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  1. #1
    Registered User sleeman13's Avatar
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    Default Granite Gear Vapor Trail vs Nimbus Ozone

    HI I am planning on thru-hiking in '09. The two packs i'm looking at are the vapor trail and nimbus ozone. I was wondering what some of the differences between them were. Also i'm 6'3" 180, so i would appreciate input on which pack would better suit my body type.

  2. #2
    Donating Member/AT Class of 2003 - The WET year
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    I own both packs. Did my AT thru in 2003 with the Vapor Trail and bought the Nimbus Ozone in anticipation of hiking the PCT.

    The pack bag itself is a little larger on the Ozone but the most significant difference between the 2 packs is the frame sheet/suspension and the loads they will carry comfortably.

    The Vapor Trail likes to be carried at under 30 lbs. With loads of 30lbs or greater over any distance the HDPU frame sheet will buckle and you'll end up shouldering all the weight.

    The Ozone will carry 40 lbs very comfortably. It has a bit of adjustment in the shoulder harness (whereas the Vapor Trail is non-adjustable) and the frame sheet is a rigid plastic/fiber so the load transfer to the hips is excellent.

    I'm 5"10 / 165lbs and I have the regular/medium in both so you definitely need the large in either of the two packs.

    If you have a specific question just ask and if I'll do my best to answer your questions. In terms of which is more appropriate for the AT ...that depends on your load. Layout your gear/clothing/food/water and figure out how much it weighs and how much space it takes. That will most likely be the best way to answer the question.

    'Slogger
    The more I learn ...the more I realize I don't know.

  3. #3
    Registered User Phreak's Avatar
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    I currently use both of these packs...

    Vapor Trail = up to 30 pounds comfortably
    Nimus Ozone = up to 45 pounds comfortably

  4. #4
    Registered User SweetAss03's Avatar
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    Default Vapor trail

    Sleeman,

    Great choices on packs. I use the Vapor trail and it is by far the best pack I've owned. And I own a few.

    I'm 6'3" as well but about 250. This pack is perfect for my body. Footslogger is correct that 30 pounds would be the max. I've never had that much in it as I try to stay right at 20 pounds.

    I wish I would have had this pack for my AT thru hike. 20 pounds on the AT is easy money, I started with about 30 and by about neals gap was down to about 20 for the rest of the trip.

    The other Nimbus is great as well but I say it is too much pack but a couple hundred cubic's

    Good luck, have a great hike!

    SweetAss03
    SweetAss

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    Registered User scope's Avatar
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    I used to have a Latitude Vapor, same suspension as Vapor Trail, and now have the Nimbus Meridian, which is a glorified Nimbus Ozone. I think the volume is 3600 for VT and 3800 for NO, but I don't think you'll notice the difference. Partly because the Vapor packs have a way of carrying a water bladder separate from being inside the pack which otherwise takes up pack room when full. This is a sweet feature and one I sorely miss. Alas, the unadjustable vapor suspension just didn't fit me right. I was consistently carrying 30 lbs or slightly more and had it fit right, it would have been great. If I could have consistently been at 25 lbs, then I probably would have kept it. Got the Nimbus Meridian for the torso adjustment which worked much better.

    The Nimbus is a really good pack, although I did have the sil blow out on me once when I overstuffed it. Granite Gear was great and gave me a new pack, sans hip belt which I kept.

    Get the Vapor, see if it works for you with all your stuff, then go to the Nimbus if needed.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
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    I have just bought the Nimbus Ozone for my AT thru hike in March 2009. I need to get my total pack weight to 25-28 lbs. Have you any advice and is this the proper pack for a 1st time AT thru hike.
    Thank you,

    gator 65

  7. #7
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sleeman13 View Post
    HI I am planning on thru-hiking in '09. The two packs i'm looking at are the vapor trail and nimbus ozone. I was wondering what some of the differences between them were. Also i'm 6'3" 180, so i would appreciate input on which pack would better suit my body type.
    Gotta try them on. I use the Latitude Vapor (same suspension as Vapor Trail) and love it. I tried a Nimbus Ozone because I wanted a stiffer frame, and couldn't wear it. The curvature of the Nimbus frame didn't match the curvature of my back, so it wasn't comfortable... for me. YMMV.

  8. #8
    Registered User sleeman13's Avatar
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    Here's a list of my gear...
    Bag: EMS Down 20 Degree
    Pad: Thermorest Z Lite
    Stove: Whisperlite International
    Pot: MSR Stowaway
    H2O Filter: Katadyn Pro Hiker
    Tent: MSR Hubba

    Clothing: Fleece, Shirt, 2 T-Shirts, Pants, Shorts, 2 Undies, 3 Wool Socks, 2 Sock Liners, Rain Jacket, Rain Pants, Hat, Balaclava, Baseball Cap, Long Johns

    Other: Camera, Headlamp, Book, Knife, Bowl, Crocs

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by sleeman13 View Post
    HI I am planning on thru-hiking in '09. The two packs i'm looking at are the vapor trail and nimbus ozone. I was wondering what some of the differences between them were. Also i'm 6'3" 180, so i would appreciate input on which pack would better suit my body type.
    I've got one of each. I use the Vapor Trail for short hikes where the total load is relatively low. I used the Nimbus Ozone on my last 600 miles or so of the AT, and loved it. The Ozone has a much more substantial frame sheet, which accounts for most of its extra weight (compared to the Vapor Trail.) It also has a bit more volume overall. Both packs are quite comfortable when used with "appropriate" loads.

  10. #10
    Registered User hopefulhiker's Avatar
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    Footslogger, why did you choose the bigger pack for the PCT? Because of the water requirements? or the distance between ressupply?

  11. #11
    LT '79; AT '73-'14 in sections; Donating Member Kerosene's Avatar
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    I've used the NO for my last 6 AT section hikes (~650 Trail miles) and love it. I had to stuff it with some extra winter-weight gear this past trip, plus I carried 2-4 liters of water due to the drought in Tennessee, which pushed total pack weight to 28-32 pounds. I really didn't notice the increase in weight while I was hiiking (only afterwards when I wondered why I was tired!).

    There are certainly times when I'd like to be able to access something in the middle of the pack without having to undo everything, but it works well enough that I haven't upgraded to the Nimbus Meridian. I've thought about buying a VT for my infrequent summer trips to shave another pound off my pack weight. I'd consider the Meridian Vapor with its front-panel access if it was 8 ounces lighter than its stated 46.

    If you're starting before April then I might go with the NO or Nimbus Meridian. Once you trim your pack weight (which you will as you tune your gear over the first 500 miles), then the VT should be more than adequate if you're re-supplying every 3-4 days.
    GA←↕→ME: 1973 to 2014

  12. #12
    Donating Member/AT Class of 2003 - The WET year
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    Quote Originally Posted by hopefulhiker View Post
    Footslogger, why did you choose the bigger pack for the PCT? Because of the water requirements? or the distance between ressupply?
    =========================

    Both actually ...

    I laid out my gear/clothing and then looked at food re-supply intervals and added water carrying requirements and determined that my Vapor Trail couldn't handle it.

    'Slogger
    The more I learn ...the more I realize I don't know.

  13. #13
    Registered User SweetAss03's Avatar
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    Default Bag

    Sleeman,

    Just as a side note, and I'm not sure if you want advice on your packing list, but you know that you most likely will want a different (lighter) bag after the first month right?

    My other thoughts are that you should lose most of the cloths/hats that you listed.

    SweetAss
    SweetAss

  14. #14
    Registered User sleeman13's Avatar
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    SweetAss03

    I have a 35 degree bag that I plan on switching to once I get further north. As for the clothes, I'm starting in the beginning of March so I figure I will need the warm clothes. Thanks for your suggestions.
    Also feel free to leave comments on my gear/clothing list. I am looking ways to lighten my load and any improvements.

    SLeeman

  15. #15
    Registered User SweetAss03's Avatar
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    I'll buy that then, early March will be chilly in the mornings.

    Your list looks alright, you will get rid of things as you go and learn.

    I would leave the filter but that is me.

    Have a great time, it was unreal for me!

    SweetAss
    SweetAss

  16. #16

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    I have both too. Used the vapor on At and Ct. it is a great pack but ya gotta keep it light. I had about 34 lbs in it at some pt and it was just a bit too much. The Ozone is great for pct or other desert hikes .. but then could change over once you were outta the Sierras. My ex used it for Pct and 1000 of cdt..he liked ... but looking at other packs now. When you have a bigger pack you tend to stuff it..Ha .

  17. #17
    Registered User mts4602's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sleeman13 View Post
    Here's a list of my gear...
    Bag: EMS Down 20 Degree
    Pad: Thermorest Z Lite
    Stove: Whisperlite International
    Pot: MSR Stowaway
    H2O Filter: Katadyn Pro Hiker
    Tent: MSR Hubba

    Clothing: Fleece, Shirt, 2 T-Shirts, Pants, Shorts, 2 Undies, 3 Wool Socks, 2 Sock Liners, Rain Jacket, Rain Pants, Hat, Balaclava, Baseball Cap, Long Johns

    Other: Camera, Headlamp, Book, Knife, Bowl, Crocs
    Have you tried out all your gear/food/water in a Nimbus Ozone b/c I would say I have pretty much the same gear list except a jetboil stove, thermarest prolite 4, and a Hubba hubba that I split the weight with another person

    I cannot fit all of my stuff in an ozone without stuffing it like crazy...even with my tent on the back.

    If find you can fit all your gear in there I would love to know how you do it and what your entire gear list is....seriously..it's frustrating for me, haha.

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