Durston Gear Kakwa 55 UltraGrid Ultralight Pack



The Kakwa 55 is the Durston premium ultralight, multi-day pack designed from the first principles of load carrying and ergonomics to provide the greatest function, comfort and usability for an ultralight pack. Developed from Dan Durston’s attention to detail and thousands of miles of backpacking experience, the Kakwa 55 has class leading load carrying, materials, and pocket design while weighing under 900 g.

This version is the UltraGrid fabric option.

Ultra Fabrics

UltraGrid is a nylon based pack fabric that is not as tough as it's Ultra 200X sibling, but still is a very durable pack fabric with a ripstop grid of UHMWPE fibres and a waterproof PU coating. It offers a smoother feel, tighter weave, and more affordable price.
Hollow Aluminium Frame

The inverted U frame provides both vertical and horizontal structure while the hollow aluminium tubing makes it lighter than flat frame stays.

Load Lifters

Load lifters are often omitted on lightweight packs but are a key component of the Kakwa's exceptional load carrying ability.

Ergonomic Shoulder Straps

The shoulder straps use an ergonomic S shape that fits almost everyone better than straight straps.

Dual Strap + Reverse Pull Hipbelt

The dual strap hipbelt cups your hips while the 2:1 leverage and reverse pull make it easy to tighten.

Y Top Strap

Y shaped top strap allows items like bear canisters and tents to be strapped on top.


Eight attachment points around the pack make it easy to attach a wide range of items.

Hipbelt Pockets

Dual hipbelt pockets are standard and have a refined design that operates easily with one hand.

Shoulder Strap Pockets

Shoulder straps pockets are standard and provide handy storage for phones, bear spray, sunglasses, and small water bottles.


Unique QuickPocket on the left side provides on-the-go access to larger items than previously possible, such as hats, mitts, and maps.

Hydration Compatible

A hydration port enables compatibility with bladders.

Durable Mesh

The front pocket uses a durable knit mesh that creates volume with pleats (folds) instead of using a less durable stretch mesh.

Top Quality

Pack is assembled with the highest quality including double stitching and bound seams at the same factory that builds Arcteryx packs.

  • Specifications

    Complete Pack (oz)

    UltraGrid: 31 oz (S), 32 oz (M), 33 oz (L)

    Complete Pack (g)

    UltraGrid: 870 g (S), 910g (M), 950g (L)

    Removable items

    Frame (3oz / 90 g) and backpad (0.5oz / 15 g) are included but removable.

    Main Fabric


    Front Pocket Mesh

    Heavy duty polyester knit mesh

    Torso Length:

    Small: 15 - 18 " (38 - 46 cm)

    Medium: 17 - 20 " (43 - 51 cm)


    Large: 19 - 22 " (48 - 56 cm)

    Hipbelt (Min - Max Circumference):

    Small: 27 - 46" (69 - 117 cm)

    Medium: 28 - 47" (71 - 119 cm)

    Large: 29 - 48" (74 - 122 cm)

    Hipbelt (Recommended Hip Size):

    Small: 28 - 38" (71 - 97 cm)

    Medium: 29 - 39" (74 - 99 cm)

    Large: 30" - 40" (76 - 102 cm)

    Circumference (Top / Bottom)

    42" (107 cm) / 33" (84 cm)

    Unrolled Height (S / M / L)

    31.5" / 33.5" / 35.5" (80 / 85 / 90 cm)

    Internal Volume (S / M / L)

    43L / 46L / 49L

    External Volume (S / M / L)


    Total Volume (S / M/ L)

    58L / 61L / 64L

    1 year against defects

  • Load Carrying

    he Kakwa 55 brings genuine load carrying capability into the sub 2 lbs weight class.

    Other packs this light generally sacrifice load carrying ability by omitting load lifters, lacking horizontal structure, and relying on less ergonomic shoulder strap and hipbelt shapes.

    The Kakwa 55 solves this tradeoff through more efficient design and advanced materials including UHMWPE fabric and hollow aluminum tubing. Hollow aluminum tubing is a more efficient use of structural weight than the solid metal bars found in competing packs. We use this material to create a rigid frame with both vertical and horizontal structure at the same or less weight than competing packs that only have vertical structure.

    This frame connects directly to the hipbelt for maximum load transfer and directly to the load lifters, which are rare on packs this light yet highly functional for shifting more of the weight off your shoulders and onto the hips. A capable structure is nothing without an ergonomic connection to your body, which is why the shoulder straps have a carefully developed S shape to contour around your upper body, while the hipbelt uses a dual strap design which cups your hips and has reverse pull 2:1 leverage for easy tightening. The result is a pack that comfortably and effectively manages loads up to 45 lbs.

  • Efficient Access

    Efficient access to your gear is a hallmark of ultralight pack design as it allows you to spend more time covering miles instead of digging through your pack.

    What is needed is not a high quantity of pockets but rather a pocket layout that has been carefully considered to compliment and allow for a diverse range of storage possibilities while remaining simple enough to be easily organized.

    For this, the Kakwa 55 has four types of pockets to optimize on-the-go access to your gear. First are the hipbelt pockets, which are designed to reliably operate one handed and easily accommodate medium sized items such as snacks, sunscreen, phones, and headlamps. That storage is augmented by dual top opening shoulder strap pockets which provide an ideal place for your phone for quick photos and navigation. These pockets also work well for small water bottles, sunglasses, and bear spray.

    Additionally there is the innovative QuickPocket which consists of an easily reached compartment in the sidewall of the left side pocket. This allows you to stow and quickly access even larger items than normally possible, such as hats, mitts, maps and bulky snacks. Finally, a mesh style front pocket has been substantially increased in size for 2024 and quickly swallows the largest items like rain gear, tents, and cook sets.

    Collectively, the Kakwa’s pockets are carefully considered so you can hike with maximum efficiency.