Nov 14, 2012 at 2:17 pm #1296057
Just had this backpack shipped by the fine gentlemen at ULA and I'm pretty damn excited. The pack body fabric is the same Zpacks uses for their Exo backpack—1.43 oz/sqyd cuben fiber with a protective layer of 50D polyester on the outside. This is lighter than the fabric used in HMG backpacks, but not by much (2.92 oz/sqyd vs 3.3 oz/sqyd). I'm planning to tape the inner seams with cuben tape to complete the rainproofing.Nov 14, 2012 at 2:19 pm #1928358
I want one. I just ordered an Arc Blast an hour ago though. Looks very cool. What's the weight of that bad boy?Nov 14, 2012 at 2:22 pm #1928360
Jason GBPL Member
@jasongLocale: iceberg lake
whoa.. is that custom or coming soon from them?Nov 14, 2012 at 2:26 pm #1928362
@kevin: it's 4.5 ounces lighter than a typical Circuit. In size large, it's 36oz with every option. I'll be removing everything except the aluminum stay and one water bottle shoulder strap, so it should be right around two pounds.
@jason: Custom. I also had them add a second side compression strap because I'll be carrying Altai Hok skis on the pack through the winter.Nov 14, 2012 at 2:47 pm #1928364
Mark HurdBPL Member
@markhurdLocale: South Texas
I just got my Arc Blast a couple of weeks ago. Sweet pack. Very comfy. I think you'll like it.
-MarkNov 14, 2012 at 11:54 pm #1928476
Alex ErikssonBPL Member
@aerikssonLocale: Austin, TX
Did anyone else initially think the pack has a bit of the Holy Glow like something you witness for the first time and can't help but hearing a church choir in the background going "ooooooOOOOOOOOHHHHHHH!!!"? I honestly thought it was photoshopped for a whole second to reinforce the cuben fiber arc of the covenant angle, for a whole second. Made me laugh.Nov 15, 2012 at 7:48 am #1928529
@squishwareLocale: Southwest Florida
That is a sexy pack.Nov 26, 2012 at 11:10 pm #1931400
Well, I got it and it's a beautiful beast. I ordered some 1" cuben tape from Zpacks to tape the interior seams. It's never going to be as waterproof as an HMG bag just by virtue of the features and how it's constructed, but it'll be waterproof enough to eliminate a pack cover here in Oregon.
Now to wait for the rain to switch to snow in the higher elevations so I can do some snowcamping!Nov 27, 2012 at 10:20 am #1931486
Dan DurstonBPL Member
That's a really awesome pack. I've been very impressed with ULA packs and this water proof fabric was all that's missing. I hope they're doing this on a regular basis.Nov 30, 2012 at 2:42 pm #1932224
Michael SBPL Member
@cascadebackpackerLocale: Pacific NW
That is one sweet lookin pack. I want to get one but I'm concerned about the white color used on these. I can't imagine that stays white very long.
Anyone have experience with these White cuben bags from Zpacks, Hyperlight Mountain Gear, etc….Does the white fade over time to tan, brown…?
Can't find any pics from a somewhat worn bag in this material.
ThanksNov 30, 2012 at 4:49 pm #1932247
@glacierramblerLocale: NW Montana
Scroll down a bit here, and you can see what Luc Mehl's HMG Porter looked like after the AMWC this summer.Nov 30, 2012 at 5:44 pm #1932261
Nice HMG Windrider.
J/KNov 30, 2012 at 6:41 pm #1932284
Michael, the white picks up dirt but a little Oxy and the dirt stains are gone.Dec 1, 2012 at 12:34 am #1932330
@david Ure: Windrider with a better frame, a better hip belt, better side pockets, and load lifters?Dec 2, 2012 at 5:11 pm #1932631
Better frame? How so?
For me, load lifters wouldn't make up for the 10 oz weight differential. I would want something lighter than 36 oz that was cuben otherwise what is the benefit?Dec 2, 2012 at 5:26 pm #1932639
The bag is 34oz with the features I don't use removed. That's less than 6 ounces heavier than a Windrider. I say it has a better frame because of the hip belt, the carbon hoop and stay, and the load lifters. At the minimum, everyone would agree load lifters are better than not at the loads these packs are designed for.
Edit: not to mention the torso length adjustment of plus or minus 1.5 inches that ULA packs afford.Dec 2, 2012 at 5:36 pm #1932641
Nice looking pack and based on the photo of yourself, it fits pretty well. You got just what you wanted and the few negative posts must be cuben-hybrid pack envy for sure.Dec 2, 2012 at 5:38 pm #1932643
The hip belt on the Windrider is 4" wide and just as long ( padded portion) as the Circuit. The Large belt is longer than the Medium, etc. you can have HMG swap out a larger or smaller size for you.
Not adjustable torso; just 4 different torso sizes.Dec 2, 2012 at 5:39 pm #1932644
"You got just what you wanted and the few negative posts must be cuben-hybrid pack envy for sure."
Dam funnyDec 2, 2012 at 6:18 pm #1932652
Aaron CroftBPL Member
Looks like an awesome pack, Kyle! I've always enjoyed the fit of the ULA packs, so this looks pretty great. You'll have to report back and let us know how it fares on the trail!Feb 20, 2013 at 10:24 am #1956417
Alex WallaceBPL Member
@feetfirstLocale: Sierra Nevada North
Nice looking pack, Kyle.
Your side profile picture with the pack on is one of the very few I've seen where the Circuit looks like it's actually fitted and riding correctly. Most of the photos online, and what I've seen on the trail, the pack appears to be slumped below the user's shoulders with the load "lifter" straps angled straight across or even downward from the shoulders. This is actually what has put me off of trying one.
Have you had a chance to put some miles on it yet?Feb 20, 2013 at 10:39 am #1956424
It's been out on two overnight snow camping trips so far—only about 15 trail miles all told. That said, I was carrying quite a bit more weight than I typically do and it carried really well.
Here's a photo I took of myself on the first trip with about 30 pounds on my back. It's hard to see but the load lifters are still being used properly:Feb 20, 2013 at 2:48 pm #1956543
Alex WallaceBPL Member
@feetfirstLocale: Sierra Nevada North
Thanks for the feedback. The pack looks good and more importantly, it looks like you're having a good time.
One more question if you don't mind: how do you like the hipbelt? Specifically, it looks pretty dang wide. Much wider than any other hipbelt I've ever used, including traditional non-lightweight packs (e.g. Osprey Aether). Does it cause any binding or restriction of movement like high leg lifts while scrambling?
Everything about the Circuit seems great, but I'd really like to try one on before I buy, which is why I have so many questions. I may just have to accept the return shipping costs and order one to try it out.
Thanks again.Feb 20, 2013 at 2:54 pm #1956548
Stephen BarberBPL Member
Using the same belt on the Ohm and Catalyst, I find it to be very comfortable. Definitely not restrictive or binding. The best thing about it is that the buckle has straps leading to both the bottom and top of the belt. This seems to make the belt cradle the hip bones comfortably and securely. Best hipbelt I've used in 40 years of backpacking!Feb 20, 2013 at 3:41 pm #1956572
Agreed. ULA's belts are amazing. I don't have a single issue with them, and the hip belt pockets are amazing.
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