I can't seem to get away from the sewing machine, and I couldn't fight the urge to make a really durable pack that can carry a bear canister on top. This will end up replacing this pack, because without any real structure, that pack ended up putting too much weight on my shoulders around 15 lbs. or more. Therefore, I wanted a pack made out of the stiff XPAC VX21 that also featured a full back pad sleeve and a removable aluminum stay. I figured with this combination, it would hold its structure well enough to be comfortable up to 25-30 lbs.
My fabric choices for this pack were...
Main pack and extension collar: VX21
Bottom of pack and bottle pockets: VX42
Front panel, bottle, and hip belt pockets: Dyneema X
Inside of shoulder straps and hip belt: Foam Ventilated Mesh
Full back pad sleeve: Lycra
Weight with aluminum stay and before strap trimming: 31 oz.
Some features I included in this pack were...
Shock cord to keep water bottles more secure:
Two webbing straps to hold bear canister in place on top of pack:
Removable (big) hip belt pockets that stay in place when attached:
I knew this pack would not be under 1 pound, and I did not intend it to be. I wanted it very durable, and I wanted it to hold its structure almost as well as an internal frame pack, and it just about does with the aluminum stay, GG Nightlight Torso Pad in full back pad sleeve, and the stiff VX 21.
Also, I wanted a closure system similar to the ULA Catalyst closure system. The extension collar rolls down, buckles on both side panels, and a center strap goes over the top.
I will take this baby on a day hike soon to try it out, and hopefully, it will be with me on the JMT in a month.