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dpage
02-17-2008, 22:00
Anyone use the A.L.I.C.E military pack on the trail?

Footslogger
02-17-2008, 22:03
I was all set to carry mine in 2003. But once I got it loaded up and hiked it for the weekend I decided it wasn't going to cut it.

Funny ...because in the early 70's I thought my ruck was the greatest thing since sliced break.

'Slogger

dessertrat
02-17-2008, 22:05
I've met a couple of guys using ALICE gear on the trail. They praised it for being indestructible, and they were used to it because they were former Army guys.

Honestly, I think it's a matter of different strokes for different folks. Equipment is nowhere near as important as people make it out to be. What you choose not to carry is far more important than what you choose to carry.

take-a-knee
02-17-2008, 22:19
I always hated an ALICE pack, I carried one most of my adult life. If you are taller than 5'8" then the waistpad rides ever higher on your back. The offset of the waist pad from the frame creates an air space between your back and most of the pack but it makes you lean forward excessively. We referred to a Large ALICE with 70-80# as the "Greentick" as in sucking the life out of you. The waistbelt simply doesn't work, most don't bother with it, if you are packing some serious weight with it you'd better have some well developed trapezius muscles. We were actually issued better packs (Gregory's and Lowe's) but often were not allowed to use them because they weren't approved for jumping.

excuses
02-17-2008, 22:56
Like footslogger I loved my ALICE in the 70's and early 80's. I started with it last year on a section hike and even with a change in the external frame to a lighter one, i found it too heavy. that and it was just too large, i wanted to fill it. no a little pack is better for the old bones now.

neo
02-17-2008, 23:03
Anyone use the A.L.I.C.E military pack on the trail?


here is a pic of me carrying a medium frameless alice pack.:cool:neo

http://whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/showimage.php?i=6226&catid=member&imageuser=3462


http://whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/showimage.php?i=6224&c=member&imageuser=3462

neo
02-17-2008, 23:05
here is a pic of me carrying a medium frameless alice pack.:cool:neo

http://whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/showimage.php?i=6226&catid=member&imageuser=3462


http://whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/showimage.php?i=6224&c=member&imageuser=3462


i carried a large alice pack with frame on georgia section,it was way to heavy,but a medium carrying a light load worked well.:cool:neo

Hooch
02-17-2008, 23:08
I humped a large ALICE pack entirely too many miles for my own good when I was in the Marines. Trust me, the last thing I want to do it strap one of those ancient things on my back now. Give me my REI Cruise UL 60 any day of the week! :D

Wilson
02-17-2008, 23:09
I still have my large, bought it myself..could,nt carry my radio and other gear in what we were issued, I think it was medium.
Its hanging on the wall in the shop...I'd like to use it for sentimental reasons, but it just does'nt compare to my Gregory for fit and comfort.

WalkinHome
02-17-2008, 23:36
I use mine for carrying my gear when I do maintenance on the trail. Very durable and versatile. Hiking-uh uh.

scout005
02-17-2008, 23:54
Get a plastic Coleman Ram-Flex frame for it, a mesh back band and lighter hip belt. Cut down some of the extraneous do dads on the pack bag and voila!, you've got a lightweight, really comfortable frame pack. My medium and frame weighs about 3.5 pounds, carries 2,500 cu. in. inside the bag (30-40 pounds usually) and is hands down the most comfortable rig I've ever used. Not ultralight but a real pleasure to carry. PM me if you need specific info. I'm planning to use mine on a thru hike in a couple years.

take-a-knee
02-18-2008, 00:11
Get a plastic Coleman Ram-Flex frame for it, a mesh back band and lighter hip belt. Cut down some of the extraneous do dads on the pack bag and voila!, you've got a lightweight, really comfortable frame pack. My medium and frame weighs about 3.5 pounds, carries 2,500 cu. in. inside the bag (30-40 pounds usually) and is hands down the most comfortable rig I've ever used. Not ultralight but a real pleasure to carry. PM me if you need specific info. I'm planning to use mine on a thru hike in a couple years.

Never tried it but I've been told that works well. I heard the 82nd Airborne actually approved that mod for jumping 'cause they broke so many ALICE frames on jumps they were running out of them. It does away with that ridiculous space between your back and the frame.

Bearpaw
02-18-2008, 00:28
I bought some extra-beefy hipbelt and padded shoulder straps 3 years ago to try an ALICE for extra ventilation in southeastern humidity during the summer. (I was terribly underwhelmed by the LuxuryLite pack, and remembered my old issue ALICE as being a better option from many years in the Marine Corps) Unfortunately the ALICE proved to be no better, and quite a bit heavier. I still have the heavy padded suspension with both a medium and large ALICE packback. But I won't use them when compared to my ULA Catalyst. The Catalyst doesn't vent as well, but the quality of its carry is far superior to any external frame I have tried, especially in the 3-pound or less range.

Now if only I could get Gardenville to make me a 3-pound or less well-ventilated external frame pack like the ones he designed for his own AT thru-hike, I would be a truly content high-humidity-hot-weather backpacker.

scout005
02-18-2008, 00:35
Here's a link to the ruck/frame mod.

http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/Quarters/2116/rucksack.htm

Ramble~On
02-18-2008, 02:28
The military got smart enough to go with much more modern packs a few years back...I clicked on the link above and was really surprised to see the ALICE was still around.
The MOLLE isn't much of a step up.
Smaller "special" units get the gear they want, gear that functions for the desired need.
For the masses it'd be nice if the military would adopt something that isn't a POS. and is actually comfortable under heavy loads.

I sometimes carry trail tools in an old ALICE. The frame design still has me wondering what the designer was thinking.
Humping a loaded ALICE worn over BDU's, flak, 782 and helmet with that huge gas mask pouch on your hip and weapon.....
PRICELESS !

greentick
02-18-2008, 02:36
...We referred to a Large ALICE with 70-80# as the "Greentick" as in sucking the life out of you. ...

Hey! That's a North Carolina greentick! During the winter we would refer to it as a "heater." That Gregory UM21 is comfortable but you need an engineering degree to figure out all the straps and buckles...

Tipi Walter
02-18-2008, 03:58
Hey! That's a North Carolina greentick! During the winter we would refer to it as a "heater." That Gregory UM21 is comfortable but you need an engineering degree to figure out all the straps and buckles...

Since we're talking about military packs I should mention the Mystery Ranch NICE system:

http://mysteryranch.com/site/nice_frames2.php

http://mysteryranch.com/site/nice_bags2.php

These babies were designed for Navy SEALS to carry loads up to 150 pounds. The SEALS went looking for something that could handle such a weight and came up short until they started working with Dana Gleason and his Montana made packs.

I use a civilian version, smaller and more in line with the old Astralplanes and Terraplanes of Dana Designs. I hefted up to 90 pounds with my G6000 pack(smaller than the NICE and without a frame)and there's no hot spots and it rides comfy.

Years ago I used the Alice pack with and without the frame, and I prefered it w/o the frame. I think I was attracted to it because it was green and jungle tested, made me feel like a jungle-expert, and it didn't hurt that I spent 2 years in Panama while in the military and got to see some thick old jungle close up.

But that danged Alice pack never could haul as much as I wanted so I had stuff dangling off of it and it looked, well, like an engorged bloated TICK. The map pocket on the top lid was a joke, the frame hipbelt was way too high, and w/o the frame I had 60 pounds hanging off my shoulders like a bag of bricks. My hands swelled up and my head ached like in the old days when backpackers were real men and hauled enormous loads without hipbelts.

neo
02-18-2008, 08:52
Here's a link to the ruck/frame mod.

http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/Quarters/2116/rucksack.htm



great link,thanks:cool:neo

Wolf - 23000
02-18-2008, 10:41
Anyone use the A.L.I.C.E military pack on the trail?

I'm currently in the Army. I haven't used the A.L.I.C.E. pack while on the trail. I try to avoid using any of my military gear when I can. I just find it is very poorly design. I have seen the A.L.I.C.E. pack break on more than on occasion. You can do a lot better.

Wolf

Tipi Walter
02-18-2008, 10:54
Back in '84 I took out an Army Ranger who was on leave and came up to the mountains of North Carolina for some down time and backpacking. He arrived fully decked out in his black beret(then the Ranger headgear), and a pair of shorts with the nametag on it he wore in Honduras when he was training the "indigs".

He looked at my big external pack loaded down with gear and figured me for some burned-out old vet with trip-wire syndrome, a guy who couldn't sleep indoors, so we hit it off. He told me about all the army schools he attended, jump school, jungle-expert school, SERE school and said the worst of the lot was POW school where he said he signed a form saying the school could not be held accountable for small broken bones.

Anyway, we went into the woods close to the Blue Ridge Parkway and he pulled out his Alice pack and what was the first thing he put in the bottom of it? A .45 caliber pistol. I knew then that I was not dealing with the usual college-hippie, let's-sing-and-dance-while-we-hike type that I've taken out so often in the past.

But he was cool and understood the pumping of righteous nylon.

mweinstone
02-18-2008, 11:13
thank you wolf. anyone whos been force marched with her knows shes a nappy headed hoe who needs to be seriously forgotten. did i mention its a horrible device not fit for a doungeon in a pay to suffer dominatrix's basement? it is.

mweinstone
02-18-2008, 11:14
my 55 litre black diamond shadow is so frikkin cool. he will kill alice if he ever sees her.

take-a-knee
02-18-2008, 12:21
thank you wolf. anyone whos been force marched with her knows shes a nappy headed hoe who needs to be seriously forgotten. did i mention its a horrible device not fit for a doungeon in a pay to suffer dominatrix's basement? it is.

I think he's feebly attempting to say that the Marquis DeSade would have been fond of ALICE.