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abrowland
03-10-2011, 04:49 PM
I started this thread in hopes to generate conversation about cutting pack weight. I've come up with a few ideas I'll share here and hope to hear some ideas I've not thought of. Thanks for the responses!

abrowland
03-10-2011, 05:17 PM
My pack weight cutting techniques are as follows:
- Keep a detailed journal of the items in your pack on every trip. Make note of the conditions of the trip and inventory what items you use and what items remained unused in your pack. Eliminate the things you don't use.
- Leave the nalgene at home and use a disposable plastic water bottle
- Take one knife/tool
- Use chemical treatment or go with the lightest filter you can find
- Examine your pack. I sold my NorthFace, and found a Gregory of the same volume with 2.5 lbs savings
- Skip the ground cloth for your tent. I've rarely come across a situation when I needed it.
- Measure your fuel before and after your trip. Keep track of your burn time in the field. Use this as an estimation for future fuel needs
- 5' of duct tape around your water bottle is more than you'll ever need
- Knock the survival kit down to a survival blanket, blister control, advil and a gauze pad or two
- Closely examine your clothing requirements. A lot of hunting clothing out there is very nice and very heavy. See if there are alternatives.
- Weigh everything and put it in a spreadsheet. You'd be surprised just how quickly little things add up!

I know these are pretty standard, but I've cut my basic pack (no food) to right at 30 lbs including the pack. This set of gear is good from May - Oct in the Colorado high country. Outside of those months, my gear changes.

mcseal2
03-10-2011, 06:04 PM
I bought a book on ultralight backpacking thinking the same thing. It talks about cutting straps off a fist width past past what you use and burning the ends to keep them from unraveling. The author says you can cut 1/2 pound off the base weight of many packs by cutting off extra material that doesn't fit your use. I will be interested in reading how this plays out, I am making a list of what I have and what I need to purchase and adding up weight as I go so I can take a hard look at what I really need.

Also if you are hunting with two people, what items do you need to only pack 1 of instead of both carrying the extra weight.

*******
03-10-2011, 07:18 PM
I've never tried cutting parts off my pack, I like have long straps in case of big loads. I have found that making some adjustments to the things in your bag make a big difference in weight. I'll make a PDF of my gear list and upload as a picture to this thread tomorrow at work. I would also love some feedback on things.

mcseal2
03-10-2011, 08:23 PM
I'm a little gunshy about chopping up my new Eberlestock also, I need the length on the compression straps for big loads. Also the other straps need some adjustment for different clothing layers. The book had some neat ideas, but alot of them don't apply to a hunter whose needs are different.

abrowland
03-10-2011, 09:03 PM
I'm not a big proponent of strap cutting either. I did make a jump to a down insulating layer. This move saved me about 2 pounds over my old fleece. It also packs up into a space the size of a nalgene bottle.
Another great move was the tossing of my old Thermarest and the purchase of a Thermarest NeoAir. This thing is super! About 14 oz and it inflates to about 2" thick. I sleep like I'm at home when I'm on this thing. My old Thermarest was just under 2 lbs.
To the list below, I also wear my camo, which I don't count in my weight totals.
Here's my gear list:
Item Weight (lbs)
Gregory pack 3.9
Black Diamond Mirage Tent 4.75
tripod 0.7
Andy's Sleep Bag 2.8
Spotting Scope 2.2
Rain Jacket 2.15
Rain pants 2.05
NeoAir 0.8
Down jacket 1.2
MSR Hyperflow 0.6
Jetboil 0.95
Long underwear top and bottom 0.95
Binoculars 0.8
Leatherman 0.65
Journal 0.6
Elk Calls 0.6
Rangefinder 0.55
Small Jetboil fuel 0.4
Water bottle 0.1
Camera 0.35
Cell phone 0.2
wool hat 0.2
Compass 0.15
Headlamp 0.15
Black Fleece Gloves 0.15
Sunscreen, tooth paste, brush 0.15
Toilet paper 0.1
2 trash bags 0.1
Map 0.05
Platypus 0.05
totals 28.4

nebowhunter
03-10-2011, 09:17 PM
I started raising packgoats. took three on A high country mule deer hunt last year. It was awsome. want to have a string of about 10.

mcseal2
03-11-2011, 01:15 PM
I'm not a big proponent of strap cutting either. I did make a jump to a down insulating layer. This move saved me about 2 pounds over my old fleece. It also packs up into a space the size of a nalgene bottle.
Another great move was the tossing of my old Thermarest and the purchase of a Thermarest NeoAir. This thing is super! About 14 oz and it inflates to about 2" thick. I sleep like I'm at home when I'm on this thing. My old Thermarest was just under 2 lbs.
To the list below, I also wear my camo, which I don't count in my weight totals.
Here's my gear list:
Item Weight (lbs)
Gregory pack 3.9
Black Diamond Mirage Tent 4.75
tripod 0.7
Andy's Sleep Bag 2.8
Spotting Scope 2.2
Rain Jacket 2.15
Rain pants 2.05
NeoAir 0.8
Down jacket 1.2
MSR Hyperflow 0.6
Jetboil 0.95
Long underwear top and bottom 0.95
Binoculars 0.8
Leatherman 0.65
Journal 0.6
Elk Calls 0.6
Rangefinder 0.55
Small Jetboil fuel 0.4
Water bottle 0.1
Camera 0.35
Cell phone 0.2
wool hat 0.2
Compass 0.15
Headlamp 0.15
Black Fleece Gloves 0.15
Sunscreen, tooth paste, brush 0.15
Toilet paper 0.1
2 trash bags 0.1
Map 0.05
Platypus 0.05
totals 28.4

Just curious, what raingear, leatherman, and tripod are you using? I carry a Leatherman Wave every day working, but hadn't really considered using it for quartering or boning game. Also that tripod is lighter than mine. Thanks

abrowland
03-11-2011, 03:06 PM
I have a set of lightweight RealTree raingear - and as I write this the numbers above might be from my old gear, which was heavier. I'll reweigh my stuff and post the weight. I too carry a leatherman wave. I switched my spotting scope to a Nikon ED50 - very lightweight, with great optics (not a Swarovski 80mm, but still pretty good). I pair that scope with a very lightweight Nikon tripod. It is not real tall, and a bit wiggly, but well worth the weight savings.

mcseal2
03-11-2011, 08:03 PM
I have a set of lightweight RealTree raingear - and as I write this the numbers above might be from my old gear, which was heavier. I'll reweigh my stuff and post the weight. I too carry a leatherman wave. I switched my spotting scope to a Nikon ED50 - very lightweight, with great optics (not a Swarovski 80mm, but still pretty good). I pair that scope with a very lightweight Nikon tripod. It is not real tall, and a bit wiggly, but well worth the weight savings.

I have looked at that scope also. I'm debating now between buying that scope and using my current tripod, rifle bipod, and binocs. Or option two going to just my bogpod tripod with the switcheroo head that allows the rifle rest or ball and socket optics mount and 15x56 Vortex kaibab binoculars. I'm sure I'd miss my 10x binocs and having the 30x zoom of the spotting scope, but I've read every review I can find on the big binocs, and for a long day of glassing the difference in eyestrain from a spotter is huge.

elktracker
03-12-2011, 12:07 AM
"Black Diamond Mirage Tent 4.75"
abrowland, you could easily cut 2 pounds or more off your tent if you were willing to go to an ultralight single person. I am thinking about getting a Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1. I talked to a G&F biologist who spends a lot of time in the field and he said he really likes this tent.

abrowland
03-12-2011, 02:16 PM
Good tip!! I'm 6'5" 200#. I have trouble fitting in a lot of the smaller tents - I'll check it out though.

elktracker
03-12-2011, 02:24 PM
Good tip!! I'm 6'5" 200#. I have trouble fitting in a lot of the smaller tents - I'll check it out though.

That could definitely limit your options on tents, don't think the Fly Creek will work for you but there is probably something out there lighter than what you are using.

OTT2
05-06-2011, 04:14 PM
A great way to track your gear and weights is with a program or spreadsheet called geargrams. You can enter all your gear and weights. Create gear lists etc. There is a demo video with it, check it out it works well.

geargrams.com

Graylight
05-06-2011, 04:23 PM
AKTO by Hilleberg could work for a bigger guy... I'm 6'2" 226 lbs. and I fit with an inch or two to spare...

mossyhorn
05-12-2011, 12:50 PM
How do you guys like the fly creek UL2 vestibule? I was looking at this tent and wondering about cooking/heating water inside the vestibule while it's raining or storming?

twp1224
05-12-2011, 01:49 PM
How do you guys like the fly creek UL2 vestibule? I was looking at this tent and wondering about cooking/heating water inside the vestibule while it's raining or storming?

It's small, but doable. I had a Fly Creek UL1 for the last two seasons, but just purchased the UL2. The UL1 was large enough to cook in, but you have to be really careful not to melt the fabric. I'm hoping the UL2's vestible will give me a little more room.

Reflex
05-12-2011, 03:31 PM
I have a Big Agnes Seedhouse 2, which is very similar in design to the Fly Creek. I really like the vestibule for storing gear; however, if it is raining out, it is very hard to open and close it without getting everything wet! I have cooked in the vestibule before, but like twp1224 said, you have to be very careful not to burn the fabric. As I was boiling water, I kept feeling the fabric and it was definitely warm. It made me a little bit nervous, but it was raining out and I didn't really want to go out and try and cook supper and get wet.