Jun 1, 2011 at 7:17 pm #1743786Steven ParisBPL Member
@saparisorLocale: Pacific Northwest
Sounds like a lot of people really like the Swift, but I really like my Exodus. Just a great all-around pack. I rolled it up and put inside my carry-on luggage for a recent trip to Bolivia. While there, I used it as a daypack, backpack for a trekking trip and a travel pack. It went on boats, on top of cars, got rained on and finished pretty much looking like it did when I started.Jun 1, 2011 at 7:49 pm #1743811Bill BBPL Member
I have an LBP as well. I would consider the stays attached to the hipbelt. Even though they are not directly attached, the stay pockets are so integral to the hipbelt that they effectively work as a single unit.Jun 2, 2011 at 1:56 am #1743883Roman VazhnovBPL Member
Why Osprey Hornet was not considered?Jun 2, 2011 at 2:25 am #1743885James MarcoBPL Member
@jamesdmarcoLocale: Finger Lakes
Will, Thanks for the great overview of the packs. I won't quibble on the details, you presented a good selection. You seem to have forgotten to include the pack liners and waterproof part of the backpacks…how well it would adapt to being submergerd/subjected to a rainstorm, or, maybe that's still comming? No matter, an excelent reveiew of the state of the market! THANKS!Jun 2, 2011 at 10:53 pm #1744325
First off, great review! very awesome article. I think it also calls attention to a very big problem in the UL industry. You'll note that ONLY TWO PACKS, the GoLite Jam and Pinnacle, have a women's specific model available although these are generally heavier than the vast majority of packs on the list. That said, at least GoLite understands that there is a big fit difference between men and women and that merely designing a pack for men and than labeling it "Unisex" does not change the physiological reality that male and female humans have different proportions, skeletal and other structures.
GoLite gets a lot of flack on the forums here for being heavier than a lot of the cottage industry folks, but at least Golite understands the female market and makes products for us, which the others such as GG, SMD, MLD, etc do not. Yes, there will always be a few women who can use a man's specific (aka Unisex) pack without problems and many will be forced to make do while always sacrificing some level of fit, comfort or functionality just to have something.
Seriously though, in this day and age, I think any responsible manufacturer, cottage industry or not, should realize how large the female community of backpackers is and begin including us in their pack designs. Another untapped market for UL packs!
By the way, I really love my GoLite Pinnacle size small. Thanks GoLite!!!Jun 2, 2011 at 11:28 pm #1744327Robert CowmanBPL Member
@rcowmanLocale: Canadian Rockies
yes there is a large community, but how many pack designers are women? Lightheart is really the only woman designing UL products. The people designing packs don't have the personal experience to design woman specific packs.Jun 3, 2011 at 6:44 am #1744385Will RietveldBPL Member
@williwabbitLocale: Southwest Colorado
Hi all, here's my responses to some of the comments:
What's a LBP??
Removable Stays: Several comments on packs not included. Packs like the ULA Ohm and Osprey Hornet are IF, not frameless. The frames in these packs are not intended to be removed, or easy to remove. Packs with removable stays are designed to be used with or without the stays. And the purpose of the stays is mainly pack stiffening. The stay sleeves are on the backpanel and the stays are not directly connected to the hipbelt. So removable stays are not a built-in, integral, structural pack frame.
Waterproof Pack: Nothing like that exists as far as I know. Most pack fabric is highly water resistant, but no pack is waterproof unless it is seam taped or seam sealed. Any pack with stitching will leak through the seams. Of course there are packs that are more water resistant than others.
Keep the comments coming, good discussion. Happy hiking! WillJun 3, 2011 at 8:12 am #1744411David UreMember
"What's a LBP??"
Little Big Pack. Simply a Mchale that is smaller version of the Critical Mass Packs.Jun 3, 2011 at 9:32 am #1744449Brendan MurphyBPL Member
I know it's "framed" but it looks nice to me:
a lightweight backpack that converts to five different modes: backpack (seen above), camp chair, lounge chair (seen left), cot, and fanny pack. Yet only weighs 1 lb 15 oz. The article has pictures of all the modes and notes about its actual use during our Philmont trek.
Looks like a fun project. I love my Ohm, but I also I have a slinglight chair so maybe I'll try it.Jun 3, 2011 at 10:56 am #1744481Addie BedfordBPL Member
A rough schedule can be found here.
I plan to meter out the SOTM parts every other week!Jun 4, 2011 at 3:40 am #1744778
I'm sure you mean well, but it really doesn't matter what the gender of the designer is…any good designer in business today should know how to make their product fit their customers. just like in any other industry, ie garment industries, there are female designers that design men's clothes and vice versa.
so really, it's a matter of recognizing that there are female customers and wanting to do it. how would you feel if only 2 packs (out of almost 100) were available for you to choose from?Jun 4, 2011 at 11:43 am #1744860Mary DBPL Member
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
+1 for Susan's comments!Jun 4, 2011 at 1:11 pm #1744877Kathy A HandysideBPL Member
@earlymusicusLocale: Southeastern Michigan
Thanks Susan! I'm so glad to see this point addressed.Jun 4, 2011 at 6:11 pm #1744974Dan DurstonBPL Member
@dandydanLocale: Canadian Rockies
This is going to be a great series. Nice job BPL.
I understand the arguments against including the Ohm since the frame hoop is attached to the hipbelt and it's tougher to remove that some others, but in the previous SOTM on internal framed packs the Ohm wasn't included because it was said it would be included on an upcoming SOTM on packs with stays…which this SOTM appears to be. Hopefully the Ohm gets included somewhere because it's such a great pack.
Obviously we could argue all day about which packs should or shouldn't be included and I understand the line needs to be drawn somewhere, so hopefully my post and the previous Ohm posts will make readers aware of this great pack and give it due consideration. It's essentially a ULA CDT with a superior compression system and nice removable frame hoop.Jun 4, 2011 at 9:51 pm #1745045Charles ReneauMember
@charley289Locale: Cascades and Oregon Coast Range
I've been using my GG G6 for years. I don't take it off trail, and I tend not to take it on trips when I'll be carrying more than two liters of water at a time (for the desert trips, I take my Mariposa). I've got one puncture the whole time I've used the pack- when my fiance unthinkingly dragged it across concrete (I just about cried!). Even then, the tear was tiny and on the bellows, so I just duct-taped it and forgot it. I've taken it bikepacking, in fact.
I think the coolest thing about the pack is that it rides well. It fits me well, and doesn't get in the way.
So, while it's totally fine that the manufacturers are building packs twice as heavy but lots more sturdy, I still think there's a place for a 3.7 ounce backpack. I think the lightest one in this report is about twice as heavy, right?Jun 5, 2011 at 3:38 am #1745085
thanks for the support!
Earlier this spring I was shopping for a UL pack. After trying – and returning – a few sub 2 lb packs, I finally found the pinnacle and chose it. the Jam is smaller, but I liked the volume flexibility with the pinnacle. it actually fits and carries quire well.
At some point, I'd like to buy a pack that weighs less than 2 lbs, but for now, I'm very happy with my pinnacle.
SusanJun 5, 2011 at 7:20 am #1745109Gabe MillerBPL Member
Will – love this report and I learned a lot, particularly on the fitting component.
Would it be possible to update the torso lengths from s, m, l, xl to the actual range in inches? Even better would be the actual strap to bottom of belt measurement for each of the size offerings. This is what truly matters. Size offerings don't mean anything without this.
For someone with a 24" torso, like myself, very few packs actually are long enough for me – so these torso measurements are critical.Jun 5, 2011 at 10:40 pm #1745397Warren GreerSpectator
No ULA Ohm in the SOTM Internal Frame report. Wouldn't mind reading about that choice. Seems like a good pack that shouldn't have been left out. -Also, great and informative report Will. Can't wait for the next installments.Jun 6, 2011 at 1:10 pm #1745615Jörgen JohanssonSpectator
@jorgenLocale: www.smarterbackpacking.com; www.fjaderlatt.se
Totally absorbing, ambitious, knowledgeable and balanced. Backpackinglight.com at its best. Thank you, Will.Jun 7, 2011 at 11:28 am #1746063Scott TruongSpectator
@elf773Locale: Vancouver, BC
Where should the shoulder strap attachment be relative to the top of ones shoulder?
Straight across from top of shoulders at 90*? or below the shoulder (wrapped) a couple of inches?
I read different things. I was under the impression the fit as described in this article more or less applied to pack fit when most packs were externally framed and thus outdated.
I have a MLD Burn, and am wondering if I should get a large torso, even though the med measures exactly my torso length. Though it definitely wraps my shoulder.Jun 8, 2011 at 11:41 pm #1746824carlos fernandez rivasBPL Member
@pitagorinLocale: Galicia -Spain
I really like state of the market reports my only concern is how long we must wait to read the complete report :-(Jun 9, 2011 at 2:00 pm #1747116Jacob WallaceMember
To be honest, I agree with this last comment. Eeking out the four parts of this report over a couple of months (can that be right?) seems excessive. Summer is just beginning and I'm keen to make the leap to my first frameless…I'd quite like to know this report's conclusion before I do :(.Jun 9, 2011 at 2:06 pm #1747119Will WebsterMember
+1Jun 9, 2011 at 7:33 pm #1747245Roleigh MartinBPL Member
@marti124Locale: Moderator-JohnMuirTrail Yahoo Group
I was really surprised to see the Kifaru packs considered frameless backpacks. I know the stays are removeable, that's because one has a choice of either of two stay lengths, but your definition of frameless is that the stays do not cause the weight of the pack to be distributed to a combination of the stays/belt because the stays are not afixed in some manner to the belt? (Or did I misread the intent of your definition.)
Are you saying a pack maker who claims their packs can handle weights between 100-150 pounds (mostly for gutted killed wild game, like goat, etc), that people are hauling such weights in those packs and the weight is not carried mostly by the belt/frame(stays)? How can their pack be that comfortable with such weights then?
Can you please elaborate on this, I'm really confused here. Thanks.Jun 14, 2011 at 9:14 am #1749022Robert GoughBPL Member
@foxmagickLocale: New York
Thank you, great article with lots of good info. Looking forward to the remaining articles. Kind of wish it was written before I bought my pack.
All Good Wishes
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