Help with Choosing Backpack ...

Discussion in 'General Preparedness Discussion' started by vja4Him, Nov 18, 2010.

  1. vja4Him

    vja4Him Survivalist Noob

    I could use some input regarding which backpack I should get .....

    I don't have much to spend right now. I will be using the backpack when I go bicycle camping, and do a little hiking around camp to get into shape and carrying stuff for birding: several bird books, two sets of binoculars, large digital camera, pocket tape recorder for bird calls, laptop, plus food stuff for the day and water, and a few basic emergency supplies.

    I'd like something that I could actually use for backpacking into the mountains for 4-5 nights. So it should be very water resistant!

    I went to the Army Surplus store today and noticed three backpacks that seemed like something that might fit my needs:

    1) Pacific Crest Denali 5 + 10 (3966 cubic inches), internal frame, $70
    2) Outdoor Dragonfly Framepack (2780 cubic inches), external frame, $50
    3) European Rucksack (20x17x32), $32

    Any suggestions and comments from experience would be appreciated. I really do want something that will keep my stuff inside the pack dry!
  2. Canuck

    Canuck Proud Canadian eh!

    Kelty Red Wing

    There is a lot of choice out there here is one that is well reviewed:

    KeltyRed Wing is good:

    Review Part 1:

    [ame=]YouTube - Medium Internal Frames: Kelty Redwing Part 1[/ame]

    Review Part 2:

    [ame=]YouTube - Medium Internal Frames: Kelty Redwing Part 2[/ame]

  3. The_Blob

    The_Blob performing monkey

    look for a good frame that distributes the weight over your hips as opposed to your shoulders bearing the brunt

    as a personal preference I like a lot of external pockets and loops for attaching more stuff that you didn't realize you needed until the last minute
  4. vja4Him

    vja4Him Survivalist Noob

    USMC ILBE Acteryx - Web-Tex PLCE Bergen ...

    I've been looking at these two packs:

    1) USMC ILBE Acteryx
    2) Web-Tex PLCE Bergen

    Does anyone have experience with either of these packs?
  5. bunkerbob

    bunkerbob Supporting Member

    This is what I just wore on a backpack trip, the MOLLE II rifleman pack can be configured in endless ways to accomodate your needs.

    Attached Files:

  6. Concerned_ Citizen

    Concerned_ Citizen Well-Known Member

    Dana Design....... awesome pack, fits like a glove, lifetime warrantee...

  7. WEcoyote

    WEcoyote Acme test pilot

    I like external frames so i can bungy cord stuff to the frame. i also like quick release snaps. 4 to 5 days of camping sounds like you need a big bag. I would sugest you take a duffel bag of your equipment with you and ask the clerk to let you pack the bag your interested in before you buy it. many a pack feels great empty and intolerable when 90 pounds of crap is in it.

    I have a GI A.l.i.c.e. (not a ruck sack) pack I dont recommend it to you. I like it for me with all my battle rattle shoved off in it but it lacks finesse.
  8. vja4Him

    vja4Him Survivalist Noob

    I have a bad back, so I won't be carrying lots of weight like I used to when I was much younger (80 pounds sometimes!). I'll be riding my bicycle to the campsite, so I won't be carrying anything on my back, until I camp set up, then head out for day hikes.

    I do want to have a good-sized pack though, just in case if I need to head for the hills, and possibly have to be on the move ....
  9. WEcoyote

    WEcoyote Acme test pilot

    i would still suggest a ridged exterior framed pack because you can tie it on the bike better and also that you take your gear with you when you buy one. I am looking into a pack Browning® Thunder Mountain ECR 62L + 12L Backpack for my wife. its not a "girly" pack i like it a lot i think you may too.

    I like the thunder mountian for its durability with real metal parts and poly fibers its water proof has good storage and is basicly a 3 pack system that inter conects into one large pack.

    Google it

    under 180 buck range.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2010
  10. SaskBound

    SaskBound Well-Known Member

    I am a backpacker (international travel) as opposed to really being much of a hiker, but I LOVE my Mountain Equipment Co-Op pack. It has survived years of luggage carosels (hell on pack straps), camel rides, chicken busses, horse and donkey treks, general schlepping around in third-world conditions, and still looks presentable. I have back problems, PLUS I always over-pack (a lot), so a well-balanced pack that rides mostly on the hips was critical. Also, MEC is really reasonable priced. I think I paid $100 for my big pack. A medium-sized one is probably right in your price range.

    Quality Outdoor Gear, Equipment & Clothing - Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC)
  11. SurviveNthrive

    SurviveNthrive a dude

    I clicked on the link above...and accidentally clicked again while waiting to load and this came up:

    Patagonia Primo Down Jacket (Men's) - Mountain Equipment Co-op. Free Shipping Available

    :eek:How much for that jacket?!?!?!!?!?!?

    Not only that, there's no labor cost when they made it as it came from China and it 'leaks like crazy' leaking, fleece? But the sort of person who bought it and found that problem still gave it a good rating.:scratch

    I searched around and found some reasonable prices, but that first item shocked me!
  12. SaskBound

    SaskBound Well-Known Member

  13. kyhoti

    kyhoti Member

    So is MEC the Canadian version of REI? They look rather similar.
  14. seansolo

    seansolo Newbie

    If it were me, I would call up Stockton REI and see when the next Used Gear Sale is, sometimes they call them the Scratch and Dent. It's like a Yard Sale but most of the time the packs are in phenomenal shape. You can get stuff for 40-80% off, it's nuts on some of the prices. I would take a drive up there before the sale and try on packs to see what is comfortable. The stores usually have sand bags there so you can try on to see what is comfortable...which is a huge part of the process most people don't think about. The Used Gear Sales are Member Only events but you can join for $20 and it's a one time fee! I work at REI and can personally vouch that these sales are crazy cool for getting gear for not much money, especially in the prepared realm. If you happen to go hit it and sign up, give them my # and i can get credit for the membership sale! I scratch your back, you scratch mine! My number is #113488. :beercheer: Seriously though, check it out, you will be happy you did.
  15. tyler_kd0bsa

    tyler_kd0bsa Well-Known Member

    Another brand to consider is mountain smith packs. I have three and they are all good. They offer a variety and their warranty is pretty good. I had one tear where the handles were sewn in and they repaired or replaced the pack and I had the pack back within a couple weeks.
  16. rflood

    rflood Well-Known Member

    Yes MEC is the Canuck version of REI.
  17. rflood

    rflood Well-Known Member

    BunkerBob uses the same setup I have for myself, a MOLLE II pack with the main compartment, sleeping compartment, 2 side pouches and magazine pouch. It is able to handle a lot of stuff, pretty water resistant, very tough material and many attachment points.
    My son has a nice REI internal frame youth pack that works really well for him and his size. I would suggest going to a place like REI or Jessie Browns and get them to size you up for something and then start doing your web research.
  18. catdog6949

    catdog6949 Survivalist and Woods Woman

    back packs and bikes......

    If you get an internal frame pack for your bike find a store have them load weight into it, and go sit on a bike if they sell bikes like REI does see what it feel's like, just a suggestion . Oh and do not even consider an external frame pack to wear while riding, not a pretty situation when you hit wind gusts!

    I would never by a pack or shoes or boots without trying them on first, that's My Advice, good luck. :)
  19. d_saum

    d_saum ExCommunicated

    Just a heads up dude.. this thread is from 2010.. lol.. I'm hoping the OP has made some sort of decision by now!!!! :p
  20. NorthernPrepared

    NorthernPrepared New Member