Dec 8, 2013 at 8:09 pm #1310760
Jennifer MitolBPL Member
@jenmitolLocale: In my dreams....
I'm looking for a backpack for my brother…who is 6'4 and weighs about 235 or so. He's a big guy.
Other than just plain torso length and waist size, is there anything else I should be looking for in terms of a comfortable backpack for him? And who makes stuff that big? Heck, I seem to fall in the large torso size for some of the packs out there with my 22" torso measurement….
Any suggestions from the bigger dudes out there?Dec 8, 2013 at 9:36 pm #2052356
I'm a (ahem) bit bigger than your brother and use a ULA Ohm 2.0 at the moment (in the market for a lighter pack). He shouldn't have a problem finding a backpack from the usual suspects as long as he properly measures his torso length and waist.Dec 8, 2013 at 9:44 pm #2052358
Ken T.BPL Member
Ian, did you go with the J or S straps? I'm a bit smaller than Jen's brother. You want to make sure the straps are far enough apart where they are attached to the pack. I have the J straps on my Ohm v 1.0 I would go with the S straps. They were not available as a choice when I got mine. I just picked up a SMD Starlite on Gearswap that has more S shaped straps and like them. SMD will be announcing new packs at the GGG. Maybe we can do some comparison shopping for you while we are there. Ian's going to be there with me.Dec 9, 2013 at 5:59 am #2052411
I went with the J straps and they've been fine for me. My daughter has S straps on her Ohm 2.0 and she really likes them. I'll post some pictures/comparisons between the two later today.Dec 9, 2013 at 6:33 am #2052418
Richard LyonBPL Member
@richardglyonLocale: Bridger Mountains
If weight isn't a major concern, try Mystery Ranch. Dana Gleason (once the Dana of Dana Design) builds packs for soldiers, hunters, firefighters, etc. Dana himself is about 6-2, 240 lbs and he builds packs for anyone.Dec 9, 2013 at 7:01 am #2052424
@davecLocale: The West Slope
Shoulder strap length can be an issue for ex-iron pumper types.
Gossamer Gear's XL Mariposa is a good option.Dec 9, 2013 at 9:32 am #2052493
@attaboybradLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
I'm marginally taller and heavier and have used properly fitting packs from Gregory, REI, Arc'Teryx, Gossamer Gear, ZPacks… basically the full gamut of mainstream to cottage manufacturers. Unless he has a freakishly long torso for his height he should be fine in the largest size for a given manufacturer. 6'4" seems to be the targeted limit for almost all long/tall gear. Tents are where he'll really have much less selection.Dec 9, 2013 at 10:24 am #2052511
Ryan SmithBPL Member
Even though he is tall, he most likely has a torso length in the 21-22" range which will be fine. If he is broad shouldered, the distance between the straps could be an issue, but probably not.
P.S – 22" is a pretty long torso Jennifer! I am 6'4" and have the same length as you.
RyanDec 13, 2013 at 6:19 am #2053850
Curt PetersonBPL Member
@curtpetersonLocale: Pacific Northwest
I totally agree with Dave on this. For me, shoulder straps are the critical factor for fit. Torsos are adjustable or at least height-based. Belts can usually be swapped or eliminated. Shoulder straps, however, can be a nightmare. Nothing worse than having the buckle up in your armpit all day. Or rubbing your neck. Or pulling to the sides all day.
I've only had ONE pack that ever worked for me stock. That's the GG Nimbus packs that are long, narrow, and pivot so they always seem to find the right place to sit. I've modded at least a dozen packs to try to get similar setups. I've only been able to get one sewn-on set of shoulder straps to sit comfortably. It always amazes me to see big guys willing to wear the UL packs with horrible shoulder strap fit. Makes me wonder if they've ever had a well-fitting pack. It's like getting great footwear for the first the time – you'll never settle again after you find it! Heck, I'm not even that huge anymore – a regular XL in tops – and I find pretty much every UL pack I've tried to be weak in this area.
Currently using a severely modded GG Crown (2lb with pivot straps), a cut-frame GG Nimbus Meridian (2.5lb but insanely comfortable) and a DIY pack (1.5lb with GG straps). Would love to find a 1lb comfortable pack to haul my typical 11lb load, but I haven't found one yet that doesn't need the shoulder straps rebuilt.Dec 13, 2013 at 8:40 am #2053906
@davecLocale: The West Slope
Curt, you're definitely handicapped on weight if that's the strap arrangement you need. Extra material = grams, sadly.
My wife is on the other end of the spectrum. Her torso requires a large Gossamer Gear pack, but on the Gorilla she has the shoulder straps cinched almost all the way down.Dec 14, 2013 at 9:02 am #2054196
Steve MeierBPL Member
Jennifer, I am 6' and my weight fluctuates between 235 to 250. I have bought and used many packs through the years and most have been fine but the ULA packs with the S straps have been a dream. I have broad shoulders and a lot of shoulder harnesses have cut into my neck but no problems with the S straps from ULA. Feel like they are custom made…
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