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Hamish McHamish
(El_Canyon) - M

Locale: USA
post pics of your Z-Packs 'zero' pack on 01/11/2013 21:30:39 MST Print View

I'm looking at specing a Z-Packs zero for superlight but superlong day use. Trying to decide between that or a MLD Newt. Anybody got pics and feedback on the small Z-Packs pack? Any option you wish you had, or had not, speced? Thanks!

John Abela
(JohnAbela) - MLife
Re: post pics of your Z-Packs 'zero' pack on 01/11/2013 22:28:51 MST Print View

Hey James,

One or the other, all about the same I suppose.

Pros for the zpacks zero would be: little under half the weight

Pros for the Newt would be: sternum strap by default, slightly more comfy shoulder straps, 200 ci more room, and you could abuse the material a bit more.

The Newt has a roll-top buckle top, the zpacks has their standard cord closure system.

From a comfort level, the Newt is probably a weeebit more, but honestly, all about the same at these weight levels.


If you care the utmost for grams saved go with the zpacks zero.

If you are willing to give up an extra ounce or so for a heavier closure system (plastic buckles weigh more than cordage) and you want a bit tougher material, go with the Newt.

In the end, there is pretty much nothing anybody can do to a sub 8 ounce backpack to make it stand out among the rest.


If you do not like the wait times of either MLD or ZPacks consider the HMG Stuff Pack. I have used it too. It is a nice solid design like the Newt and Zero. From a comfort factor I would place it at the bottom of the list of the Newt/Zero, because of the shoulder straps which I just did not like, but it was a solid pack that handled the same loads that I use in my Zero.


As for features that I would consider adding... hmm. Well no not really. Once you reach the point of being able to use a backpack of this size, you usually got your stuff figured out and that usually means 99% of your gear is inside of your backpack. If you do not keep your compass/whistle around your neck, you can easily attach it to the Newt, but you might have to have zpacks add a tie-out for your compass cord (unless you enjoy attaching it to the shoulder strap daisy chain, which I do not, but you might).

As for photos... sorry, hard enough to be a sul/xul hiker as it is without lugging around the weight of a camera. Think I have carried a camera on maybe two or three of my hikes over the last three years.

+Abela

Stevie Patrick
(XstevieX)

Locale: Adirondacks
Zero pic on 01/11/2013 23:52:01 MST Print View

Here's my zero, it's a medium though. I opted for the cuben hybrid and only added a mesh front pocket, bungee for my GG pad, and a top strap. I love it just the way it is, sometimes I wish had got the roll top, but the standard top opening has grown on me.

Zero

I also recently got the new Newt. I love it as well, but have only used it on day hikes. I need to play around with packing it, but I'm not sure I could take it out for more than an overnighter with my current gear setup.

Edited by XstevieX on 01/12/2013 21:07:23 MST.

josh wagner
(StainlessSteel) - F
vid on 01/12/2013 10:16:32 MST Print View

here's a video my buddy and i shot of me showing off my kit in a size small zero. it's lengthy and i babble a bit, but it will at least give you an indication of the size.

i had 2 water bottle side pockets added, and the back stuff it pocket. i had 2 small loops sewn on the shoulder straps (1 on each shoulder, right about chest level) for me to have a place to attach my whistle and my bandana. that is it. i have a pack w/ tons of "features", a ula circuit, so i wanted this one to be bare bones. i don't like using a hip belt or sternum strap, so they were easy to leave off. for what it's worth i asked joe to sew and extra layer of cuben onto the bottom of the pack, as i figured this will be the part that takes the most abuse...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qGw-TFyXgns

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - M

Locale: Cascadia
Zero on 01/12/2013 15:51:57 MST Print View

That dark grey hybrid fabric is beautiful stuff. Nice pack Steven. I'd love to see a few more pics if you got em.

James: There's some nice Zero pics in these threads:
http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=59246
http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=55091

Edited by dandydan on 01/12/2013 16:00:58 MST.

jason quick
(jase)

Locale: A tent in my backyard - Melbourne
Zero....nice on 01/12/2013 15:56:55 MST Print View

+1 with Dan....sexy looking pack there.

@ Steven Patrick: What's your preference for hydration, as in...how do you prefer to store water sans side pockets?

Edit: question.

Edited by jase on 01/12/2013 19:23:34 MST.

M J
(mj451at2) - M

Locale: Somewhere out hiking!!!
Zero XS on 01/12/2013 16:10:14 MST Print View

Here's my XS Zero that Joe tricked out for me to accept all the add-on's I got with my first Gen Exos... Hip belt pockets, side mesh pockets, XS chest pack... I have 50+ days with this pack, the longest being 4 nights/5 days(18lbs,9oz at the start) on the FootHills Trail(NOBO from Oconee)and never had a problem... I've had 22lbs still with no problem... BTW, its got the roll top and haul loop and is made from the same Hybrid Cuben as the EXOS...ZERO XS

Hamish McHamish
(El_Canyon) - M

Locale: USA
_ on 01/12/2013 19:39:26 MST Print View

Great stuff folks, much appreciated.

Stevie Patrick
(XstevieX)

Locale: Adirondacks
Re: Water Storage on 01/12/2013 21:06:31 MST Print View

@ Dan:
Thanks! I don't think I have anymore on my phone (my only "camera"), but if I play with it in the next few days, I may pack it up and post a few more pics.

@ Jason:
Right now I like to carry two "gatorade" (look like Gatorade bottles, but some organic sports drink company, and about .1 oz lighter) bottles on my shoulder straps. I made two bottle holders out of some z-line, a chord lock, and some bungee chord. I then carry two Evernew bottles, a 2 liter for dirty water, and 1.5 liter for filtered water, using the Sawyer. I didn't mention, my Zero also has a hydration port for a hose, but I just could never get into it, but liked the idea of having the option if I changed my mind.

jason quick
(jase)

Locale: A tent in my backyard - Melbourne
water storage on 01/12/2013 21:25:13 MST Print View

Thanks Steven

Yeah...I have the Arc Blast with the hydration Port....only because I forgot to ask them to omit it before construction....like you...I just can't, and never have, got into it.

I also use a Steripen system that utilises a soft Nalgene Canteen for dirty water.

Your shoulder strap water bottle set up sounds similar to Stick's. I take it it works well for you? Doesn't wobble around too much, or become an inconvenience? Easy to use?

The only reason why I'm asking is because I'm soon to get a Zero with mods, and was considering leaving off the side pockets.

Thanks!

Stevie Patrick
(XstevieX)

Locale: Adirondacks
Re: water storage on 01/12/2013 21:41:20 MST Print View

I actually got the idea from Stick's blog, I never really found any details on how he made his, but I just kind of winged it, and like what I came up with. The bungee wraps around the bottom-middle, and using the chord lock I can pull it as tight as possible against the strap. Overall I am pleased, and don't find that it wobbles too much or anything. I have considered picking up some of Joes cuben bottle holders though, they look nice. But yeah, I'm with stick, I find it awkward to reach back for a bottle. I like it right there on the strap, and it's super easy and quick to remove, just loosen the chord lock and remove the mitten hook from the strap (I think I forgot to mention the mitten hook earlier.) I'll try to take some pictures tomorrow to show how this works. I usually just leave the top z-line with mitten hook attached to the bottle, so I just clip it on and then tighten up the bungee.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: post pics of your Z-Packs 'zero' pack on 01/12/2013 22:58:58 MST Print View

"As for features that I would consider adding... hmm. Well no not really. Once you reach the point of being able to use a backpack of this size, you usually got your stuff figured out and that usually means 99% of your gear is inside of your backpack."

I agree with John. These are basically stuff sacks with straps -- intended to carry very light loads. If you need a lot of options, then you need a "real" backpack.

I have a small zero. Here are my options:

1. Rear pad holder. I only use this if I bring a foam torso pad as my sleeping pad. Forget using it as a frame sheet. The pack is too small. I remove it if I bring a NeoAir. With a NeoAir I bring a rolled 1/8" foam pad that is strapped to the outside.

2. Water pockets. I hike in deserts. Required.

3. I added a sternum strap, which is a piece of thin guyline and a single mini cord lock. The straps are sometimes slippery.

Here is a trip report with a lot if information on the Zero http://popupbackpacker.com/backpacking/trip-reports/anza-borrego-nov-2011/

Butler 1

Anza 2

Butler 1

Butler 2

Butler 3

Edited by ngatel on 01/12/2013 23:00:31 MST.

Brian Lindahl
(lindahlb) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: post pics of your Z-Packs 'zero' pack on 01/25/2013 12:33:16 MST Print View

Nick - how do you attach your foam pad vertically to the pack? Photo perhaps?

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: post pics of your Z-Packs 'zero' pack on 01/25/2013 13:09:29 MST Print View

You can purchase two optional cuben triangles that can be removed.

Pad_2

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
More Pictures on 01/25/2013 13:12:35 MST Print View

Here is a trip report with zPacks gear pictures towards the end

Brian Lindahl
(lindahlb) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Re: Re: post pics of your Z-Packs 'zero' pack on 01/25/2013 13:17:08 MST Print View

I was actually wondering about the 1/8" foam pad that you attach vertically to the outside.

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Nick's poncho/groundsheet on 01/25/2013 13:34:45 MST Print View

Do you still use that poncho/groundsheet that is in your trip report, Nick? I have eyed that a bit. Is the durability good when used as a groundsheet?

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: post pics of your Z-Packs 'zero' pack on 01/25/2013 13:48:23 MST Print View

The draw string for the closure of the top of the pack runs down the front of the pack to a loop at the bottom (versus a roll top closure). The 1/8" pad is super light, so I attach the pad with two pieces of Velcro strips that also keep the pad rolled tight.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Nick's poncho/groundsheet on 01/25/2013 13:55:10 MST Print View

Ben,

Poncho/Ground sheets get tough abuse and eventually will develop holes. So I am very careful with site selection. If there is a chance of something poking a hole, I place my sleeping pad under the ground sheet. I don't normally use the ground sheet with my Hexamid, unless I expect a lot of rain. My sleeping pads are waterproof. Also, on some trips I may also bring a polycro sheet that goes under the sleeping pad and sometimes under the poncho/groundsheet. Depends on the terrain I am expecting. I try not to use the poncho as a ground sheet; it is too expensive.

So far it has held up well, No holes. I have been working on a post for my blog with pictures and comparing how the zPacks works as a poncho versus more traditional ponchos. I might finish it up this afternoon if I have time, since you jarred my memory. Otherwise it will be next week as I am going to do battle with snow this weekend :)

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Nick's poncho/groundsheet on 01/25/2013 14:02:30 MST Print View

Thanks Nick. I could use new raingear and that looked like a good option. Sounds like you've liked it as a poncho anyway.