digging your hand inside the bag is no joke. You can’t see properly. Everything turns into chaos and a total time-waster. We learned this the hard way while testing out TETON Sports Scout 3400.

Although a large backpack with a clamshell front opening still provides broader coverage and access than side-loading. It was a convenience we enjoyed while using Gregory Zulu 55 and Salkan Backpacker.

The room inside the main compartment is enough to fit in everything you need for multi-day hikes while in Gatlinburg. We managed to sneak in two medium-sized packing cubes and a small one. If you’re a light packer, you’ll squeeze in a week’s worth of supply in this large backpack while in the backcountry.



The built-in reservoir sleeve inside the main compartment has a clip to secure your bladder. Its port sits at the back. You can clip the tube in the right side of the sternum strap, so it doesn’t dangle everywhere. Not all hiking backpacks have a dedicated easy-to-access tube clip, so that’s nice. If you have 3D Hydro Reservoir, it fits the sleeve perfectly. But any 3-liter bladder will do well.

Like with the Osprey Aether 65, this large backpack from Gregory provides two ways to access your right water bottle with extra compression straps outside. Meaning whether you’re using Kleen Kanteen or a CONTIGO Autoseal Chill Water Bottle, you won’t have any problem.

And since there’s an opening angled towards you, you can grab your refreshment without breaking your shoulders. We had to face that struggle while on the trail carrying large backpacks like The North Face Terra 65 and Sierra Designs Flex Capacitor. The left holster of Gregory Paragon 55 doesn’t have a slit through, which was a bit disappointing.

In general, staying refreshed in nature is no problem with Gregory Paragon 55. The hydration system is a bit better than other hiking bags.


Top Lid

This bag model from Gregory has a standard rectangular floating lid. Everything you need at your fingertips can stay here. It’s also the ideal room for your emergency kit. You can adjust the top cover if you want to expand more storage.

You’ll find the rain cover inside the zipped pocket underneath. This space can also double as a security pocket since it’s out of sight.

If you want a floating lid that can also work as a daypack, you might want to see the Aether 65 by Osprey. Or, if you need an actual daypack, check out the Salkan Backpacker’s 2-in-1 deal.

Front Mesh Pocket

The front mesh pocket with buckle is the same as what you’ll typically find in other hiking bags like its brother, the Zulu 55 and the Aircontact Lite from deuter. Your dripping waterproof jacket can slip here (mesh fabric helps drain the water).

But if you prefer secured front pockets, Jack Wolfskin’s Highland Trail 55 might interest you.

Hip Pockets

The Gregory Paragon 58 comes with roomy hip pockets. With the same nylon material as the rest of this large backpack, rest assured that it won’t just give up. Any extras you need can sneak in here- backup carabiners, mini flashlight, compass, or perhaps some energy bars.

These hip pockets are pretty standard with big zip pulls- which we thought would make our life easier. Sad to say, but they don’t open/close as smoothly as we wish they would. At least you still have hip pockets for more storage. Still, having them is better than none, like in TETON Scout 3400.

If you want unique hip pockets, look at Jack Wolfskin Highland Trail 55. The right hip pocket transforms into a water bottle holder.


Sleeping Bag Compartment 

This large backpack from Gregory has your standard sleeping bag pocket. Spacious enough, so there’s no need to force your sleeping bag inside.

There’s a detachable divider between the main compartment and this room. Paragon 58 used toggles to keep it in place instead of zippers. Yes, it reduced the bag’s weight, but it also compromised the divider’s integrity. It’s flimsy, and the spaces on the side mean your items can spill into the sleeping bag compartment.

If you don’t like that, you can check Deuter Aircontact Lite or Osprey Aether 65 as alternatives.

But if you don’t plan to use the divider at all for more clothing space, you don’t need to worry about the toggles. Attach your sleeping mattress outside, and you’re ready.

Out for a quick hike? It’s better to opt for smaller bags like these: Gregory Arrio 30, Arc’teryx Aerios 30, or Arc’teryx Brize 25.

If Gregory Paragon 58 doesn’t do the trick, detour over to our main guide for more hiking backpacks.



You can get Gregory Paragon 58 for around $230. Stepping back after we tested this large backpack, the tag is reasonable. What you’re paying here is primarily the construction and comfort it brings.

The material could’ve been better. If you’re willing to add another fifty bucks, you might as well invest in the Osprey Aether 65 with 420D nylon.

Gregory offers a lifetime warranty for their products. Normal wear and tear issues are repairable free of charge. Like any gear, how you use and take care of this large backpack affects its lifespan.

But this backpack if:

  • Want a sleek looking technical backpack
  • Willing to hand over a couple of hundred bucks
  • Need a lower-back friendly hiking bag
  • An experienced light packer backpacker

Related Reviews

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:


Things we like:

  • check-mark
    Very versatile backpack that can handle a week or a weekend
  • check-mark
    Slim profile keeps the weight close to your body
  • check-mark
    Well-executed side zip for central compartment access
Click to see more

Things we don't like:

  • check-mark
    Their support system doesn’t do much to help with heavier loads
Click to see more
Click to see more

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Frequently asked questions

Who produces Gregory packs?

Samsonite International  S.A acquired Gregory in 2014 for $85 million from Black Diamond. Gregory backpacks made an excellent match to the company’s existing outdoor line known today as High Sierra.

Can I throw my Gregory Paragon 58 Backpack inside the washing machine?


Set aside time for handwashing to keep your Gregory hiking bag in its best condition. Remember to use mild soap and soft fabric to wipe away any stains and dirt. Never put your large backpack inside the dryer or washing machine to avoid ruining its coating and overall quality.

How do you properly fit a Gregory backpack?

There are three contributing factors for a comfortable carrying experience when using a large backpack- shoulders, hips, and load lifters.

Ensure that the shoulder pads offer support from your shoulder blades to the front and the hip belts are not sitting too low. The load lifters should not be too tight. It puts too much weight on your shoulders. Loosen it up a bit to a point where you feel some load transfers to your hips.


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