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SUL Backpacks
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Jeremy Rardin
(JearBear) - F

Locale: Cumberland Trail
SUL Backpacks on 01/09/2014 14:01:01 MST Print View

Are there any other backpacks you know of that weigh less than 8 oz aside from zpacks or gossamer gear?

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/09/2014 18:48:08 MST Print View


Terra Nova
Hyperlite Mountain
Zimmer Built

I'm sure there's a few more?

Jamie Shortt
(jshortt) - MLife

Locale: North Carolina
Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/09/2014 19:08:36 MST Print View

Going below 8 oz for a pack really limits your materials, surface area/volume and features in a pack. You pretty much need to leave dyneema behind and stick with cuben (or silnylon). I see more MYOG packs on the forums that are sub 8 oz than I do packs being sold by cottage guys.

My current pack that has performed extremely well for me is 4.25 oz. It is cuben (don't recall what weight I used). It has only shoulder straps, 2 side pockets, and one back pocket at about 2400 cubic inches in total. It does not have a belt or sternum strap. Bottomline is below 8 oz just does not give you much for durability nor features so you won't see much difference.

If buying a sub 8 oz pack I would look at zpacks or zimmerbuilt. Is there something specific you are looking?


Edward Jursek
( - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
SUL Backpacks on 01/09/2014 22:50:57 MST Print View

There are some older, cottage made sil and spinnaker packs that surface on Ebay or the Gear Swap Forum at good prices. I have scored an older Gossamer Gear Murmur that was 9oz and I currently have a Mountain Laurel Designs Prophet in spinnaker that is 6.7oz. In the past, I looked at the Gossamer Gear G5 and G6. If you can wait and lurk, theses kinds of packs do pop up and sometimes at great prices.

Jeremy Rardin
(JearBear) - F

Locale: Cumberland Trail
Re: Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/09/2014 22:56:32 MST Print View

I have seen the HMG stuff packs and terra nova packs as well and they caught my eye.

I will probably end up using the Murmur pack since it has all the features I appreciate in a pack. I will probably rest around the 8 to 10 range for durability and features sake. My reason for inquiry is I am considering doing SUL this entire year for any time above 40 F. So I am just looking into all of my options for pack in the weight range 3 to 10 oz if that makes sense.. Just in case there was something or a company I hadn't heard of. I really want to get my hands on a GG Whisper Uberlite.

For features I really like side pockets for water bottles (Since I don't really use a bladder) and a outside mesh pocket.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/10/2014 00:28:41 MST Print View

Some years back, Gossamer Gear was making packs out of spinnaker fabric, and they were really light. The old Murmur was about 8 ounces then, and the Whisper was about 4 ounces. The old Whisper was difficult, because I had only one bear canister that was small enough to fit in it.


Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/10/2014 05:20:19 MST Print View

MLD NEWT 9oz 1700 ci All Dyneema X and $85
Zimmer Built Gear Deals has the QuickStep Pack for $149
- Main Pack Volume: 1700ci
- Pack Volume with outer Pockets - 2200ci
- Pack weight - 9oz
- Pack Dimensions: 6"X10" X26"
- Body Material: 3.3oz Hybrid Cuben Fiber
- Mesh Front and Side Pockets
- Dyneema X and 3D mesh Shoulder Straps

Or the Hybrid Day Pack starting at $99

- Pack Volume: 1300ci
- Pack Weight: 6.75oz
- 3.3oz/yd2 Hybrid Cuben Fiber
- Dyneema X and 3D Mesh Shoulder Straps
- Sternum Strap
- Haul Loop
- 2 Front Daisy Chains
- Front Bungee Cord
- Water Resistant Zipper
- Bladder Hook

HERE are some of his cuben packs, XPac Backpacks and Dyneema X Backpacks , he will custom make anything you want,I have one of his packs and it is very nice.
I love this thread by Jamie, My first sub 5 lb trip! ,he is using a Golite Ion 1500 ci.
Podcast: Sub-3 on the PCT with Glen Van Peski
SUL with a fanny pack

Edited by annapurna on 01/10/2014 07:28:23 MST.

Jeremy Rardin
(JearBear) - F

Locale: Cumberland Trail
Re: Re: Re: Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/10/2014 13:43:38 MST Print View

Thanks for that Link!

Benjamin Moryson
(hrXXL) - MLife

Locale: Germany
LAUFBURSCHE PACKsack on 01/11/2014 00:36:57 MST Print View


there is a new SUL pack from LAUFBURSCHE in Germany. It is made with silnylon and weighs 130g and in DXG 135g. The pack has 24L.

Here is the link to the homepage.

James Marco
(jamesdmarco) - MLife

Locale: Finger Lakes
Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/11/2014 05:49:14 MST Print View

Jeremy, not too many. Most cottage companies tried to go lighter than a half pound but ran into the durability wall.
A couple examples:
Old GG G5: Every trip out for a week would require some sort of repair when I got back. The spinnaker progressivly stretches, then fails. Especially the straps/mounting clips attachments. I eventually cut the lower sections off and replaced them with silnylon. I remember the pack weight was around 6oz or so for starters. But, I later deemed it unreliable for week trips and only used it for weekend trips. Eventually, I stepped on a rock that broke off and slipped down about 20' on a hill, tearing the bottom of the pack and pouch out. My daughter had the G5 silnylon, that held up pretty well. But the weight was around 8oz after beefing up the bad spots before she even took it out. She still uses this. GG no longer makes either of these.

The Whisper was nice because it was smaller. But again, had a similar problem in that the fabric progressivly went bad. Even with a sub-10 pound load.

The standard SUL/UL pack will be less than 1 pound. I have an older MiniPosa that weighs about 15oz that handles 25 pounds of gear easily. For two weeks out, this is more than enough.

Volume seems to be important. The Murmur "can" fit a BV450. Smaller sized cannisters, too, of course. This is my prefered pack for trips up to two weeks out. My base qear is fairly light at around 6 pounds. Food, however, is highly invariable. I need around 1.1-1.3 pounds per day for two weeks giving me a total food weight of around 16 pounds. Most of the SUL packs do not work well with a 22 pound load. If, I bring my saw it will be around 23 pounds. I assume you know that 15-20 pounds is the approximate cut off for SUL packs. Even the old G5 had a 15pound weight limit and this was pushing it. The total pack weight means I need a waist belt. Even a strap, as on the Murmur, is enough to pick up 7-10 pounds. Adding this to a Zero will push this over the 4oz needed for SUL, for me. So, I don't bother. The UL MiniPosa at 15oz works well.

Volume and Weight seem to be tied together. As a general rule, the smaller something is, the less it weighs. Small lights, small stoves, small fuel volumes, high density foods, two 500ml water bottles, a small grease pot, spoon, bear line/ditty bag, some vitamins/mineral pills, a lighter, a 17oz 40f bag, 9oz pad/pack frame, 14oz tarp, 10oz down sweater, long johns, socks, Steripen, bandana, rain jacket are about all I NEED. This comes up to around 4.5 pounds. Repair kits, first aid, spare batteries, etc. account for the rest. Heavier clothing sometimes in spring and fall(eg, a wool sweater.)

Cuben packs, like the Zero, are nice. But again, reaching the ultimate goal of 4oz on a pack and still maintain enough durability for week long trips is always a problem.

Jeremy Rardin
(JearBear) - F

Locale: Cumberland Trail
Re: Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/11/2014 14:10:17 MST Print View

I appreciate the insight! I will probably stick to around a 8 to 12 oz pack. Its not worth the carrying discomfort.

Bill Segraves
(sbill9000) - F - M
Re: SUL Backpacks on 01/12/2014 08:55:26 MST Print View

IMO, the question of what works well as an SUL backpack reveals one of the weaknesses of trying to categorize things as XUL, SUL, UL, etc as a function of base weight (the subject of a sometimes heated thread running in parallel).

When you get down into the SUL zone, the weight of your food and water becomes proportionately much more important, and it's those things that will likely dictate your pack needs. For weekendish trips on which I don't need to carry water, I made myself a prototype pack entirely out of Tyvek (plus one piece of light cord to cinch the top closed). It's less than 4 oz and could certainly be made lighter (and better, overall, in Sil). Since I was carrying << 10 lbs total, it didn't even need any padding in the shoulder straps. At that weight, the pack doesn't have to do much.

If you need to carry a bear can, or water, or are going out for a week, it's going to be a very different story.


Bill S.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
"carrying discomfort" on 01/12/2014 16:09:27 MST Print View

"It's not worthe the carrying discomfort."

I agree 100% and THAT'S why I use a light internal frame pack. Maybe not light by SUL standards but "trail comfortable" by any other standards.

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Lightweight pack on 01/13/2014 16:51:24 MST Print View

For the last 5 years I've been using a 5oz pack on summer trips. Memory fades, but I think it is an experimental prototype made by MLD similar to their 'Newt' but in lightweight silnylon. No padding in the shoulderstraps, but openings into which you can slip a spare pair of socks.

I'm careful with my gear, and look for non abrasive surfaces to set it on when I take a rest stop. I use a few oz of carbon fibre golf club shaft as my tent poles, and combined with my sleeping pad, an adequate internal frame holds it all in good shape.

Edited by tallbloke on 01/14/2014 08:37:47 MST.

matt kirk
(matthew.d.kirk) - F

Locale: southern appalachians
sub60 fast pack on 01/15/2014 15:00:11 MST Print View

I recently received the first professional prototype of a pack that I designed, built and modified over the course of 4 years. It has served me well on several long-distance SULish adventures including this past summer on the AT. The specs are:

Weight = 9 oz. (255 g) and that includes a 20L sil-nylon liner.
Volume = 1600 cu. inches (26 L)

A first draft of instructions are available at the link below. I will soon be adding more content including a video explanation of the pack features and how to achieve a desirable custom fit with the fully adjustable standard pack components.

This certainly isn't a pack for everyone, but it worked well enough for me so I thought I'd put some effort into making it available for others...

Jeremy Rardin
(JearBear) - F

Locale: Cumberland Trail
Re: sub60 fast pack on 01/16/2014 15:47:37 MST Print View

Thanks! I checked that out and I really like the design.

Jeremy Rardin
(JearBear) - F

Locale: Cumberland Trail
Re: Re: sub60 fast pack on 01/19/2014 11:43:21 MST Print View

Matt- I just realized who you were haha! So you currently hold the record for fastest unsupported/self-supported thru-hike of the AT? Did you trail run a lot of it to get those miles in every day or did you just hike fast for long hours??

Also, I signed up as an interested tester for that sub60 pack. Is there anyway, if I don't get chosen as a tester, that I could purchase one? I really like the design, a 9 oz pack with hipbelt and chest water bottle pockets. I don't commonly use a bladder, so that is a really convenient storage pocket.

matt kirk
(matthew.d.kirk) - F

Locale: southern appalachians
RE: sub60 pack on 01/19/2014 18:35:44 MST Print View

Hi Jeremy,

Thanks for your interest in the pack. I did receive your form submission. I'll be in touch with you soon. I'm still prototyping but hopeful to have a limited number of locally made (western North Carolina) packs available sometime before the end of February.

To answer your question about AT<60: I just went with the flow. If the trail and my pack weight was conducive for running, I'd go for it. That usually would mean flat or gentle downhill with total pack weight under 10 lbs. I mostly walked though.

I've enjoyed reading about your adventures across the line in TN. Keep up the good work and happy trails!

Jeremy Rardin
(JearBear) - F

Locale: Cumberland Trail
Re: RE: sub60 pack on 01/19/2014 19:43:40 MST Print View

That is really cool, I watched your videos but it seems like there would be recognition for a record holder lol I guess that sort of information is only interesting to a limited group of people. I would really like to thru-hike the AT myself, and a fast-packing scenario seems more likely, though I have heard people voice their regrets that they missed too much. On the other hand, people have said by the end of 6 months they are ready to be done as well. I am looking forward to your email! In any case, I hope the pack designing goes well.

Patrick Matte
(JPMatte) - M

Locale: N. Georgia
packs on 02/13/2014 20:04:09 MST Print View

My myog raw way pack came in at 8.5 oz