Looking for recommendations

wildstreak

Member
Nov 24, 2014
80
1
Kentucky
I need a pack. Planning for a mule deer/antelope hunt in Wyoming next fall. I feel pretty confident that I have enough points to draw. Will either be camping close to the truck or renting a place so I don’t need it to be big enough to coyote out. I want a rifle scabbard, the ability to pack the animal out if need be and big enough for clothes, gear, etc. I liked the looks of the eberlestock team elk pack but I’m not sure it’s big enough.

Thanks in advance.
 
Last edited:

jimss

Member
Jun 10, 2012
141
2
If you want the very best look at Kifaru or Stone Glacier. You likely won't ever need another pack. They both have sturdy frames capable of 100+ lb loads and are relatively light weight. I would advise a larger bag in case you plan on hunting and packing out elk at some point. My preference is a 6,000+ cu in bag that I can cinch down tight to the frame when it's not loaded. The nice thing about Kifaru is you have lots of options for bags, lids, accessories, etc. They are mighty expensive but well worth the cost! If you are pinched for cash you can likely pick up a nearly new one on Rokslides classified section, ebay, or elsewhere for close to 1/2 the price of a new one.
 

Slugz

Veteran member
Oct 12, 2014
2,950
728
50
Woodland Park, Colorado
What jimss said above......I run a Woodsman with 4 external pouches, drink holder and a guide lid for 5 day+ trips.
Day archery hunts I run the guide lid, belt pouch, drink holder and webbing
I then configure it as a freighter with only the belt pouch, webbing and drink holder
Compression straps then let me put anything I want on the outside ( rifle or bow)

Only thing I want to get is a no hands carry set up for the rifle ( one with the rest for the butt and the rifle clips to the pack and rests under the arm pit ( several different options out there)

I wish I would have done this along time ago instead of spending so much money on so many packs because I didn't want to spend the money on a good one. Kuiu, EXO, Stone Glacier are all good options also.
 

ElkTrout

Veteran member
Feb 2, 2012
2,443
42
Parker, CO
What everyone has said! You can?t go wrong with one of these packs! They are expensive but worth every penny in my opinion. I switched to a Stone Glacier for the 2018 big game season! So pleased with it and how it performed from daily use to packing out heavy loads!
Previous pack was the eberlestock just one. Great pack but much heavier compared to packs mentioned in previous posts. Good luck and let me know if you have any questions!


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87TT

Active Member
Apr 23, 2013
285
47
Idaho
I had a Kuiu and it was only OK. I didn't care for it with a load and it tended to squeak. Got an Exo and think I have bought my last pack. I bought the 3500. I can carry a whole camp for a week or just use it for the day. Also can just use the meat sling to haul meat.JMO
 

mcseal2

Veteran member
Mar 1, 2011
1,107
79
midwest
I have the Team Elk. It would work but would not be my first choice.

If you really want to stick with Eberlestock I'd look at the J34 or putting together a set-up with the Mainframe, scabbard, batwings, and a dry bag between them if you need more capacity than the wings. My buddy did this for our moose hunt.

All that said I use my Team Elk for predator hunting to hold my huge FoxPro PB3 call and my AR. Big game hunting I use either an Exo 3500 or a Kifaru frame with a Nomad 2 bag. Both have their place with me but I hunt with the Exo the majority of the time. If I was going to own only one pack it would be the Exo 3500. It is up there with Kifaru in quality and fits me great. The bag layout works great for me hunting out west or packing lots of warm stuff in for whitetail. The side optics pockets are very nice and convenient. I have not tried Stone Glacier but hear good things.

The Frankenstud sling keeper was a good addition to my packs. It keeps me from missing my scabbard very often by keeping my sling in place when I'm using both hands on trekking poles or optics.
 

Caseyu

Active Member
Aug 27, 2012
272
0
Reno, NV
Might as well throw some fuel on the fire! For whats its worth I have owmed two eberlestock packs, multiple backpacking brand packs. A couple kifarus and a,stom glacier. The ome thimg i will tell you is nobody will ever complain from buying a nice pack that fits you. All of the brands mentioned are top notch and are taylored towards slight differneces. I would encourage you yo go with atleast a 3500cc pack or bigger. Exo pack is another one that is really buzzing right now and many of my friends are very happy with them. I settled with the stone glacier simply for the pack weight which is what is carried most of the time. Kifaru hands down with pure comfort. But ultimately you need to try, research, pull the trigger, and enjoy! Goodluck

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Bonecollector

Veteran member
Mar 9, 2014
4,294
744
Ohio
Agree with all that has been stated thus far. Keep in mind that many packs are laid out differently as well. I like one large compartment with the 2 long side pockets on mine. My tripod/camera slides in one side and trek poles and puffy slide in the other both for quick easy access.
Some have zippers that open from either end of the bag. I thought this was not a big deal until I tried it. Handles on the top/bottom of pack make it easier to toss around in truck or around camp. Again, not a big deal, but boy is it nice after having it.

How do you want to carry your meat out? Inside bag, outside the bag, or between bag & frame. Things to ponder.

Hopefully these simple ideas get you thinking about other options.
 

HighPlainsHunter

Active Member
Mar 1, 2018
419
3
Laramie
Unless you are counting ounces on multi night backcountry trips you really don't need anything to fancy unless you have money to blow.

I have a few of the Eberlestock packs and they work well and all are well broken in with lots of blood stains. Don't trust people with clean new packs, they obviously have no idea how to hunt LOL. I like having the rifle right behind my back in the scabbard. I use the J-34 most of the time but also have a couple smaller models I use for certain situations. In reality for what you describe a pack that can carry a couple quarters is all you need. Day hunting with a jacket, lunch, etc does not take a large pack. Shoot something just throw 2 quarters in and go back. Dump that load and the gun and come back for the rest. I do this all the time.

If you want a deal buy a used one on e-bay. So many hunters go buy expensive packs, never kill squat, and then end up selling basically new packs for whatever they can get a few years later.
 

Timr245

Very Active Member
Jul 21, 2016
573
365
Northcentral PA
I’m a very inexperienced elk hunter (just 1 DIY Colorado trip so far) however, I can say that I hunted in a similar fashion, just being gone from the cabin from dark to dark and my Eberlestock mainframe, equipped with 2 batwing pouches, rifle scabbard and small hip belt case was so perfect for me. I’m only 5’6” and it fit my torso well so anyone taller would likely find it even more comfortable. The hip belt dispersed the weight great (loaded it with 90lbs of plates once to hike around my house) and it carried my rifle perfectly. Walked about 30 miles in 5 days in snow just below my knees and never felt like the pack was holding me back. Just my $.02
 

kidoggy

Veteran member
Apr 23, 2016
3,915
694
idaho
I need a pack. Planning for a mule deer/antelope hunt in Wyoming next fall. I feel pretty confident that I have enough points to draw. Will either be camping close to the truck or renting a place so I don?t need it to be big enough to coyote out. I want a rifle scabbard, the ability to pack the animal out if need be and big enough for clothes, gear, etc. I liked the looks of the eberlestock team elk pack but I?m not sure it?s big enough.

Thanks in advance.
been looking at it also . if your not going to coyote out it is plenty big enough.. my concern with it is comfort when meat packing compared to the XO packs. both will handle the loads , just not sure how they stack up against each other for comfort.
 

Catahoula12

Very Active Member
Apr 26, 2013
602
31
Northern Colorado
I also carry the Kifaru Woodsman like Slugz had mentioned above. Last season was my first with it and really found it very comfortable. I only wished I had bought it early last spring to use during summer mountain hiking, camping and high mountain lake fly fishing trips. It will be useful very soon. Good luck.
 

DRUSS

Active Member
Jun 22, 2014
363
22
nw oregon
been looking at it also . if your not going to coyote out it is plenty big enough.. my concern with it is comfort when meat packing compared to the XO packs. both will handle the loads , just not sure how they stack up against each other for comfort.
I had a crooked creek and a eberelestock just one pack, then a nimrod pack and a bull pacs frame.
Next was a kifaru and a exo. I really wish I would have spent the $ early. As I really appreciate the kifaru and exo now and realize how much more comfort was available at a earlier time of life. All carry loads well, but some just fit better, balance better or distribute weight better. I believe design is a lot of this, but fit has helped me more than anything. Or maybe extra adjustment options. Haven't tried a kuiu, seek outside, or stone glacier yet though. My mountain rambler has a rifle sleeve which I really like, but this pack isn't available anymore. I do know Bob beck offers a sleeve type that fits on some kifaru systems. Probably could put them on other pack setups with a little effort.
 

sneakypete

Veteran member
Aug 9, 2011
2,648
48
Oakdale Ca.
I have a KUIU icon pro 3200, never an issue. I've packed out elk quarters, 1/2 a mule deer without issues. It sniches down to your back by pulling the loadlifter straps on top.
 

BAKPAKR

Member
May 10, 2018
144
53
West Virginia
Like some of the others who have responded, I have a Kifaru Woodsman. I have carried it a lot since last August, with all kinds of loads, and I would highly recommend it for a hunting pack and a meat hauler.

With whatever pack you wind up with, make sure the frame is long enough for you. I am tall and have a fairly long torso. I used to carry a Kifaru Late Season. It was a little short for me so my shoulders carried more weight than they should have. The Woodsman on a 26? frame has really helped with all day comfort.
 

Eastfork

Member
Feb 14, 2016
82
0
Well, everything that has been said is true. Everyone has there opinion, biased or not. But remember, packs are like shoes, one will fit u better than the next. Just because its 1000 dollars dont mean it will fit good. Myself and my hunting friends have used every single pack one can imagine. A lot if it has to do with what u want and what type of hunting are u going to be doing. Any pack with a 100 pounds on it isn't going to feel great, but how does it ride for all the time your just hunting. With 20 to 30 pounds on your back?

We mostly hunt either from a wall tent or a spike camp, there for our day packs weight maybe 15 pounds at the most. We have had great success with opsrey packs. We use the atmos, aether and xenith. I just got a hill people gear pack. I still prefer the comfort of the osprey.

I know, I know, it not rated for a 100 pounds, it's not tough enough, it isn't camo, it doesn't cost 1000 bucks. It's going to fail, its built to be super comfortable on long distance hikes.......wait....what was that last thought??? It built to be comfortable on long hikes......isn't that what we want? How often are you hauling 100 pounds? ??? Me, maybe once or twice a year. Usually 60 to 80 pounds.

What I'm saying, is we have packed over 30 elk and at least 20 deer. And all we use are ospreys. Awesome warranty, amazing customer service and great product.
 

kidoggy

Veteran member
Apr 23, 2016
3,915
694
idaho
Well, everything that has been said is true. Everyone has there opinion, biased or not. But remember, packs are like shoes, one will fit u better than the next. Just because its 1000 dollars dont mean it will fit good. Myself and my hunting friends have used every single pack one can imagine. A lot if it has to do with what u want and what type of hunting are u going to be doing. Any pack with a 100 pounds on it isn't going to feel great, but how does it ride for all the time your just hunting. With 20 to 30 pounds on your back?

We mostly hunt either from a wall tent or a spike camp, there for our day packs weight maybe 15 pounds at the most. We have had great success with opsrey packs. We use the atmos, aether and xenith. I just got a hill people gear pack. I still prefer the comfort of the osprey.

I know, I know, it not rated for a 100 pounds, it's not tough enough, it isn't camo, it doesn't cost 1000 bucks. It's going to fail, its built to be super comfortable on long distance hikes.......wait....what was that last thought??? It built to be comfortable on long hikes......isn't that what we want? How often are you hauling 100 pounds? ??? Me, maybe once or twice a year. Usually 60 to 80 pounds.

What I'm saying, is we have packed over 30 elk and at least 20 deer. And all we use are ospreys. Awesome warranty, amazing customer service and great produc]

I've used a cheap cabelas pack frame most of my life and it has packed hundreds of animals over the past 30-35 years. getting pretty worn out now but then so am I.


you are correct on not NEEDING to spend a fortune . on the other hand after trying on the exo, I wish I had had one the past 30 years. never realized how uncomfortable my old frame was till I tried a good pack.

I am to the age I enjoy my comfort.



my thoughts are ,if you can afford it ,why deny yourself?
 

Eastfork

Member
Feb 14, 2016
82
0
Kiddoggy,
U are correct. Dont deny yourself the best. But one man's best is not for everyone. We did not have as good as luck with the exo as u. We has a couple of the early 3500 and they were not worth it. I'm talking about all day comfort. But hey, like I say, just because I love asolo dont mean they are best boot for everyone!! That's why america is so great!! We have unlimited options!!!!
 

kidoggy

Veteran member
Apr 23, 2016
3,915
694
idaho
Kiddoggy,
U are correct. Dont deny yourself the best. But one man's best is not for everyone. We did not have as good as luck with the exo as u. We has a couple of the early 3500 and they were not worth it. I'm talking about all day comfort. But hey, like I say, just because I love asolo dont mean they are best boot for everyone!! That's why america is so great!! We have unlimited options!!!!
yeah . I get that .

of the packs I tried on exo fit me and felt best. WOULDN'T SAY THEY ARE the best.
guy at exo store told me they are making a higher frame this year for those with a longer torso. should be coming out around june