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#7216953 - 12/22/12 New Kifaru's...  
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ken999 Offline
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#7217177 - 12/22/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: ken999]  
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Take_a_knee Offline
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That bikini frame looks killer. I'd been looking really hard at a ULA Epic, this may change my mind. I'll pass on the packbag. Hill People's packbag system blows that thing out of the water. I predict they will sell way more frames alone than systems. Now if HPG will come out with a spectra grid version of their Tarahumara, we'll be able to piece together a true UL pack system you can live out of that won't drag you down.

#7217587 - 12/22/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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alaska_lanche Offline
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Have you used the Highlander (larger version of the Tarhumara TAK?? Just wondering, I have and thought it was a great concept, just lacking in a few places, plus its WAY to smaller to use for a week long trip.

That said I agree with you in that the frame seems awesome but the packbag I'm not sure provides a real advantage over a standard longhunter bag to put on there.

#7217643 - 12/22/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: alaska_lanche]  
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Take_a_knee Offline
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I've not used or seen the Highlander. I have a Tarahumara. I have it mounted as a back panel on an old LH frame with the HPG sil packbag and compression kit. I have a small KU pod mounted on top like a top pocket/flap.

#7217677 - 12/22/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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llama2 Offline
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Originally Posted by Take_a_knee
That bikini frame looks killer. I'd been looking really hard at a ULA Epic, this may change my mind. I'll pass on the packbag. Hill People's packbag system blows that thing out of the water. I predict they will sell way more frames alone than systems. Now if HPG will come out with a spectra grid version of their Tarahumara, we'll be able to piece together a true UL pack system you can live out of that won't drag you down.


Not so sure about that. I had a HPG ( and I do love their stuff) 25 sil bag and a Tara and a Highlander to check out and the (2) of them ( Highlander and 25 sil bag) together and they weighed as much as my Kifaru LH guide bag did ( with out the lid). And... that was without any compression kit from HPG to mount it.

I thought the concept of the HPG was sound and thought there would be a wt decrease benefit. But here is what I found from weighing the gear and comparable gear- ( thank goodness for having a good scale and not just depending on the eye test and feel )

The Tara alone weighed 16.25 oz
The Highlander alone weighed 26.25 oz
The 25 sil bag weighed 7.9 oz

So Tara plus sil bag was just over 24 oz (For a about 3500-4000 ci set up - maybe)

And HL plus sil bag was just over 34 oz ( for a 4500-5000 ci set up- again maybe)

( and above gear was without any compression straps or hardware to attach them to the duplex frame)

So how does that compare to a 7200 ci Kifaru LH guide?-

The real eye opener and one that I thought my eyes must be playing tricks on me. The HL bag and the 25 sil-nylon bag weighed more together ( just over 34oz)- even with out mounting hardware, than my 7200 ci LH guide bag weighs alone with out its hood- 33 oz.


*** and the longhunter is a whole lot easier to attach to the duplex frame than the HPG stuff.

and if I need a light weight compression panel, I can just use a Wilderness Pack specialties Handi-pak ( 4 oz.) or one of Kifaru's new load kits.

I think the New Kifaru bags are going to be very nice and much easier to use than trying to mix and match with a HPG system. And I am not opposed to mixing and matching bags - I have found ways to put a ton of different bags from different manufacturers on a Kifaru frame.


#7217695 - 12/22/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: alaska_lanche]  
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llama2 Offline
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Originally Posted by alaska_lanche
......

That said I agree with you in that the frame seems awesome but the packbag I'm not sure provides a real advantage over a standard longhunter bag to put on there.


Luke- think I tend to agree with you on that one. My LH Guide weighs only 37 oz for the bag and the simple basic timberline lid.

#7217750 - 12/22/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: llama2]  
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Take_a_knee Offline
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People who live out of packs, for weeks, no, for months at a time, swear by ULA packs. Their packs have a roll top, no lid, and a mesh back panel, much like the HPG setup. The guy who designed it lived out of the packs he designed for weeks/months every year, and after he sold his company, probably still does. I've been using and carrying packs for 35yrs now, and the ULA setup, livability wise, is the best I've found.

I agree the HPG Tara could be made from a lighter material, and they have considered that. I've considered making something similar myself out of 4oz dyneema.

I don't own a Highlander. I will never carry enough of my kit outside of a Hefty compactor liner to need that volume. If you need 7200ci, and aren't carrying a satcom radio/antennae or a 20lb. London Bridge med pack, you really should learn to lighten up.

Last edited by Take_a_knee; 12/22/12. Reason: spellin'
#7217955 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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fuzzyone Offline
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I have been on the ULA website and all there weight suggestions don't exceed 40lbs. Am I missing something? I don't see where a pack that tops out at a load capability of 40lbs has anyplace on a " backpack" hunt. Hell even when road hunting and we have to pop away from the truck I have at least a '
MR load sling with a day pack lashed to it and I have buds that will have naked pack frame with a small "possibles" bag on it.

I just don't understand

Fuzzyone


Pardon my fat fingered I-phone typing
#7218014 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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alaska_lanche Offline
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Originally Posted by Take_a_knee
People who live out of packs, for weeks, no, for months at a time, swear by ULA packs. Their packs have a roll top, no lid, and a mesh back panel, much like the HPG setup. The guy who designed it lived out of the packs he designed for weeks/months every year, and after he sold his company, probably still does. I've been using and carrying packs for 35yrs now, and the ULA setup, livability wise, is the best I've found.

I agree the HPG Tara could be made from a lighter material, and they have considered that. I've considered making something similar myself out of 4oz dyneema.

I don't own a Highlander. I will never carry enough of my kit outside of a Hefty compactor liner to need that volume. If you need 7200ci, and aren't carrying a satcom radio/antennae or a 20lb. London Bridge med pack, you really should learn to lighten up.


TAK,

There is a BIG difference from the guys that live out of their packs doing something like the PCT or AT that go 5-7 days between towns and stocking up on food and the most they have to carry is maybe 40 pounds at a time vs. someone going on a 10 day backcountry hunt completely unsupported, going in 10+ miles one way and then coming out with camp and meat and cape in a single load.

These two different types of backpacking require to very different types of backpacks IMO. I'm afraid you are confusing the two. I know I would NOT pack want to 100 pounds in a ULA epic frame for any distance. The one I used was good with 50 pounds in it but up at 80 pounds it was NOT nearly as comfy as over hunting packs I've used.

I've used the highlander and its a cool little pack but when you load up meat inbetween it and a frame the usable space inside the highlander becomes compromised even with day hunt stuff if you really wanna strap things down tight.

I guess I just don't like strapping everything to the outside of my pack more than I have to. How exactly do you carry your meat, cape, horns, and camp out of the backcountry? Do have a pic of you doing so, I'm always looking to improve things and seeing a pic of how you pull it off would be great.

Almost any of us could fit all our gear in 4000 cu in pack for week long endeavors, but I don't buy a pack based on my going in weight and space, rather based on what my pack will weigh and space/volume coming out after a successful hunt with meat, cape, and camp all in the same load.

Here is a 7200 cu in pack coming out with half a sheep my buddy shot over 15 miles from the road. Going in for the week I started with just under 40 pounds....as you can see I still was able to use up a lot of the cubic inches even though the pack was hardly full going in.
[Linked Image]

Also how can the ULA setup be the best you've found and you've never even used it?? You don't even know if the frame will be comfy for your body type? Or have you borrowed and used one and carried an animal out with it??

The ULA epic is a cool pack for sure, but hardly a long distance unsupported backpack hunting pack for consistently hauling heavy loads out of the backcountry over and over.

#7218209 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: fuzzyone]  
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Take_a_knee Offline
Campfire 'Bwana
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Originally Posted by fuzzyone
I have been on the ULA website and all there weight suggestions don't exceed 40lbs. Am I missing something?..... I don't see where a pack that tops out at a load capability of 40lbs has anyplace on a " backpack" hunt.
I just don't understand

Fuzzyone


Yes, you are missing a bunch.

#7218258 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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broomd Offline
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Idaho
Originally Posted by Take_a_knee
Originally Posted by fuzzyone
I have been on the ULA website and all there weight suggestions don't exceed 40lbs. Am I missing something?..... I don't see where a pack that tops out at a load capability of 40lbs has anyplace on a " backpack" hunt.
I just don't understand

Fuzzyone


Yes, you are missing a bunch.


40 lbs! Lol....
Backpack hunt for hares maybe!


..
....anyone serious about packing out big game will laugh at that pack...

#7218275 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: broomd]  
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alaska_lanche Offline
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Broomd I know Kevin T uses a modified ULA epic that can do some pretty decent loads. Not sure how far he's packing his loads out but most people can endure just about any pack at 100 pounds if it holds together for a few miles, when you start packing out 10 or more miles is when a pack designed to handle the weight really is worth the extra weight. But it seems to work alright for him, but at 4.5-5.5 pounds for a hunting pack the Stone Glacier, the Standard Timberlines and possibly these new bikini frames are worth a look to shave some weight I guess.

#7218477 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: broomd]  
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Ed_T Offline
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Originally Posted by broomd
Originally Posted by Take_a_knee
Originally Posted by fuzzyone
I have been on the ULA website and all there weight suggestions don't exceed 40lbs. Am I missing something?..... I don't see where a pack that tops out at a load capability of 40lbs has anyplace on a " backpack" hunt.
I just don't understand

Fuzzyone


Yes, you are missing a bunch.


40 lbs! Lol....
Backpack hunt for hares maybe!


..
....anyone serious about packing out big game will laugh at that pack...


The Epic might be rated for 40 lbs but as it comes it handles 60 with ease. By changing out the stays (I used Kifaru Composite stays) it carries 85-90 better for me than a Long Hunter or KU. If I am expecting to be carrying loads of over 100 I go with my Granite Gear Chief Patrol.

That said the new Kifaru looks very nice and I am sure it will sell well and have a lot of satisfied users.


Ed T

#7218665 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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llama2 Offline
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Mckenzie Valley, Oregon
Originally Posted by Take_a_knee
.......
I don't own a Highlander. I will never carry enough of my kit outside of a Hefty compactor liner to need that volume. If you need 7200ci, and aren't carrying a satcom radio/antennae or a 20lb. London Bridge med pack, you really should learn to lighten up.


TAK- you do not have any more idea about what I carry in or out; anymore than I do you. Could I get by with a 4000-5000 ci volume for a week long ( or 3 month long for that matter) "backpack" trip?- sure I could. But.... that volume is going to be pushing it when it comes to packing out an animal in same load. Heck- even 5000 ci. is sometimes pushing it for winter camping for a 4-5 day trip in the snow when camping with family and carrying some of their gear. And, I have very light and low volume gear. The only reason I went with the LH guide bag ( 7200 ci) over the standard LH (5200ci) bag was the weight difference was right at 2 oz. on my digital scale when I had them side by side. They both compress just as small;- they just do not both expand out the same.

So.... you have no idea what my needs are. So maybe it is you that should learn to "lighten up".

#7218693 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: llama2]  
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fuzzyone Offline
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Ed T

Thanks for your concise answer. That makes more sense.

Fuzzyone


Pardon my fat fingered I-phone typing
#7218772 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: fuzzyone]  
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Big_W Offline
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Washington
Big difference between backpacking vs backpack hunting but we can talk about both right? ULA packs are a great design for backpacking, maybe the best UL pack for the money. I have a ULA catalyst but it does not like anything over 30 pound loads. Thats good enough for a 5 day backpacking trip. If I am hunting (especially solo) I want at least a 6000 ci pack. Where I go for deer I need to be able to pack out all my gear and a whole boned out deer in one load. I do not like hanging a lot of stuff on the outside of my pack.

For some of the reasons llama2 stated I do not like the modular hauler concept. They are heavy, expensive to setup and do not give you the space a pack bag would. I also do not like how the weight is getting farther from you body. Everyone seems to be packing out away from the pack frame with these hauler/meat shelf setups. Give me a big internal frame pack so I can stuff everything in and just go.

#7218892 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Big_W]  
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kutenay Offline
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I have found genuine advantages to both types and I just bought a second, pristine-condition, Dana Shortbed Terraframe as a "spare". I like these due to the light weight, great strength and real comfort under load and the ease of packing an oddly contoured load, such as a rolled hide, section of bone-in animal or whatever.

There have been very few internals until quite recently, that will handle the weight that one of these top externals will, the MR packs are good in that respect, but, the Dana externals STILL feel a bit better to me. The pack that "Big W" has been wise enough to buy is the superb McHale and my little experience with them and the maker, Dan, has convinced me to order one soon, they are the best packs I have yet seen.....bit costly, so, it's a decision one wants to make with a lot of thought.

Overall, for wilderness trekking in remote areas, where you cannot depend on assistance from others, I think that the best "expedition" grade large internals are the most useful choice and Mystery Ranch and Kifaru are about the top of that group, McHale, excepted.

There, are a LOT of barely-used 7000 cu.in. ish "Expedition" packs on the used market and those with bright colours can be muted by using a dull toned pack cover. This, to me, is the best place for a novice to start and thus learn what is most conmfortable for him as all the advice here available, cannot "feel" your what your own body will tell you.

That new Kifaru Bikini rig looks VERY good to an elderly geezer like me who wants to carry only the least burden possible. I can sure see one of these as an ideal deer hunting rig.

#7218946 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Big_W]  
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alaska_lanche Offline
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Originally Posted by Big_W
Big difference between backpacking vs backpack hunting but we can talk about both right? ULA packs are a great design for backpacking, maybe the best UL pack for the money. I have a ULA catalyst but it does not like anything over 30 pound loads. Thats good enough for a 5 day backpacking trip. If I am hunting (especially solo) I want at least a 6000 ci pack. Where I go for deer I need to be able to pack out all my gear and a whole boned out deer in one load. I do not like hanging a lot of stuff on the outside of my pack.

For some of the reasons llama2 stated I do not like the modular hauler concept. They are heavy, expensive to setup and do not give you the space a pack bag would. I also do not like how the weight is getting farther from you body. Everyone seems to be packing out away from the pack frame with these hauler/meat shelf setups. Give me a big internal frame pack so I can stuff everything in and just go.


Big W, we certainly can and should talk about both, but the thread was discussing hunting backpacks, which I really don't think the ULA epic is a great option for hunting for my needs just based on my use with it.

I agree about the modular option. However if I can put a 8500 cu in pack bag on that frame and just stack it like a normal pack bag and still be right at 5 lbs and it is still as good as a G2 frame then great...but only time and actual use with it will tell if it is right for me...but atleast I only got to buy the frame. laugh

#7219248 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: kutenay]  
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Bushcraft Offline
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Washington
Originally Posted by kutenay
There, are a LOT of barely-used 7000 cu.in. ish "Expedition" packs on the used market and those with bright colours can be muted by using a dull toned pack cover. This, to me, is the best place for a novice to start and thus learn what is most conmfortable for him as all the advice here available, cannot "feel" your what your own body will tell you.


Excellent point.


It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't, everyone would do it. The hard...is what makes it great.
Reviews are only as good as the crowd reviewing them.
Progressive Liberalism is the philosophy of Western suicide.

#7219539 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: Bushcraft]  
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evanhill Offline
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Western Colorado
Looks like the Bikini Duplex is going to be a great option for lots of folks.

At the size range that most of these systems are (including one of our S25M bags plus a Highlander), I prefer an internal myself. When you start talking about a frame that has a 12"x30" (or taller) footprint, the modular system comes into its own.

#7219634 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: evanhill]  
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DanAdair Offline
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NW Montucky
I want one...

I really like my UL5200, but it had to stay home when I went into The Bob for 8 days.

Big trips, I really need a 6500 inch pack. Or I gotta quit eating, and not take clothes.


I'm Irish...

Of course I know how to patch drywall
#7219638 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: DanAdair]  
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DanAdair Offline
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NW Montucky
But my opinion on the Bikini Duplex is the same of the UL 5200. Good looking pack, but it needs more compression straps.

Or they could just change the Kifaru logo to a muffin


I'm Irish...

Of course I know how to patch drywall
#7220097 - 12/23/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: DanAdair]  
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Kevin_T Offline
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Western Colorado
I like compressin systems like the Epic. I do think with improved stays it will carry a larger load well, though I would like to see an extra compressin strap and larger webbing. I have basically gifted the Epic to Owen (my son) and he uses it all the time. I had to get him a smaller belt. My most used pack this year was a ULA ohm 2.0 with a modified frame. I have carried 75 in it, but really I consider it a 50 to 60 lb pack due to belt slippage. Combined with a couple custom made add ons it is the most efficient wilderness carry system I know of. It's a bit small 3900 , but measured 3000 but I did use it on the early spring crossing of part of the San Juans ( 25 to 30 miles, mostly snow, much above tree line) with snow shoes, ice axe, BCS and prototype sibling stove. I also used it on one weekend BP hunt. I didn't plan to carry out a whole animal though. My plan, if I had gotten something was to put camp gear in a dry sack attached to the outside, and meat inside then come back with a Kelty cache hauler for the big load. I really like the cache hauler for large loads, in fact I like it much more than a Dana external frame. I don't like 3 piece belts though, so perhaps I am in the minority. My twener pack is an Osprey vector series, that while long in the tooth is excellent for loads to 80 ( though I've carried over 100 with it). I do believe if Osprey still made the vector series it would be on everyone's radar for BP hunting .

#7223010 - 12/24/12 Re: New Kifaru's... [Re: ken999]  
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Eremicus Offline
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Placerville,CA,USA
Thanks Ken. I'm delighted to see the new design still uses the upper and lower delta straps. What has always impressed me about Kifaru packs was how well they locked into the hips and base of the spine. For carrying loads, especially off trail, side hilling, etc. that makes a huge difference.
I'm giving away my Mtn. Hardware pack because it doesn't fit any where nearly as well when carrying a load. My Kifaru Late Season does alot better with the same or a heavier load. E

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