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Pack advice please!
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Sumi Wada
(DetroitTigerFan) - F

Locale: Ann Arbor
Pack advice please! on 02/03/2011 08:53:24 MST Print View

I'm looking for some pack advice.

I have a GoLite Peak that I really like -- fits me and my gear well -- except when I have a dry camp and need to carry extra water. My typical total pack weight is 21-22 lb which the Peak handles really well but extra water can push that up to 30 lb. It's usually only maybe a 6-hour stretch out of 4-5 days so I could just suck it up but I've been wondering if there's a better solution.

I saw a Talon 44 on the clearance table at REI and picked it up on a whim. It fits, feels comfortable and, based on reviews, should carry 30lb relatively well. But, wow, there sure is a LOT of pockets and buckles and loops and straps on that thing!

So, now, I'm wondering how the Jam would do. GoLite lists both packs as 30lb maximum -- are they essentially the same except for the volume?

By the way, I think my "suck it up" vs "buy another pack" line is in the $100-$125 range which probably rules out comparable ULA/GG/etc. packs.

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Pack advice please! on 02/03/2011 09:59:48 MST Print View

Are you using a foam sleeping pad to supplement the frame? Could you use something thicker, like a piece of RidgeRest Deluxe or 4 sections of a Z-lite for trips when you know you'll be carrying lots of water? Do you have any kind of tent poles that you could use to supplement the foam? My TarpTent Squall "burrito" rolled up in its stuff sack with the tent poles shoved in provides some extra rigidity to my pack.

You could try carrying some of the water in 1L bottles in the side pockets, which should transfer most of that weight to the hipbelt.

Or, if you wanted to get creative, you could take out the foam panel in the back, and replace it with something stiffer, like a sheet of 1/8" polyurethane. Or, tape sections of aluminum rod to the foam panel.


P.S. I am considering getting a Peak as well. Can you reach a water bottle in the side pockets while you're wearing it?

Edited by andrew.f on 02/03/2011 10:00:56 MST.

ben wood

Locale: flatlands of MO
Re: Pack advice please! on 02/03/2011 10:03:29 MST Print View

you could always sell the peak and the talon, then add that to your cash and purchase a ULA circuit, which is designed to carry loads in that range quite comfortably

Aaron Reichow

Locale: Northern Minnesota
Re: Re: Pack advice please! on 02/03/2011 10:06:06 MST Print View

+1 to what Ben said ... The ULA Circuit is an exceptional pack, IMHO.

Sean Brenckman
(SeanBrenckman) - F

Locale: Minnesota
GG speeder belt on 02/03/2011 11:23:29 MST Print View

"The speeder belt, the brainchild of my buddy Read "Speeder" Miller, allowed me to carry the heaviest part of my load, the water, right around my hips. Read's original thought was that such a belt would allow the use of a very light pack for most situations along the PCT, then just adding the belt for the dry sections, rather than carrying a pack capable of the maximum water load for the entire trek."

T kawa
(kitsune) - F
peak bottle holders on 02/03/2011 14:37:57 MST Print View

andrew, I can reach the bottles on the peak, while it's fully loaded; putting them back sometimes takes a bit of effort though. I use it mostly as a daypack, or a running pack when I need it (at which time the removable belt is nice) if you don't need/want a removable belt, why not get the Jam? 1000cu in for 3 ounces? I wonder why I didn't get the jam? Also the compaktor system is only nice whne you have basically nothing in the pack (for me), becasue it bends the lower part of the pack.

Sumi Wada
(DetroitTigerFan) - F

Locale: Ann Arbor
Re: Pack advice please! on 02/03/2011 15:21:54 MST Print View

Thanks for everyone's advice.

I hadn't thought about supplementing or replacing the foam pad on my Peak. Will definitely have to consider that.

The Talon is still unused and purchased from REI, so I can return it easily. I hadn't thought about selling the Peak and replacing it altogether but it's certainly an option.

Looking at the ULA website, it looks like the Ohm is closer to the Peak volume-wise than the Circuit. How does the Ohm compare to the Circuit?

Oh, and Andrew, as someone else mentioned, I can *just* reach a water bottle in the side pocket on my Peak but as it's made out of a stretchy material, I can't get it back in.

Edited by DetroitTigerFan on 02/03/2011 15:25:01 MST.

Mark Hudson
(vesteroid) - MLife

Locale: Eastern Sierras
re on 02/03/2011 19:04:41 MST Print View

I have an ohm and a circuit, and love them both, just different sizes for me for different seasons or needs.