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Thread: Whats the difference between a hunting backpack and a normal backpacking pack?

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    Default Whats the difference between a hunting backpack and a normal backpacking pack?

    Hey everyone... I am having some real trouble figuring out why I have a hunting backpack that cost $350 compared to a normal backpacking backpack that you can get for $120... what’s the difference?

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    not sure what you have but the diff in the one i got vs a rag backpacking pack is in the framing and what comes off it to pack out game and the hunting pack has a spot that carries my gun or bow and can breakdown to bear frame if i need to pack out big game thats all i know not an expert on them like some here can tell you alot more than i

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    iroc6976

    I am hunt with a badlands and was just comparing the two and there really was not much different... EXcept the gun holder.. witch i could take to a seemstrist and have her add a boot to my reg backpack... The animals that i have carried out, i have completly deboned.. no bone.. except for the skull...I always put the meat in a compartment... UGGHHH! O-well

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    The difference is packing meat. I bought an Alaskan from Cabelas and spent less than $200 for it. Worth every penny. Scour your house for some old pillow cases. You'll need those for the meat. To me the others are very fancy but don't suit my purpose.

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    Tony...That is my old pack. I have had great use for it. but time to move on... I use pillow cases as well..I get the zip up on's from marshalls... they work great!

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    In my experience, besides the specialized features like scabbard, camo pattern, meat shelf, orange blaze cover, etc. The hunting packs seem to much more reinforced and the materials seem to be quieter. I can definitely carry heavier loads with my hunting pack than with my backpacking pack, also much more comfortable, but I may be vias because I really like my Eberlestock pack :)
    "Wilderness to the people of America is a spiritual necessity, an antidote to the high pressure of modern life, a means of regaining serenity and equilibrium."
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    I have a Badlands 2200, and an REI Mars 45 pack. The REI backpack is far more comfortable but, it isn't built like the Badlands. Hiking underneath, and rubbing against thick Chaparral didn't faze my Badlands. It scratched the crap out of the fabric on the Mars 45. Think of it like comparing silk to canvas. Silk is softer, but it doesn't hold up well.
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    Thumbs down deleted

    Last edited by jesunter; 07-21-2011 at 06:38 PM.

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    Any pack is a "hunting pack" if you have it and are hunting.

    I certainly see lots of really nice non-hunting packs on the trails when I do get out for a hunt. Packs whose total gear barely ways more than my empty 4500. Like Kitfox has mentioned, its a matter of what you want to do with it and where you want to take it. If I had tow packs that could carry 60+ lbs of bloody meat I would then look at where I would want to take each pack. Frankly, few non-hunting packs make it off established trails. Both my Superday and 4500 have bush-wacked through pines, buckthorn, mountain mahogany, manzanita, blackberries, chamies, and other nearly impenetrable brush. They come out fine even though I scratch up my arms. Other better buikt packs will do just as well.

    Would you want to do that to a nice trail pack? If so, would it survive? If you did and it was shredded, torn, ripped, whatever, how much would it cost to fix or replace? I have had a great experience in getting my Badlands fixed.

    Dance with what you brung, but if you have a choice, which pack will serve your needs best.
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    just got a pack from bass pro...certianly not the best...but is large enough for a weeks supply along with all i need...was on clearance for 95 bucks..will carry a bow or rifle and is comfortable...cant spring for the really good ones so this will do fine...can post pics if anyone is interested...for the price its a good pack

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    That's cool man, I started with a old external frame like from the 80's (got it at a garage sale I think), and even though was a good pack I eventually pull the trigger on a Eberlestock J107...the point is to start with what you can and eventually your are going to make your way to the pack that works better for you.
    "Wilderness to the people of America is a spiritual necessity, an antidote to the high pressure of modern life, a means of regaining serenity and equilibrium."
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    “Civilized life has altogether grown too tame, and, if it is to be stable, it must provide a harmless outlets for the impulses which our remote ancestors satisfied in hunting"

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    I've got the eberlestock blue widdow. Small enough for a daypack when compressed and expands large enough for multi day use. Also has mesh vented meat compartment and numerous attachments for extra storage, rifle, or bow. The expanding meat compartment is what sold me on it.

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    thanks guys for all the input!

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    I've been looking into this lately myself. Trying to decide whether to use my Gregory pack and just cover it with a camo rain cover or something(its orange) or splurging on another pack specifically for hunting like an Eberlestock or Badlands.

    I find that the hunting packs are typically a little heavier(around 8-9lbs) but more durable and the "backpacking" packs are lighter (about 5.5-6.5lbs) but maybe a little more fragile and rarely in what would be considered "hunting colors". Most nice hiking packs are about $250-$300 and the nice hunting packs are about $300-$400.

    In other words, I have no idea yet and was just rambling :)

    I will say, for any of you guys who can afford it, Kifaru makes some of the best packs around that are the best of both worlds. Super light, big, camo and durable. Roughly $600-$700 bucks

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    I think several on here hit the nail on the head that the main difference is durability for being off trail and carry meat etc. For rifle hunting I have more or less don't care about camo so that isn't a major concern. But I do want something that holds up and has a lot of organization to help me setup camp quickly and get on the trail quickly and know where everything is. I expect to be able to get my spotting scope out quickly, have hydration, something to hold some trail snacks, and something to securely carry my firearm or bow securely.

    I have decided on 2 packs that work best for me and the type of hunting I do.

    The KUIU Icon 6000 is my go to multi-day pack. It is well designed and laid out specifically for hunting. I carried a 124 pound moose quarter out and all the weight was well balanced on my hips and I could get my fingers through the straps at the top of my should so no load was bearing on my shoulders. It is pretty impressive and lightweight as well. With that setup including rifle, scope and water I was at 34.5 pounds for 5 nights with 1/2 of my tent setup. The expansive cc's allows me to get a boned out deer and my gear out in a single trip

    The Badlands Sacrafice is super light and a good option for a few days and also is my day pack. I carried a bone out deer and antlers last year out, minus my gear, with this setup and it was all it could handle. But to shave a couple of pounds and get in somewhere quick I am holding onto this pack.
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    I ended up getting the sacriface as a day pack and buying the eberlestock J34. Now I need to narrow my backpack list to the essentials.....

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    I tried on so many backpacks that the clerk started getting upset. But hey...I have old back injuries from my motorcycle days and a pack can cripple me. The Eberlestock X1 fits perfectly, allows me to carry a bow, rifle or both all day without pain. I have a Sitka Gear Optifade Ascent 20 pack that is quite balanced, light and comfortable too. One thing everyone else has avoided mentioning is that in addition to strength, comfort, camo, and quietness, these packs also have something of a "cool factor" that other packs lack. For example, you hunt for 4 days, shoot an elk and debone the animal and strap the 400pt antlers to your pack. It has a blaze rain cover that prevents some moron from shooting you in the head as you hike out. That's cool!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcrosby View Post
    The Badlands Sacrafice is super light and a good option for a few days and also is my day pack. I carried a bone out deer and antlers last year out, minus my gear, with this setup and it was all it could handle. But to shave a couple of pounds and get in somewhere quick I am holding onto this pack.
    Hmmmmm.............where's the gear? Still up there? I'm going to Idaho this summer. I'm just saying.
    An archer tries to see how far away he can get from his target and still connect. A bow hunter tries to see how close he can get to his.

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    I have a collection of packs, both hunting and non-hunting and I use them all depending on the hunt.
    Here'a a pic from last year using 1970's era Jansports.
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    i am building up my gear. i own a badlands 2800 that i am flat out abusing. i've slept on it as a back support in the desert. it isnt huge, and is awkward to learn to pack. i've gotten good, and besides the goofy square pocket for the rectangular water bladder, it is a great bag. with a cheap lightweight duffle and some old pillow cases, i bet i can haul out some meat with the wing design.

    for bivy hunting..i cheaped out and used my gregory. it was comfy, but with really heavy loads..i need to revisit adjusting the straps. i pulled it all skewed.

    my next pack will be a timberline T2 or T3 from KIFARU. one pack will retire the rest. it is a truck payment, but my badlands and gregory combined is more expensive. i should have researched it all better. the kifaru i can buy external modular bags to make it huge.

    i am waiting for a kifaru sleeping bag to ship to me. i cant wait. great gear!!

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    IMHO, It's all about the money.
    I have many packs of many price ranges and the most expensive are the designated hunting packs.Most good packs or other backpacking gear is vetted very well by the companies yet the added component of camo or specialized weapon carrying adds tremendously to costs and weight.
    Most folks could buy a military surplus Alice pack and be perfectly happy if they thought it was from a specific "hunting pack" company.
    I personally own many packs, tents, stoves and other backpacking gear. It is what I love to do and I always strive for excellence and weight savings. Today there is so much gear tent that comes out it is almost overwhelming...
    Last edited by easymoney; 03-08-2012 at 05:40 PM.
    Stop Global Whining...

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    A good hunting pack is going to have the capability of carrying way more than you can.

    If you take a typical non-hunting pack it is built for lightweight backpacking with a max weight of 50-60 lbs of gear. Will it carry more? Yes it will but it isn't going to carry alot of weight comfortably.

    Do you need to spend $700 on a pack? That is for you to decide and what you finaces will let you do. Two things you want for a quality backcountry hunt are a great pack and great boots. If you are uncormfortable from the get go you will not be the best you can be.

    There are good packs in the $300 range, eberlestock, badlands, tensing has some great packs, horn hunter full curl. There's many out there.

    The 2 best pack companies IMO are Mystery Ranch and Kifaru. They are alot of money but you get what you pay for.

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    I have used the Blue widow by eberlestock. I like it due to the fact it can compress to a good day pack that can be folded out to haul meat. Then you can expand it for you over night hunts and then if you need more room you can add the spike camp duffle to it for more room. Its fits well on my back and right now by pack weight is around 45 to 50 pounds. Good luck there alot of great packs out there...

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    blood stains.

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    Default Geared up for NZ

    Winter gear for 4 ( 2 hunters and our wives ) very lofty gear requires a huge carrying capacity. Minus -20 sleeping bags, down parkas, winter tents, crampons and ice axe, etc.
    Can't wait ! 20 days and counting down.
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    Glass eye, do you have any threads of your trips on here? sound like some good ones.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Daveyboy View Post
    Glass eye, do you have any threads of your trips on here? sound like some good ones.
    http://www.jesseshunting.com/forums/.../218086-NZ-DIY

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    I hope you have a great time Glass Eye. We have had plenty of fronts come through the last few weeks you are going to get plenty cold :)
    Mick


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