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Packs And What To Choose


Jase
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I've been doing a lot of searching on the net for the different types of packs you can get. I normally use a cambelbak unit that has sort of a backpack on it as well, but I am looking for something a little larger, and without the 3M reflective stuff thats a dead give-away.

I know the badlands gear is very good, and I've seen lots of other brands that appear to be top notch. There are 2 issues that I have though. Firstly, I get very hot while I'm hunting and there needs to be decent air circulation/ventilation around my back to keep me cool and comfortable. The bandlands gear has a hyper-vent series which looks perfect and creates the space I need. Lots of other brands have foam padding with channels etc which I guess would work ok as well, but my Camelbak has that and it's not the best.

The second issue that I have is that I don't go on 3 or 4 day long hunts. I do a lot of day hunts starting in the morning, walking most of the day and then coming back to camp, or heading back to camp for lunch then head out again. A lot of the packs with the good features seem to be pretty big, probably too big for what I need. I want to make sure that I can still move around in the bush more or less the same, and not have to think about a massiave pack and how I am going to get inbetween trees and bushes and scrub etc.

The gear I need to carry is basically water and light food for the trip, first aid kit, ammunition, gps etc. I need space in there to take off a jumper/vest.jacket as the day warms up too.

Question is, do I look for a smaller pack that has ok features and is the ideal size of my hunting style, or do I look at the larger type packs with the best features and just deal with the fact that it's a little bigger than what I want.

The Badlands Diablo seems to be their smallest offering with the hypervent: http://badlandspacks...ks_Hypervent08. It runs in at just under 2000ci, where the Camelbak Blowfish that I have is a 1200ci.

Love to hear your thoughts or suggestions on other packs; experiences with different gear, what to look for what to aviod etc.

Cheers,

Jase

Edited by Jase
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There are lots of points to think about when selecting a backpack. Or maybe that's just me being anal again...

Anyway, I reckon the two most important parts are the waist strap and shoulder straps. Sounds a bit obvious but if they don't hold the pack on your back like its part of you, then you'll be struggling with it all day.

The waist strap should be carrying all the weight on your hips with almost zero weight on your shoulders. The shoulder straps are just there to keep the pack as close as possible to your back and to stop it moving around. Because we are all different shapes and sizes, this means that they both need a large adjustment range to make sure you can fit it to your back properly.

So I will always spend a bit more for a decent harness system.

If that all sounds like garbage to you then head to your local Snowgum/etc and try on a high end pack (big or small) and get the sales dude to fit it properly to you. Then compare it with a cheap one and you'll see immediately the difference.

In the bush this will translate to both less fatigue and also less noise because of the greater control you have over it.

So I'd be comparing the harness systems of the packs you're looking at first then the other features.

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I have a Badlands Super Daypack and I get very hot & sweaty wearing it - even in cooler weather. I really like my old TimberHawke Guthook pack which is similar to a Badlands Monster Fanny Pack - it keeps all the weight on my hips & my back uncovered. If the Guthook were just a bit bigger it would be perfect.

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I have this pack and i reckon its the bees knees. Has plenty of pockets, heaps of room for a jacket. The feature i like the most is that the compartments are big enough so that you van have ammo, knives in one pocket all your maps gps in another and food in another pocket. It also has a 3l compartment

http://www.cabelas.com/product/Hunting/Hunting-Bags-Packs|/pc/104791680/c/104392080/CamelBak-TriZip-XT-Hydration-Pack/1226589.uts?destination=%2Fcatalog%2Fbrowse%2Fhunting-hunting-bags-packs%2Fcamelbak%2F_%2FN-1105017%2B1000002991%2FNe-1000002991%3FWTz_l%3DSBC%253BMMcat104791680%26WTz_st%3DGuidedNav%26WTz_stype%3DGNU&WTz_l=SBC%3BMMcat104791680%3Bcat104392080

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Plenty of different packs to choose from,just work to your budget,and get something that suits your requirements.I use a Stoney Creek Day Pack.It is 15 litres,so not to big,but I carry an extra pillow case that can be used as an extra carry bag if successful.And if you are like me,and sweat a bit,have you thought about buying an undergarment that helps to take the sweat from your body so you stay a bit more comfortable.I often wear a powderdry thermal top from Stoney Creek,and an airmesh shirt(if I can find it again)with a polar fleece jacket on top.This keeps me warm and dry,so I can keep hunting all day(not that that happens to often these days).

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There are lots of points to think about when selecting a backpack. Or maybe that's just me being anal again...

Anyway, I reckon the two most important parts are the waist strap and shoulder straps. Sounds a bit obvious but if they don't hold the pack on your back like its part of you, then you'll be struggling with it all day.

The waist strap should be carrying all the weight on your hips with almost zero weight on your shoulders. The shoulder straps are just there to keep the pack as close as possible to your back and to stop it moving around. Because we are all different shapes and sizes, this means that they both need a large adjustment range to make sure you can fit it to your back properly.

So I will always spend a bit more for a decent harness system.

If that all sounds like garbage to you then head to your local Snowgum/etc and try on a high end pack (big or small) and get the sales dude to fit it properly to you. Then compare it with a cheap one and you'll see immediately the difference.

In the bush this will translate to both less fatigue and also less noise because of the greater control you have over it.

So I'd be comparing the harness systems of the packs you're looking at first then the other features.

I agree 100% . I would try and find a smaller external frame pack with removable haversack with a good wide padded waist belt and wide padded shoulder straps with a chest strap , prefferably a chest strap that can be moved up and down . However if you find a really comfortable pack that suits you with no chest strap add it in later . Once you get the pack find an ex soldier or treker to adjust it correctly as Duncs has outlined.

The frame allows maximum ventilation around your back and you can remove the haversack part and use just the metal frame to carry fire wood a trophy or meat etc. Not sure where you would find one though .

The modern internal frame pack is probably more comfortable and torso length adjustable though . You need to go to a big camping outdoors type shop that has a good selection of types and just try them all on and spend some hours adjusting them to fit.

It is the only way to get an idea of what model and brand suits you.

Edited by Happy Jack
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HJ, Badlands are super adjustable so they can be fitted to any body type, quiet material and super strong. I have a 4500 for multiday hunts, a 2800 for over night or a couple of nights and a monster (bum bag with straps) pack for day treks or when not travelling too far from base camp. All are hydration bladder compatible and the two bigger ones accommodate the rifle when i don't want it on a sling. The two bigger packs I had in mind so I can carry plenty of meat back or a trophy if I need to. that in mind your pack will probably need to be bigger than what you need just for your gear. Nevertheless the god packs usually have a heap of compression straps to stop the load from shifting even when underpacked.

I also have a half a dozen small day packs by a company from the US called "MOTHER" also very good packs as they have a feature where they have an integrated game bag that belows out giving the pack about 3 x the original capacity to carry some meat.

I have to be honest though with the heap of packs that I own I currently only use two, the Badlands Monster and the" Mother" One Pack. Both brands purpose built for hunting.

Also being waterproof or having a rain cover is pretty important too.

....I also like the badlands warranty. They will fix or replace it even if a rat chews through it.

How much ar you looking to spend HJ?

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Back Packs are like women hard to find a good one that suits your purpose.

They also get you hot and sweaty. And can give you the craps.

My big pack is not a hunting pack at all, it has a frame that keeps it off your back a great waist band and adjustable chest strap.

I spent a day at Anaconda trying out packs, And i mean a day. It was a sale day 50% off.

I took each and every one that i thought may be what i wanted filled them up with stuff to give them some weight.

Then wandered around with it on.

The final decision was made by elimination, but it took a day and time well spent IMO.

I have a number of back packs for different things.

But this one im talking about is the most comfy.

It is not a camo hunting pack, it is a hiking pack.

Grant has some good back packs.

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HJ, Badlands are super adjustable so they can be fitted to any body type, quiet material and super strong. I have a 4500 for multiday hunts, a 2800 for over night or a couple of nights and a monster (bum bag with straps) pack for day treks or when not travelling too far from base camp. All are hydration bladder compatible and the two bigger ones accommodate the rifle when i don't want it on a sling. The two bigger packs I had in mind so I can carry plenty of meat back or a trophy if I need to. that in mind your pack will probably need to be bigger than what you need just for your gear. Nevertheless the god packs usually have a heap of compression straps to stop the load from shifting even when underpacked.

I also have a half a dozen small day packs by a company from the US called "MOTHER" also very good packs as they have a feature where they have an integrated game bag that belows out giving the pack about 3 x the original capacity to carry some meat.

I have to be honest though with the heap of packs that I own I currently only use two, the Badlands Monster and the" Mother" One Pack. Both brands purpose built for hunting.

Also being waterproof or having a rain cover is pretty important too.

....I also like the badlands warranty. They will fix or replace it even if a rat chews through it.

How much ar you looking to spend HJ?

I am not looking to buy one Jase is . I already have a One Planet 75 Litre and a few smaller day packs but not the back to carry heavy weight anymore . You are right though the Badlands look quite good . I liked the OX setup.

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Price really is a second consideration at this point. I know the Badlands gear, particularly those with the Hypervent are around the $300, and I consider that fairly acceptable. I do have a limit, but that said I have to consider what I'm getting for my money, and if I get a lot more comfort, features etc for a little more green then I'll pay it.

The areas where I will be using can be pretty harsh on gear, and the Badlands has got me there because of the warranty. The frame is something that just makes sense to me. If the military uses it, it has to have some merit. I've carried a friends pack that used an ALICE style frame and it was almost like it wasn't on compared to trying to carry a pack with that much weight and no frame.

Nice thing waist straps are definitely something I am looking at as well. Nothing worse than those thin bloody things that just dig into you. HJ, how important are the chest straps? What exactly are they designed to do; I assume that the shoulder and waist straps were the main load beaing areas.

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Chest straps hold the shoulder straps together snugly. Definitely a good idea but clearly it'd be easy to make your own if the pack you pick doesn't come with them. Having said that, most do these days.

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Nice thing waist straps are definitely something I am looking at as well. Nothing worse than those thin bloody things that just dig into you. HJ, how important are the chest straps? What exactly are they designed to do; I assume that the shoulder and waist straps were the main load beaing areas.

Hip belts are essential, they take the load so your shoulders don't, and sternum straps are allso essential, they keep your shoulder straps in place when there is no load on them, and help keep any load on your frame rather than on your shoulders.

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Are there ways of minimising the bulk of a larger pack if I am not using all the space?

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this is the pack I'm using they have all different type american military use them videos on all the different packs explaining the features my brother has the mini me pack which is a hydro pack with a few other features i.e. gun scabber game bag Ive ordered the x1e more of a day pack website is http://eberlestock.com might find some you like

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Something to be aware of is the thickness of the shoulder straps, we get used to using our rifles when 'shooting in' scopes/loads and then take them up the bush.

The trouble is that the LOP (Length of Pull) of the rifle, and the eye relief of the scope is changed by thicker shoulder straps if your pack is made with thick straps.

I try to find day packs around 30litres and with moderate to thinnish shoulder pads, always with a chest strap.

If I was buying now I'd look for a blaze pack as well.

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