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Thread: New Sheep Pack??

  1. #1
    Member cohlp's Avatar
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    Default New Sheep Pack??

    Looking for a new sheep pack for next year. I would like to get rid of my external frame for an internal frame (lighter) that will handle my gear and a sheep. Any recomendations?

    Thanks

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by cohlp View Post
    Looking for a new sheep pack for next year. I would like to get rid of my external frame for an internal frame (lighter) that will handle my gear and a sheep. Any recomendations?

    Thanks
    I have a couple Mystery Ranch packs and really like them as they fit me very well, but they don't work for others. That said I have an Arcteryx Bora 95 liter that I will be selling due to having too many packs . Member here "bighorse" swears by them and I agree they are a great pack, just doesn't fit me as well as the Mystery Ranch packs. He's hauled out a number of goats and deer and even a brook range sheep out with his so the pack obviously up to the challenge. Granted the Arcteryx is 2.5 pounds lighter than one of my Mystery Ranch packs, but the better fit for me more than makes up the difference in weight.

    Also Osprey & Gregory make some solid internal frame packs that are popular as sheep hunting packs as well. Specifying your price range would be a help as well.

    Anyways, here is a link to the pack I was refferring to. Let me know if you are interested.

    http://www.rei.com/product/747133

    It'll be going in the Swap & Sell forum here shortly for $200.

    Good luck

  3. #3
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    My recommendation is to stick with an external frame pack. Since you asked, I'd also stay away from Barney's $500-$600 models and buy about five of those moose packs at Boondocks for <$120 each. They're lightweight and surprisingly rugged, and that many packs will last you a lifetime. I've gone through two or three moose packs in about 20 years. They look like hell before I replace them, but they've also been through it.

    You'll apreciate being able to tie things onto the outside of that frame, and you'll be able to carry a lot more weight with a external frame than you can with an internal frame. Once your sheep hunt is over, you can use the external frame pack for all of the other big game species, but you're not going to enjoy packing moose or caribou quarters with that internal frame pack. If something happens to the moose bag, you can replace it with another bag without having to buy the frame again.

    On the downside, the mesh webbing between your back and the frame (not the padded waist band) will rip out after you get a few heavy loads on it. My .02.

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    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    Just curious why you'd buy a pack you know is going to break at some point vs. a Barney's that is not likely too. After many cheap frame packs in the $120 range have failed on me right in the middle of packing a moose I am going to take a long hard look at a Barney's pack.
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

  5. #5

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    I have the same Arcteryx Bora 95 mentioned above and it has done me very well over the years. I have mostly packed elk, muledeer, mtn goat, moose, and this year a dall ram with it. I started off with a cheap external frame Cabelas model and totally hated it. I really didn't like the idea of having weight so far from my back and the weight seemed to shift..especially when in uneven terrain. The last time I used my external framer I ended upside-down like a tortus on his back and from that moment on I haven't looked at external framers.

    I have heard nothing but good reports about Mystery Ranch packs and maybe their external frame isn't as unstable as some of the older models that have frames 4 to 6" from your back? Unfortunately Mystery Ranch packs are 2 to 5 lbs heavier than most mountaineering internal framers...which is mighty heavy. Obviously the Mystery Ranch line uses high quality materials and that is likely why their current models are so heavy. From what I've heard the Mystery Ranch packs can handle 100+ lbs which is quite a load for most internal framed packs. The additional weight of a MR pack may be worth it if it fits you well and you can carry more weight?

    There were several posts earlier this summer on bowsite.com in regard to Mystery Ranch coming out with a lighter designed pack that is capable of handling 100 lb loads. I am pretty sure they are currently field testing it to see how it performs. It will be interesting to see how it turns out!

    Obviously there are advantages for internal vs extrernal framers and it is best to try a few on and look them over to see which fits your particular body and meets your particular needs.

  6. #6
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    Default Pack

    Go with a barneys there great packs very durable. All my buddies that guide have them and swear by them. Ive had mine for almost 10 yrs now and will be buying a brand new one next year. When guiding sheep hunts i have to carry my food the hunters food and my gear and still manage to find room for a sheep. Ive had my pack fall off mountians and go a long way down and the only thing that happend was it bent a little and im still using it 5 yrs later wouldnt buy anything else. If anything atleast go to barneys and try one out theyll fit it to you and put weight in it so you can test it and see how it feels on you. If your just using it for personal hunts youll prolly never need to buy another pack.

  7. #7

    Default Pack

    I've used several internal frame packs from Kifaru and Osprey and while they are more comfortable to hunt with and do fine with loads up to the 100# range, they don't handle the big loads like an external. If you are hunting sheep with a partner and are likely to be carrying out 1/2 a sheep and your gear it would be fine, if you are solo and going to pack out camp and a sheep go with the external. BTW.....I do like the Kifaru for an internal pack. My external is a Barneys and I have no complaints about it.

  8. #8
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    Default Sidebar Alert

    AKDoug,
    All packs will break at some point (with enough use), but to be clear, the Camp Trails pack/frame has never actually "broken" in a sense that has left me hanging. Once, I had a D-ring pull away from the pack, but it was only one of 10 D-rings/J-hooks, so it was no big deal. I chose to replace the packs/frames that I mentioned before they broke, but both are still functional. I'm certain that I could haul a few more caribou or possibly even a moose out before either actually broke. I have two with mighty worn aluminum, but that's my own fault from repeated abraision against rocks, boats, ATVs, etc.

    With respect to those who get great satisfaction from their Barney's pack, more power to you. They're great pieces of equipment, but my personal opinion is that they cost too much money to justify. It's like fishing with an Orvis vs. a Lamiglas. Both are great rods and just as functional, but the major differences are price and prestige. I'm not looking for prestige, so the Lamiglas is my choice. Likewise, the pack is one place where money can be saved for use on other gear. True that Barney's packs are larger and custom fitted, but (again... no disrespect intended) if you learn how to adjust packs for yourself, you can save about $400 and get a great fit out of the cheaper Camp Trails packs. They're inexpensive, lightweight, rugged, and can handle much more weight and gear than internal frame packs.

    I made the recommendation for an external frame pack because it's hard to justify, in my mind, buying an internal frame pack that will only be marginally effective for a few animals. You have to consider the weight of the meat, cape, horns/antlers, AND your camp when hunting. Internal frame packs are comfortable and great as day packs, but why not use a pack that can do it all?

    Sorry for such a long sidebar. Cheers.

  9. #9
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    Default badland lands 4500

    What do you guy think of the badlands lands 4500. I have one and realy like it. very comfy to wearwith a load and the best warrenty of any body. they will fix for life at nocost to you but for shipping.

  10. #10
    Member akguy454's Avatar
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    Default dana

    dana design has done me great, I used it for many years as a mountaineer instructor and it is comfortable and holds alot of weight

  11. #11
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by akguy454 View Post
    dana design has done me great, I used it for many years as a mountaineer instructor and it is comfortable and holds alot of weight
    Dana sold to Marmot who turn his name into temporary profit and his gear diesign into junk. He now owns Mystery Ranch and by all accounts makes the highest quality packs.

    I tend to agree that the Barney packs are the best external frame packs you can buy. I just don't like ANY external frame for mountain work! They are the cheapest way to haul a lot of weight though and they are handy for tying heavy odd shaped objects to. Most of the mountaineering packs start to become uncomfortable around 75-85 lbs and anything above 100 can go from very uncomfortable to down right painfull or even result in complete catastrophic pack failure. If you wan't to haul large heavy loads in an internal you are going to have to pay to play! The cheapest would be the Large Osprey pack, if you are one of the ones they fit comfortably. I would take one if I was going in w/ a partner and only taking one animal.
    If I was going solo then the minimum would be a Mystery Ranch w/ the Nice frame. The Kifaru fits in there somewhere too but I am honestly not too failiar w/ it. The big money pack would be a custom one from McHale packs, custom fit custom made and custom priced I have owned a Barneys Pinnacle and hauled it up the mountain and it did the job, it will haul a major load, but no external fram will ever provide the balance and comfort of a quality properly fitted internal fram pack!

  12. #12
    Member doogiehauz's Avatar
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    Smile

    kifaru held my 115 lbs of sheep and gear just fine. Kifaru is great and the gunbearer is a life saver. should say arm saver

  13. #13

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    The "Newest" Barney's shoulder straps are nice!!! I replaced my old ones this year. I replaced the Moose bag I had last year (needed more pockets). And the frame the year before that (airline broke a tube)..... So yeah, Barneys packs do require some upkeep. But, then again I have pretty much ABUSED the hell out mine for the last 17 years! The only way to go.

  14. #14
    Member Rick P's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKDoug View Post
    Just curious why you'd buy a pack you know is going to break at some point vs. a Barney's that is not likely too. After many cheap frame packs in the $120 range have failed on me right in the middle of packing a moose I am going to take a long hard look at a Barney's pack.
    Have never had a frame fail, it's usually the bag that dose! Frankly 500-600 dollars is way to much money. Heck thats one and a half years worth of hunting budget or a new rifle!

    Love the old Danna design packs for hiking but for hunting it's external frame all the way! Internal frame packs where never ment to handle the loads involved in alpine hunting.
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  15. #15
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    I should add that I have never had a frame fail either. I have, however, destroyed the straps and suspension system on several cheap pack frames (all at bad times) and that's why I'm headed to a Barney's next.
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

  16. #16
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Default Kifaru

    I am using a Kifaru Longhunter this year - I bought it used. I have only 1 trip this year with it on. Started with 60 pounds - didn't weigh it when I got to the truck. It was very comfortable - but I only had 60 pounds...it was a 26 mile hike.

    I am not sure how it is going to do with moose quarters in it - and won't probably till next year.

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    I Just got a Eberlestock pack, from what i've heard they are great. I'm taking it alpine deer hunting this weekend and goat hunting on the 15th opener. I'll let you know what I think.

  18. #18
    Member wildwill's Avatar
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    Default Dana

    Big Dana fan as well.

    Just an FYI, I have a Dana Terraplane that I am parting with. Its a size L, and has been used on a couple backpacking trips--showing no signs of use at all. I listed on an auction site, but if no bids and a local fella wanted it, I would sell it locally.

    Will
    Since the World is 2/3 Water and Only 1/3 Land, Figures the Good Lord Intended I Fish More Than I Plow.

  19. #19
    Member cohlp's Avatar
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    Default Thanks

    Thanks for all the help guys. I have 3-4 in mind now that I can go try out.

  20. #20
    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Default Bora

    I just hauled out a goat on a solo trip with my Bora 95 today. Thats the third goat hauled out with this pack. Only complaint.....the upper supporting straps attached to the suspension have come loose and there is some side to side play at times and with a big load and decending through goat country. I think I can repair it.

    I do like the Badlands packs too. Never tried MR but looked at the web site and they look solid and the options are cool.

    Pay to play, so-to-speak. High on a mountain with your trophy loaded up is not the place for a pack failure.

    The only reason I support my Bora is because it's performed time and again. It's starting to show some age though.

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