Anybody else use lumbar packs for day hikes? I fell in love with the idea when I picked up a Kelty Summit from Sierra many moons ago...it had just enough room for most of the things I really needed for day hikes up to 3-4 hours. Only lately have I upgraded to a Mountainsmith Day TLS, and it may be the last pack I ever buy.
Because of a neck problem, my wife used a Mounainsmith lumbar pack for several years. Earlier this year she switched to a ME-2 Pack. It's strapless and big enough yet light enough for use as either a daypack or a backpack (she's used it for both). It seems more comfortable and easier to pack than the lumbar pack she used before.
Lumbar packs are awesome! They get a bad rap because of their neon incarnations in the '80s, but they're eminently useful for backpacking. I've essentially replaced my daypack with one. I'll also carry one, positioned on my front, when I'm on longer, non-ultralight trips where my main purpose is photography. I've taken a medium format in one, but usually I'll be taking along a DSLR and other camera/video equipment. Throw the camera in there with a few snacks and you're good to go. May look a little silly, but function over form. I'm also intrigued by the prospect of using one by itself for overnight trips in good weather.