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Winter Pack recomendations
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Eric Osburn
(osb40000) - MLife
Winter Pack recomendations on 07/21/2014 00:06:28 MDT Print View

Looking for a larger sized pack (60-75L) that I can easily attach snowshoes to that will cary bulky winter camping gear and is fairy durable but not weigh the 6lbs my current winter pack weighs. Lots of packs out there seem to fit the bill minus the ease of strapping down snowshoes.

It would need to accommodate a hilleberg kaitum 3, 0F down bag, snow shovel, msr white gas stove, fuel bottles, MH chill wave (sit around camp fav), and other winter oriented gear.

Edited by osb40000 on 07/21/2014 00:15:52 MDT.

Christopher Yi
(TRAUMAhead) - F

Locale: Cen Cal
Re: Winter Pack recomendations on 07/21/2014 00:27:30 MDT Print View

Hyperlite Mountain Gear Porter? Or their 4400 series Ice Pack and ask to have it modified for snow shoes.

Edited by TRAUMAhead on 07/21/2014 00:28:59 MDT.

Rick M
(rmjapan) - F

Locale: London, UK
Re: Winter Pack recomendations on 07/21/2014 02:18:39 MDT Print View


Edited by rmjapan on 06/22/2015 01:46:26 MDT.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Osprey on 07/21/2014 21:39:59 MDT Print View

Look at the larger Osprey packs. Very comfortable.

Don Selesky
(backslacker) - M
Re: Winter Pack recomendations on 07/21/2014 21:49:41 MDT Print View

I'll second the recommendation for the HMG Porter (Expedition?) 4400. Solid pack that carries well, and works well as a winter pack.

Jeff Jeff
(TwoFortyJeff) - F
Re: Winter Pack recomendations on 07/21/2014 22:47:31 MDT Print View

The Osprey Aether packs have straps that work well for strapping snowshoes.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Winter Pack recomendations" on 07/22/2014 10:49:44 MDT Print View

I've found that having a frame really helps for solidly strapping skis to my pack. Because skis will catch on tree limbs etc. I personally prefer a frame for strapping snowshoes as well. My framed pack only weighs a bit more than two pounds.

Edited by book on 07/22/2014 10:50:18 MDT.

Rob P
(rpjr) - M
Paradox on 07/22/2014 11:11:51 MDT Print View

I would think that the Paradox packs would be pretty good for attaching snowshoes. You could place them between the pack bag and the Talon, and then tighten the Talon. I've never done it before, but the design seems like it would work pretty well for that type of application.

Plus, there are different size pack bags, and if you don't like their pack bags you could use a dry bag, or even have Chris Zimmer make you a custom pack bag for the frame.

Derrick White
(miku) - MLife

Locale: Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada
HMG Porter 4400 on 07/22/2014 11:42:14 MDT Print View

My backpacking is usually self-sustained long distance, 4 seasons and offtrail\wilderness. I regularly carry 60 plus pounds in this pack. With about 500 miles logged, it is worn, but showing no signs of fatigue around stitches and stress points. It carries comfortably, equalling much heavier and more sophisticated suspension systems like the Arcteryx Bora. I've seamed sealed it from the outside which makes it veritably waterproof.

You can not go wrong with this pack for use in any season including winter and water based expeditions.


Philip Tschersich
(Philip.AK) - MLife

Locale: Kodiak Alaska
Porter or Unaweep on 07/22/2014 13:19:07 MDT Print View

I own both packs (Unaweep w/ 3900 packbag, and a 4400 Porter).

The Unaweep carries significantly better. Not that the HMG is bad, but it basically just feels like more of a sausage on your back. The Unaweep 'drapes' against you very pleasantly and the weight transfer is simply better. I also prefer the durability of the VX21 in the Unaweep to the 50d body of my Porter. I think the new Porters may have 150d fabric throughout. Both are adaptable for carrying various types of gear, and you will be able to figure out your own attachment strategy. You can also order different sized packbags in different materials through Paradox Packs for the Unaweep frame, so the adaptability of that platform is a nice plus. You could have a 3900 in cuben for summer trips and a 4800 in VX for long, burly expeditions.

Now that I have the Unaweep I can't see using my Porter that much anymore, though either will probably get the job done for you and are excellent winter packs.

Richard Fischel
cilogear 60l is what i've selected on 07/22/2014 16:06:01 MDT Print View

for the same usage as you intend. i've tried a number of different packs and cilogear is where i ended-up. just over 4#'s all in and 2#'s stripped out. no problem attaching anything to the pack with cilo's innovative system. if you really want to go big in volume, the cilogear 75l will pretty-much swallow anything you want to feed it. one thing to consider is if you want a lid or not. i wouldn't have anything but a daypack without one. others here feel differently.

Jeffs Eleven
(WoodenWizard) - F

Locale: Greater Mt Tabor
Re: cilogear 60l is what i've selected on 07/22/2014 17:51:20 MDT Print View

Yeah! Cilogear is my choice too. I picked up a 45l (extends to 60ish) and love that thing. I was nervous about no true suspension but so far it is really comfortable with just the frame sheet thingy.

Very versatile and well made

Valerie E
(Wildtowner) - M

Locale: Grand Canyon State
Re: cilogear 60l is what i've selected on 07/22/2014 17:59:03 MDT Print View

And now you might add the (new) Klymit/Elemental Horizons Motion 60 to this list...

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Porter packs on 07/22/2014 22:41:28 MDT Print View


I think a Porter pack would be very good for your purposes.

I've strapped my MSR Lightning Ascent 'shoes to my Dana Terraplane but putting them between the frame and the pack sounds a lot better.

greg c
(spindrifter) - F
Cilo 45L on 07/22/2014 23:01:03 MDT Print View

Based on my use of the Cilo 45L I agree with Jeff and Richard about its versatility and comfort. I use mine for mountaineering and snowcamping which are gear intensive. The 45L swallows everything with ease and attaching snowshoes, shovel, and crampons all at once is so much easier than anything else I've tried. The options for attachment are limitless. The fabric on the standard pack is bomber where it needs to be and lighter in areas where wear is less of an issue. Mine weighs 3lb 8 oz. with 4 straps attached. The suspension is elegant in its simplicity and supremely comfortable. A dense foam pad, HDPE framesheet, and burly aluminum stay do an excellent job of load transfer. Good luck however you choose. All of the packs suggested seem like fine choices.

Derrick White
(miku) - MLife

Locale: Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada
Frame Packs on 07/23/2014 07:25:45 MDT Print View


Agree. Assuming a pack carries well and meets the weight objective, the addition of a frame would undoubtedly enhance the ability to attach external gear more securely.


Richard Fischel
what fits in a cilogear 40l (which i don't have any more) on 07/23/2014 07:54:17 MDT Print View

here's what i would pack +/- a couple of items for 4+1 days when expecting 0*F. when carrying snowshoes i would typically attach one each to the right and left sides of the pack with the cilogear quick release straps. i've also carried them cinched down under the brain. cilogear makes an accessory shovel pocket and the snowshoes can go between the pocket and the pack body.

what's in your 40l

40l packed

Edited by RICKO on 07/23/2014 08:01:53 MDT.

greg c
(spindrifter) - F
Cilo and Snowshoes on 07/23/2014 08:54:38 MDT Print View

In addition to Richard's suggestion about attaching snowshoes under the brain or on the sides of a Cilo, they can also be securely strapped directly to the front panel of the pack via the grey straps provided. I've done this with my shovel attached on top of the shoes and it carried well.

Eric Osburn
(osb40000) - MLife
Cilo on 07/23/2014 10:34:45 MDT Print View

Awesome input guys. The Cilo 60L is currently the front runner. I'm actually debatingon whether I should go with the 60L or 75L since I do have friends that I bring with me on winter campouts that usually don't have room for gear and I also want to start bringing my kids in a few years when they are old enough and they won't be able to pack much in with them.

I love how flexible the attachment system is and for a big winter pack I can live with up to 5lbs if necessary. My current winter pack is a gregory and it just doesn't have the attachment points I need to carry things like a shovel and snowshoes properly.

Richard Fischel
be careful with the jump from the cilogear 60l to 75l pack on 07/23/2014 10:53:24 MDT Print View

while it's listed as only a 15l difference, the 75l is a lot more pack. i’d put it up against some of the 110l packs in the market. you’ll really need a lot of discipline to not fill that beast up with extras and junk. that being said, there are refinements in the 75l's suspension that make it more suited to handling the bigger loads. call cilogear up on the phone and they’ll be more than happy to make suggestions. depending on where you live, there may even be a store that stocks some of their packs.