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Reader Reviews

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Gossamer Gear G6 Whisper

in Backpacks - Frameless

Average Rating
4.50 / 5 (12 reviews)

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( sanderson )
Gossamer G 6 on 08/02/2005 21:41:03 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I love the size and the weight. It is a little to fragile, to be perfect, but darn close. If i could afford a new G6 every year, ....

paul johnson
( pj )

LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
GG G6 Whisper UberLite Pack on 08/09/2005 03:04:14 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

Recently started using one. Was skeptical of using a beltless pack w/o a sternum strap.

Neither of these is an issue. Pack carries very well. The shoulder straps stay put and do NOT slip off of the shoulders even w/o a sternum strap.

When utilizing the extension collar, can fit more in this pack than I had imagined I would be able to. Pack is comfortable at the 15lb fully loaded wt. (incl. 3d food & 2L water).

oh...and it's priced right. By no means overly expensive, but as a prev. poster pointed out it's not the cheapest UL pack out there - others weighing 4x to 6x times as much can be had for 2/3 of the price of this pack.

Yes, the fabric is not overly robust, but the pack is NOT intended for bushwacking. If it were any lighter, it would float away.

When used properly, this pack has no equal. I would prob. have given this pack a 4.5 or 4.75 if fractional scores were possible. hey...there's always room for improvement. perhaps with more use, i'll find an area this pack can improve in. But for right now, i find it to be perfect for accomplishing its intended mission. It has no competition.

Kevin Sawchuk
( ksawchuk - M )

Northern California
Soooo close. on 12/14/2005 13:40:54 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

This pack is amazingly light and with the wide shoulder straps quite comfortable even without a waist belt. If you realize its limitations (not durable, no easy water bottle access)and hike with a light load this pack cuts a lot of weight from your kit. I would be willing to have a slightly heavier pack that was made of a more durable fabric, had (very thin) waist belt/sternum straps (because I run and need more stability)and side pockets for water. A pack with these features weighing 6-9oz might be the ultimate.

kevin davidson
( kdesign )

Mythical State of Jefferson
G6 is the standard to measure all other SUL packs by on 12/14/2005 13:47:31 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

It led the way in it's niche and still offers enough to satisfy most weight shedding demons. I don't mind the tissue thin materials--it's small and narrow enough to rest in the relative safety of my back. It could stand to use to have drain holes or mesh in the bottom of it's external pocket.

Unmodified, it's a high 4. With the simple modification of a sternum strap and bungees to carry sports bottles adventure race-style, it's a solid 5.

Edited by kdesign on 12/14/2005 14:02:54 MST.

( jhaura )

Love the pack, ditch the Velcro on 10/16/2006 20:00:18 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

Initial Review Oct 2006: Out of the box I love it, light as a feather, VERY well made and sized perfect for my intended use. I really like the shape, it's like a slim aerodynamic sled. GG's products are really in line with their marketing: "Innovative. Ultralight. Affordable." I agree that this pack with the new lower price of $80 meets all the above criteria.

Weight: 3.88 OZ. I'll probably remove the velcro shoulder strap slots and sew them shut with just a 3" piece of ThinLight foam at the very top of the strap.

I had just received my Patagonia Wool 2 top and slipped into it before test packing the Whisper. The first item in is the quilt. On my first stuff of the bag my new wool sleeve gets caught on the velcro, after gingerly removing the velcro I was left with an almost one inch chaff in the seam as the velcro ate up the thread. Soon to be a rip no doubt. Ouch...I really don't like velcro on gear. After that I fastened the collar down while packing. That's why it gets a 4. GG can and should do better than velcro. Also I wish they provided the shockcord for compression/tie-out, now I have to source some before my trip, and I don't need more to do. But all in all I am thankful GG makes gear like this. Nothing is ever perfect for everyone.

Going for a three day solo this weekend and will report back after that.

Here's some pics:


Edited by jhaura on 10/16/2006 20:28:33 MDT.

Alfred Sidman
( sidmanac )

Pacific Northwest
Great pack for an ultralighter willing to replace it every few seasons. on 10/18/2006 02:41:34 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

Used this pack for two 3-day/2-night on-trail backpacking trips in the Olympics and Cascades in summer. Also used it as my only luggage for a four week hostel trip in Europe, where I carried it on planes. Has held up with no puncture or seam failure. I can see a very slight loosening of a few turns of stitching attaching straps to pack near the neck. As others point out, the pack is relatively fragile and won't last more than a few seasons of on-trail use.

On-trail, I insert a rolled 3/4 non-deluxe Ridgerest into the pack, letting the roll expand fully with the ridges locking into one another to keep the volume. The resulting cylinder of several layers of foam pressing firmly on the entire wall area adds a remarkable amount of rigidity to the pack. It also prevents objects inside from poking through, stretching the fabric, or point-loading a seam. This arrangement keeps its form even when empty. The 20" high roll is the perfect height for this pack. The pack is narrow enough for uninhibited arm swing, and its efficient boxy shape keeps weight close to the back. With ultralight loads, the shoulder pads are entirely comfortable with the provided foam inserts, which I keep in all the time for a pack weight of 4.1 oz.

With the collar fully extended, the pack holds about 2500 cubes. Unlike some reviewers, I find the velcro cinch system quite effective on the roll top. I routinely carry 7 lbs baseweight for summer overnights as a 6'3" 200lbs-er with all XL personal gear. In addition to the skimpiest of sleeping bags, this weight includes Gossamer Gear's generously-sized two-person tarp, as well as stove and shared accessories for my significant other and myself. My pack takes most of the food for the two of us for three days. I have to dismount the pack to get my water bottle, which I like to keep in the main compartment to keep its weight high and close to me. The enforced break is usually welcome. A little less convenient is stuffing the map in the one external pocket on the back, out of reach except by a partner. Nonetheless, I would keep the pack just as streamlined as it is.

The only improvement would be a yet-to-be invented fabric of the same weight that lasts longer. Gossamer Gear's Whisper Uberlight is a very nice product for the ultralighter willing to replace inexpensive gear every few seasons.

Edited by sidmanac on 10/20/2006 10:43:41 MDT.

Al Shaver
( Al_T.Tude - M )

High Sierra and CA Central Coast
Truth In Advertizing - This Truly Is Gossamer Gear on 10/27/2006 20:41:59 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

I made this purchase specifically to run the 208 mile JMT. I added a suspension and attachment for my Camelbak that directly loads the shoulder straps without stressing the sack. I sewed additional velcro to keep the top rolled shut. I added attachments for my front pack (which also serves as a sternum strap) and a light webbing waist strap to stabilize the pack while running. I think the much heavier GG waistbelt option is unnecessary at 15-20lb loads. I cut an "X" with a hot knife for my hydration tube to exit the sack and added tube containment straps and clip on the shoulder strap which I use with the included foam inserts. To save a little weight I could take Jhaura's suggestion and remove the velcro and lower 40% of the foam and stitch the upper section in place. The pack weight with foam inserts ballooned from 4.0oz to 4.8 oz with all these mods.

My testing consisted of running hills with 18lbs in the sack plus 4.5 lbs of hydration bladder which is 50% over GG's recommended weight limit. With such use the seam connecting the blue sack to the black fabric against the wearer's back failed near the upper shoulder strap attachment. A small amount of grossgrain reinforcement solved this problem. During actual competition I ran with 6lbs fluid at the start making for a 24.5lb total load. Post reinforcement I have had no failures in 150 miles of hiking and running.

All of the mods that I performed were geared to my specific application. For the general SUL user I think this is a brilliant design that meets all of it's goals out of the box.

Edited by Al_T.Tude on 10/27/2006 20:44:20 MDT.

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T. Sedlak
( busotti )
Ultra Light but fragile on 07/06/2007 18:05:31 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I'm yet another user to note how fragile this thing is. I thought I was fairly gentle but put a hole in the bottom during some bushwacking/summit trips.

The sturdier material for the pack base seems in an sub-optimal location. I ended up reinforcing the bottom (with weight penalty) to bolster it.

Pretty nice for side trips, day trips. I would not take it as the sole pack for a longer trip without being prepared to sew it up.

Edited by busotti on 08/22/2007 09:00:59 MDT.

Adam Rothermich
( aroth87 )

Missouri Ozarks
Great pack, but I'm being gentle on 09/16/2007 21:16:02 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

One more person to note how fragile it seems. I've got a spinnaker tarp and groundsheet, so I was aware how fragile it seemed but I always feel a little wary when I sit this pack down. So far I haven't had a single problem with it, actually it still looks brand spanking new.
When the pack arrived I was blown away by how light it was. I knew it was light, but man did this thing put a smile on my face. Upon inspection all the seams looked great except for one. The stitching that reinforces the notch below where the drawstring should go looked a little loose. I plan on getting some seam sealer to bolster it, but thus far I've had no problems with just being a little more careful when I pack it up. Other than that the pack is very well made. The webbing on the shoulder straps is still a little hard to adjust but not a huge deal.
I've only used it on two day trips so far but am quite impressed. Both times I loaded it up with gear like I would be staying the night out. I placed my sleeping pad (GG NightLight torso) between my back and the pack via the lash loops and some extra shock cord I had. It worked very well to ease my fears about sitting the pack down since the pad is what is in contact with the ground. The only down side is that the shoulder straps have to be let out so much that I don't get the full advantage of the 3" width. I will try sticking the pad inside the pack next time, and just compress my quilt a little more, to see if it makes a difference.
Even with the sub-optimal shoulder strap placement the pack rides extremely well. That may be as much do to the 5 lbs base weight as anything, but I was still amazed. I couldn't hardly tell I was wearing a pack.
I do miss having side pockets to keep water bottles in but the back pocket is an adequate replacement. It can easily hold a couple of water bottles, windshirt, TP, and essentials kit.
Overall, I couldn't be more pleased with this pack. It does have its short comings, but that's to be expected when your intentions are the lightest weights possible. I think the Whisper strikes a great balance between weight, durability, and comfort. I can foresee myself doing a lot of SUL trips with this pack.


Shawn Taylor
( staylor310 )

Best of SUL Packs on 07/02/2008 12:15:39 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

I have to give this pack a 5 because of the weight (4oz). I will however give it some constructive criticism-

I would prefer a wrapping front pocket, which comes around to the sides, and provides access to a water bottle w/o having to remove the pack. I would prefer a different shoulder strap, like the ones on the Golite Ion, but it is still a great pack as is. And its cheap!

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Evan Chartier
( evanchartier )
I wish they were still available on 05/01/2013 12:23:45 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I received a G6 Whisper as perhaps the best PIF ever to be listed on BPL. I have since used it on multiple trips and I have been quite pleased. Although I know this pack is no longer available, I think it is always useful to have as many reviews as possible. Perhaps someone will want to pick up a used one some day and look back at some reviews (I know I have done that!)

The only criticism that I have, which has not been addressed by the other reviews, is that the pack is simply too large for me. When I have gone our for a weekend, I probably fill 5/8 of the pack. I assume that I would need the other room if I were to go out for a week, but for a weekend pack it is very large. This makes it difficult to use the velcro closure system, since I do not fill the pack past where the shoulder straps meet the top of the pack. I would love to see this pack in a smaller volume. But alas, I guess I will just have to make something myself!

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