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what to look for in a Starter/Budget DayPack?


freeballer
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The last few months I've been using a 9L daypack. Its just large enough for my hydration bladder, medical / survival kit, emergency poncho, mylar blanket and a few misc.. I think its time to "graduate" to a larger pack...

In addition to my "regulars", space for clothes (+ socks, a windbreaker...) I'd like to have enough space for camp stove, possibly a hammock. It would be nice if it had attack points for trek poles and hydration compatible..

Definitely open to suggestions.. There aren't many options locally, so I'd probably have to order it and hope I won't have to return it and pay postage. I was hoping to stay within a range of about $100-$150..

Also which would be better for bad back? internal vs. external frame..

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The last few months I've been using a 9L daypack. Its just large enough for my hydration bladder, medical / survival kit, emergency poncho, mylar blanket and a few misc.. I think its time to "graduate" to a larger pack...

In addition to my "regulars", space for clothes (+ socks, a windbreaker...) I'd like to have enough space for camp stove, possibly a hammock. It would be nice if it had attack points for trek poles and hydration compatible..

Definitely open to suggestions.. There aren't many options locally, so I'd probably have to order it and hope I won't have to return it and pay postage. I was hoping to stay within a range of about $100-$150..

Also which would be better for bad back? internal vs. external frame..

for a daypack, you probably wouldn't need anything much bigger than 20L, even for long dayhikes with extra jackets if you think you'll have some weather issues.

you also won't be carrying enough weight that a frame will be an issue, but there really aren't any external frame packs. An internal frame pack may help, but will just add weight to the pack.

you can use ice axe loops to attach trekking poles if you need to, and most packs have them.

i think something like the flash 22 would work well and be under your budget - http://www.rei.com/product/877567/rei-flash-22-pack

something a little pricer but with more features like hipbelt pockets and external water bladder access would be the osprey talon 22 - http://www.rei.com/product/862535/osprey-talon-22-pack or the lighter GG type 2 utility pack with hibbelt pockets - http://gossamergear.com/packs/backpacks/type-2-utility-backpack.html

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for a daypack, you probably wouldn't need anything much bigger than 20L, even for long dayhikes with extra jackets if you think you'll have some weather issues.

What he said.

I've used an REI Stoke 19 [1] this season, and it has served me well for everything from trail runs to "real mountaineering." The hip belt pockets and side stash pockets hold enough stuff that I don't need to take it off very often, it's big enough to hold crampons and a down parka, and it has attachments for two ice tools. The thing's not super-durable, but it's better than a lot of packs of similar weight, well-designed, and cheap.

[1] http://www.rei.com/product/865280/rei-stoke-19-pack-special-buy

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Aaron Zagrodnick

I'm currently using the Flash 22 as a daypack, works great but like Ted said it's actually a little large for most day excursions, but I really like the exterior storage options. The REI Flash 18 is a great pack as well if you're ok without the outside storage:

http://www.rei.com/product/877566/rei-flash-18-pack

Although, you can run some shock cord through the daisy chains for a place to stash some items if you like. You can check out our review of the Flash 18 here:

http://www.trailgroove.com/issue1.html?autoflip=19

The Type 2 / Rukus / Quiksak options from Gossamer Gear do look really functional and interesting as well.

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i think something like the flash 22 would work well and be under your budget - http://www.rei.com/product/877567/rei-flash-22-pack

something a little pricer but with more features like hipbelt pockets and external water bladder access would be the osprey talon 22 - http://www.rei.com/product/862535/osprey-talon-22-pack or the lighter GG type 2 utility pack with hibbelt pockets - http://gossamergear.com/packs/backpacks/type-2-utility-backpack.html

most of the packs don't seem to be hydration compatible.. I usually take a litre or two, depending on the trip.. The osprey talon isn't hydration compatible but its larger cousin, talon 44, seems to... I've written to them to see how large of reservoir/bladder it'll hold..

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What he said.

I've used an REI Stoke 19 [1] this season, and it has served me well for everything from trail runs to "real mountaineering." The hip belt pockets and side stash pockets hold enough stuff that I don't need to take it off very often, it's big enough to hold crampons and a down parka, and it has attachments for two ice tools. The thing's not super-durable, but it's better than a lot of packs of similar weight, well-designed, and cheap.

[1] http://www.rei.com/product/865280/rei-stoke-19-pack-special-buy

Since I can't have the pack in front of me, so I'm trying to find some reviews/videos that can give me an idea what you can pack inside..

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I'm currently using the Flash 22 as a daypack, works great but like Ted said it's actually a little large for most day excursions, but I really like the exterior storage options. The REI Flash 18 is a great pack as well if you're ok without the outside storage:

http://www.rei.com/product/877566/rei-flash-18-pack

Although, you can run some shock cord through the daisy chains for a place to stash some items if you like. You can check out our review of the Flash 18 here:

http://www.trailgroove.com/issue1.html?autoflip=19

The Type 2 / Rukus / Quiksak options from Gossamer Gear do look really functional and interesting as well.

The lack of attach points and compression straps may be a deal breaker.. I should probably use my trek poles more often, but I bring them none the less..

I'll do a search on type 2 / rukus / quicksak in a short bit..

Edited by freeballer
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jeepingetowah

@Aaron, here is a photo of me with 2 sleeping bags, a bivy sack, and all my other gear, cookset and all, in the Flash 18 during a winter hike in Texas. I know winter is not the same, but I agree that the shock cord is a great idea.

Personally I used the Sea to Summit fasteners HERE

I am a firm believer that whatever pack you choose, aim to wear it overloaded and see how it feels first. Then extrapolate whether you want to be caught on a day with a big load. Will you know how to strap it on? Will it hurt after 3 miles? I prefer the Flash 22, better waistbelt, and also water bottle side pockets. Side mesh pockets that allow me to reach for my water bottle is a key upgrade from the Flash 18.

post-20-143508721682_thumb.jpg

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jeepingetowah

@seano - I had never seen that Stoke pack before. I really like the belt and the hipbelt zippered pockets. I would totally go for that because I see side pockets to hold water bottes, which is key for me.

Thanks!

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