Mathews Inc.
Weight of loaded pack for multi day hunt
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
bowhunt 19-Aug-20
Glunt@work 19-Aug-20
Ucsdryder 19-Aug-20
Whocares 19-Aug-20
Surfbow 19-Aug-20
bowhunt 19-Aug-20
Ucsdryder 19-Aug-20
bowhunt 19-Aug-20
Ucsdryder 19-Aug-20
Brotsky 19-Aug-20
Jaquomo 19-Aug-20
bowhunt 19-Aug-20
Buskill 19-Aug-20
RD in WI 19-Aug-20
Brotsky 19-Aug-20
bowhunt 19-Aug-20
Vonfoust 19-Aug-20
Brotsky 19-Aug-20
bowhunt 19-Aug-20
Lark Bunting 19-Aug-20
Brotsky 19-Aug-20
fubar racin 19-Aug-20
Trophyhill 19-Aug-20
Whocares 19-Aug-20
Brotsky 19-Aug-20
Glunt@work 19-Aug-20
Whocares 19-Aug-20
nmwapiti 19-Aug-20
bowhunt 20-Aug-20
Predeter 20-Aug-20
wifishkiller 20-Aug-20
SBH 20-Aug-20
Scrappy 20-Aug-20
DanaC 20-Aug-20
Shawn 20-Aug-20
bowhunt 20-Aug-20
fisherick 21-Aug-20
fisherick 21-Aug-20
WV Mountaineer 21-Aug-20
Jaquomo 21-Aug-20
WV Mountaineer 22-Aug-20
KD 22-Aug-20
skipmaster1 22-Aug-20
Surfbow 22-Aug-20
Fatbass 23-Aug-20
From: bowhunt
19-Aug-20
I was reading another thread about what people put in their packs. There were several mentions of 30 pound, or sub 30 pound pack weights.

I was curious what your guys gear lists look like. After a lot of years of backpacking and fine tuning, my pack would still be nearly 50lbs in a 7 day hunt any time after the first week of September. End of August first week of September I can cut a few things with the nicer weather.

I know I could shave a little weight off. I can’t figure out how a guy could have all the gear needed to spend a week in the mountains elk hunting hunting, and then get meat taken care of and have a pack capable of packing meat out of somewhere worth packing into for multiple days.

Thank you!

From: Glunt@work
19-Aug-20
Lots of ultralight backpacking info on the web. 30# is doesn't even qualify anymore. people are doing week trips well under that (not hunting). The big three (pack, tent, sleep system) is where you get a foundation for lightweight started. I don't backpack enough to spend the $$$ on getting super light and even if I did I probably would be over 30# for a week long trip hunting. When I do backpack hunt, its one heavy trip in, set camp and hunt from there. If I was hunting with my pack on and camping wherever I end up for the day, it would be time to spend some money and shave weight. Would be interesting to see folk's lists who are going light. Things have come a long way.

From: Ucsdryder
19-Aug-20
How miserable do you want to be? I liked some added comforts like a chair. Nothing worse than hunting all day then sitting on a hard rock. Optics will really add to your weight.

From: Whocares
19-Aug-20
And the rock your "friend" slips in your pack. I've noticed the same pack with the same items in it weigh a little more than it did 10 years ago. Global warming. Oh, and your own gut - that weight is part of the load!

From: Surfbow
19-Aug-20
It's hard to get down to the low 30# range, especially when hunting. Last week I was right at 40# for a 4 day high altitude sheep hunt: things that could be left/lightened included a pair of 15x binos+tripod, a full 3 liters of water, a water filter we could have doubled up on, my Seek outside canopy (stakes and pole in my buddy's pack), and one heavy merino layer (17oz.) that I wanted to try but could've left at home. I wasn't the tag holder so I didn't even have to carry a weapon...

From: bowhunt
19-Aug-20
I do a lot of back pack hunts every year for the last 20 years. The last 10 years I typically spen 25-30 nights a year minimum backpacking. I have been upgrading gear to better lighter stuff over all that time and have my setup dialed in really good for me.

The ultra light back packing Info on the web doesn’t really pertain to hunting for the most part.

I was hoping to see gear list from some guys that backpack hunt that are getting down into that weight range. Just trying to see how they are packing so much differently to shave off 15-20 pounds of weight

From: Ucsdryder
19-Aug-20
Have you cut your toothbrush yet ? You’re not hardcore unless your toothbrush is less than 3”.

From: bowhunt
19-Aug-20
I just use a stick and some moss for a tooth bush, shaved 1.5 ounces leaving the tooth brush behind. Just have to figure out how to ditch the other 15-20 lbs??

From: Ucsdryder
19-Aug-20
List your gear and let people pick it apart. 15-20 pounds is a lot to drop unless you have the Coleman version of everything.

From: Brotsky
19-Aug-20
My pack weighs 47#'s for a 10-day hunt with a full load of water. I could cut it down to 35#'s pretty easily by sacrificing comfort items and going with a tarp, lighter bag, and lesser sleeping pad while going to a lighter cook system. I prefer to carry 47# and be comfortable and well fed.

From: Jaquomo
19-Aug-20
If all you take is a kill kit, tarp, sleeping bag and minimalist pad, change of undershirt, underwear and socks, light game bags, ultralight stove, and dried food (or forget the stove and deal with it. ) Especially if stuff can be split between two guys. I'd rather carry an extra 10-15 lbs for a little more comfort, but I won't hunt with my camp on my back, either. My pack this year will come in at around 45 lbs, but I'm hunting solo and carrying a chair and an UL 2 man tent. A comfortable, rested and fed hunter is a better hunter.

I have a magazine assignment to do an article on solo backpack hunting for old guys. We'll see if I survive with 45 lbs, lol!

From: bowhunt
19-Aug-20
Smiley face disappeared off my last post. Was joking about the tooth brush. :)

Im happy with my set up. Sounds like you guys posting on here end up about where I do weight wise on your packs 45ish pounds

Just wanting to see what guys are taking that are able to get their gear so light.

I’ll post my pack list after while. I would love to see what I could get rid of or change to drop 15 pounds and still have all necessities to elk hunt for a week in September being prepared for rain, snow, and hot sunny weather. Also have to take care of the elk after killing it and get it packed out to the road.

From: Buskill
19-Aug-20
Assuming no water to haul , I’m about 30-35 pounds depending on weather and # of days out. For a single night I’d of course be a bit less. If I can avoid taking a tent I’ll also be less.

From: RD in WI
19-Aug-20
I don't backpack hunt (yet) but I did carry many heavy rucks in the Army - as an M60 machine gunner and Platoon Radio Telephone Operator (RTO). That said, how does the packing go: Decide on a weight and try to meet it - or - Select the items you want/need, while trying to find the best tradeoff between weight and durability/efficacy? Good luck on your hunt.

From: Brotsky
19-Aug-20
RD, I find the item that is the highest quality, the weight that I want, and that is within my budget. Those are the 3 things I consider when selecting my backpacking equipment.

From: bowhunt
19-Aug-20
Here’s what I take 45-50 lb range with food and water for week long trip

Like I said, would like to see how guys could cut down to 30lbs for a week and be prepared to kill and pack an elk out, deal with rain and snow.

Backpack list

Sleep System *Kelty2 person tent (5.5 lbs) 2 of us share *Thermarest Neo Air Xlite sleep Pad *REI Sub Kilo sleeping bag *Klymit Xpillow inflatable pillow General gear *Hunting tags & ball point pen in zip lock bag with 1 extra zip lock per species if hunting multiple species on trip *Breeze squeeze wind tester(I use a ton when calling to get set up properly) *Platapus Big Zip 3 liter water bladder *Garmin Montana GPS *Black diamond Icon headlam *Extra batteries for headlamp/gps *1 roll toilet paper up to 7 day trips *Glen Berry Thunder Bugle reeds(1 per day) *Phelps gray Amp mouth reeds (1 per 3 days) *Jet boil stove *Small Giga Power fuel can for jet boil *Spoon *Lighter *Coghlans Fire starter paste *Katadyn Hiker Pro Water filter *Flip flops to wear at camp *20ft paracord rope(clothes line @camp) *Mole Skin and Leukotape(for blisters) *Tooth brush & toothpaste *Qtips *Non scented deodorant *4 ibuprofen per day (2 in am-2 in pm) *2-3 field tips to shoot bow at spike camp if possible. Some of my spots I can shoot a square of toilet paper in a soft dirt bank. Others no way to do that without breaking arrows. Awesome to shoot if possible. Skinning/ meat hanging/meat care *Bahco 396-LAP 7.5 inch blade hand saw *Havalon knife with 6/8 xtra blades *Gerber Metolius EZ Open knife *6 Carabou Gear 20x38 game bags, trash bag,30ft paracord all vacuum sealed together. Clothing *Stocking cap *Smart wool gloves(2 pair if long trip/wet weather) *1 pair KUIU Aattack pants *1 KUIU 125 Ultra Merino LS Crew T Shirt *1 pair KUIU calf high merino socks (2 pair total extra socks for trips 5 +days) *KUIU Ultra Merino zip off bottom *KuiU Ultra Merino 145 zip t

#Kuiu gator #Kuiu chugach Nx rain pants/jacket #First lite puffy jacket #KUIU Peloton zip jacket

#items dependent on weather forecast. If doing 7-10 day trip, weather forecast not reliable for that length of time after first week of September in high country and all items are packed. Food (per day amount) *3 packets instant oatmeal vacuum sealed *1 or 2 cliff bars *2 cups low fat granola, 1/2 cup instant milk, 1/2 cup freez dried strawberries vacuum sealed *2 Starbucks via *2 powdered pedialyte/Gatorade packets *Mountain house meal for dinner *1 oz jerky *1/4 cup mixed nuts

I have a Kifaru frame, mountain warrior bag and guide lid. I know I could get a lighter pack, but when carrying heavy meat loads for more than a few miles this is hands down the most comfortable pack I have tried.

From: Vonfoust
19-Aug-20
Younger: better shape, less money= heavier pack Older: worse shape, more money, wiser= lighter pack

Idea: carry the heaviest crap you can find the first two times. That way you'll truly appreciate ANY upgrade. I am now ready to appreciate some upgrades:)

From: Brotsky
19-Aug-20
4 places you could save considerable weight: 1. Get a stone glacier pack, I bet it rivals the Kifaru comfort wise under heavy load. Mine certainly does. 2. Kill kit, all you need is a havalon knife, some blades, game bags, and I use an emergency blanket to set meat on while boning. 3. Your tent is 2# too heavy. 4. Ditch the Katadyn filter and get a Sawyer Squeeze.

From: bowhunt
19-Aug-20
Looks like my pack is the biggest culprit for extra weight. Frame, mountain warrior bag, guide lid, and 2 hip pockets is 9.5 lbs. 4lbs heavier than 6400 cu stone glacier pack. A buddy of mine had the stone glacier, and sold it to get the same pack I have. He didn’t really like the stone glacier with over 50 pounds in it. He bought that in 2015 or 2016 so maybe the frame is different now.

That water filter looks pretty interesting at 3 oz, mine weighs 11 oz. so that could save another half a pound.

Me and my buddy share the tent so could split up the pieces. I also got a Seek outside cimmaron I plan to use this year. Tried it for a six day trip spring bear hunting and liked that a lot. I also got the wood stove. One of us will carry that @ 2.5 lbs and the other carry the cimmaron That I think weighs 3 pounds. I had already changed tents but didn’t update my gear list.

If I got rid of the para cord, folding saw, and gerber knife that would save 12 oz. it’s pretty nice to have the saw for cutting a meat pole or skull capping stuff so I don’t have to pack a skull 6-8 miles back to the truck. Saw Will be used for wood cutting for stove we seem to get a lot of rain and snow second half of September.

If I did change all that, it looms like I could save a little over 7 pounds in weight.

How new is your stone glacier pack and what model is it out of curiosity?

From: Lark Bunting
19-Aug-20
We are doing a seven day, six night elk hunt a few miles in this year. We'll be right at 50 pounds with 3 liters of water on us. This does not include the items I wear in. I figure it's a miserable 3 mile hike in (1850' up) until we drop camp then a very light pack until we get an elk down. I've been training since early June with 50-60 pounds in my pack while I walk the dog. I do it about 4 nights a week with a lot of stretching after. On the off nights I found I enjoy kettlebell workouts more than gyms, lifting. Currently the items I count as heavier than necessary are:

Tent: 5.1875 lb Jetboil Flash: 20.4 oz Platypus Gravity Filter: 14.5 oz Kill Kit: (5 bags Black Ovis and Kuiu, Havalon, Kevlar Glove, micro-tool for blade changes) 29.85 Food: 10 pounds (Tried to stay close to 1.5lb per day with the right amount of calories)

I've debated on carrying less water until we hit the teeny creek crossing, camp is 1/2 mile above this point. We could completely fill the bladders, dirty bag/clean bag and extra 1L hydroflask and only carry the added weight a 1/2 mile. But, that would add almost 18 pounds for that last 1/2 mile. Probably doable but that last ascent to camp is a bear with an empty pack. We'll see. Hunt, fine tune, repeat. :)

From: Brotsky
19-Aug-20
Bowhunt, I'm using the Sky 5900 with the x-curve frame. The x-curve frame is amazing, just seems shaped to fit my body type. SG has a video explaining which of their frames is right for you, worth the watch.

From: fubar racin
19-Aug-20
For a hunt my pack is right around 45 pounds with a 13 pound backpack, also hiker trash with dreams of a triple crown in my future that packs down to a 13 pound base weight

From: Trophyhill
19-Aug-20
anywhere from 50-60 lbs depending on how many days of food i bring.

From: Whocares
19-Aug-20
I've done a lot of backpack hunting and refined my gear to lighter, efficient and affordable(sort of) and a week to 10 days runs 45-50 lbs like Brotsky and some others said. Could get lighter but want a couple little creature comforts like Lou and some said. Just did a 4 day back pack and pack weighed about the same! Guess I could get rid of the bottle of relaxer. Not!

From: Brotsky
19-Aug-20
Chuck, some items are NOT negotiable! :)

From: Glunt@work
19-Aug-20
I have almost always used an MSR Pocket Rocket type stove vs a Jetboil type. It's tiny and light, maybe better for simmering if cooking some trout or different things and can use different pots and pans. Jetboil is faster and consumes less fuel. Anyone use both and have a preference? Thinking of trying one out.

From: Whocares
19-Aug-20
I've used both. prefer jet boil. No real good reason I guess, other than handy. I eat the trout raw so I don't lose any of those omega things.

From: nmwapiti
19-Aug-20
My pack for a week of deer hunting in Southern Utah this week was 40 pounds with about a liter of water. I do bring a 1 lb chair and a nice sleeping mattress.

From: bowhunt
20-Aug-20
I use the jetboil, my buddy I do a ton of backpacking with has the msr pocket rocket. We have both had them for at least 12 years and they get used a lot. Both are very durable. The jetboil definitely boils stuff nearly twice as fast. By the time you add a fuel canister and a pot to boil water in I’m not sure if there is much of a weight savings going with the msr stove. The advantage of the MSR stove I have seen is if you want to cook something besides boiling water. The wind also affects the cook time less on the jet boil.

These are my observations on the two stoves

From: Predeter
20-Aug-20
Seems like I'm always between 40 and 50lbs depending on days of food needed. I've been lighter then 40 in the past with an ultralight tarp and lighter sleeping bag, but have changed to heavier items due to some miserable nights with the ultralight stuff.

The last 3 years I haven't made any major changes. I will switch stuff out for different hunts/weather to get as light as possible for expected conditions but in general, the weight is what it is.

This year I am planning to reduce the food i take. Always tried to get 3000-3500 calories a day but never seem to be able to eat it all and end up carrying stuff out with me. Shooting for 2500 a day for the first hunt this year.

From: wifishkiller
20-Aug-20
Im at 55-60 pounds plus or minus depending on how many days,how much food and water (if its dry or not) and what optics im bringing. Thats hunt ready, going in to kill planning for 7 days.

From: SBH
20-Aug-20
I upgraded my sleep system this year and dropped

OLD setup was Big Agnes 15 degree bag and integral pad. MSR 2 man tent. The tent is like 15 years old and weighed 5lbs. Sleeping bag and pad came in around 5 lbs too so I was close to 10lbs for that set up.

New setup - WM 20 degree bag, SG ULskytarp, Thermarest neo air pad. Under 5lbs total. Huge difference.

From: Scrappy
20-Aug-20
What alot of the guys that are counting oz's don't tell you is they are not including everything in there pack when they leave the vehicle. Somehow it has become common practice to not include the weight of things in your pack like food, water, fuel for your stove, and all other kinds of stuff. Its like the guys that claim their bicycle that has a motor is non-motorized. Absolutely doesn't make any sense. If you put something in your pack it adds weight...

From: DanaC
20-Aug-20
Some backpacking guru once said, "Take what your body needs and your soul requires, and be ruthless with your soul."

Interpret that as you like.

From: Shawn
20-Aug-20
I think it's wonderful guys can even get down to 45-50#s. Hell I whitetail hunt mostly and do a lot of hang and hunts. For me to sit all day in the cold, say 20 degrees or colder my pack with food, extra clothes and my binos, calls and such weighs 22#s now add my stand and I am over 30#s. That is for a day sit, like I said seems to me 50#s for a week or so is great!! I agree I would pack more weight to add toy comfort level of I was packing well in for a week or more. Shawn

From: bowhunt
20-Aug-20
So my original question was how are guys getting down to 30lbs for multi day hunts In The mountains in September. I stated my pack is around 45-50 lbs after decades of fine tuning what I want to take and need to take. I have seen the claim of 30 pound packs for hunts like this multiple times.

I was just hoping to see a pack list from people that get the weight that low. I know I could shave 5-6 pounds pounds, but can’t figure out how a guy could cut 15-20 pounds and still be prepared to deal with a dead elk and multiple days of snow, rain , and or sunshine.

I am happy with my set up, but was curious what it would take to have a 30 pound pack, and spend a week in the mountains mid September.

Basically everyone that posted is within 5 pounds of what my loaded pack weighs, so the 30 pound pack must be and urban legend line big foot, everyone has heard of it but no one has actually seen it :)

From: fisherick
21-Aug-20
Here is my old bivy checklist (excel) that I have used for 3-day hunts. You could use for up to 5-days just add in food and extra socks weight. I have made several changes such as a Sawyer water filter instead of iodine tabs, puffy vest instead of m-fleece sweater, two more game bags +5 oz, (if solo) and extra water if needed.

I know I could update gear with lighter options, but this works for me in first 2-3 weeks of September at 8500-9500' elevation in Colorado.

BIVY CHECKLIST NUMBER ITEM NUMBER ITEM oz ESSENTIALS oz CAMP 4.09 Knife Buck PBS 47.52 Marmot EOS 1P tent, stakes 3.25 Pepper Spray 34.01 Sleeping Bag - Down 15*marmot 2.01 Gatorade Bottle 20 oz 25.51 BA IAC pad or ridgerest 14 0.65 Emg water Filter 7.66 Esbit stove & pot/ SnowPeak 8.3 2.05 Iodine Tablets 1.25 Cup plastic, spork/ ins cup-3 1.02 Fire Starter 1.33 paper towels 0.75 Lighter 4.75 2L Water Bag 1.06 Flint & Steel 1.25 Toothbrush-paste 1.14 Base Compass 1.25 Unscented Wipes-7 0.96 Map 1.25 Plastic bags - Al foil 5.75 50' Cord 2 caribiners 3.1 Fuel tabs or canister- 6.96 3.78 1st Aid kit / meds 1.41 9"x12" foam pad 0.75 Bandage,ace 1.65 Painters tarp plastic 0.78 pen, duct tape 2.25 Stuff sack/SB 0.75 Kleenex Pack 2 134.19 Total 1.15 Orange Bandana Clothes in Pack 0.35 20' Orange Flagging 8.21 Rain Jacket, space rain 0.08 Tie Wraps 7.41 Rain Pants, space rain 0.96 Tab, bow string 8.75 L S Shirt envio skin/merino wool 0.77 1/2 oz sanitizer 5.51 Longjohns envio skin/ merino 2.01 Space Blanket 3.66 Boxers envio skin/ merino wool 3.55 Space bag 3.08 Wool Socks/ poly socks 2.03 LED Flashlight 0.95 Balaclava / hat 2.35 LED Headlamp 2.41 Gloves, liners & 1/2 finger 0.75 Light stick 8.41 Micro-fleece Sweater 0.26 Whistle 1.41 W.P. stuff sack 1.66 Poncho plastic 4.65 FRS Radio 49.8 Total 1.65 Heat packs 0.27 Lip Balm ON PERSON 5.81 Game Bags 2, gloves 2.51 Wallet - License,money, ID, cc 8.01 Camera 2.61 Knife 8.77 Calls- bugle,hoochi,reeds 1.34 Matchcase-compass 87.51 Badlands 2800 pack 6.35 GPS 12.35 Binoculars 161.38 Total 1.15 Bandana 23.5# Pack- OP Total 26.31 Total 32 water- qt. ? Camo clothes worn 75 3- days Food Ascent pants, 1/4 merino shirt, boxers, C4 vest or jacket,socks,boots,hat 30.25# Pack,OP,food,water total Recurve bow,quiver,arrows

From: fisherick
21-Aug-20

fisherick's embedded Photo
fisherick's embedded Photo

21-Aug-20
Your weight is in your sleep system. Then it’s in your glass. Then it’s in the food you choose to eat. Then it’s the clothes you wear. If you are a big guy, your clothes simply weigh more. Start there. Leave the tooth brush and such at the truck. Use your finger. Use toilet paper instead of wet wipes. Take one head lamp that will last on batteries. It’s stuff that adds up.

From: Jaquomo
21-Aug-20
"Leave your toothbrush and such at the truck.." Umm, Justin, that one ounce toothbrush won't be noticed, but your breath after a couple days of not brushing or flossing will attract vultures. Lord help whomever has to share that tent!

22-Aug-20
Lou, I hear you. But, I’ve never shared a tent while back packing. I use a hammock. I’m also well past middle age and I’ve never had one cavity. I only brush my teeth once a day when I’m home. So, it isn’t do to miraculous effort on my part. I just don’t get bad breath or built Up gunk on my teeth. That’s coming from my wife too. I just have great oral health. I sum it up because I’ve never drank much soda my whole life. Mostly water, a few beers here and there, and a gallon of milk a day. I also don’t get BO. Even after many days in the same polyester base layers. I don’t know why. I just don’t. I’m lucky I guess. :^)

From: KD
22-Aug-20
Going in with my 3 day pak attached to my main pak 60-65lbs for two weeks.

KD

From: skipmaster1
22-Aug-20
Hell, my whitetail pack/stand is always between 40 and 50 pounds depending on the time of year. That’s only for 4-10 hours. Lol. But I’m not often hiking more than 2 miles in.

From: Surfbow
22-Aug-20
"Leave your toothbrush and such at the truck.." Umm, Justin, that one ounce toothbrush won't be noticed, but your breath after a couple days of not brushing or flossing will attract vultures.

Haha, no kidding, there's 1.5oz that definitely won't stay in the truck...

From: Fatbass
23-Aug-20
I do a series of 4 day bivouac hunts, essentially making a large circle through an area to see if it has what I'm looking gor. Total pack weight including food and water is 28 pounds.

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