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Pack recommendation for the ladies in my life
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Curtis B.
(rutilate) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Pack recommendation for the ladies in my life on 02/23/2014 18:52:03 MST Print View

What UL packs would you recommend I consider for my wife and rather petite daughter?

My wife and daughter have now bought into UL principles and are looking to replace their Osprey Aura and Deuter something-or-other with something lighter weight.

My wife is 5'4", torso is 16.5", daughter is 5'2", estimated torso length is 14.5"-15".

For most trips they'll have a base weight of 12-15 lbs and total weight of ~25 lbs and MAYBE a day or two at the beginning of a long trip a total of 30 lbs (such as the first couple of days through the 100 Mile Wilderness last summer). Most trips are 4-5 days.

I would like to find something with limited internal structure (like the stays on an HMG Porter), but not reliant upon the pad for structure. My wife hates my Porter because it has no external pockets for the snacks, hat, gloves, bars, etc. that she wants easy access to, either with a lid or very generous side/belt pockets.

Ladies (and men who buy gear for them), what would you recommend that I add to the list to consider?

Rick M
(rmjapan) - F

Locale: London, UK
Re: Pack recommendation for the ladies in my life on 02/23/2014 19:46:38 MST Print View

Yes in my experience, the ladies in my life like their packs with LOTS of pockets for their STUFF. All things equal, they like panel loaders over top loader too. They can get to their STUFF without have to unSTUFF the whole bag. And they can pack their STUFF the way they want to, without regard to how they STUFF their STUFF.

My recommendation for YOUR own peace of mind, the Granite Gear Aji ki. Female specific short torso 15"-18" and choice of 4 hipbelt sizes with tool loops to add extra pockets for more STUFF. When needed the removable frame sheet saves weight or add Klymit airframe option to boost load carrying capacity.

Apparently discontinued, now on sale across the net shops.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lTJgNWZQRXs

Edited by rmjapan on 02/23/2014 23:14:33 MST.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Packs, Pockets and Stuff on 02/23/2014 21:22:43 MST Print View

Well if your Porter fits they could us the HMG Windrunner. Basically the same pack but with pockets.

Another pack I really, really, like is the Exped Lighting. I got the 60 liter version to test out and its grown on me. The stay is a bit tall (24 inches). Depending on how bulky your loads are that may or may not be an annoyance. This pack carries weight better then anything I've tried so far. I'd cautiously say I think it carries weight better then the Porter.

The main downside to the Lighting is the limited pockets (but more then the Porter). There are hipbelt pockets, side pockets and a pocket where most pocks have a hydration pocket. They are starting to go on sale because an updated version is coming out. You can get one on sale or wait for the improved version (on the new one the compression straps won't go over the pockets).

If you want pockets you might consider the Osprey Exos 48. My mom loves the fit of the old version and I've heard the new one is even better. Lots of pockets there.

Kevin Burton
(burtonator) - F

Locale: norcal
REI flash... on 02/23/2014 21:24:35 MST Print View

I bought my niece an REI flash pack. The thing I like about it is that there aren't many of the compromises that are in some of the severe UL packs. This means she can use it for multiple sports. Further, it's reasonably priced.

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re:Pack recommendation for the ladies in my life on 02/23/2014 22:34:48 MST Print View

My wife loves her ULA Ohm.

Brian Johns
(bcutlerj) - M

Locale: NorCal
GG Mariposa on 02/23/2014 23:39:19 MST Print View

The Mariposa has many proud female hikers behind it, and in my experience is a very spacious pack. 30 lbs. for a few days would not be a problem. The 12-15 lbs. you mentioned seem to be about what it's designed for.

Jennifer Mitol
(Jenmitol) - M

Locale: In my dreams....
Re: GG Mariposa on 02/24/2014 07:43:38 MST Print View

As an UL lady.....

My favorite is the gossamer gear stuff...I like the gorilla but I imagine the mariposa is just as sweet. I have a girlfriend who was trying to go lighter as well and I tried to sell her my osprey exos...she had the same problem as I did, which is painful collarbones/shoulders. She went the gorilla route and I think she will never part with that pack. Ever.

I also likes the S straps on ULA packs...very nice fit.