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BPL Absaroka Pack
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Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 15:51:30 MST Print View

The upcoming BPL Absaroka Backpack.

Hmm, while there is something to be said for more durability and ability to carry heavier loads, isn't this sort of entering the realm of mainstream backpacking? And haven't so many people railed against this very philosophy that mainstream backpackers maintain? Or is the drift that afflicts companies like GoLite inevitable? Seems everyone is getting heavier these days.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 16:27:25 MST Print View

Well, Ryan did say that there will be a version for the UL ounce-counters coming soon as well.

But spare a thought for those of us who want to do week-long trips in winter-time, possibly in the snow. The range of light-weight packs suitable for that is a bit limited. No, I am not looking for a scad of 'What about XXX?' comments, just a recognition that sometimes a silnylon stuff-sack with string for shoulder straps is not going to hack it.

'UL' has to be taken in context, and some conditions require more gear than others, just for survival. If I compare the gear I used to carry on week-long ski trips 10 years ago with what I carry today, I can see a huge reduction in weight. My 4.5 kg of tent has become <2 kg. My huge winter SB has become light quilts. My 3+ kg pack has become 0.8 kg. My 0.8 kg of winter stove has become 0.2 kg (and falling). And so it goes. But winter gear still weighs a lot more than summer gear.

Cheers

Edited by rcaffin on 01/21/2010 16:28:00 MST.

Jim MacDiarmid
(jrmacd) - MLife
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 16:32:42 MST Print View

I'm not a gear expert, but I also was not blown away by the specs.

Seems like a close competitor would be the ULA Circuit with 47.5 liter bag capacity and ~12 liters of capacity in the pockets for approximately the same weight at 36 oz. The Circuit claims a lower weight carrying capacity though.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 16:52:29 MST Print View

I agree with Roger. For a variety reasons, some of us need/want larger volume packs that have good support. However, I personally doubt the Absaroka pack will topple the Osprey Exos or LuxuryLite for my heavy loads.

Matt Lutz
(citystuckhiker) - F

Locale: Midwest
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 17:48:18 MST Print View

Ditto Roger and Lynn. Also, props to BPL for getting their statement and vision of the pack out there.

Like most, I have more than one pack. One for SUL pursuits (Zpacks Z1) and one for everything else (GG VT) read: winter, carrying a tent, etc. The new BPL pack fits the latter. Stock alert requested.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 17:59:07 MST Print View

Although this pack is probably not for me, I do see one major problem with it...


I cannot remember the name, nor can I pronounce it. Even after Ryan's phonetic spelling of the name.

Recommend that it be changed to something that is memorable and catchy. That will probably increase sales by 50% :)

Tom Caldwell
(Coldspring) - F

Locale: Ozarks
Re: Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 18:19:21 MST Print View

"I cannot remember the name, nor can I pronounce it."

I've always thought that was pronounced Ab-sa-roe-kuh. :)

Sounds like an okay name to me, it's better than P1 or P2 There are some brands of packs that are confusingly named to me, like the Osprey lines. Or the Granite Gear Vapor Meridian Latitude Nimbus line.

Edited by Coldspring on 01/21/2010 18:20:18 MST.

Joseph Morrison
(sjdm4211) - F

Locale: Smokies
"BPL Absaroka Pack" on 01/21/2010 18:35:54 MST Print View

You forgot Ozone on the end of that Granite Gear pack name!

Greyson Howard
(Greyhound)

Locale: Sierra Nevada
Re: Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 20:30:30 MST Print View

I like the name "absaroka" but I have one question; will it be available in a more LNT, subdued color? I look forward to seeing more.

Robert Blean
(blean) - MLife

Locale: San Jose -- too far from Sierras
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 20:43:02 MST Print View

What is BPL's goal with the line of packs they are bringing out?

* Are they simply expanding their business?

* Are they bringing out something that they believe the rest of the industry has overlooked and/or will not bring out?

* Something else?

So far BPL has been independent of the gear manufacturers, and an objective (if sometimes opinionated) source of information. If they are now competing with other manufacturers, will there be issues such as objectivity of reviews of gear where there is competition?

-- Bob

Brandon Sanchez
(dharmabumpkin) - F

Locale: San Gabriel Mtns
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 20:53:22 MST Print View

Hopefully they just shorten it to 'Rocka That would be cool and easy. And I know the backcountry aint a fashion show but I wouldnt want to wear the bright green beartooth and the bright orange pack. Im not a fan of the fluorescent outdoor gear.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 21:20:59 MST Print View

But spare a thought for those of us who want to do week-long trips in winter-time, possibly in the snow. The range of light-weight packs suitable for that is a bit limited. No, I am not looking for a scad of 'What about XXX?' comments, just a recognition that sometimes a silnylon stuff-sack with string for shoulder straps is not going to hack it.

Oh, I completely agree with you Roger! (and you Lynn, and others...). I do a lot of winter backpacking and my winter packs are always heavier and sturdier than my summer packs. I'm just having a hard time differentiating between packs that are already out there and what the Absaroka might offer that is different. After all, you have to market the thing and offer customers something unique. And that's not easy to do if your pack line is not yet established or even known.

On a different note, Ryan has in the past voiced great fondness for McHale packs and since the Absaroka is similar to McHale packs I've been wondering if there is a connection.

John Whynot
(jdw01776)

Locale: Southeast Texas
Re: Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 21:21:38 MST Print View

>>I cannot remember the name, nor can I pronounce it.

Well, it could be named "Popo Agie", after the Popo Agie Wilderness...

Might be a good pack for longer trips with heavy food loads.

Edited by jdw01776 on 01/21/2010 21:24:28 MST.

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
looks good on 01/21/2010 21:32:16 MST Print View

The hipbelt complex in particular is intriguing.

My only complaint, in the context of winter use, is that I see no way to carry skis.

Scott White
(sdwhitey) - F

Locale: Smoky Mountains
looks great! on 01/21/2010 22:32:40 MST Print View

I am hoping this pack carries as comfortably as the vapor trail and improves upon the vapor trail's shortcomings.

I like the look of the side pockets and hipbelt pockets as well as the closure system.

Here are some photos Ryan posted in addition to the ones in Miguel's link.

Edited by sdwhitey on 01/21/2010 22:37:40 MST.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 22:50:21 MST Print View

Interesting. Very, actually.

I was told by some BPL Staff that 37oz was heavy for a backpack in the traditional sense (I disagreed). How do they feel about this 35oz prototype?

I can't tell by the pictures - what is the compression like?

Andrew Lush
(lushy) - MLife

Locale: Lake Mungo, Mutawintji NPs
Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 22:53:27 MST Print View

Mmmmm. Interesting.

I add my voice to those calling for the packs to be available in more subdued and cryptic colours.

Edited by lushy on 01/21/2010 22:54:45 MST.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 23:19:42 MST Print View

It's definitely not something that would make me want to give up my beloved SMD Comet. I have very pressure-sensitive shoulders and NEED load lifters! And my Comet, with the stays, weighs only 27 oz. and will carry up to 35 lbs. I'm just sorry that SMD dropped it, because their Starlight is a lot bigger than I need. I expect my Comet will be around for quite a few years more, though.

I'm not at all enamored of the bright orange, either. Aargh.

No problem with the name, but I grew up in Wyoming! I suppose they could have called it the Teton or the Beartooths, but what's wrong with the Absaroka? (Actually, the Beartooth Plateau is part of the Absarokas.) They could have called it the Popo Agie, which is really one that nobody can pronounce (it's something like poh-POH-zha). Or Twogwotee (TUH-guh-tee).

Edited by hikinggranny on 01/21/2010 23:29:40 MST.

Nia Schmald
(nschmald) - MLife
Re: Re: BPL Absaroka Pack on 01/21/2010 23:36:15 MST Print View

Yeah, neon orange is not my thing.

That being said I like the idea of this pack. On my thru hike I had a 10 lb base weight + 6 lbs of water + 15 - 20 lbs of food for a total in the low 30s. I used a vapor trail but it struggled at the upper end of that weight. The only light weight competitor that can carry that weight comfortably that I know of is the nimbus ozone at 3 lbs. Significantly heavier than the roka.

On the down side, besides the color (a big negative), the compression seems minimal. Looks fine if you let your sleeping bag loft up fully, but no so good if you leave your shelter and bag in camp and go off for a day hike.

joe newton
(holdfast)

Locale: Bergen, Norway
BPL Roka pack colour on 01/22/2010 00:31:11 MST Print View

Wouldn't the bright orange colour help prevent you from getting shot in the back of the neck by hunters? Seems like a plus to me!