Dec 31, 2019 at 4:53 pm #3625022
Does anyone have actual experience hauling skis on a non ski modified HMG porter 4400 that can speak to the durability of the fabric as is, without adding the nwd reinforcements? Or a 3400 for that matter. I know the 4400 has the burlier fabric. ThanksJan 4, 2020 at 9:23 am #3625489
Sorry not specific to skis. However, I have used HMG packs in the past and have never been thrilled with the abrasion resistance of the pack fabric. Additionally, the quality (at least to me) has always been hit and miss. I have had the seam tape peel right off after only a handful of trips.
This probably diesn’t help you but I would be looking for something more durable for hauling skis. My 2c.Jan 8, 2020 at 7:16 pm #3626174
Interesting. Have you had experience with both the lighter and heavier fabrics? I was hoping that the durability of the heavier fabric used on the 4400, which is the same as the bottom fabric used on the smaller models, would be significantly more durable, but maybe not?Jan 8, 2020 at 10:15 pm #3626194
I don’t want to dissuade you from pursuing one, however. I didn’t use the heavier fabric and it may be just fine (likely so).Jan 9, 2020 at 12:35 am #3626204Ryan JordanAdmin
@ryanLocale: Central Rockies
Well, I have to admit … metal ski edges are not friendly to the standard DCF fabric used on any HMG pack.
I do NOT recommend it for any sort of long term use. I have lots of rips/abrasions doing this – on most packs I’ve used (not unique to DCF). But the HMG DCF isn’t particularly special with regards to ski edge abrasion.
Now, I have a Cordura 1000 “panel” I slide into the sidewalls of any pack I use to protect the pack from metal ski edges.Jan 9, 2020 at 11:10 pm #3626371
Thanks for your response Ryan, it sounds like you’ve had lots of experience with that. I would like to see how you implemented your sleeve. I thought about something like that on the porter if I went that route. It seems like it would be pretty easy to attach with the dual daisy chains but was wondering how high up to extend it and how to attach it up high to protect above daisies. It’s a little hard to justify spending an extra $100 for the ski mods on an already expensive pack that I’ve never even tried. My pack that I’ve used for everything for over a decade is an old Wild Things Ice Sac made with vx21 and after many multi day ski traverses, overnights etc with skis it still hasn’t had a hole worn thru it. It just isn’t very comfortable with heavier weights.Jan 9, 2020 at 11:27 pm #3626373
Also, any other suggestions for other packs to consider for this type of adventure?Jan 10, 2020 at 7:50 am #3626403Brad RogersBPL Member
@mocs123Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Interesting – I like XPac X21 and VX21 (210d face fabric) and I do think they are more abrasion resistant than the 150d hybrid DCF that HMG uses on the Porter, I still don’t consider it a super durable fabric.
What about a Seek Outside Divide or Unaweep 4800 made out of X-Pac X42 (420d face fabric)? If you call they might still have some X50 left (500d cordura face fabric). I’m a big fan of SO packs for heavier loads.
Other options could be a Cilogear in full woven dyneema. I’ve never carried a Cilogear pack, but they look nice for pursuits when a heavier more durable pack are warranted.
McHale?Jan 10, 2020 at 8:15 am #3626405
Yeah – I would second what Brad said. Seek Outside may have what you are looking for.
Also http://www.mchalepacks.com. Dan Mchale, custom pack builder extraordinaire, has many fabrics to choose from. One being spectra (full dyneema – not sure on the weight) which is, quite frankly, bulletproof (I have this on my Mchale).Jan 11, 2020 at 12:53 pm #3626567nunatak down gearBPL Member
A pack should be designed from the ground up for ski carry. Not only is wear of the pack fabric is important, but sway, weird loading, ends scraping on ground/getting caught in foliage, ease of strapping on/off, etc all have a say in how the experience is going to be.
Having carried skis on everything from bushwhacks to alpine ice since the eighties I currently subscribe to the diagonal skimo attachment: skis strapped together base against base with a single voile strap in front of the binding. Slip this package into a sturdy web loop on the lower corner of the ‘front’ of the pack. A quick release buckled strap holds the skis to the higher diagonally opposite corner of the front panel.
The pack needs be sized right, ie a big pack with little stuff in it is not going to work well.Jan 11, 2020 at 2:49 pm #3626586
Interesting on the skimo carry. Does that work ok on trips with bushwhacking involved? I’ve always A framed on overnight stuff but that is how that pack is set up. Good points about pack being designed for ski carry. That was what a really like about the ice sac as it skied really well. It has straps on the hip belt to stabilize load from side to side and load lifters, although not very high above shoulder straps, they still function well to keep pack tight to body. Any suggestions packs you’ve liked?Jan 11, 2020 at 2:54 pm #3626587
Thanks guys on the other pack suggestions, the seek outside look pretty good if they could be made without the side pockets so A frame carry would work. The McHales look great and I’m sure you could get any option made but I don’t really have $700+ for a pack right now.Jan 11, 2020 at 9:34 pm #3626617nunatak down gearBPL Member
I make my own packs, so no, I do not have a recommended skimo model. Since these are predominantly for short duration races they are probably a little small for most other uses.
That said, the currently unavailable Raven from small cottage Freerange Equipment looks like a good starting point – if 25 liters is big enough.Jan 11, 2020 at 10:16 pm #3626622
To be clear, I’m not looking for a skimo pack, but was referring to skimo style carry. I’m looking for a 50 ish liter that expands to 65-70 liter for multi day adventures. ThanksJan 13, 2020 at 10:58 am #3626856David ChenaultBPL Member
@davecLocale: Queen City, MT
I suspect the reason your skis haven’t worn through the Ice Sac is the specialty ski lash straps for A-frame carry, which minimize fore-aft motion. This is why diagonal carry can be effective, given the right lash points you can use the curve of the front of the pack to keep the skis still (if as Jan mentioned the lash points are designed properly).
The Cold Cold World Chaos is the closest thing to the Ice Sac you can still buy off the shelf. The various Cilogear packs as well. Neither prioritize load carry in a way backpackers generally expect. The Porter is probably closest to what you want. I imagine the daisy chains could work well for diagonal carry. You can do diagonal or A-frame carry on a SO Divide, but both are less than ideal, and thus I wouldn’t recommend that pack if ski carry is a major part of the brief.Jan 14, 2020 at 10:20 am #3627047
Thanks David, I actually have a chaos as well that I use on occasion. I was thinking about that porter to lose a little weight. I’ve looked at cilo but they aren’t any lighter and Ive heard mixed reviews on their durability. I wonder if the porter would hold up to skis better if i rigged up tail and mid ski stabilizer straps like ice sac? It wouldn’t be hard with dual daisies to set up a very stable a frame carry. I am hesitant with that pack not having hipbelt stabilizer straps or load lifters though.Jan 14, 2020 at 10:24 am #3627048
Also interested in your thoughts on divide. Do they do custom work, like no mesh, no pockets on side of pack, maybe add ski straps? ThanksJan 14, 2020 at 10:47 am #3627050Brad RogersBPL Member
@mocs123Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Seek Outside may do custom work depending on their current workload, you would just have to call and ask.
On my 2015 Unaweep 4800, I cut all the straps for the “Talon” off and makes for a sleek pack. I’m not sure that’s exactly what you are looking for but it’s an idea. I can’t help on any sort of ski solution because…well I live in Tennessee, so the only ski’s we have are water skis.Jan 14, 2020 at 11:56 am #3627054
Ok thanks Brad, I will check it out.Jan 14, 2020 at 12:51 pm #3627059Philip TschersichBPL Member
@philip-akLocale: Kodiak Alaska
I used a Porter when I skied (well, splitboarded) across Kodiak Island a few years back: Splitboarding across Kodiak Island. I carried my boards vertically on the sides when hiking conditions allowed (e.g., @ 0:40 and 8:50), but I also used an unusual horizontal front-to-back carry in dense brush (e.g., @ 1:13 and 3:15). This was with the standard 50d polyester face fabric. It took very little for the metal edges to cut the fabric. A diagonal base-to-base (skimo) carry saves the pack fabric, but moves the weight of the skis much further away from your body. Almost any pack can become a ski pack if you use Voile straps to cinch the skis to some anchor point on the pack. Normal compression straps and the like generally result in a floppy, insecure carry.Jan 14, 2020 at 2:38 pm #3627076David ChenaultBPL Member
@davecLocale: Queen City, MT
If you Voile-strapped each ski to the Porter daisy in two spots and then wrapped the compression straps over them that might get the job done.
SO has changed the compression on the Divide since I last worked with them, with more flexibility with strap location via gatekeeper buckles. The issue I see is that the bottom-most strap is inside the bottle pocket, which would make a-frame a bit awkward.Jan 14, 2020 at 11:49 pm #3627170
Great video! That looks like an awesome solo trip! I noticed your load lifters, did you go with the recommended pack sizing or go for a size smaller? What are your thoughts on your system now that you’ve used it a while? Did you do same on 4400? I thought I read that you didn’t use the 4400 muchJan 14, 2020 at 11:53 pm #3627171
The divide pack looks like it could work for A frame without the side pockets, and maybe add a tail slot and a webbing or voile strap up highJan 15, 2020 at 2:34 am #3627176Chad LorenzBPL Member
@chadlLocale: Teton Valley, Wydaho
Ski edges and my avy shovel blade have consistently put nicks in my DCHW custom Porter 4400. Rather than seek out the “perfect” pack for ski carry, why not just create a tube/sleeve/protection of some sort to wrap around your skis?Jan 15, 2020 at 10:53 am #3627221Philip TschersichBPL Member
@philip-akLocale: Kodiak Alaska
“I noticed your load lifters, did you go with the recommended pack sizing or go for a size smaller? What are your thoughts on your system now that you’ve used it a while? Did you do same on 4400?”
That 4400 was the first HMG pack I owned. I got it used. It is a size large. I really needed a ‘tall’ instead, so once I realized the amount of weight being put on my shoulders I did a little sewing where I extended the frame up above the shoulders and added the load lifters. It worked okay, but in general I don’t think HMGs are designed to carry the amount of crap you end up stuffing into a pack of that volume. The need to add on bottle pockets and the front stuff pocket also seems dumb to me. I would rather have these things permanently attached (like on the SW, Windrider, etc). But the full-length daisy chains on the Porter are very handy for lashing stuff on via Voile straps. I wish more packs had that. I end up adding daisy chains to packs I think I will use for ski touring or where I want a better ice ax handle attachment point, etc. I am a serious fan of Voile straps for almost every “well now, how do I attach this to my pack?” situation.
I have not seen the perfect lightweight ski touring pack yet, but that’s probably because I’m super picky about what I’m looking for.
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