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#3587817 - 02/14/14 07:02 PM Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight?
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
Alright, first gear weigh in for a 7-8 day, backpack style (no spike camp) CO Elk hunt. Actual gear came in at 44.23 (without bow), 48.63 with bow, but there are still have a couple of unknown variables.

*Food: I estimated 10 lbs for 7-8 days including coffee. That's a bit heavy, as 1 lbs per day is the usual goal, but I know I'll need it. I just don't perform well without sufficient calories.

Some of these things, I'm looking to cut corners. In others, I need to cut corners, but I can't afford the upgrade. For example, my sleeping bag comes in at 3.2 lbs. It was "Ultralight" by the standards of 1999, but the equivalent bags today are coming in at a little over a pound if you're willing to shell out $400+ (that' upgrade won't happen this year). Same thing on the down jacket, mine (that I also bought in 1999) came in at 20 oz. Newest models are running 9 oz. Those to upgrades alone would save me almost 3 pounds, but I can't afford it.

What can I trim and what looks heavy? Since we'll be hunting with full packs and covering extremely difficult terrain, I need to trim down to 40 lbs. I can probably compromise on a pound of food, possibly 1.5 lbs, but I know I am going to be more than 7 lbs. Expected Temp range is 30-80 degrees


Empty Pack: 126.4
Sleeping Bag: 51.2
Tarp Shelter: 11
Trekking Poles: 18.8
Water Filter: 12.5
XLite Sleeping Pad: 12.5
Soft shell Jacket 24
Down Jacket: 20.5
Food: 160oz
Firstaid kit: 10
Water: 35.2 (2 liters)
Bladder: 6 oz
Rain gear (top & bottom): 34.4
Merino Base layer pants: 9.1
Merino Base Layer shirt: 8
Outerwear Pants: 18.5
Gloves: 2.6
Merino Neck gaiter: .75
Merino hat: .75
Hat: .75
Optics + Harness: 35.2
GPS w batteries: 5.4
headlamp w/ batteries: 3.2
Spare batteries: 6
dry sacks: 3
Tent stakes: 2.1
Stove: 3
Pot/cup/spork: 12
Fuel: 8
*Kill Kit: 30 (game bags, knife, 550 cord)
socks 7
Boots: 30
-----
707.75 oz/ 44.23 lbs

Bow: 68.8

Total: 776.55/ 48.53 lbs
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3587886 - 02/14/14 07:44 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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I'd ditch the extra base layers, neck gaiter, extra boots, outer pants, and down jacket (unless you sleep in it).

I'd also replace the rain gear with a poncho (http://www.golite.com/Poncho-Tarp-P885.aspx) 7 ounces compared to 34.4. All you do with rain gear is put it on to wait out a storm, then take it right back off. This is assuming you're wearing leg gaiters, which are a necessity.

Make sure you pack enough variety for food. Otherwise, you'll just be starving yourself while you pack around a bunch of carp you can no longer stand to eat. I've returned with food on every single one of my trips.

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#3587898 - 02/14/14 07:53 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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Your pack weighs almost 8 pounds. Next to the sleeping bag this is probably the most expensive thing. You should be able to cut 2.5 pounds here with an upgrade.

http://www.rei.com/product/844652/rei-xt-85-pack#specsTab

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#3587906 - 02/14/14 07:58 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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Add a pair of Crocs for camp shoes. You'll thank me later.
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#3587908 - 02/14/14 07:59 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Buzzard Breath]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: Buzzard Breath
I'd ditch the extra base layers, neck gaiter, extra boots, outer pants, and down jacket (unless you sleep in it).

I'd also replace the rain gear with a poncho (http://www.golite.com/Poncho-Tarp-P885.aspx) 7 ounces compared to 34.4. All you do with rain gear is put it on to wait out a storm, then take it right back off. This is assuming you're wearing leg gaiters, which are a necessity.

Make sure you pack enough variety for food. Otherwise, you'll just be starving yourself while you pack around a bunch of carp you can no longer stand to eat. I've returned with food on every single one of my trips.


None of the clothes, assesories or boots are "extra." I'm wearing those, and am counting the total weight I am carrying (and wearing). My resistance to ditching the rain gear is in the case we get socked in with rain for several days or the entire trip. I have considered the poncho though -might could make that decision depending on the forecast. Another Problem with a poncho is it's difficult to bowhunt in and doesn't breathe very well.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3587959 - 02/14/14 08:40 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
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Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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Add leg gaiters, Tylenol Pm, earplugs, extra lighter (first aid kit), TP, baby wipes (these can be dried and rejuvenated with a couple drops of water), and 2 pairs of merino wool boxers (burn 1 on day 4).

Tylenol PM and earplugs are to keep the bears away. The Colorado mountains will be completely silent in September, not even bugs will be making noise. You will hear leaves drop. This will solve that problem for you. I wear earplugs anytime I'm backpacking in black bear country anymore. Besides, you've already survived a shark attack, what's the chance of you being attacked by a bear?

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#3587979 - 02/14/14 08:58 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Buzzard Breath]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: Buzzard Breath
Add leg gaiters, Tylenol Pm, earplugs, extra lighter (first aid kit), TP, baby wipes (these can be dried and rejuvenated with a couple drops of water), and 2 pairs of merino wool boxers (burn 1 on day 4).

Tylenol PM and earplugs are to keep the bears away. The Colorado mountains will be completely silent in September, not even bugs will be making noise. You will hear leaves drop. This will solve that problem for you. I wear earplugs anytime I'm backpacking in black bear country anymore. Besides, you've already survived a shark attack, what's the chance of you being attacked by a bear?


Yeah, looks like I forgot to add the weight of TP, wipes (plan to dehydrate most of them), and merino boxers. I was just planning on one pair. Is that a mistake?
Tylonel PM -good idea. I'll probably bring multivitamins, too. I do have some gaiters, I'll have to check their condition, though.

As I'm inching closer to 50 lbs, I've got to start cutting. We were talking about sharing a stove and pot which would cut 5-10 oz, but we had also discussed splitting up some to cover more ground.

Pack: I would like to upgrade to a Stone Glacier pack, but I doubt it's in the cards this year. Will that REI pack carry exceptionally heavy loads (100 lbs +) for meat hauling? That's my concern with a "budget" pack. They are fine on 60 pound loads, but come up short when hauling heavy loads.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3588083 - 02/14/14 10:51 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
AT Hiker
6 Point


Registered: 07/03/11
Posts: 853
Loc: Clarksville, Tennessee

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I would start training pack goats right now, they can carry about 40lbs each and if you get hungry you of all people will know how to cook one.

I say take all that gear on a 2 day hike here in TN (go to the Smokies). You will then see what non hunting essiantials you will need.

Socks are a good investment too, merino wool, keep a clean pair to sleep in.
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In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
-John Muir




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#3588096 - 02/14/14 11:15 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: AT Hiker]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: AT Hiker
I would start training pack goats right now, they can carry about 40lbs each and if you get hungry you of all people will know how to cook one.

I say take all that gear on a 2 day hike here in TN (go to the Smokies). You will then see what non hunting essiantials you will need.

Socks are a good investment too, merino wool, keep a clean pair to sleep in.


Planning on doing a 2-3 day backpacking trip in the Ozarks to test a couple of things, mainly the tarp system. I also want to see what I can do with some backcountry food. I have an idea I want to experiment with, just need to test it out. If it works, it could potentially give me the calories I need at minimal weight.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3588334 - 02/15/14 09:01 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
AT Hiker
6 Point


Registered: 07/03/11
Posts: 853
Loc: Clarksville, Tennessee

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When I hiked from GA to the Smokies a couple years ago I ate a fraction of the food I brought but used just about everything else. Like Buzz said, you will likely return with food and typically it is the heaviest thing you pack.

I wish you luck with the food experiment, if you can shave weight there and still keep your nutrition and hunger pains at ease then you will do good.

X2 on crocs, super lite weight and your feet will love you. Plus they are good for water crossings. I strap mine on the outside of my pack.
_________________________

In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
-John Muir




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#3588495 - 02/15/14 10:52 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: AT Hiker]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
Camp Shoes: This is a hotly debated topic amongst ultra light backpackers and hunters these days. Some guys are carrying the 5 Finger Shoes and similar and you can get some of those that weigh only 5 ounces. I've been out of the backpacking game for awhile, but I never carried camp shoes in the past even though some of my partners did. For creek crossings, I always removed my insoles and socks and crossed the creek in my boots. For camp, I'd either walk around with my boots unlaced or barefooted. I can definitely see the allure of having camp shoes, but it seems like a luxury. They are also redundant. If I can figure out how to get below 40 lbs, I'll reconsider, but right now, its all about seeing where I can cut weight and not add it. The Softshell jacket is my current target. I could replace it with a 2nd merino shirt and shave close to a pound. Theoretically, if we are on the move, I won't need a jacket, maybe my rain jacket to cut the wind. I'm wondering if I could get by with a single Merino shirt + rain jacket + down jacket (when needed). That's a tough one, I feel like I need a midlayer option. The down jacket is too warm to move in. Hmm.

I hear you on getting burned out on food items, though, I don't recall ever returning from a trip with excess food. At the same time, thinking back, I don't recall much of the details of eating on backpacking trips. I guess when you are just backpacking and don't have the weight of hunting specific gear, you have a little more latitude. Other backpacking trips for me were climbing trips, where we were also hauling climbing gear in with us. Those were usually very heavy packs going in and out, so I reckon we just ponied up on that end and hauled the loads. We would set up a camp and climb in an area for several days at a time in the backcountry. I remember snacking on a lot of jerky, dried pineapple and macadamia nuts.

So, anyway, my idea for dealing with food is to make a batch of Pemmican. A cupcake portion is socked full of protein and gets you ~500 calories. I was thinking that I could get by, at least on a certain number of dinners, merely by eating a piece of pemmican and mixing a ~3,000+ calorie, super concentrated drink with a mixture of protein powder, hydrate and recover mix, and quality sports drink mix (Cytomax or similar). Theoretically, I could have a ~4,000 calories meal, socked full of protien, simple carbs, and vitamins in just a few ounces. The theoretical problems with a meal such as this is that it will take you 20-30 minutes before you start to feel full. Psychologically, you ate a cupcake and a drink after a long day of extreme excursion. The question is, psychologically, will that do it? I was thinking that I could alternate dinners with that and Mountain House (or similar) meals, meaning that I would not be eating cooked food on half of the night out. Sounds good in theory, but I need to experiment with it first. With a selection of nuts, dried fruit, jerky, and homemade power bars to get me through the day, I think I could stay within the 1 lbs per day range, but cutting corners like that is the only way I am going to be able to do it. Under those conditions, My body is going to scream for 5,000+ calories a day and that's all there is to it. Also, my body seems to draw energy best from fat and protein sources. Lately, I've really only been eating a single, small cup of steel cut oats or a single sweet potato as my only sources of carbs each day. Energy levels are great and I've been training hard. In order to stay strong and keep my energy levels up, I'm going to have to figure out how to achieve that with minimal weight. So, the pemmican + super concentrated drink seems like the most direct and lightweight route from A (food) to Z (optimal performance).

If that doesn't work out, it will be back to the drawing board. I know that a lot of hardcore guys are ditching stoves altogether these days, but I ain't going anywhere or doing anything without a cup of coffee in the morning and that's non negotiable. I as on a 7 day+ backpacking trip in WY with my dad back about 12 years ago, or so and our stove crapped out on the 2nd morning. My dad said "oh, well, I guess we'll do without and said, "No way. You go ahead and I'll catch up." I left my pack and trail rain back out, jumped in my dad's truck, drove to Jackson Hole, bought a new stove (and drank a cup of coffee), drove back, trail ran my way back in, put on my pack and started hiking. I caught up with my dad's camp late that night. I don't remember how many miles that was exactly, but I was to say it was around 35 miles. I know we were at least 10 miles in when the stove crapped out. Hey, I'm serious about having my cup of coffee in the morning ;\)
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3588566 - 02/15/14 11:55 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
I reconfigured the weight lay out. A lot of people don't count the weight of the clothes they are wearing or even their optics. IMO, weight is weight regardless of where you are wearing/carrying it. My total weight is 10 lbs heavier than my pack weight. You'd have to convince that you wouldn't feel the difference in 10 lbs when gaining a couple of thousand feet of elevation before it would not get considered as part of the weight you are carrying. But, for the sake of clarity (and for the fact that it looks lighter on paper):

Empty Pack: 126.4
Sleeping Bag: 51.2
Tarp Shelter: 11
Trekking Poles: 18.8
Water Filter: 12.5
XLite Sleeping Pad: 12.5
Soft shell Jacket 24
Down Jacket: 20.5
Food: 160oz
Firstaid kit: 10
Water: 35.2 (2 liters)
Bladder: 6 oz
Rain gear (top & bottom): 34.4
GPS w batteries: 5.4
headlamp w/ batteries: 3.2
Spare batteries: 6
dry sacks: 3
Tent stakes: 2.1
Stove: 3
Pot/cup/spork: 12
Fuel: 8
*Kill Kit: 30 (game bags, knife, 550 cord)
socks 2
-----

Base Pack weight: 598.2/ 37.38 lbs


Bow: 68.8

Clothes/Optics:
Merino Base layer pants: 9.1
Merino Base Layer shirt: 8
Outerwear Pants: 18.5
Gloves: 2.6
Merino Neck gaiter: .75
Merino hat: .75
Hat: .75
Optics + Harness: 35.2
Boots: 30
Socks: 4

109.65 / 6.8 lbs

Grand Total: 776.65/ 48.54
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3588790 - 02/15/14 03:38 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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 Originally Posted By: Poser
Pack: I would like to upgrade to a Stone Glacier pack, but I doubt it's in the cards this year. Will that REI pack carry exceptionally heavy loads (100 lbs +) for meat hauling? That's my concern with a "budget" pack. They are fine on 60 pound loads, but come up short when hauling heavy loads.

The REI XT85 is an awesome hauler. It can easily handle more weight than I am comfortable carrying. Do a search on Bowsite or Rokslide for info. Several forum members use it and have posted about it. By cutting off some unnecessary parts, it can be trimmed down to below 5 pounds.

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#3588814 - 02/15/14 03:59 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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 Originally Posted By: Poser
A lot of people don't count the weight of the clothes they are wearing or even their optics. IMO, weight is weight regardless of where you are wearing/carrying it.

You won't catch me doing this. I don't weigh anything anymore. My pack weighs what it weighs and I've got to carry it no matter what. Don't get me wrong, I've done enough of this that I could probably tell you what it is within a couple pounds. But, I'm more concerned with being able to be somewhat comfortable and enjoying myself more while on a hunt.

I'm a tent person and I want 2 hot meals a day. It's what helps me hunt to the best of my ability. Although this year I may become a tipi person and pack a wood burning stove with me. I've been on hunts where I've been miserable, lost focus, and blew opportunities. No more.

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#3588847 - 02/15/14 04:28 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Buzzard Breath]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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I'm also developing a new concept over the winter. I have established a solid layer of energy around my midsection. I figure if I can keep this until my hunt, I can easily handle less food. \:D
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#3589192 - 02/15/14 09:08 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Buzzard Breath]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
12 Point


Registered: 08/29/99
Posts: 7425
Loc: Powell Tn

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 Originally Posted By: Buzzard Breath
I'm also developing a new concept over the winter. I have established a solid layer of energy around my midsection. I figure if I can keep this until my hunt, I can easily handle less food. \:D


That's how I figure it...I could easily make it a few days if I became lost or ran out of chow. At some point this summer I'm gonna take the tipi and stove plunge. That way I can carry a lighter bag and more chow The Mystery Ranch 6500 I have weighs nearly 10 empty.

A person could just about drive themselves nuts trying to cut weight. I have read where guys have cut the edges off of their maps, toothbrushes in half and God forbid....1 pair of drawers. Powder and baby wipes only work for so many days.
_________________________
"Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." --Benjamin Franklin


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#3589212 - 02/15/14 09:25 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
AT Hiker
6 Point


Registered: 07/03/11
Posts: 853
Loc: Clarksville, Tennessee

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Poser, you seem very analytical over this, you actually seem like the ultralight backpackers I met on the trail. I for one try my best within my budget to cut as much weight as possible but I also feel if you can train and prep yourself for a heavier weight you give yourself a huge advantage. I also loose the fun when I think to much about it.

My feet are my life source, therefore good boots, merino socks, and crocs are a must. No way you can let your feet breath and boots dry some by wearing them in camp.

For food, I have tried everything for the most part but nothing like ramen noodles to make you feel full and give you that quick endorphin like feeling. Then I take supplements, energy dense bars for the nutrition side. Food is a highly debatable topic as well, but knowing your body (like you do) is key. I can survive 5 days in the backcountry with 2,000 cal or less per day, water is my key element. Ramen and a snickers bar can carry me 20 miles in the mountains, when I get back to town a micro brewery and brick oven pizza joint is my first stop.

Bottom line is this; you will cut all that weight then hopefully at the end of the hunt you will be packing out more weight than you ever imagined. A nice mature bull elk aint skinny by no means.

What is your favorite backpacking coffee? I like the starbucks via, its my splurge when I go hiking.
_________________________

In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
-John Muir




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#3589218 - 02/15/14 09:33 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: UPSman
 Originally Posted By: Buzzard Breath
I'm also developing a new concept over the winter. I have established a solid layer of energy around my midsection. I figure if I can keep this until my hunt, I can easily handle less food. \:D


That's how I figure it...I could easily make it a few days if I became lost or ran out of chow. At some point this summer I'm gonna take the tipi and stove plunge. That way I can carry a lighter bag and more chow The Mystery Ranch 6500 I have weighs nearly 10 empty.

A person could just about drive themselves nuts trying to cut weight. I have read where guys have cut the edges off of their maps, toothbrushes in half and God forbid....1 pair of drawers. Powder and baby wipes only work for so many days.


Kuiu is releasing a new series of packs next month. The Ultra 6000 which weighs in at 3.9 lbs. price, surprisingly, cost is $350. That being said, there has been criticism of their Icon series packs. Though, for the weight, price point and the ability to seperate the pack from the frame for meat hauling, it's definitely one to consider. The Stone glacier and Kifaru packs are all in the $600+ range.

As far as weight goes, I'm definitely off the "light is right" philosophy, if you can afford it. Shaving ounces anywhere you can by cutting tags off clothes, sawing toothbrushes in half etc all add up.

Have you guys seen the "Wooby" trend to save weigh on full sleeping bags?
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3589223 - 02/15/14 09:36 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
tickweed
10 Point


Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 4740
Loc: medon,Tn.

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what are your plans if you take an elk? At the time of yr you are going, you wont have a large time frame to get an 800lb animal out. Believe me, I know. Packing in sounds great, but without horses or mules, getting meat out is a monster of a job if packing out on pack frames. We hike in from our main base camp daily, 3-5 miles, but many times when we have taken Elk we had to get them out that day, and head down the mountain to get them to a processor. If warm at all, the black flies and yellowjackets will cover the meat. Meat bags are a must, as well as skinning as quick as possible. Just keep this in mind, because if you pack in deep in bow season, you will lose meat unless you have 5-6 people in great shape that have pack frames, and are able to get it out asap. Had a buddy that went a couple yrs ago by himself, packed in several miles, killed a nice 5x5, and lost over half the elk due to warm weather, and no help. Going light is great with horses, but you have got to be in daily range of a vehicle during bow season, in the event you have to get a elk out. Now, during gun season, mid Oct. onward, yes, much cooler, usually some snow, meat can be hung, more time to get it out. One tip, if you must hang meat, hang it in dark timber, much cooler, keep the sun off it. Just trying to help you out. Ive been 16 yrs, we've took 30 plus elk. Wish you the best. My last advice, take plenty of water, or you wont make it. You cant drink enough.

Edited by tickweed (02/15/14 09:42 PM)
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The hardest thing about Bowhunting Turkeys is leaving the gun at home!

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#3589232 - 02/15/14 09:51 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
12 Point


Registered: 08/29/99
Posts: 7425
Loc: Powell Tn

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I have a friend who has an Icon pack. I haven't had the chance to fiddle with it much. With my MR bag, it will carry far more than I can physically tote up and down a mountain. I have seen the Wooby bags but I'm a cold sleeper. I have a Big Agnes Storm King and I sleep just fine in it. If it wasn't so big, I'd carry my Cabelas Alaskan -40 bag, but it doesn't compress down to about the size of a mini fridge.
_________________________
"Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." --Benjamin Franklin


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#3589239 - 02/15/14 09:56 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
12 Point


Registered: 08/29/99
Posts: 7425
Loc: Powell Tn

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3 of us toted a cow out in one trip, about 3 miles. We had to help each other up as we all had about 100+ lbs of elk and gear. I agree whole heartedly on having a plan to get an elk out. Another thing is that if you aren't familiar with horses and tack, then you have no business trying to figure it out when you get to the trail. It is a disaster waiting to happen.
_________________________
"Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." --Benjamin Franklin


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#3589273 - 02/15/14 10:40 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
AT Hiker
6 Point


Registered: 07/03/11
Posts: 853
Loc: Clarksville, Tennessee

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I have not heard of the Wobby, had to look it up. But I do use a liner in my REI down radiant bag, which by the way is awesome! IMO their is nothing better in its price range.
_________________________

In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
-John Muir




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#3589475 - 02/16/14 09:05 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: AT Hiker]
1shot1kill
4 Point


Registered: 09/06/01
Posts: 393
Loc: unicoi county tn us

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I went on the second rifle hunt in 2013. If I had it to do over I would have left the insulated clothing at the house. They are nice in the early mornings but you will warm up quick when you start putting the miles in. Also if you have insulated boots such as Rocky Bearclaws etc, ditch them, use a lightweight 6" waterproof hiking boot with good socks. Make sure you take extra pair of socks, and mole skin. I took my GPS also and didn't use it just added weight, all you need there is a good topo map and compass. If you do decide to take your GPS I have a 24K Topo Colorado base map if your interested. Good luck on your hunt
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#3589532 - 02/16/14 10:05 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: AT Hiker]
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Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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 Originally Posted By: AT Hiker


Bottom line is this; you will cut all that weight then hopefully at the end of the hunt you will be packing out more weight than you ever imagined. A nice mature bull elk aint skinny by no means.

What is your favorite backpacking coffee? I like the starbucks via, its my splurge when I go hiking.


Yeah, my plan is to be uninhibited by my pack weight on a daily basis while
hunting, though I intend to train for hauling heavy loads of 100+.

Coffee: Yeah, the via is lightest. I do a have silicone coffee maker setup that's light, but the ground coffee itself adds up if you are talking more than 3-4 days. That is a total luxury, but I'll probably go with the Via on this trip, Seems to be the best quality vs. weight ratio, don't you think?
_________________________
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#3589565 - 02/16/14 10:40 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: tickweed]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: tickweed
what are your plans if you take an elk? At the time of yr you are going, you wont have a large time frame to get an 800lb animal out. Believe me, I know. Packing in sounds great, but without horses or mules, getting meat out is a monster of a job if packing out on pack frames. We hike in from our main base camp daily, 3-5 miles, but many times when we have taken Elk we had to get them out that day, and head down the mountain to get them to a processor. If warm at all, the black flies and yellowjackets will cover the meat. Meat bags are a must, as well as skinning as quick as possible. Just keep this in mind, because if you pack in deep in bow season, you will lose meat unless you have 5-6 people in great shape that have pack frames, and are able to get it out asap. Had a buddy that went a couple yrs ago by himself, packed in several miles, killed a nice 5x5, and lost over half the elk due to warm weather, and no help. Going light is great with horses, but you have got to be in daily range of a vehicle during bow season, in the event you have to get a elk out. Now, during gun season, mid Oct. onward, yes, much cooler, usually some snow, meat can be hung, more time to get it out. One tip, if you must hang meat, hang it in dark timber, much cooler, keep the sun off it. Just trying to help you out. Ive been 16 yrs, we've took 30 plus elk. Wish you the best. My last advice, take plenty of water, or you wont make it. You cant drink enough.


Tickweed,

Good question. My plan, as of right now, is to train for hauling heavy loads. I've started focusing on some Olympic lifts: deep squats, snatch, deadlift, thrusters etc to build core strength. I also rigged up this 50 lbs "pill" for my backpack. I intend to make 2 more of them and do some training with up to 3 of them:



While my focus on gear is to shed weight and be ultralight so that I am unhindered while hunting, I plan to be able to deal with hauling 100+ pound loads of meat over difficult terrain. They area that I am looking at, it appears that it is possible to be within 5 miles of a road most or all of the time. Given that, we could potentially split up and one of us bring the vehicle around to a point closer to the meat.

I usually skin, quarter and pack whitetail out of the woods. In fact, this past season, I did that with every deer I killed even when hunting on private land and could have driven up to or very close to the kill site. I did that primarily just to get better and more efficient at it. I've definitely experience the green flies and yellow jackets before, even in November. I've also experienced black flies out West (not in relation to meat, unless you are talking about the chunks of meat they'll bite off your head! ), so that's definitely a consideration, but yeah, the plan would be to get the meat bagged and hanging. From there, I'd say our first priority is getting the meat out, so even if we have to leave our gear and come back later a day or 2 later for it, we'll ferry meat, possibly splitting up and relocating the truck to a closer location is applicable. Also, based on what you told me in the past, I think we'll look at going later in September rather than earlier.
_________________________
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#3589568 - 02/16/14 10:43 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: 1shot1kill]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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 Originally Posted By: 1shot1kill
I went on the second rifle hunt in 2013. If I had it to do over I would have left the insulated clothing at the house. They are nice in the early mornings but you will warm up quick when you start putting the miles in. Also if you have insulated boots such as Rocky Bearclaws etc, ditch them, use a lightweight 6" waterproof hiking boot with good socks. Make sure you take extra pair of socks, and mole skin. I took my GPS also and didn't use it just added weight, all you need there is a good topo map and compass. If you do decide to take your GPS I have a 24K Topo Colorado base map if your interested. Good luck on your hunt


I don't think I would use insulated boots unless I were hunting in the Winter in AK. Nothing worse than having sweaty feet when its cool out. I'm going to go with Zamberlan Guides. I have a pair of Vasques that I've had for a number of years, they still have a bit of life in them, but I think I'll retire them from hardcore use.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3589572 - 02/16/14 10:51 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Posts: 12544
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 Originally Posted By: UPSman
I have a friend who has an Icon pack. I haven't had the chance to fiddle with it much. With my MR bag, it will carry far more than I can physically tote up and down a mountain. I have seen the Wooby bags but I'm a cold sleeper. I have a Big Agnes Storm King and I sleep just fine in it. If it wasn't so big, I'd carry my Cabelas Alaskan -40 bag, but it doesn't compress down to about the size of a mini fridge.


You own a -40 degree bag ? That's like what you sleep in at Camp 5 on Mt Everest. I have -15 Degree down bag from my Alpine days. That thing is toasty, but even at colder temps, I never felt like I needed a bag that warm. I sleep pretty warm. Put me in a mummy bag and zip it up, and I'll start roasting. Very seldom do I sleep all night with a mummy bag fully contained. Maybe the first 20-30 minutes to get it warmed up.

My partner has a MR bag and he loves it.
_________________________
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Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

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#3589949 - 02/16/14 06:33 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
trealtree
16 Point


Registered: 09/29/04
Posts: 10815
Loc: Middle Tennessee

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Not sure what kind of socks you have, but I wear a pair of these every day. I've worn them for up to 20 days straight. It's the only pair I wore hunting in wyoming this past season. Only time I took them off was at night when I put on super thick poly socks to sleep in.

http://www.swiftwick.com/pursuit-seven-black-9627-prd1.htm
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#3589962 - 02/16/14 06:44 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
12 Point


Registered: 08/29/99
Posts: 7425
Loc: Powell Tn

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 Originally Posted By: Poser
 Originally Posted By: UPSman
I have a friend who has an Icon pack. I haven't had the chance to fiddle with it much. With my MR bag, it will carry far more than I can physically tote up and down a mountain. I have seen the Wooby bags but I'm a cold sleeper. I have a Big Agnes Storm King and I sleep just fine in it. If it wasn't so big, I'd carry my Cabelas Alaskan -40 bag, but it doesn't compress down to about the size of a mini fridge.


You own a -40 degree bag ? That's like what you sleep in at Camp 5 on Mt Everest. I have -15 Degree down bag from my Alpine days. That thing is toasty, but even at colder temps, I never felt like I needed a bag that warm. I sleep pretty warm. Put me in a mummy bag and zip it up, and I'll start roasting. Very seldom do I sleep all night with a mummy bag fully contained. Maybe the first 20-30 minutes to get it warmed up.

My partner has a MR bag and he loves it.


That cabelas bag is the cats azz. I cannot sleep in clothes hardly. Getting all twisted up and then I'm awake more than I'm sleeping. When we hunt from the truck and come back at night, that's the only real time the bag gets used. 2 falls ago in Colorado it never got below 20 at night and I think I can describe as what it feels like to be a pig in a blanket. The MR pack is well worth the money IMO.

What kind of pack is that in the picture? Looks like an Eberlestock.
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#3590019 - 02/16/14 07:15 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
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UPSman,

That is the Erbelstock X2 which is my Whitetail pack. I'm actually going to send it back to the company next month for some repairs. I've give it a good beating in the last couple if years and some of the tension straps are partially or fully torn. I think some of that damage was from plowing through thickets.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3590134 - 02/16/14 08:34 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
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Registered: 08/29/99
Posts: 7425
Loc: Powell Tn

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100 lbs in an X2 will put that pack to the test. I would ask to see if they would reinforce the stitching on the shoulder straps. Nothing would suck worse than a strap tearing loose 5 miles from the truck with a pack loaded with meat or antlers. I have a friend who had a sitka pack ( one of the smaller ones ) take a crap on him while carrying out a black bear hide and skull. He described it rather colorfully.
_________________________
"Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." --Benjamin Franklin


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#3590562 - 02/17/14 09:23 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
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 Originally Posted By: UPSman
100 lbs in an X2 will put that pack to the test. I would ask to see if they would reinforce the stitching on the shoulder straps. Nothing would suck worse than a strap tearing loose 5 miles from the truck with a pack loaded with meat or antlers. I have a friend who had a sitka pack ( one of the smaller ones ) take a crap on him while carrying out a black bear hide and skull. He described it rather colorfully.


That's not the pack I'll be taking out West. -not quite the capacity I need for a backpack hunt. They do claim the pack is fully capable of handling Elk quarters though. Erbelstock makes pretty nice packs, but they tend to not be on the Ultralight side of things, actually, far from it. I've noticed that on the Long Range Hunting Forum, those guys are all Erbelstcok or nothing for spike and base camp hunting. They are definitely tough packs that should last for years of use, but the weight of their material + all of the bells and whistles really add up. Also, most of their packs do not offer adjustable torsos. This X2 is a little short for me, actually. I can adjust the pack to ride a bit lower on my back and its fine for day hunts (though not optimal weight positioning for heavy weight), hauling out Whitetails etc, but I wouldn't want to use it for heavier loads on multiday hunts.

Hunting packs: Its hard to have just one that does it all....
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3590636 - 02/17/14 10:17 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Crosshairy
10 Point


Registered: 08/22/06
Posts: 2652
Loc: Bartlett, TN

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 Originally Posted By: Poser
Alright, first gear weigh in for a 7-8 day, backpack style (no spike camp) CO Elk hunt. Actual gear came in at 44.23 (without bow), 48.63 with bow, but there are still have a couple of unknown variables.

*Food: I estimated 10 lbs for 7-8 days including coffee. That's a bit heavy, as 1 lbs per day is the usual goal, but I know I'll need it. I just don't perform well without sufficient calories.

Some of these things, I'm looking to cut corners. In others, I need to cut corners, but I can't afford the upgrade. For example, my sleeping bag comes in at 3.2 lbs. It was "Ultralight" by the standards of 1999, but the equivalent bags today are coming in at a little over a pound if you're willing to shell out $400+ (that' upgrade won't happen this year). Same thing on the down jacket, mine (that I also bought in 1999) came in at 20 oz. Newest models are running 9 oz. Those to upgrades alone would save me almost 3 pounds, but I can't afford it.

What can I trim and what looks heavy? Since we'll be hunting with full packs and covering extremely difficult terrain, I need to trim down to 40 lbs. I can probably compromise on a pound of food, possibly 1.5 lbs, but I know I am going to be more than 7 lbs. Expected Temp range is 30-80 degrees


Empty Pack: 126.4
Sleeping Bag: 51.2
Tarp Shelter: 11
Trekking Poles: 18.8
Water Filter: 12.5
XLite Sleeping Pad: 12.5
Soft shell Jacket 24
Down Jacket: 20.5
Food: 160oz
Firstaid kit: 10
Water: 35.2 (2 liters)
Bladder: 6 oz
Rain gear (top & bottom): 34.4
Merino Base layer pants: 9.1
Merino Base Layer shirt: 8
Outerwear Pants: 18.5
Gloves: 2.6
Merino Neck gaiter: .75
Merino hat: .75
Hat: .75
Optics + Harness: 35.2
GPS w batteries: 5.4
headlamp w/ batteries: 3.2
Spare batteries: 6
dry sacks: 3
Tent stakes: 2.1
Stove: 3
Pot/cup/spork: 12
Fuel: 8
*Kill Kit: 30 (game bags, knife, 550 cord)
socks 7
Boots: 30
-----
707.75 oz/ 44.23 lbs

Bow: 68.8

Total: 776.55/ 48.53 lbs



What kind of water filter do you have? I know there are some lighter options out there (Life Straw is one I've read about, but never tried. That's probably the most minimalist available, besides the tablet approach). Either way you go, be sure to have some water-treating tablets as a backup. I've heard of too many filter-failure stories. Or, look up the ratio of drops of bleach per gallon, and you could use that instead for a cheap fix that takes up almost zero space.

Is the bladder like the Camelback kind? You might just carry one of those half-size water bottles for on-the fly drinking and lose the bladder weight.

The trekking poles are an odd thing for weight consideration...when you are walking, the pole is resting on the ground half the time and you aren't actually carrying it, per se. That's over a pound of pseudo-weight right there :). Another thought from a guy that carries a walking/shooting stick sometimes...could you get by with just one, or would that knock you off balance too much? I understand why you prefer two...

I second the rain gear comments. If I plan on hunting in actual rain, I will bring my breathable suit, but it is not particularly light. Another option might be to only carry the legs, and use a good poncho for the upper and lose that part of the weight. Just throwing out ideas.

Lastly, I know very little about stoves, since I've never used the backpacking styles. How long is 8 ounces of fuel supposed to last? Is it the Sterno-based kind, alcohol, or what? Could you rig your setup to work with a small wood fire in a pinch (as a fall-back plan, not as primary)?

Best of luck!
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#3590694 - 02/17/14 10:43 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
Crosshairy
10 Point


Registered: 08/22/06
Posts: 2652
Loc: Bartlett, TN

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Just as food for thought...

My cousin hunts "way back there" in Colorado for elk almost every year. He's a game warden in Perry County, TN. I know that he has contacts with folks at the closest town, and has hired a guy with a pack mule or two to help him get his elk out in times past. That's something you might look into - get someone's contact information, and then if the weather gets warm, you could use that as a fall-back plan instead of trying to make 4 or 5 long trips.
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#3590729 - 02/17/14 11:14 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: Crosshairy
 Originally Posted By: Poser
Alright, first gear weigh in for a 7-8 day, backpack style (no spike camp) CO Elk hunt. Actual gear came in at 44.23 (without bow), 48.63 with bow, but there are still have a couple of unknown variables.

*Food: I estimated 10 lbs for 7-8 days including coffee. That's a bit heavy, as 1 lbs per day is the usual goal, but I know I'll need it. I just don't perform well without sufficient calories.

Some of these things, I'm looking to cut corners. In others, I need to cut corners, but I can't afford the upgrade. For example, my sleeping bag comes in at 3.2 lbs. It was "Ultralight" by the standards of 1999, but the equivalent bags today are coming in at a little over a pound if you're willing to shell out $400+ (that' upgrade won't happen this year). Same thing on the down jacket, mine (that I also bought in 1999) came in at 20 oz. Newest models are running 9 oz. Those to upgrades alone would save me almost 3 pounds, but I can't afford it.

What can I trim and what looks heavy? Since we'll be hunting with full packs and covering extremely difficult terrain, I need to trim down to 40 lbs. I can probably compromise on a pound of food, possibly 1.5 lbs, but I know I am going to be more than 7 lbs. Expected Temp range is 30-80 degrees


Empty Pack: 126.4
Sleeping Bag: 51.2
Tarp Shelter: 11
Trekking Poles: 18.8
Water Filter: 12.5
XLite Sleeping Pad: 12.5
Soft shell Jacket 24
Down Jacket: 20.5
Food: 160oz
Firstaid kit: 10
Water: 35.2 (2 liters)
Bladder: 6 oz
Rain gear (top & bottom): 34.4
Merino Base layer pants: 9.1
Merino Base Layer shirt: 8
Outerwear Pants: 18.5
Gloves: 2.6
Merino Neck gaiter: .75
Merino hat: .75
Hat: .75
Optics + Harness: 35.2
GPS w batteries: 5.4
headlamp w/ batteries: 3.2
Spare batteries: 6
dry sacks: 3
Tent stakes: 2.1
Stove: 3
Pot/cup/spork: 12
Fuel: 8
*Kill Kit: 30 (game bags, knife, 550 cord)
socks 7
Boots: 30
-----
707.75 oz/ 44.23 lbs

Bow: 68.8

Total: 776.55/ 48.53 lbs



What kind of water filter do you have? I know there are some lighter options out there (Life Straw is one I've read about, but never tried. That's probably the most minimalist available, besides the tablet approach). Either way you go, be sure to have some water-treating tablets as a backup. I've heard of too many filter-failure stories. Or, look up the ratio of drops of bleach per gallon, and you could use that instead for a cheap fix that takes up almost zero space.

Is the bladder like the Camelback kind? You might just carry one of those half-size water bottles for on-the fly drinking and lose the bladder weight.

The trekking poles are an odd thing for weight consideration...when you are walking, the pole is resting on the ground half the time and you aren't actually carrying it, per se. That's over a pound of pseudo-weight right there :). Another thought from a guy that carries a walking/shooting stick sometimes...could you get by with just one, or would that knock you off balance too much? I understand why you prefer two...

I second the rain gear comments. If I plan on hunting in actual rain, I will bring my breathable suit, but it is not particularly light. Another option might be to only carry the legs, and use a good poncho for the upper and lose that part of the weight. Just throwing out ideas.

Lastly, I know very little about stoves, since I've never used the backpacking styles. How long is 8 ounces of fuel supposed to last? Is it the Sterno-based kind, alcohol, or what? Could you rig your setup to work with a small wood fire in a pinch (as a fall-back plan, not as primary)?

Best of luck!


Crosshariy.

My current filter is an old MSR pump. I intend to upgrade to Sawyer Squeeze Filter which weighs 3 ounces: http://www.rei.com/product/837824/sawyer-squeeze-water-filter-plus#descriptionTab
It comes highly recommended on the RockSlide forum.

Yes, the Bladder is a CamelBack bladder. Having the water constantly available means you end up drinking more water and staying hydrated. I've been using bladder systems for 15 years or so and find them to be well worth it when on the move.

I'd still consider the trekking poles weight that one is carrying. In some or many cases, I may have my bow in my hand, which means the poles would be on my pack. The trekking poles become worth their weight on steep and technical downhill, especially in the case of hauling heavy loads such as meat. There are lighter poles on the market, but having a pair with twist locks as opposed to screw locks is critical for heavy weight. If you were just backpacking, you could go with a trimmed down pair.

As far as rain gear, I scored the lightest rain gear on the market during a holidays sale. I have had a chance to test it in some harsh conditions both hunting, hiking and running and found it to be excellent on the breathability front. Its also pretty good at cutting wind and given that CO conditions can produce sustained ~60 mph winds, often for consecutive days, I think a full rain suit is much more ideal than a poncho. I think I'm going to ditch my soft shell, especially in that case, I'll need somekind of shell for protection from the wind, might as well be my rain jacket which is 18.9 oz. As of right now, I'm feeling pretty confident on this front. My partner, however, is planning to go the poncho route, so, if we are faced with harsh conditions, should be an interesting comparison. (current pack weigh in presently has me lighter than him, too).

Stoves: I have a couple of camping stoves. For this trip, I think we'll go with the propane blend cannisters as it is the lightest option. In general one 8 oz. canister of SoPro fuel will be sufficient to boil water for two people over four days. Each person carries one 8 oz cannister, we should be good. Wood burning stoves are an option and are becoming popular again with the ultralight crowd. There are a number of new wood burning stoves on the market and certainly something to consider, though they are not as cheap as you might expect. You also have to plan on gathering wood, which, on a dark to dark hunt is another task to deal with. Its a tradeoff for sure.

So, all in all, on my list above, I think I can cut close to 2 lbs by swapping my softshell for a 2nd merino shirt and upgrading my water filter. If I upgrade my pack, I'll get another 5 lbs right there, so that gets my pack weight closer to 30 lbs than 40, and my total weight right around 40. My goal is to shave to get my total weight at 40 lbs. I feel like 40 lbs is a weight that I can move with very comfortably even on extreme terrain and I can effectively hunt with it on my back. With those upgrades, a total of $400, the only item I may end up cussing at is my sleeping bag. I'm going to try washing the bag and see if the weight lightens a bit. Its become a bit compressed over the years and the loft may lighten up.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3590736 - 02/17/14 11:17 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: Crosshairy
Just as food for thought...

My cousin hunts "way back there" in Colorado for elk almost every year. He's a game warden in Perry County, TN. I know that he has contacts with folks at the closest town, and has hired a guy with a pack mule or two to help him get his elk out in times past. That's something you might look into - get someone's contact information, and then if the weather gets warm, you could use that as a fall-back plan instead of trying to make 4 or 5 long trips.


do you know what the cost is on that? with a few planned upgrades, I'm going to be cutting it close on my budget. My plan is to do the actual trip for $1,000. "Actual trip" is tag, fuel and incidental costs while on the road. Gear upgrades, I'm looking at as long term purchases so that I can do annual DIY hunting trips for $1,000 or less. I'm guessing that having a mule team on call is no cheap affair.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3590756 - 02/17/14 11:29 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
AT Hiker
6 Point


Registered: 07/03/11
Posts: 853
Loc: Clarksville, Tennessee

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Via is by far my favorite instant coffee, it is pricey of course but I have yet had any better. It is lite weight, only negative I could find would be the empty packets you have to deal with, not that it is a major issue either.
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#3590770 - 02/17/14 11:45 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
DaveB
10 Point


Registered: 09/03/08
Posts: 3627
Loc: Shelby County

content Online
I wish you the very best of luck Poser. My own experience all of which is during the first rifle season in NW Colorado-Meeker/Craig area is of little value because of the temperature difference. However:

You cannot imagine what it is like camping at 7,000 feet and then walking 4 miles a day minimum up hill and down. The best physical shape you can get in is gonna be key to happiness.

Splitting expenses 3 ways is the only way you are going to keep under your budget.

In 1988, pack mule service was $300.00 IF this or that or the other conditions were met. Out of reach for me at the time.

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#3590779 - 02/17/14 11:58 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: DaveB]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: DaveB
I wish you the very best of luck Poser. My own experience all of which is during the first rifle season in NW Colorado-Meeker/Craig area is of little value because of the temperature difference. However:

You cannot imagine what it is like camping at 7,000 feet and then walking 4 miles a day minimum up hill and down. The best physical shape you can get in is gonna be key to happiness.

Splitting expenses 3 ways is the only way you are going to keep under your budget.

In 1988, pack mule service was $300.00 IF this or that or the other conditions were met. Out of reach for me at the time.


1988? Yeah, I'd expect $1,000 or more today, don't you think? If I had mules and were on call by hunters who I knew were spending $$$ anyway, and I was expected to show up to a location at any given time, I don't think I'd consider it for less than $1,000, probably more in the $1500+ range and that would still be condition dependent.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3590903 - 02/17/14 02:01 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
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Maybe I missed but what unit are you hunting?
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#3590915 - 02/17/14 02:12 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: UPSman
Maybe I missed but what unit are you hunting?


I think we are going with 74.
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#3590960 - 02/17/14 02:57 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
tickweed
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A lot of cost will depend on the cost of gasoline at the time of the hunt. $1000.00 will be cutting it close, that's only a hair over $400.00 after your either sex tag and license. Groceries, gas, food out and back, maybe a motel one night, or two. You are doing a great job planning, and getting in shape. I look forward to your opinion after you have packed your bull out. I promise, no matter how great a shape a person is in, being from the flat land hurts. You will be fine, and have the time of your life.
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#3590972 - 02/17/14 03:11 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: tickweed]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: tickweed
A lot of cost will depend on the cost of gasoline at the time of the hunt. $1000.00 will be cutting it close, that's only a hair over $400.00 after your either sex tag and license. Groceries, gas, food out and back, maybe a motel one night, or two. You are doing a great job planning, and getting in shape. I look forward to your opinion after you have packed your bull out. I promise, no matter how great a shape a person is in, being from the flat land hurts. You will be fine, and have the time of your life.


Yeah, $1,000 may be a little tight, but we'll be splitting gas, so that should be more in the $200 range. One of the landowners of a property that I hunt has a ($800,000) condo in Gunnison that we can use on the way in and out of the mountains to get a night's sleep, shower, acclimate for a day, secure our laptops etc. So, conceivably, I should be able to get it done on that budget.
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#3591241 - 02/17/14 06:30 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
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Let me check my maps. We have hunted 71 and 711 but nosed around in 74 a little I believe. You taking 40W all the way to Gallup NM? The drive from Gallup to Cortez is mind numbing. There is a reason they gave it to the Indians....Its like the face of the moon, there isn't a dang thing there.
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#3591259 - 02/17/14 06:38 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Crosshairy
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I'll try to find out about the cost of pack-out mule service. I don't have his number handy, so it may take a while.

As far as your sleeping bag goes...
Can you tell if the fill material is what is especially heavy? I've actually heard of people modifying their sleeping bag by either cutting out fill material in certain spots (e.g. If you sleep on a pad, you might feel ok about pulling fill out of the bottom section), or replacing it with lighter, more efficient filler. Might be something to look into if you feel like the shell material is reasonably light.

Also, consider filling a weather balloon with helium and attaching to your pack. That's worth a pound or two there... \:\)
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#3591310 - 02/17/14 07:03 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
UPSman
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IF you are hunting NF, you have to use a person that is licensed to run pack animals (in the area you are hunting) if you use them to pack an elk out for you. Outfitters get testy over this. We used Blue Mesa Ranch to rent horses one year and he could not personally bring his animals onto NF land where we were hunting because of Tenderfoot outfitters having the licensing rights (for lack of a better term) in that area.
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#3591406 - 02/17/14 08:13 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: Crosshairy
I'll try to find out about the cost of pack-out mule service. I don't have his number handy, so it may take a while.

As far as your sleeping bag goes...
Can you tell if the fill material is what is especially heavy? I've actually heard of people modifying their sleeping bag by either cutting out fill material in certain spots (e.g. If you sleep on a pad, you might feel ok about pulling fill out of the bottom section), or replacing it with lighter, more efficient filler. Might be something to look into if you feel like the shell material is reasonably light.

Also, consider filling a weather balloon with helium and attaching to your pack. That's worth a pound or two there... \:\)


The most appropriate bag I have for this trip (I have 3), is a TNF "Ultralight" long, down bag from 1999. Even though it's not treated, I'm guessing the surface material is the weight on this bag. The same model of bag is now lighter, though they probably use lower quality down then the they did in the 90s. Not sure if I would cut into it at this point. Now, my synergic bag that I've had since the early 90s, I suppose I could weigh it and potentially mess with its fill if it indeed has potential -good idea, actually.
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#3591872 - 02/18/14 08:54 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: DaveB]
tellico4x4
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Registered: 11/29/04
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 Originally Posted By: DaveB
In 1988, pack mule service was $300.00 IF this or that or the other conditions were met. Out of reach for me at the time.


Have used various outfitters in CO over the past 25 years and this cost hasn't changed much at all. I just took a look at an Outfitters website that I have used in Meeker area, and they still only charge $250.00. Of course, you have to quarter the elk and get it down to a trail that is accessable by horse. If you have ever spent days packing an elk out on your back a piece at a time, the cost of hiring it done is money you won't regret spending.

I ran into a guy one time that was back packing an elk out who was a hurting puppy. Due to the almost vertical terrain he was in, and having about 100 lbs in pack, he had ripped two toenails off in his boots coming down the hill to trail. He still had about 4 miles to go to the trailhead.

Find an outfitter that does drop camps in your area, and I'm sure he'll be glad to pack an elk at a reasonable cost. Most of those guys are on the trail(s) daily packing anyway and are happy to get a few extra bucks for very little additional work. Adding an empty horse to a pack string is no big deal to them.

Secret is to get a method of communication set up before heading into the boonies. I had one of those SPOT gadgets one time that I used on a solo trip. You could pre-program a few messages into it. I set one up that went to my wife that had my packers phone number in it. That did two things in that it let her know that I was still alive, and when she called the packer, he already knew where to meet me.


Edited by tellico4x4 (02/18/14 09:03 AM)
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#3592393 - 02/18/14 04:00 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: tellico4x4]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
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 Originally Posted By: tellico4x4
 Originally Posted By: DaveB
In 1988, pack mule service was $300.00 IF this or that or the other conditions were met. Out of reach for me at the time.


Have used various outfitters in CO over the past 25 years and this cost hasn't changed much at all. I just took a look at an Outfitters website that I have used in Meeker area, and they still only charge $250.00. Of course, you have to quarter the elk and get it down to a trail that is accessable by horse. If you have ever spent days packing an elk out on your back a piece at a time, the cost of hiring it done is money you won't regret spending.

I ran into a guy one time that was back packing an elk out who was a hurting puppy. Due to the almost vertical terrain he was in, and having about 100 lbs in pack, he had ripped two toenails off in his boots coming down the hill to trail. He still had about 4 miles to go to the trailhead.

Find an outfitter that does drop camps in your area, and I'm sure he'll be glad to pack an elk at a reasonable cost. Most of those guys are on the trail(s) daily packing anyway and are happy to get a few extra bucks for very little additional work. Adding an empty horse to a pack string is no big deal to them.

Secret is to get a method of communication set up before heading into the boonies. I had one of those SPOT gadgets one time that I used on a solo trip. You could pre-program a few messages into it. I set one up that went to my wife that had my packers phone number in it. That did two things in that it let her know that I was still alive, and when she called the packer, he already knew where to meet me.


Yeah, I've heard that the Spot devices are a popular choice. Check this thing out: https://www.meetearl.com/ -super cool and cheaper than most high end GPS units by Garmin or Magallan.
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#3592955 - 02/18/14 10:39 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
AT Hiker
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That is neat, I wouldnt mind checking in to this a little bit more. Wonder if the some of the GPS chips/downloads are compatible?
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#3608045 - 03/05/14 02:31 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: AT Hiker]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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Hey poser I'm in the same weight shaving boat. Have you considered selling your current sleeping bags and pack to up grade? You may be able to get enough money out of those to get lighter weight gear with minimal or no extra cost. I use backcountry.com and backcountrygear.com mostly for gear. 850+ fill power goose down is going to shave weight considerably. I've got a heavy Dana Design that I may not be using cause the sucker weighs nearly 9lbs dry. When I was in Kansas City cabelas I bought their alaskan I frame pack that is about 5.5lbs. It cost only $140 and feels surprisingly good with 40lbs corn loaded in it. Do you have a spreadsheet set up? If you would I could email you mine and all you have do is insert the item weight in ounces and it will automatically convert everything to lbs/ounces (not lbs/tenths). It also automatically highlights everything in red that is > than a pound.

Edited by ghosthunter (03/05/14 02:34 PM)
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#3608178 - 03/05/14 04:56 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Hey poser I'm in the same weight shaving boat. Have you considered selling your current sleeping bags and pack to up grade? You may be able to get enough money out of those to get lighter weight gear with minimal or no extra cost. I use backcountry.com and backcountrygear.com mostly for gear. 850+ fill power goose down is going to shave weight considerably. I've got a heavy Dana Design that I may not be using cause the sucker weighs nearly 9lbs dry. When I was in Kansas City cabelas I bought their alaskan I frame pack that is about 5.5lbs. It cost only $140 and feels surprisingly good with 40lbs corn loaded in it. Do you have a spreadsheet set up? If you would I could email you mine and all you have do is insert the item weight in ounces and it will automatically convert everything to lbs/ounces (not lbs/tenths). It also automatically highlights everything in red that is > than a pound.


Yeah, I have the spreadsheet from the Rokslide forum. -pretty useful.
I have decided that I'm definitely upgrading my pack to a ultralight sub, 4 pound pack.

Sleeping bag: I could probably some decent money for my -20 degree bag. The present version of it lists for $999. I think it was $450 back in 1999. Hmm. That may be the last thing I deal with as my weight shaving situation has improved somewhat. I'll post the updated list soon.
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#3608190 - 03/05/14 05:08 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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What pack you getting?
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#3608205 - 03/05/14 05:34 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
What pack you getting?


Considering the Kuiu Ultra 6000 that launches this month. 3.9 lbs, $350.
http://www.rokslide.com/easyblog/entry/western-expo-kuiu-ultra-6000-pack

I was looking hard at the Stone Glacier and Kifaru packs, but the price tag puts them both out of my league.
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#3608346 - 03/05/14 08:23 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Wow!! That's incredible to get a pack that light. Definitely something I'll be interested in. I hope you get it. I'd like to hear all about it. Keep us posted.
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#3608387 - 03/05/14 09:19 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Wow!! That's incredible to get a pack that light. Definitely something I'll be interested in. I hope you get it. I'd like to hear all about it. Keep us posted.


Yeah, there were complaints with their first generation of packs, but, apparently they have been solved on the 2012 and later Icons. Being their second pack design roll out, hopefully these come off with no problems. I've seen pics on the KUIU Instagram page of the weight tests on the frame and it is pretty impressive.
If you look around that the hunting specific pack designs, 2014 is definitely the "year of the pack" with lots of new carbon fiber frame designs, ultralight and capable of carrying up to 150 lbs loads.
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#3608620 - 03/06/14 07:43 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
tickweed
10 Point


Registered: 11/25/09
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Man, you guys are serious.
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#3609050 - 03/06/14 03:34 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: tickweed]
ghosthunter
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 Originally Posted By: tickweed
Man, you guys are serious.


You bet! My pack was like 56 pounds last year and I swore never again😉
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#3609073 - 03/06/14 04:11 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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content Online
 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
 Originally Posted By: tickweed
Man, you guys are serious.


You bet! My pack was like 56 pounds last year and I swore never again😉


I agree. The difference between a 40 pound pack and a 50 is HUGE. While its not rocket science to get a 7 day pack under 40 pounds for backpacking, throwing in gear for hunting takes some careful consideration to stay under 40 lbs.
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#3609229 - 03/06/14 07:43 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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Currently I'm under 32 lbs minus water.
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#3609254 - 03/06/14 08:17 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Currently I'm under 32 lbs minus water.


Where are you going hunting and what?
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#3609265 - 03/06/14 08:29 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Colorado elk. This will be my
Third trip this coming September.
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#3609347 - 03/06/14 09:26 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Colorado elk. This will be my
Third trip this coming September.


Cool, we'll have to talk more.
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#3609834 - 03/07/14 01:29 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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What are you carrying to cut wood if anything at all?
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#3609839 - 03/07/14 01:36 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
What are you carrying to cut wood if anything at all?


Not planning on cutting any wood. Do you usually build a fire in Sept?
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#3609905 - 03/07/14 03:12 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Always. I absolutely love fires. Helps me relax in the evenings. And it does get chilly at night. I've currently got a 21" sven saw that weighs 13.1oz but am looking at a little buck saw that they claim weighs 3.95oz.
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#3610249 - 03/08/14 06:16 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
ghosthunter
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Also, don't forget a windicator. It's nearly a must.
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#3610310 - 03/08/14 07:51 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Also, don't forget a windicator. It's nearly a must.


Oh, yeah. I keep that in my optics harness -it may not have made the list, but its in there.

Do you use the fire for cooking in place of carrying a stove?

Also, if you are not familiar, Titanium Goat makes some ultra lightweight products at reasonable prices: http://www.titaniumgoat.com/products.html

Their cheapest Bivy sack is only 6 oz and $85. Granted, this is not a fully waterproof bivy, more of a water resistant, extra protective/warmth layer for your sleeping bag.
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#3610859 - 03/08/14 10:35 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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Do you have horses lined up
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#3611069 - 03/09/14 10:14 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Do you have horses lined up


No, planning on humping meat out on our backs.
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#3611119 - 03/09/14 11:35 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
AT Hiker
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Registered: 07/03/11
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Always. I absolutely love fires. Helps me relax in the evenings. And it does get chilly at night. I've currently got a 21" sven saw that weighs 13.1oz but am looking at a little buck saw that they claim weighs 3.95oz.


I have a wyoming saw, perfect for cutting wood and bone. Never know when you might need to cut some limbs for whatever reason; splint, fire, meat pole, shooting sticks, blind, etc.

To each his own, but if I was camping in a elks backyard and onto some animals I would not build a fire. Smell is their #1 defense and in CO lots of hikers and hunters and when a elk smells smoke they may vacate out of habit.

But I love a fire at night too so it would be hard not to build one. I usually just hike a bit in the mornings from my camp spot so I dont worry about bumping anything.
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#3611134 - 03/09/14 11:51 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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 Originally Posted By: Poser
 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Do you have horses lined up


No, planning on humping meat out on our backs.
 Originally Posted By: Poser
 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Do you have horses lined up


No, planning on humping meat out on our backs.


That was my plan the first hunt until we killed and realized how difficult that was going to be. We had to use horses. No way the two of us were going to be able to get the meat off the mountain in the heat without loosing it. My game plan involves lining a horse up. You can rent horses out there.
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#3611137 - 03/09/14 11:55 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: AT Hiker]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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 Originally Posted By: AT Hiker
 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Always. I absolutely love fires. Helps me relax in the evenings. And it does get chilly at night. I've currently got a 21" sven saw that weighs 13.1oz but am looking at a little buck saw that they claim weighs 3.95oz.


I have a wyoming saw, perfect for cutting wood and bone. Never know when you might need to cut some limbs for whatever reason; splint, fire, meat pole, shooting sticks, blind, etc.

To each his own, but if I was camping in a elks backyard and onto some animals I would not build a fire. Smell is their #1 defense and in CO lots of hikers and hunters and when a elk smells smoke they may vacate out of habit.

But I love a fire at night too so it would be hard not to build one. I usually just hike a bit in the mornings from my camp spot so I dont worry about bumping anything.
I'll check out for that saw, thanks. As for the fires we try not to camp right in them. We make a little spike camp then walk to where want to start hunting. The fires don't seem to be hurting us. We hear elk bugle in the night.
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#3613175 - 03/11/14 02:34 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Crosshairy
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Registered: 08/22/06
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Loc: Bartlett, TN

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This doesn't address cutting bone, but Gerber makes a retractible hand saw (a bit safer than a folder, in my opinion) that weighs maybe 4 ounces and will slice through smaller limbs. I've cut 4" diameter trees down with it several times without much difficulty.

Also, the price is right!

I'm pretty sure this is the same one that I have...

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/830534/...er-handle-black
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#3620845 - 03/19/14 06:42 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
12 Point


Registered: 08/29/99
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Poser---

Kuiu is running a sale right now. The 5200 and 7200 are marked down.

https://store.kuiu.com/SearchResults.asp?Cat=1852
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#3620930 - 03/19/14 08:00 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
turk870
6 Point


Registered: 09/07/08
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Loc: centerville

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 Originally Posted By: UPSman
Poser---

Kuiu is running a sale right now. The 5200 and 7200 are marked down.

https://store.kuiu.com/SearchResults.asp?Cat=1852
just saw that, they are still higher than the new ultra.i do like the pockets on the icon.the ultra is lighter.been bouncing both of these packs around my head(the price point is good)also been looking at stone glacier,and kifaru.think im going to try for a high country early season mule deer hunt in co.the kuiu with the price is in the lead,i still have an under quilt and a top quilt to buy.but since I can disguise this as backpacking nassisaties think I can get them with minimal lip.

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#3620997 - 03/19/14 08:55 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: turk870]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
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Me personally...I'd roll with the icon before the ultra. Before I spent the coin I'd take a serious look at a one of the Paradox packs. One of the company owners is out of middle Tn and they are getting very good reviews from the guys running them.
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#3622122 - 03/21/14 09:18 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: UPSman
Poser---

Kuiu is running a sale right now. The 5200 and 7200 are marked down.

https://store.kuiu.com/SearchResults.asp?Cat=1852


Saw that, but still think I'm going to go with the Ultra.
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#3623948 - 03/23/14 11:06 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Posts: 12544
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Got my tarp shelter in and set it up this morning. It uses two trekking poles as the main supports.



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#3631711 - 03/31/14 01:09 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Crosshairy
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Registered: 08/22/06
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I meant to post this the other day...

Google "aerogel in sleeping bags"

have you ever heard of it? It's a material that we are starting to use in industrial insulation applications at the refinery, and I suspect that variations on the material will be used for all sorts of things in coming years. Coolest part - it's a great insulator, and the lightest solid material known to man.

Haven't looked into the cost, but I wonder if you could re-work your equipment and save a ton on weight.
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#3631753 - 03/31/14 01:47 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Posts: 12544
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Interesting. I looked it up and found this:

When it comes to outdoor gear, aerogel holds tremendous potential. A mere 3 millimeters of aerogel insulates better than a layer of goose down 10 times as thick. But there’s one big hurdle to overcome before aerogel starts appearing in ultralight, ultrathin, and ultrawarm winter gear. Conventional forms of aerogel are relatively stiff and inflexible, which makes it problematic for use in gear like clothing and sleeping bags that require a soft and flexible drape to provide warmth and comfort.

I'm guessing that technology will change over time, though.
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#3637371 - 04/06/14 07:53 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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Nice set up😉
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#3653549 - 04/23/14 06:02 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Crosshairy]
turk870
6 Point


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poser,you get your ultra yet.i wound up ordering a kifaru longhunter with bikini frame.they had a sale on the bag.shouldnt have to wait too long since they have the bag on hand.now just have to get an under quilt
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#3653783 - 04/23/14 10:13 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: turk870]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
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Registered: 08/29/99
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Poser...heads up if you're wanting an Ultra 6000.
http://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbthreads...age#Post8805137
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#3653989 - 04/24/14 08:38 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: turk870]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
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 Originally Posted By: turk870
poser,you get your ultra yet.i wound up ordering a kifaru longhunter with bikini frame.they had a sale on the bag.shouldnt have to wait too long since they have the bag on hand.now just have to get an under quilt


No, not yet. I probably won't have anymore extra gear money until later in May. IRS set me back. My buddy just put a order in for the Kifaru + bikini frame.
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#3653993 - 04/24/14 08:39 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: UPSman
Poser...heads up if you're wanting an Ultra 6000.
http://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbthreads...age#Post8805137



Appreciate it, but don't have the extra cash at the moment. I do, however, have a individual free shipping coupon from Kuiu that is good until June, so should be able to get the same deal.
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#3706966 - 07/10/14 04:31 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Well, after months of diligent research and changing my mind multiple times on which one to spend the money on, I ended up going with the Exo Mountain Gear 5500: http://exomountaingear.com/pack-features/

For awhile, I was convinced to go with Stone Glacier, but the latest reviews of the Exo in relation to the price point sealed the deal. Literally, everyone is raving about this pack. There is a video on the site of a 250 pound load test. http://exomountaingear.com/videos/

While I'll never put 250 pounds in it, I've definitely been training hard to deal with loads up to 150 pounds. The reviews on the Kuiu packs just aren't adding up. Everyone says they are fine up until 60 pounds, but seem to have too much flex for heavy loads and "extreme" loads over 80 pounds have been getting terrible user feedback. There is also a questions of durability.

The Stone Glacier is a solid choice, but coming in about $100 higher than the Exo. My partner went with the Kifaru, which is also a solid choice, but with the upgrades, he dropped quite a bit of cash. I tried the pack on with weight and its a solid design, but I'm not a huge fan of the tubular, butterfly storage system. I went down that road with my Erblestock pack. I prefer a single, large compartment.

The Exo uses a titanium frame. http://exomountaingear.com/frame-features/

Stone Glacier and Kuiu are carbon fiber. Kifaru uses a mixture of aluminium, titanium and wood. Mystery Ranch also was a consideration for awhile, but not being a hunting specific pack, it does not have a meat load shelf. It is however rated for extreme weight. You may have to ditch the contents of your pack in order to haul meat with it. Its going to be a month before the pack is ready to ship, but that should still give me enough time to get it properly fitted and dialed in.

Man, hunters never had it so good with pack options. 2014 is the year of the hunting pack with multiple boutique, American made companies putting out well designed, products using high end materials.
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#3707375 - 07/11/14 07:20 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
tickweed
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Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 4740
Loc: medon,Tn.

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Poser, when are you going?
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#3707416 - 07/11/14 07:48 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: tickweed]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: tickweed
Poser, when are you going?


Leaving on the night of 9-18, arrive afternoon of 9-19, acclimate (9,000 feet) that night and 9-20, hunt 9-21 thru 9-28.
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#3707770 - 07/11/14 05:11 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
UPSman
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That's a good looking pack. I haven't heard of them until now. Hopefully you will get to tote some meat and horns out of the Rockies with it.
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#3707779 - 07/11/14 05:33 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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 Originally Posted By: UPSman
That's a good looking pack. I haven't heard of them until now. Hopefully you will get to tote some meat and horns out of the Rockies with it.


Its a relatively new company and the packs are only available direct from the manufacture. In fact, if you didn't pre order, there are waits on the packs as they manufacture in batches. The 2014 Pre orders went out back in May, with the 2nd batch just shipped a couple of weeks ago. Next round is August, which may be the last batch to go out before hunting seasons start to open up. With the first shipment, a bunch of guys were able to test the packs out on spring bear hunts.
There was some buzz about them last year, but the 2014 model is getting raved about.
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It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

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#3711015 - 07/15/14 04:31 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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Latest weigh in. I shaved some more weight on the sleep system by going with a lighter air mattress (7.9 oz). There is still a bit of speculation and give or take on a couple of specific weights, especially with regards to food, but looks like I'll definitely come in with a pack weight of less than 40 lbs, which has been my goal all along.

Empty Pack: 82
Sleeping Bag: 51.2
Tarp Shelter: 29
Trekking Poles: 18.8
Water Filter: 3
Sleeping Pad: 7.9
2nd Merino shirt: 9
Down Jacket: 20.5
Food: 160oz
Firstaid kit: 10
Water: 70.4 (2 liters)
Bladder: 6 oz
Rain gear (top & bottom): 34.4
GPS w batteries: 5.4
headlamp w/ batteries: 3.2
Spare batteries: 6
dry sacks: 3
Pot/cup/spork: 6
Fuel: 8
Lighter: .4
*Kill Kit: 24 (game bags, knife, 550 cord)
socks 2
Toothbrush: 1.2
wipes/TP: 8
-----

Base Pack weight: 562.2/ 35.13 lbs (including 2 liters of water)


Clothes, boots and optics:

Merino Base layer pants: 9.1
Merino Base Layer shirt: 8
Outerwear Pants: 18.5
Gloves: 2.6
Merino Neck gaiter: .75
Merino hat: .75
Hat: .75
Optics + Harness: 35.2
Boots: 132
Socks: 4

210.9/ 13.8 lbs

Total load out: 48.3 + Bow (4.5 lbs)
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3711062 - 07/15/14 05:32 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1585
Loc: East

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Loose the toothbrush. You may be fooling yourself by saying you will use it now, but in reality you may brush your teeth once, at best, in a week. Loose the neck gaiter, you won't wear it in September. I used to always take one, but after half a dozen trips and never taking it out of the pack, I no longer bother.

ADD A GOOD CAMERA!!! Yes, I did shout that. Don't keep it in your pack. Make a pouch or buy one and keep it within reach. Take hundreds of pictures. If nothing else, it will slow you down. And, that's a good thing.

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#3711524 - 07/16/14 07:41 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Buzzard Breath]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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Buzzard Breath,

I see where you get your name from
I have always brushed my teeth on backpacking and backcountry trips and don't see why I wouldn't in this case. (I don't have a dental care plan and haven't been to the dentists in over 10 years, so I try to take care of my teeth).

On the neck gaiter, I was actually thinking that it may come in more handy for keeping the sun off the back of my neck. The treeline in the area we will be in is right around 12,000 feet, which is a lot of UV exposure. But, yeah, under normal temperature range for Sept, it doesn't seem to be a necessary piece of gear for insulation. Its just a thin piece of merino that weight less than an ounce. If I end up breaking 40 pounds with my pack weight, it will be on the list of weight savings, though I'd probably need to add in some sunscreen or a brimmed hat to protect my head and neck from UV. Hmm.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3711596 - 07/16/14 08:37 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Buzzard Breath
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 Originally Posted By: Poser
On the neck gaiter, I was actually thinking that it may come in more handy for keeping the sun off the back of my neck. The treeline in the area we will be in is right around 12,000 feet, which is a lot of UV exposure. But, yeah, under normal temperature range for Sept, it doesn't seem to be a necessary piece of gear for insulation. Its just a thin piece of merino that weight less than an ounce. If I end up breaking 40 pounds with my pack weight, it will be on the list of weight savings, though I'd probably need to add in some sunscreen or a brimmed hat to protect my head and neck from UV. Hmm.

I never thought of that. I come back from every one of these trips with my neck, face and hands sun burned. I tell myself that I need to pack sunscreen the next time, but never remember.

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#3712128 - 07/16/14 07:34 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Buzzard Breath]
ghosthunter
10 Point


Registered: 11/30/04
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Great list!!! I'm definitely going to go over it more thoroughly. Thanks for posting. What water filter are you using that weighs only 3oz?
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#3712131 - 07/16/14 07:45 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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What game bags are you using? And maybe I missed it but what stove?
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#3712544 - 07/17/14 09:59 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Great list!!! I'm definitely going to go over it more thoroughly. Thanks for posting. What water filter are you using that weighs only 3oz?


I'm using this Sawyer system: http://www.campsaver.com/squeeze-water-filter

You have a couple of options with it.

There are 3 different sized bags that you can use to scoop water up and then drain through the filter into your bladder. If you look at the 2nd pic, you'll see the filter installed on one of the bags.

Your other option, is to install the filter on your bladder hose and use it as an inline filter. Under this scenario, your bladder would contain the dirty water and would be filtered on the way to your mouth. You could also fill up secondary bottles from your bladder system.

The filter will also fit the mouth of most retail water bottles.

I intend to use the filter and the smallest (.5L) bag, which is a 3oz combo. My partner is using the same filter as an inline setup, which is a little lighter. I don't like the idea of carrying dirty water in my bladder. I also intend to carry 2 bag/bladder style water bottles (32 oz wide mouth and a 16 oz). Those will be for extra water storage if we decide to camp in one spot for more than 1 night. That will also give me a bottle to mix drinks. I'm going to carry some "Energy & Focus" mix as well as some concentrated, dried greens. I eat a couple of bowls of greens daily and, given that my body is used to getting that much fiber, I don't want to cut that off suddenly, so I'll get my daily greens in liquid form. -good source of vitamins and minerals, ultra lightweight, too.
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It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

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#3712563 - 07/17/14 10:11 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
What game bags are you using? And maybe I missed it but what stove?


I use Alaska brand game bags. I've tried different ones and these are my favorites because of the amount of stretch: http://www.santanaoutdoors.com/alaska-game-bags/

For a stove, we're running a Jetboil, which will be a shared load: http://www.campsaver.com/flash-pcs-stove

Its not the lightest on the market, but the ease of use + the speed at which it boils water is a fair tradeoff. -being able to boil water in 90 seconds saves a considerable amount of fuel, so that saves weight of some, but not all, of the lighter systems. Its a tough choice and you have to consider how many times a day you will be boiling water. If there are 3 people sharing a stove and you are boiling water 9x a day (3x at breakfast, 3x at dinner) over the course of 7 days, then that is 63 boils total. If you're talking about a 90 second boil time vs. 3-4 minutes, then that fuel expenditure will add up considerably (not to mention time spent waiting to have coffee in the morning).

Here is a comparison chart that will make your head explode: http://zenstoves.net/StoveChoices.htm
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It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3712678 - 07/17/14 12:36 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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Here is my sleep system. I have a 1 oz sheet of Polycro for ground/moisture protection in my floorless shelter and then I'm running a newest generation of 3/4ths length Thermarest. These things have improved considerably. I have a first generation one that is MUCH heavier and less comfortable. This one weight 7.9 oz. I plan to lay my head on my pack and from the knee down will be directly on the polycro. I'm a side and stomach sleeper so this should work fine.




I really wish I could afford to upgrade my sleeping bag. While this thing was top of the line way back in 1999, its fairly heavy for its warmth ratio by today;'s standards. A lot of guys have gone to using "quilts" in the early season, which is essentially a modified sleeping bag with no head insulation or zipper. You just wrap up in it like a blanket. You can get those down to around a pound. I'm halfway tempted to break out my wife's sewing machine and cut and re stitch this bag back up as a quilt to shave some weight. My bag is weighing in at 51.2 (though, I recently washed it, so it may be a little lighter). You can run a quilt for ~20 oz, or a newest generation 30 degree bag for 26-30 oz. That's a big weight savings.
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Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

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#3713182 - 07/18/14 04:39 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Registered: 11/30/04
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Thanks for all the info. I purcashed one of those sawyer filter and keep it in my fly fishing vest and drink from river without using the bladder. I haven't tried it inline with my water bladder deal. I currently use a katydyn pump, which I love but is a little heavy. The sawyer seems to be I little difficult to guzzle water if you're dying a thirst but I've only use it to drink straight from the river with the supplied straw. I may see how it works inline with my bladder. Nice thing about the pump is you can get water from a little puddle that otherwise you couldn't scoop up. My first trip to Colorado me and my hunting buddy had to get water from a hole in a rock that has water in it.

I really like your setup. Thanks. I may have more questions cause that's an extremely light setup.
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#3713349 - 07/18/14 10:13 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

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Ghosthunter,

Yeah, my old filter system is a Sawyer pump weighing in at a hefty 13oz. That thing will also give you a workout
But, yeah, the bag system isn't ideal for super dry areas with shallow water sources, though you can use it like a straw as your described. If you have abundant water sources such as lakes and streams, it is ideal.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3713440 - 07/18/14 01:19 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
tickweed
10 Point


Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 4740
Loc: medon,Tn.

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Your sleeping bag will be just fine. The time of yr you are going, it probably wont be really that cold. Ive hunted the rifle hunts many yrs in mid Oct., and even then it can be warm. After this first trip, you will see its not really that big of a deal. One thing you might, and probably wont need at mid Sept, is a set of chains for your truck.
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The hardest thing about Bowhunting Turkeys is leaving the gun at home!

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#3713485 - 07/18/14 02:34 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: tickweed]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12544
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
 Originally Posted By: tickweed
Your sleeping bag will be just fine. The time of yr you are going, it probably wont be really that cold. Ive hunted the rifle hunts many yrs in mid Oct., and even then it can be warm. After this first trip, you will see its not really that big of a deal. One thing you might, and probably wont need at mid Sept, is a set of chains for your truck.


Yeah, I just wish that bag were lighter. Its the 400 pound gorilla in my ultralight approach.

I think we have the snow chains covered, but thanks for reminding me. I'll double check on that. I know we talked about it once. It would be unusual for any meaningful snow in Sept, but it certainly has happened before. Shoot, I was in Yosemite once and it freakin' snowed in July!
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

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#3713628 - 07/18/14 07:47 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
10 Point


Registered: 11/30/04
Posts: 3603
Loc: chattanooga

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Maybe it's been mentioned already but how are you planning to get the meat out if you down one?
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#3713641 - 07/18/14 08:10 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Maybe it's been mentioned already but how are you planning to get the meat out if you down one?


Man up and pack 100-150 lbs loads for 1-3 trips, depending on the amount of meat, terrain and distance. -been training for that.
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#3713664 - 07/18/14 08:51 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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Is this your first trip?
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#3713695 - 07/18/14 09:27 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
Is this your first trip?


Yep. Total greenhorn.
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#3713873 - 07/19/14 09:38 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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I thought I was gonna pack the meat out on my first trip till we actually downed one and reality set in. But we had bout 6/7 miles to go. How far you gotta go?
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#3713941 - 07/19/14 11:41 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
I thought I was gonna pack the meat out on my first trip till we actually downed one and reality set in. But we had bout 6/7 miles to go. How far you gotta go?


I don't know. We're going to be nomadic in our hunting style. I'd expect at least 5 miles, though we may be able to reposition the truck a bit closer to us if necessary. We've been training hard for carrying heavy loads on steep terrain -lots of hill repeats, stair wells and trails with heavy packsaddles well as conditioning workouts, endurance, and strength training. I've done backcountry climbing trips before, so have some experience with heavy packs (climbing gear + bivy gear) at elevation.

I'll also add that we have both invested in a high end, meat hauling packs, fully capable of hauling heavy to extreme loads. Most packs on the market, even most of the mid-grade hunting packs designed for meat hauling (Badlands, Erblestock, Tenzing etc) get poor grades in the +80 lbs load as they just flat lack the suspension or, in the case if Erblestock (I've packed many Whitetails in one), have a poor load lifter design that becomes painfully obvious once you exceed 60 lbs.

Did you end up calling a mile team in?


Edited by Poser (07/19/14 12:29 PM)
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#3714004 - 07/19/14 02:01 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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We ran into some gentlemen that had horses who helped us. We coulda got the meat off the mountain on our backs but we woulda had done it in the dark cause of the weather being so hot in mid day. It woulda taken two trips and I don't know if the remaining meat would've survived. I didn't want to risk the meat going bad,plus we woulda lost a few extra days of hunting caused it woulda consumed up time getting the meat back to the truck. Just a side note... I'm not sure where you're hunting but the blow flies were terrible where we where. And those alaskan game bags ain't gonna stop them from blowing eggs all over the meat and ruining a lot if it. This year I will have TAG bags.
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#3714097 - 07/19/14 05:20 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
UPSman
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A good liberal dose of black pepper will keep the flies off your meat. 100lbs of backpack is a stinkin' load in the mtns. I looking forward to a post hunt review of what worked for you and what didn't. Trust me...if you shoot an elk (and I hope you do) you will be cussing that thing 100 times if you hafta to carry it any kind of distance or thru a blowdown ;\)
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#3714103 - 07/19/14 05:23 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: UPSman
A good liberal dose of black pepper will keep the flies off your meat. 100lbs of backpack is a stinkin' load in the mtns. I looking forward to a post hunt review of what worked for you and what didn't. Trust me...if you shoot an elk (and I hope you do) you will be cussing that thing 100 times if you hafta to carry it any kind of distance or thru a blowdown ;\)


Yeah, I was thinking about black pepper. I've heard that chili powder works real well, too.
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#3714185 - 07/19/14 08:02 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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You got a saw for firewood?
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#3714219 - 07/19/14 09:40 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
You got a saw for firewood?


Wasn't planning on messing with a fire unless we have Backstraps to cook.
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#3714303 - 07/20/14 07:26 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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We always build a fire in the evenings and sometimes in the morning. Helps warm the body and soul. And we did eat some fresh tenderloin over it! 😊
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#3714335 - 07/20/14 08:56 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
ghosthunter
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I just ordered me a regular length neoair xtherm. Backcountrygear has them in sale.
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#3714354 - 07/20/14 09:50 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
I just ordered me a regular length neoair xtherm. Backcountrygear has them in sale.


Sweet. I think you'll like it. You'll be amazed how light that thing is.
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#3714357 - 07/20/14 09:54 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
We always build a fire in the evenings and sometimes in the morning. Helps warm the body and soul. And we did eat some fresh tenderloin over it! 😊


Yeah, it sure sound comforting. I'm just not sure if it will be so practical for September when we'll be moving camp on a daily basis. Because we'll be setting up and tearing down each night and morning, I doubt we'll have time to mess with a fire. Usually, on backpacking trips, I don't build a fire unless we set up camp early and I'm just killing time. In this case, any available daylight time should be spent hunting. If we were base or spike camping, I totally would plan on building a fire, though.
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#3714374 - 07/20/14 10:35 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
And those alaskan game bags ain't gonna stop them from blowing eggs all over the meat and ruining a lot if it. This year I will have TAG bags.


Meant to ask you. I do have one tag bag, but there doesn't seem to be too much of a difference between them and the Alaska brand bags. How do they perform differently? I was just looking at a ultralight Tag kit for boned out meat. Its about $50, which is pricey for game bags. If its the difference between having fly larva or not, I'll definitely add it to my upgrade list, I just didn't realize there was much a difference.

On a side note, isn't it amazing how quickly flies and bees show up to your kill site, even on a cold november morning. It blows my mind sometimes that the pretty much the moment you cut into a deer, green flies show up. Its like, what were these flies doing 5 minutes ago, how did they get here so quick, and what are they even doing out on a cold morning?
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#3714383 - 07/20/14 10:56 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
ghosthunter
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I've never seen a tag in person so I can't speak from experience but only from reviews. Those flies out west are different than our flies. The will lay a lot of eggs fast and you can literally see the eggs all over your meat. Does the tag you have appear very porrissed?
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#3714387 - 07/20/14 11:04 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
I've never seen a tag in person so I can't speak from experience but only from reviews. Those flies out west are different than our flies. The will lay a lot of eggs fast and you can literally see the eggs all over your meat. Does the tag you have appear very porrissed?


Seems about the same as the Alaskan, just a different material, though, The Alaskan bags are much more stretchy and that stretching may allow the flies to get at the meat. I suppose that, if you were hanging the bags, you could hang the bags by tying directly to the the bone rather than the bag and you won't get that stretch. That, of course, assumes, that you weren't boning out. I know a lot of guys like the Caribou brand bags as well.


Edited by Poser (07/20/14 11:10 AM)
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#3715166 - 07/21/14 02:08 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
DaveB
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Registered: 09/03/08
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Today: Temperature in
Denver is 91 degrees and the humidity is 17%.
Vail is 80 and 23%.
Gunnison is 76 and 33%


I'm thinking, Mr. Poser, that water is gonna be a problem for you no matter what filtration stuff you carry. I would have a LOT in my vehicle. An awful lot.

By now you have looked at the USGS maps, Google earth & others. When you shoot an elk you MAY wanna have the straightest trek to your camp/vehicle. Grab a map and dry run a few scenarios. Camp is here, elk dead over there, can I get back this way? No, dramatic elevation drop must be a cliff. Here? no, box canyon. Here, no, river, well maybe. Just an idea. You may want to just plain walk back the exact way you came in.

Link to traffic cameras more or less: http://www.cotrip.org/m/cameraDtl.xhtml?id=10085&rd=32


Edited by DaveB (07/21/14 02:22 PM)

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#3716244 - 07/23/14 07:51 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: DaveB]
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Mud Dauber
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 Originally Posted By: DaveB
Today: Temperature in
Denver is 91 degrees and the humidity is 17%.
Vail is 80 and 23%.
Gunnison is 76 and 33%


I'm thinking, Mr. Poser, that water is gonna be a problem for you no matter what filtration stuff you carry. I would have a LOT in my vehicle. An awful lot.

By now you have looked at the USGS maps, Google earth & others. When you shoot an elk you MAY wanna have the straightest trek to your camp/vehicle. Grab a map and dry run a few scenarios. Camp is here, elk dead over there, can I get back this way? No, dramatic elevation drop must be a cliff. Here? no, box canyon. Here, no, river, well maybe. Just an idea. You may want to just plain walk back the exact way you came in.

Link to traffic cameras more or less: http://www.cotrip.org/m/cameraDtl.xhtml?id=10085&rd=32


Good suggestion. I've been doing that a bit: picking points A and B randomly and then examining how one would navigate between them. It may be possible, in some cases to send one person back to the truck to reposition it to a fixed point.

As fr as water, I'm seeing what appears to be ample water sources on the map. A friend I mine hunted mule deer pretty close (general area) and said they didn't have water difficulties. That being said, he's from AZ. I plan to carry a 3 L bladder + two 32oz bag/bottles, so, at maximum capacity, I can have 164oz of water.

-noted on keeping a cache of water at the truck. I've had some heinous experiences of the years if running out of water. I have a Story about dunkin my head in a mule trough at the Grand Canyon an another about drinking the water from a tuna can, but too dehydrated to actually eat it. Severe dehydration is a terrible thing.
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#3716250 - 07/23/14 07:56 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
tickweed
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We pack water in each day as we hunt into our area, and stash extra at certain points, so its there if we need it.
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#3717170 - 07/24/14 07:58 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: tickweed]
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Mud Dauber
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I know a lot of guys carry a piece of closed cell foam for a glassing cushion. If I'm counting ounces, how important of a piece of gear is that? I do have an old Ridgecrest I could cut, or I could just sit on my pack. I've never done the hours of glassing thing before, but I sure need a pad for turkey hunting. Thoughts?
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#3717236 - 07/24/14 09:25 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
DaveB
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Good question because I never carried one. Wanted to, needed to. Sitting on frozen ground and in 3-8 inches snow, yeah, you need something. Summer time I just do not know. May want to consider something inflatable. I like to stand. Sitting just seems to reduce what you can see.
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#3717905 - 07/24/14 09:10 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: DaveB]
UPSman
TnDeer Old Timer
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I have a shorty Z mat that I carry for when it's wet and snowy. It makes a difference when you just don't want a case of the wet butt. This would work well also.
http://www.rei.com/product/829881/therm-a-rest-z-seat-pad

...or an old piece of foam b!tch (military sleeping pad) would do just fine also
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#3717995 - 07/25/14 04:47 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: UPSman]
ghosthunter
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I love to carry a little pad. Small weight for comfort. Each to their own.
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#3717996 - 07/25/14 04:48 AM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
ghosthunter
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What's your bow setup? How many arrows you carrying?
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#3718356 - 07/25/14 04:45 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: ghosthunter]
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Mud Dauber
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Registered: 07/28/10
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 Originally Posted By: ghosthunter
What's your bow setup? How many arrows you carrying?


It's a bowtech pro40 from 2004. Long axle length, especially by today's standards. Next time I upgrade, I'll choose a lightweight bow. Mine isn't bad (aircraft aluminum) but the long axle length means more surface area = more weight. I'll probably carry 6 arrows. My bow is in the shop right now getting restrung and tuned. I plan to spend some time shooting with a pack on and with a elevated heart rate (burpees) once I have it back.
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#3718498 - 07/25/14 09:15 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: Poser]
AT Hiker
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Registered: 07/03/11
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I like to sit in brush or next to a tree, so I use the natural stuff laying around to sit on. Glassing is a all day adventure, but my patience is lacking so I never sit still very long. I also use a top layer to sit on if its not too cold out.
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#3718505 - 07/25/14 09:29 PM Re: Backpack Elk Hunt: Where to Shave Weight? [Re: AT Hiker]
AT Hiker
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Registered: 07/03/11
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call the forest service and ask about stock tanks in the area, they are good water sources in a pinch.
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