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Thread: Lightening the gear load...

  1. #1
    Not just an internet expert... The Claw's Avatar
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    Lightening the gear load...

    Rightly or wrongly, I have set off on a mission to lighten the weight of the gear I carry when out hunting... I certainly don't have it nailed down (far from it in fact) and I'm just adding things as I can afford (sneek past the CFO) or as gear wears out. The majority of my multi day trips are after tahr or chamois, which means that for a lot of things I don't feel comfortable going to extremely light (or the lightest) options. This is evident in my choices of sleeping bag and tent for example...

    For a couple reasons really for going lighter,
    1: within reason, a lighter pack will mean more ground covered and covered with more ease (its not that easy though!)
    2: Almost seems counter-productive, but it also means I am likely to carry more gear... By that I mean gear that I had elected to leave at camp previously because I couldn't be bothered carrying it. Things like sleeping gear, spotting scope, rain/warm gear (even during settled weather), DSLR camera etc...

    So far I have replaced or purchased specifically for its lighter weight:
    Tarptent Moment DW tent. Weighs 1kg with 2 carbon fibre poles. Replaces my MSR Hubba Hubba (so not strictly comparable as its a 2 person tent vs 1 person) which is a kg heavier and not as sturdy in the wind
    Kifaru Duplex Timberline 2 pack. Replaced several packs, but mainly a Eberlestock J34. Kifaru is 1.1kg lighter and reportedly far superior (I haven't received it yet)
    Katabatic Gear Alsek sleeping quilt. Rated to -7 degrees, weighs 600g. Doesn't strictly replace a sleeping bag as my main winter bag weighs as much as my new tent and the quilt combined! But then I used to carry that sleeping bag around so I suppose I am saving 1kg when I do carry the new one!
    Exped UL Downmat. Much warmer and lighter than my previous mat, and 1/2 the packed volume.
    Carbon fibre tripod for spotting scope.
    Kovea Titanium Stove. Contemplating getting a Jetboil Sol Titanium. I know there are far lighter alcohol/hexa stoves out there too, but I haven't even begun to look into these yet...

    I'm currently working my way through my clothing, but struggling to make a decision on what to get...

    I would like to replace my current Macpac Resolution Jacket with something lighter and more compact but still retain durability. Current thinking is an Arc'Teryx Theta AR, which is about 260g lighter than the Macpac, and should be at least as durable. I'm struggling with the price however... I also struggle with the offerings of pretty much all the hunting clothing companies. Most are pretty heavy, with pockets that are useless when wearing a pack (hipbelt). The only ones that slightly interest me are the Sitka Dewpoint (but the cut is pretty short) and the Kuiu Chugach NX (but its only available in camo - which I'm not that keen on wearing around town etc...).

    I also want to buy a lightweight down hooded jacket to replace my (awesomely warm, but bulky and heavy) Macpac Equinox XPD. Currently considering Mont Bell, Haglofs, or Arc'Teryx options. All weigh around 280g and pack down really small. The jacket will be used as a layer while glassing (either under the above hardshell jacket or my Sitka Jetstream softshell, so doens't need to be overly durable or weather proof. It will also form part of a sleeping system, adding warmth to my quilt. I really want a hooded jacket for this reason, but also I think for the little extra weight the increase in warm value far exceeds the weight of the hood.

    Replacing these 2 jackets will save me roughly 850g and a heap of space.

    So these items alone will save me a total of around 5kg from my original kit, that I will certainly take!

    So what are you guys/girls doing/wearing/carrying when it comes to light weight options? Does anyone have some first hand experience with the jackets I'm considering above or have other options that I should be looking at?

    Cheers
    Speill likes this.
    If it's not a first round hit you need to practice more

  2. #2
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    its a compromise alright, i bought this a few months ago i climb .co.nz :: Mountaineering gear at wholesale prices #3 i think i got or #2, gone to high quality bivy bag instead of 1 man tent, gone to 40l pack from 80l, i wont be comprimising on my outer shell and will be swazi when they get back in stock, sitka puff jacket, jet boil style cooker and thats me for a few days
    Oldmout likes this.
    Dont waste your time chasing every last fps, it doesnt matter in the real world, it wont make a difference, all it will do is cause head aches and frustrations. And dont listen to silly old cunts

  3. #3
    Lovin Facebook for hunters kiwijames's Avatar
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    For a solo to multi overnighter I have found it's your sleeping bag, pad and tent that take up the biggest volume. A few kg honestly is neither here nor there. 40L is pretty tight but a good number to aspire to. I will follow this one Sam as I'm keen to see where you end up.
    Your CFO does not appear to be too tough either
    The Universe is a cruel, uncaring void. The key to being happy isn't a search for meaning. It's to just keep yourself busy with unimportant nonsense, and eventually, you'll be dead. -Mr Peanutbutter

  4. #4
    ebf
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    Interesting thread Claw, tx for posting.
    Viva la Howa ! R.I.P. Toby
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  5. #5
    Not just an internet expert... The Claw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebf View Post
    Interesting thread Claw, tx for posting.
    No worries mate. I'm hoping to learn more as well from others that have been there, done that. There are a number of forum members that have far more experience than me so hopefully we will all learn something :thumbup:

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  6. #6
    Almost literate. veitnamcam's Avatar
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    Threads like this are good because.
    good gear is bloody expensive and I always buy something then a few months down the track discover I would have been better off with something else.
    Blaser and Kaweka_Neil like this.
    "Hunting and fishing" fucking over licenced firearms owners since ages ago.

  7. #7
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    We all know the best solution to this
    Hill time with a load on....... simple and doesnt cost anything
    Savage1, Munsey and Kaweka_Neil like this.
    Dont waste your time chasing every last fps, it doesnt matter in the real world, it wont make a difference, all it will do is cause head aches and frustrations. And dont listen to silly old cunts

  8. #8
    ebf
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    Which frame did you get for the Kifaru ?

    My lightweight tramping pack is an Osprey Exos 58, but not suited to bush bashing.

    I have the Kovea Titanium stove as well, never been a fan of Jetboil, just think you can go lighter with other systems.

    Hubba HP, in summer I just cary the footprint and fly - around 900g.

    5kg is a massive amount to drop on pack weight... Just resist the temptation to take other crap
    Viva la Howa ! R.I.P. Toby
    Black rifles matter...

  9. #9
    Not just an internet expert... The Claw's Avatar
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    Got the bikini duplex frame with composite stays.

    Sent from my SM-N9005 using Tapatalk
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  10. #10
    Not just an internet expert... The Claw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smiddy View Post
    We all know the best solution to this
    Hill time with a load on....... simple and doesnt cost anything
    Yep, sure is... I carry about 10kg of shotgun ammo, full water bladder and some gear to get around 15kg in my 40l pack when out for a walk... But then carrying an extra 5kg (for example) of gear when there are lighter and often better solutions out there is a bit daft... Pity light=$'s though

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    Smiddy likes this.
    If it's not a first round hit you need to practice more

  11. #11
    Not just an internet expert... The Claw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by veitnamcam View Post
    Threads like this are good because.
    good gear is bloody expensive and I always buy something then a few months down the track discover I would have been better off with something else.
    The old buy once, cry once ah? Been bitten by not heeding to that several times more than I would like to admit...

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    Smiddy likes this.
    If it's not a first round hit you need to practice more

  12. #12
    Almost literate. veitnamcam's Avatar
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    usually find I could have bought it cheaper somewhere else or something better iv never even heard of like your pack
    "Hunting and fishing" fucking over licenced firearms owners since ages ago.

  13. #13
    Not just an internet expert... The Claw's Avatar
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    Just an update on the pack. Arrived last week, very impressed with the quality of it and the size, both expanded and compressed right down.

    It's amazing how well it carries weight compared to previous packs I have had. I got a hanging meat bag for it that I have hanging from the top of the frame stays and down into the main bag. I have about 16kg of shotgun ammo in it for an overall pack weight of 18.5kg for training with. The weight seems to literally disappear once the pack is on and properly fitted. Other packs I have had would pull back on my shoulders with a similar amount of shotgun ammo in them. For some reason I would feel this in my calves and achilles when climbing, even with less weight than I have in the Kifaru pack. This morning I didn't have this feeling at all.

    I realise that shotgun ammo won't simulate how a similar weight of gear would be distributed in my pack if walking into somewhere/fly camping, but what it does simulate is a load of meat/headskin etc plus my day hunting gear. When I have had that sort of stuff (like a full bull tahr winter skin and head) in other packs it can't be properly contained and always seems to end up bulging out/down in the pack and pulling back on my shoulders which seems to make everything a lot more difficult than it needs to be.

    I am tempted to just take the main bag off the frame for day hunting and have the hanging bag on it for meat etc and strap a couple drybags under the hanging bag for my day hunting gear...
    If it's not a first round hit you need to practice more

  14. #14
    Member Scouser's Avatar
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    Kifaru is excellent gear, i havent got any of it myself, but those that do swear by it.....not at it!!!!!!

    looking forward to your trip reports as to how well it fares!!!!!...im always trying to take weight off, never ending quest!!!!!!!
    While I might not be as good as I once was, Im as good once as I ever was!

    Rule 4: Identify your target beyond all doubt

  15. #15
    Member outdoorlad's Avatar
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    Photo's please Mr Claw
    veitnamcam likes this.
    Shut up, get out & start pushing!

 

 

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