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Pack Indecision

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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby JonW » Fri Feb 25, 2011 7:50 pm

I'm also in the market for a 50L for summer overnight alpine trips and winter day climbs. There always seems to be trade-off between weight and support. I suppose this pack would carry a max of 35 lbs or so. Three on my list include:
- Cold Cold World Chernobyl (49 L) - 3 lb 4 oz
- Osprey Variant 52 - 3 lb 12 oz
- Gregory Alpinisto 50 - 4 lb 11 oz

The Gregory seems heavy, but should (in theory) be quite comfortable. I know the Variant and CCW packs come highly recommended. Anyone have direct experience with the three listed above? Thanks.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby Autoxfil » Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:37 pm

50L is pretty big for those kinds of trips. I use a 30L for such purposes. What kind of stuff are you bringing that's so bulky?

Anyway, if you're happy with your loads, I'd get a Cilogear 40L, 40B, or 45L. The subtle differences are outlined here:

http://blog.cilogear.biz/?p=390

I had an sold a Variant 52. It was an exceptional pack, and there are few packs that carry as well at such a light weight. But, now I have 30L and 45L Cilogear worksacks, which are hugely more versatile.

The magic of the Cilogear packs is that they are hugely more modular than other packs. My 45L holds 75L when you pack the expandable collar and lid full, and will carry 50lb+ with great comfort. It also strips down to 2lb with great ease - and unlike any other pack I've ever used - actually carries and climbs very well when stripped down. You can close the sides of the pack down, pull out the framesheet, and you have a 2lb 22L summit pack that fits tight to the back, without flopping around. It even carries skis nice and tight while in this compressed mode.

I love my 30L for light and fast winter day trips, or summer alpine jaunts. But really, the 45L will do everything you could ever ask of a climbing pack. It's not only the most versatile pack out there, but it probably does each of those things better than a whole quiver of more specialized packs.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby jmh5331 » Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:48 pm

@Apex, I've taken my predator on 3 night/4 day overnights and it's been good. 3 nights/4 days on Longs Peak with bivy gear (megamid for a tent) and I could have added 5-10 more lbs of stuff. Same type of trip on Mt. Washington in the winter, 3 nights/4 days camping near the Harvard Cabin and climbing in Huntington Ravine and it was fine. It expands enough for a trip like this, and I don't pack ultra-light. I think the pack weighed about 50lbs with all the food and technical gear, and it was reasonably comfortable (I'm only 150lbs, so a 50lb pack isn't ever very comfortable). I agree with Excitable Boy that this would be the single pack I would get if I could only have one.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby JonW » Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:57 pm

Apex, sorry, I didn't mean to hijack your thread. Since the consensus is a 50L seems most versatile, I thought more specific info on 50L packs would apply.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby Apex » Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:33 pm

No worries JonW, thier answers to your question are helping me aswell, and I guess there are other people out there in the same boat as me.

@Autoxfil, how do you think the Cilogear 45L pack would perform for backpacking aswell? Looks very attractive, can cinch it down small for day cragging and summit, yet expand it hugely for expeditions (correct me if I'm wrong here). Slightly worried about the customization of it, as I wouldn't really have a clue how to set my pack up.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby fossana » Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:57 pm

As an FYI, there's been a lot of discussion/debate on CiloGear packs on previous threads:

packs-cilogear-vs-wild-things-t57159.html
cilogear-customer-service-t55143.html
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby Autoxfil » Fri Feb 25, 2011 11:47 pm

Apex wrote:@Autoxfil, how do you think the Cilogear 45L pack would perform for backpacking aswell? Looks very attractive, can cinch it down small for day cragging and summit, yet expand it hugely for expeditions (correct me if I'm wrong here). Slightly worried about the customization of it, as I wouldn't really have a clue how to set my pack up.


The 45L would perform quite well for backpacking. The materials are more durable than necessary, and there's no vented packpad, but it carries weight very well. They are used by non-climbing backpackers, athough not in great numbers.

It's not overly complex - if in doubt you can just use it like any other pack and learn the advanced features slowly, but they aren't hard. Bascially it's a very good normal pack, but all the straps are modular. This will help:

http://wiki.cilogear.biz/index.php?title=Main_Page

You wouldn't want to carry a full 75L load in the 45L for long - the collar is tall and when fully expanded the weight is too high. It's great for when you want to start in a t-shirt and shorts with helmet, rack, crampons, and warmer clothes all neatly inside the pack instead of dangling all over. It's also great for closing up camp in a hurry and just throwing it all in without packing carefully. But, for real expedition climbing, hauling loads between camps, you'll want a bigger pack.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby Autoxfil » Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:12 am

I re-read your original post. The Cilogear 45L is bigger than the Variant 52 when loaded normally (so it still carries well). It's not a lot bigger, but when packing the same gear it fits much easier in the 45L than it did in my Variant.

The 40L is probably going to be about the same as the Variant, or a tiny bit smaller.

It sounds to me like you could probably use the 45L for everything you do. It would certainly be nicer to get a 30L and a 60L, but that's some real coin. A 45L will do it all, but might get in the way a bit if you're rockclimbing with a puffy and water bottle in there, and while it'll certainly fit everything you need for a long BC tour, I would hate to push extra weight up high while skiing. A 60L would let you keep the weight nice and low and cinch the top of the pack down a bit. Although, if packing lighter is the goal, sometimes a smaller pack helps.

If it helps for size comparison, here's the contents of my 30L right now:

14 ice screws
full ice rack with screamers, slings, biners, etc.
helmet
30' webbing for TRs
gloves
camera
compass, map, TP, gel, etc
60m tagline

outside:
60m 10.2mm
crampons
ice tools

This is by no means overloaded, it's a typical weekend cragging load.

Hope this helped more than added confusion.


I should also say I like Cold Cold World packs - same theory as Cilogear, but they don't have a plastic/metal framesheet or the modular straps. For most of my use they would probably be so similar I wouldn't notice, but for massive and tiny loads they are at a disadvantage. They are significantly cheaper, however.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby ZenoMarx » Sat Feb 26, 2011 2:01 am

You could very easily build your own framesheet and stay(s) for a Cold Cold World if you so desired (or any other frameless pack for that matter). HDPE plastic sheets and alloy strips can be found at places like McMaster-Carr.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby Apex » Sat Feb 26, 2011 3:43 am

Looking at the 60L Worksack now, it'd give me more versatility for those longer trips, and for shorter stuff it might be a bit big but at least I won't have to buy a new pack. If its anything like the 45L it compresses down nicely. Any more thoughts on durability? Have these issues been addressed?
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby MScholes » Sat Feb 26, 2011 2:44 pm

I can agree with the Cold Cold World Packs. About a month ago, when the other thread about packs was fresh, and I needed a new pack I pulled the trigger on 2 of their packs. I picked up an Ozone and a Chernobyl. They compliment my Osprey Kestrel 38 well. And while the Osprey is certainly a good pack, these Cold Cold World packs are something else. The Ozone I think officially lists as a 28L pack but it seems like a Marry-Poppins bag... fantastic! They also don't weight anything! I can't help but recommend them for what I've done so far... they'll get heavy use this summer when I'm in Chamonix/Leysin and on Elbrus, but they should hold up fine.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby drpw » Sun Feb 27, 2011 2:46 am

I use the REI pinnacle for everything. I use it for hauling gear to sport routes, 5 day summer backpacking/climbing trips in the Sierra, and winter trips (single and multi day) with bc snowboard gear. It's 45l and el cheap, and mine is nice since I tore the bottom coming down Baldy in the trees below the hut I sewed it up with rad pink thread.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby 96avs01 » Sun Feb 27, 2011 3:07 am

JonW wrote:I'm also in the market for a 50L for summer overnight alpine trips and winter day climbs. There always seems to be trade-off between weight and support. I suppose this pack would carry a max of 35 lbs or so. Three on my list include:
- Cold Cold World Chernobyl (49 L) - 3 lb 4 oz
- Osprey Variant 52 - 3 lb 12 oz
- Gregory Alpinisto 50 - 4 lb 11 oz

The Gregory seems heavy, but should (in theory) be quite comfortable. I know the Variant and CCW packs come highly recommended. Anyone have direct experience with the three listed above? Thanks.


A slightly lighter option than the Gregory, but one that will likely carry just as well is the Deuter Guide 45+...just food for thought. FWIW, I have put 45+ lbs in my Deuter Glide 35+ and it carried comfortably.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby JonW » Mon Feb 28, 2011 12:06 am

Autoxfil wrote:50L is pretty big for those kinds of trips. I use a 30L for such purposes. What kind of stuff are you bringing that's so bulky?


On most routes, I typically carry the following:
handful of screws, light alpine rock rack, harness, slings, cord, crampons, tools, rope, shovel, probe, helmet, down jacket, upper body layer, climbing gloves, 2-3 L water, and food. I realize some of this goes on the outside, but this will not fit in a 30L pack.

Kind of disappointing that they didn't put a crampon pocket on the outside of the Cilogear 45L. I really don't feel great about just strapping them on the outside.
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Re: Pack Indecision

Postby lcarreau » Mon Feb 28, 2011 1:32 am

Haven't yet heard anybody mention "Kelty" packs !

They've been in business since 1952; seems like somebody would have mentioned them.

I bought one in 1991. It lasted for about eight years, until a marmot chewed a large hole in it
while hiking in Sequoia National Park.

Gawd darn California Marmots !!!

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