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How to store pack at night?
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Ken Chida
(kchida) - F

Locale: SoCal
How to store pack at night? on 09/10/2009 19:19:19 MDT Print View

I tried my best to search, but the effort was fruitless. do you folks store your packs at night? I hang my empty pack on a tree about 5ft off the ground with all compartments open. I sleep in a bivy, so bringing the pack inside is not an option. I'd like to put my pack in a trash bag and hang the whole thing, but that might make it look too much like food. What do you guys do?

Acronym Esq
( - F

Locale: TX
Re: How to store pack at night? on 09/11/2009 00:58:10 MDT Print View

I use my pack as the last 1/3 of my sleeping mat. It provides a little insulation b/t the ground and my legs/feet and elevates my legs/feet slightly. This also keeps it close in case I need anything out of it (rain jacket, knife, first aid kit, etc.)

acronym 9/11/2009 1:54 AM

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
How to store pack at night on 09/11/2009 02:07:26 MDT Print View

My pack is my pillow, which is even handier if I need something during the night (although whatever I want always seems to be at the very bottom of the pack!). Of course food and smellables go into my Ursack before bedtime. My dog's pack (with dog food also transferred to the Ursack) goes into a plastic garbage bag (to keep it dry) and is stored just outside the tent door. The plastic bag is not necessary if the vestibule is closed, but I like to keep it open as much as possible.

Jason Klass
(jasonklass) - F

Locale: Parker, CO
Pack Storage on 09/11/2009 08:40:43 MDT Print View

I use a 3/4 length pad so I also use my pack as insulation under my legs and feet.

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: How to store pack at night? on 09/11/2009 08:48:39 MDT Print View

These days my pack is typically the lower 1/4 of my sleeping pad. In the past it has been set up against a a nearby tree once it was emptied of smelly thing (garbage bag covered in the case of rain) or been my bear bag and suspended from a tree. The only time I have had problems with animals bothering the pack was when I accidently left food in the pack (an apple was left in the bottom). This resulted in a night time tug of war between myself and a raccoon who was trying to pull it out of our pyramid tarp which was closed up at the time.


Edited by verber on 09/11/2009 09:53:58 MDT.

Jim MacDiarmid
(jrmacd) - MLife
Re: How to store pack at night? on 09/11/2009 09:21:17 MDT Print View

I also used my pack as leg insulation, even when I sleep in a bivy. The bivy keeps it from moving around too much. I keep all my clothes, etc in my pack liner, which I suppose I could tie off and hang if I had to.

Elliott Wolin
(ewolin) - MLife

Locale: Hampton Roads, Virginia
RE: How to store pack at night on 09/11/2009 11:14:23 MDT Print View

I too use my pack at the bottom of my 3/4 length pad.

But on my last trip my pack got soaked and I didn't want to put my feet and quilt on it. Fortunately we were in an ADK lean-to that night so I put my (still dry) tarp over the pack and under my feet. But had I set up the tarp about all I would have had that was dry were some socks and maybe a thermal shirt. Maybe I should bring a small square of plastic sheeting?

Terry G
(delvxe) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
me too, feet on 09/11/2009 11:18:39 MDT Print View

below my feet, without food, with the exception of a little coffee in a aloksak to get me going in the AM.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
I keep it... on 09/11/2009 11:21:48 MDT Print View

...wadded up and out of the way mostly. If I let my feet near it, I'll end up resetting my watch and getting water all over the place.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Re : "How to store pack at night?" on 09/11/2009 11:23:31 MDT Print View

My pack is usually empty, apart from food, when i'm sleeping, so there isn't much i can do with it. If there are any food-munchers about, i hang it off the floor someplace.

Not ouside, as it will usually get soaked!

Thomas Burns
(nerdboy52) - MLife

Locale: "Alas, poor Yogi.I knew him well."
Pillow on 09/11/2009 12:33:26 MDT Print View

Most packs make good sleeping-pad extenders. Just shove it to the foot of your bivy.

My go-to pack now is a Fanatic Fringe Alpine Trail, which at only 6 oz doesn't provide a lot of insulation. It's also so slippery that it won't adhere well to the floor of the Tarptent.

Thus, I shove it empty into my sleeping bag stuffsack to perform pillow duty.


Ken Chida
(kchida) - F

Locale: SoCal
(cannot be blank) on 09/11/2009 12:37:24 MDT Print View

Awesome, thanks! We seem to have a strong consensus on this subject. I always worry that my pack would have food residue and/or other misc. odors that attract bears. Inevitably, we all get fragrant things like sunblock on our packs, but I suppose it's not enough to cause concern.

I suppose I'll need to store my cleaned cookware outside of my pack. I figure that my mostly-clean pot may attract animals, but would offer little positive reinforcement for them to forage around human campsites. I'm guessing that we all don't stuff our pots and pans into our tiny bear canisters, right? Even better, I'm sure many of you just boil water in your pots and eat out of a ziploc bag, which easily fits into a canister.

James Patsalides
( - MLife

Locale: New England
How to store pack at night? on 09/11/2009 12:53:22 MDT Print View

My pack is my pillow, I empty it out every night and roll it up. All smellables (including my stove and kettle) go into an OPSAC up a tree (PCT method or whatever). Only other loose items are mini flashlight (clipped to my sunglasses hanging the peack of my tarp, bear spray (if used) in one of my sneakers next to my bag, and a water bottle... this way I can move in and out from under the tarp if it starts raining or clears up again!

Jim MacDiarmid
(jrmacd) - MLife
Re: (cannot be blank) on 09/11/2009 13:22:19 MDT Print View

I suppose I'll need to store my cleaned cookware outside of my pack.

Placed on top of your bear cannister
(which of course would be at it's proper distance from your campsite), empty pots and pans makes a nice alarm system.

I believe it was the estimable Mike C! who said that unless you're using your pack as a cutting board during meal preparation, and as a dish rag/pot scrubber after, food/other scent shouldn't be an issue as far as bears go.

Denis Hazlewood
(redleader) - MLife

Locale: Luxury-Light Luke on the Llano Azul
Re: Re: (cannot be blank) on 09/11/2009 19:33:28 MDT Print View

If you carry a LuxuryLight you may keep the cylinders in the tent, or bivy. The frame usuallly stays outside.

LuxuryLight cylinders in ID Bivy
LuxuryLight Cylinders in my ID Bivy, with plenty of room left over for me.

Keith Selbo
(herman666) - F - M

Locale: Northern Virginia
I hammock on 09/11/2009 20:53:39 MDT Print View

I sleep in a Hennessy Hammocks Hyperlight Backpacker. The pack, which is virtually empty except maybe for my trowel, map and possibly water filter, hangs from one end. It is barely sheltered by the tarp so I wrap my poncho around it if rain is forecast.

Peter Sustr
(czechxpress) - F - M

Locale: Boulder
Bottom Half on 09/11/2009 22:10:13 MDT Print View

I will also put my vote in to use it as the second 1/2 of your pad for your legs in your bivy. I put mine straps down and opening facing towards me. I put anything extra in my food bag, compass, sparker, etc. and hang that.

Jared Cook
(rooinater) - F

Locale: Northwet
Re: Bottom Half on 09/11/2009 22:17:46 MDT Print View

If it's cold out I use it under my legs, otherwise it lays under my tarp right next to me. If I'm in a bivy and didn't setup the tarp... Same principle, if it's cool out and I need the insulation it goes under my feet otherwise it lays next to me, a rock or a log.

josh wagner
(StainlessSteel) - F
hammock on 09/12/2009 07:58:00 MDT Print View

i just simply stand mine up at the base of one of the trees my hammock is attached to. if i think it's going to rain i lay it down underneath the center of my hammock

Denis Hazlewood
(redleader) - MLife

Locale: Luxury-Light Luke on the Llano Azul
Picking fly-specks from the pepper on 09/12/2009 08:25:13 MDT Print View

When placing the pack beneath your hammock, do you orientate the pack with the top toward your head, or feet? And, how do you keep from stepping on the pack when getting in and out of the hammock?

Just curious, I've never known anyone who uses a hammock