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new backpack

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Re: new backpack

Postby Wandering Daisy » Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:31 pm

I have the woman's equivelent of the GoLite Odyssay and love it. As for off-trial packs- I really think you can adjust to about anything. For years I did hard-core off-trail with my Kelty external frame pack. The way you pack the pack is more important. With the Kelty, I have to switch the heavy stuff downward when I go off trail. I have done so much mountaineering with my Kelty that I really do not find it difficult to manage off-trail. I still use it when I do a trip with more than 11 day food because that seems to be the weight when my Go Lite gets uncomfortable. The Kelty is my hard core "hauler". The only thing I worry about with the Go Lite is that it probably will not last very long. I have used it 2 years and it is showing lots of wear.



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Re: new backpack

Postby freestone » Sat Feb 25, 2012 8:14 am

My new pack, a Granite Gear Crown VC-60 weighing in at 2 pounds.

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Compared to my REI UL Cruise, it's about the same size (3700 cubic inches or 60 liters) but about a pound lighter. There are no zippers or pockets except the external webs for water bottles etc. and all the plastic hardware and straps are downsized. GG offers a lid as an accessory, otherwise it's a roll top closure.


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The back plane features a non removable channeled pad for ventilation. There is also an internal rigid sheet that is removable for UL loads. My Bearicaide Scout will fit horizontally but not sure about anything larger.


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It's rated comfortable to 30 pounds and no hint of flimsiness in it's construction or stature. I would say 25 pounds max leaving the car at the trailhead.
So far it's a keeper, but there's still work to be done for me to get out the door for a week in the High Sierra under 25 pounds.
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Re: new backpack

Postby Carne_DelMuerto » Thu Mar 08, 2012 9:21 am

With REI dividend season almost here, yesterday I went to my local store with my gear to try on a few packs. I've been eyeballing an Osprey Exos 58, but they didn't have any in stock. I ended up trying out an Osprey Atmos 65 which fit well and held my gear nicely. The salesman warned me off the Exos, basically saying the payoff for the light weight is a less a durable pack. (An assessment I've seen reflected in these forums.) Anyone have any insight to share? I should add that I may pull the trigger on a Bearikade Expedition this spring, so that would need to fit in the pack.
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Re: new backpack

Postby oldranger » Thu Mar 08, 2012 9:33 am

Carne

I wrote a pretty thorough review of the EXOS 58 in this forum a couple of years ago. Yes there are durability issues but they come with lifetime waranty. So I just send mine in to get refurbished for the cost of shipping. I also have two so one is always available.

Mike
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Re: new backpack

Postby quentinc » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:02 am

After seeing Gary C's post about the Odyssey sale, I took my chances on one. I am the diametric opposite of a go-lite backpacker, but on a 3 day trip with pack weight in the mid 30's (which is ultra-lite by my standards) I was pretty happy with it. I'm not sure how it will fare on longer trips and when I have to add a bear canister. Also, as WD says, I have questions about its durability, particularly the flimsy feeling zipper for the bottom compartment.

Zippers are always the first thing to go on my tents and sleeping bags too. You'd think in all these years, they could have invented a better technology. :)
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Re: new backpack

Postby richlong8 » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:23 am

After seeing Gary C's post about the Odyssey sale, I took my chances on one. I am the diametric opposite of a go-lite backpacker, but on a 3 day trip with pack weight in the mid 30's (which is ultra-lite by my standards) I was pretty happy with it. I'm not sure how it will fare on longer trips and when I have to add a bear canister. Also, as WD says, I have questions about its durability, particularly the flimsy feeling zipper for the bottom compartment.


I have used my Odyssey for 4 seasons, and have been happy with it. At the end of last season, the fabric seam pulled away from the zipper on the top lid. But I am very hard on my equipment, and put a good number of miles on every year, including bushwacking through brush and willows to fish, so that is not a deal breaker for me. The other zippers have all been fine. I almost always take a BV500 bear canister, and it fits fine. The pack seemed flimsy to me when I first bought it, but it has held up well. The volume available for the weight of the pack is what makes it work for me, and I have been out on a couple of 10-12 day trips, carrying about 45 pounds with no issues. I picked up a Go-Lite Quest cheap about a month ago, which is the same pack minus the bottom compartment. It is about 6-7 ounces lighter, and I plan to use it for short trips, and then use its top lid on the damaged Odyssey when I use the Odyssey for long trips. I have looked at a couple of Granite Gear packs, and I think the quality is higher, but they don't hold the volume they say they do, carrying a bear canister, fishing equipment, camera equipment would be very difficult with one of those packs. If I was more of a through hiker, packing ultralight, so I could do lots of miles everyday, I might consider a Granite Gear, or an ULA Catalyst, but that is not my priority.
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Re: new backpack

Postby Carne_DelMuerto » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:46 pm

Mike,

Thanks—I found your review. I read you fit a Bearikade Weekender in it without issue—ever try an Expedition?

Based on your review and the replies in that thread, it does look like durability is an issue. Also Maverick mentions not being pleased with the hip belt—another point the REI salesman brought up. I think that Atmos may be the ticket, but I'll keep researching.
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Re: new backpack

Postby oldranger » Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:01 pm

I don't think the Expedition will work in the Exos 58. I have been considering picking up another Bearikade and having it custom made 1 inch longer than the weekender. I think russ did something like that. I don't have a problem with the belt. You just have to understand how it works. I wish it was wider with larger buckle but then it would be heavier, too. I have carried up to 53 lbs with it (and I'm now shorter than I used to be).

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Re: new backpack

Postby Flux » Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:09 pm

Wow freestone, I never saw that pack before.

Are the grey back and bottom side panels stretchy??
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Re: new backpack

Postby TRAUMAhead » Fri Mar 09, 2012 1:05 am

oldranger wrote:I don't think the Expedition will work in the Exos 58. I have been considering picking up another Bearikade and having it custom made 1 inch longer than the weekender. I think russ did something like that. I don't have a problem with the belt. You just have to understand how it works. I wish it was wider with larger buckle but then it would be heavier, too. I have carried up to 53 lbs with it (and I'm now shorter than I used to be).

Mike
Read a few reports on another forum that the Bearikade would fit in an Exos 58 and a small Exos 46, but with the 46 it left no room for gear.

Contemplating on the Expedition vs Weekender. Usually a weekend backpacker, but I see myself doing longer trips in the future. Pretty sure I could get away with a Weekender, but my friend (RogueP) always says he doesn't have enough room. And with the Expedition, I'd have to opt sticking it on top of my pack vs inside.

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Re: new backpack

Postby Wandering Daisy » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:36 am

I have a Bearikade Weekender and can fit everything for an 8-day trip, do a 9-day trip but really have to be careful about the bulk of ALL the food and cannot fit non-food smellies the first night out, 10-day trip I have to plan on the first day at a location with a bear box. If I do a 10+ day trip I take my Ursack for the overflow. I know this is not 100% legal but the Ursack, if used properly, and if you do not camp in areas of habituated bears, does the job. Another trick is to plan your trip so the first few days are in areas where the bear can is not required and just hang the excess the first few days.

I pack 2,500 calories per day. The key to fitting everything in is to ONLY take very low bulk food and utilize every little nook in the bear can. This means repackaging everything loosely in plastic bags so that thre is enough flexibility in each food bag to ooze into little spaces. I also have to replace bulky grains with more compact varieities (couscous vs elbow noodles) and Malt-o-meal vs oatmeal. I also do more "gorp" than trail bars. This works for me, but not everyone wants to fuss with food that much. I am a "food is only sustainence" type so having limited food options becasue of the bear can is not an issue with me. If you fall more into the "foodie" catagory, you may need the larger size. Because I am small and my pack is small, going to an Expedition bear can is not an option.

You can rent a Bearikade at Roads End in King Canyon. I think they have a few Expedition sizes. I did this on a trip just to try it out before I decided I really wanted a Bearikade. I am really happy with my Bearikade Weekender. It has actually withstood a bear attack!
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Re: new backpack

Postby richlong8 » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:28 am

That is how I pack also, repackaging everything in zip log bags, and compressing all the air out of everything so it all fits. I had not considered the malt o meal instead of oatmeal- that might be worth a try. I usually take trail bars, and figure 3 a day, but they do take up a lot of space, and the weight adds up. I have been thinking about picking up a Weekender this year. I use a BV500, and it is cheap compared to the Bearikades, but weighs 2 pounds, 9 ounces. It supposedly holds 700 cubic inches compared to the Weekender's 650, but a study I read somewhere(Backpacking Light?, Calpidder?) says the BV 500 volume is actually overstated, and it holds less than the Weekender. And the Weekender weighs only 1 pound, 15 ounces, thus the attraction, but it is not cheap!
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