View Full Version : Help with choosing a new pack.

11-19-2009, 12:44
Right now I am using a High Sierra Long Trail 90 and I LOVE everything about it, except for the 6lb weight.

I needed a large pack so I could carry some extra weight for my son. My son is now 14 and bigger than me, so I wont need to carry as much extra stuff now.

I do want to stick to a larger pack, but it does not have to be as big as the one I have now. I am not a UL backpacker I like my extra stuff LOL and I do plan 4 and 5 day trips where I will be carrying all my food for the whole trip.

I do want a bag that is also a front loading bag in addition to top loading.

Is there anything large and front loading and under 4 lbs ?

Or would I be better off keeping the Long Trail for my long trip where I have to carry lots of food, and buying a much smaller and much lighter pack for my short 2 and 3 day trips ?


Pacific Tortuga
11-19-2009, 14:29
I did a quick search and saw no packs that are both side and top loading, but, I'm sure there are some out there.

If you love your pack, witch you say you do, why not try cutting weight from your shelter, sleeping bag & pad, + ? Unless you already have.

Keep your SLT 90 pack, buy a pack from an REI, or like, store with a killer return policy and see if it fits your needs.

Smaller pack for 'your style', might be a, ULA CAtalyst. 2 or 3 days, very light, made in Brian's garage in Ogden, UT. USA. ( this is what I love)

Good hunting for your needs on the trail.

11-19-2009, 14:35
Agree with Tortuga, the ULA Catalyst is a great pack for larger volume needs. Altough not a panel loader, there is plenty of external storage outside of the main compartment. An exceptional pack, I love mine!

11-19-2009, 14:38
perhaps a gregory z65 or an osprety atmos 65 if you're going to hauling more weight

I have no experience with ULA packs (yet) but hear that they are great

11-19-2009, 15:26
perhaps a gregory z65 or an osprety atmos 65 if you're going to hauling more weight

I have no experience with ULA packs (yet) but hear that they are great

Or an Osprey Aether 70 if small sizes make you nervous.

11-19-2009, 15:42
The Granite Gear Nimbus Meridian weighs four pounds even on my scale (mfr claims 3#8). The main bag area is top loading and also has a single zipper, offset slightly to the left, that runs up/down over the front of the pack and gives access to the main bag.

One big plus point of this pack is the design of the straps/frame/belt. It sits solidly on your hips and shoulders and, while I haven't taken this pack out on a trip yet, it feels like it would carry 35 pounds handily.

The GG NM is marked down to $150 at many retailers such as Campmor.

11-19-2009, 17:21
When my son got to be 14 and bigger than me, I knew I had carried the last of the extra stuff. Or food. Love my Catalyst though, but too big for me for anything less than a week long trip.

Chaco Taco
11-19-2009, 18:14
Granite Gear Nimbus meridian. Has a cover that you can remove if you want. Its really nice. i love mine. Lotta places may have it onsale soon. Local places here have onsale for $188. Its nice because you can stuff it full and compress it down and it looks really small. Fits me perfect and Im 190, 6 ft tall. My torso is about average. Cannot say enough great things about this pack.

Chaco Taco
11-19-2009, 18:16
It front loads as well. Im tellin ya, check out this pack

11-20-2009, 06:11
I have an REI Ridgeline that I have been using for a few years now and I really like it. Its 4lb 8oz. A little over what you had said you are looking for. It is top and front load. REI has them on sale right now.