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el cheapo front packs
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John Frederick Anderson
(fredfoto) - F

Locale: Spain
el cheapo front packs on 10/05/2009 12:44:12 MDT Print View

Hi all,

Back hiking after a summer laid up with pneumonia and a cracked rib. Boring, but my mind was on the trail and in the mountains!!

I've been toying with the idea of front packs, and, while I'd like to buy an Aarn pack, the one I want isn't available yet (MM40 with detatchable front pockets) so I decided to make my own.

The shots show how they fit and how they carry. I have a one litre platty in each, and they don't interfere with my arm swing with the pacerpoles, which is fantastic!! I gave them their maiden run today on a 5 hour training hike in the pre pyrenees- and the weight distribution compared to having the extra two kilos in the bag was really well balanced.

Finding UL gear in Barcelona is pretty impossible (thank god for the web), but I found some Lifeadventure silnylon stuff sacks- the pack says 5 litres, but I think that is for the pair, and had a seamstress in my barrio sew on some straps based on my MLD hipblet pockets. I put some low and some high to see what was the best carry, and the low ones work best, so I'll cut off the higher ones. I fix the draw cord to the shoulder straps of the pack with a mini carabiner- not hitech, but it works.

Each one weighs 40g, and of course, they are multi use so if I am not carrying so much water I can put something in them inside the ruck sack. The pack is a Grivel 35, by the way (not ultralight, but super comfy).

I can use half litre plattys to give more space for all day things I use like a knife and trail mix etc too.

Didn't cost much at all to do this, and will really make a difference when I have to camel up some days.

Maybe I'll buy some dyneema and make them a bit more bombproof, but for now, they do the job just fine.

front pockets wide

front pockets close up

cheers,
fred