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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Sat Sep 27, 2008 6:00 pm 
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bcrider wrote:
Stoked you're stoked Chris but can't help but wonder why you didn't get the Osprey Exposure 66?


Hey BCR, couple of reasons:

1. This pack will be used for more than just multi-day boarding/mountaineering trips. I am ideally hoping to replace two packs currently in my arsenal (Gregory Reality - 70L, and Gregory Massif -105L). As such this pack would see use for winter mountaineering, snowboard touring trips, future expeditions (Aconcagua, return trip to AK, Mt Logan, etc...) and extended backpacking/trekking (e.g. Muir Trail, Annapurna circuit). Given the space needed for all these intended uses the 70-90L capacity was a big factor.

2. For glacier travel I typically have my primary crevasse extrication anchor (picket) attached to the side of my pack under the compression straps and resting in the side pouches. The Phoenix has side pouches to accommodate both Nalgene bottles and easily hold picket (with quick access via a runner clipped to the sternum strap) without having to tightly cinch the compression straps to prevent it from falling out. (Also work well to have quick avy probe access)

3. Very intrigued to see how well the recycled materials hold up to abuse. Given my affiliation with CalEPA and the absence of reviews on this pack I figured I would step up and beat the hell out of it and provide needed beta.

4. For expedition trips I do like a separate sleeping bag compartment, not to hold my bag but rather the tent body/fly so that it can be quickly removed once arriving at camp without unpacking the majority of the pack's contents.

5. Really like an external daisy chain on an expedition pack and the Phoenix has two.

If I purely wanted an alpine snowboard pack the Exposure would probably have been my choice (lighter and some intriguing features), and I could have saved some $. Guess time will tell how well this pack performs in my numerous anticipated uses. I'm now done :soapbox:

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165 Venture Divide, Spark Franken-Burner, LaSportiva Spantik
163W Jones Solution, Phantom Alphas, Dynafit TLT5
162 Furberg


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2008 9:37 am 
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96avs01 wrote:
If I purely wanted an alpine snowboard pack the Exposure would probably have been my choice (lighter and some intriguing features), and I could have saved some $.



That's what I was thinking. Your other reasons make sense too.

Good luck and let us know how it goes! :thatrocks:


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 Post subject: Re: Quest 65 preview
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 10:41 pm 
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Location: Oakland, CA
SchralphMacchio wrote:
kjkrow wrote:
Right on, let us know what you think after you get to load it up for a while. Just from looking at the pictures, it reminds me a bit of the Mountainsmith packs in terms of basic design and layout.


I haven't loaded it up and tested the suspension at all. I'm planning on using it as a four season pack, so it will get some test on some realllllly easy overnight backpacking trips in October.

First impressions:
-pack is a bit overdesigned, probably one of the main culprits in its heavy weight (5.5 pounds):
--there are dual compression straps for top, bottom, and sides, in addition to the snowboard holding straps
--hypalon used is very thick, as the other fabrics of the shell tend to be as well - generally thicker than I have seen on other winter packs
--there is an excessive amount of hypalon for the shovel handle/ice axe holding system, there is no need to completely enclose an ice axe handle or shovel handle in a sleeve of hypalon
--there are separate ski straps (rubberized polymer with metal hooks) in *addition* to the side compression straps
--there is a separate waistbelt built into the top lid, it may be removable for weight savings or useful in first aid improvisation (I tend to carry extra straps for this purpose and others)
--there is a nylon flap that is used to securely attach the top lid if you expand the contents of the main pocket vertically ... considering there are front and back compression straps for the top lid this piece of fabric is uneccesary
--the included rainfly buckles into (it's removable) and is stored in its own special compartment at the bottom of the pack

-a positive of the overdesign is that it gives an impression of "bombproofness"

-but, the quality of the materials for the suspension system does not look like it rivals that of trusted brands such as TNF, Osprey, etc. The suspension looks decently designed (dual load stabilizers on the hip belt) and overall looks lightweight actually, but I question the foam padding and the breathable mesh covering used, we will see after I load about 40 pounds into it

-there *is* front access to the main pocket through a side zipper, this is awesome!

-there *is* a separate zippered pocket that goes behind your board/shovel that can be used to store all your avy-specific gear for quick access, this is exciting as well!

-You need at least a 30" waist, any smaller and the hip belt runs out of tensioning

-it has a grommeted port for your hydration hose, and a clip on the shoulder strap for your hose. Those clips are a pet peeve of mine because they will break the first second your beater. I removed the clip and am going to use a large key ring ... blow the water back up the hose, fold the hose below the mouthpiece, and slide the folded end into the key ring to keep in place and keep from freezing.

Pack Preview Summary:
-a super compressible, feature rich pack for a great price, but you may get what you pay for in terms of overall quality (still an untested risk)


Just another update. I haven't tested the board carry yet because I'm too lazy to screw my bindings on my board. But maybe I'll do it this weekend and go for a hike. I just look forward to being able to smirk while other people are wondering why some douche in a giant touring bag is wandering the Berkeley Hills or Point Reyes National Seashore with a snowboard :)

Anyway, I've filled the pack with a few physics books, my sleeping bag, enough food for lunch for four, safety gear, and strapped my pad to it and gone now on two 11-mile hikes with some moderate vertical involved. I think I weighed it in at just over 30 pounds. Here are some field observations.

Honestly the suspension is pretty good ... better than I originally suspected. Feels fine when I'm climbing up steep slopes, very stable when fully compressed and comfy. I still need to go to a packfitter and get it really dialed in (bars bent and load lifters set up right) but the pack is really flexible about sizing. Shoulder straps can be mounted in three different positions for torso length. The dual load stabilizers (upper and lower) on the hip belt make the fit really tunable to get the weight carried well.

Pole carry on the downhill is super easy - on the sides there are water bottle pockets, you can put the poles handles in the water bottle pocket and then use the ski straps and compression straps to secure. For whippets you just use the ice axe / shovel handle holders.

Bag divider for keeping sleeping bag or whatever else you want in the bottom compartment is nice. Zippers feel good. Bottom compression is set up really well for carrying a pad down there. The overall compressibility is unreal.

VOLUME ... ahem, it's called "Quest 65" but it expands to well over 4500 ci ... I think it has a 75+L capacity. You could schlep a lot of shit in this pack.

Hip belt ... still kinda bummed about how it's set up for wider people, I'm almost maxed out on the straps with my 30" waist and I have these ridiculously long strap ends hanging down over my crotch. 36" waists are probably perfect for the hip belt.


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:26 pm 
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Two random thoughts schralp.

For the long straps. You can get some thin bungee cord off an old pack or at the fabric store and run it through the ends of the straps. Then tie around the strap where it comes out of the hipbelt. Each loose side basically folds back on itself instead of dangling down. You can also do this to long compression straps too. It makes them slightly harder to adjust until you get used to it. Kinda hard to explain. I'll take a pic tomorrow.

Second thought is regarding your pad. I'm from the school of thought that thinks the less lashed to the outside of the pack the better, especially when it comes to to a wide sleeping pad. Are you using a Thermarest style pad or closed cell? Most Thermarest pads are small enough to be stored inside and even a closed cell pad can be too. if using a closed cell, take your empty pack and put your pad inside in an open O shape. Then fill your contents into the pack. The pad gives the empty pack structure and makes it easy to fill. It also solves the issue of carrying it on the outside. Since your pack has the extra volume you should still be able to fit everything inside and have a nice clean, snag free outer. Food for thought. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:38 pm 
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Location: Oakland, CA
bcrider wrote:
Two random thoughts schralp.

For the long straps. You can get some thin bungee cord off an old pack or at the fabric store and run it through the ends of the straps. Then tie around the strap where it comes out of the hipbelt. Each loose side basically folds back on itself instead of dangling down. You can also do this to long compression straps too. It makes them slightly harder to adjust until you get used to it. Kinda hard to explain. I'll take a pic tomorrow.


Yes, pictures please. NO idea what you are talking about :) I'm honestly considering taking a lighter to a razor blade and melting off some of the extra ... then I guess I'd need to fold over and sew in a stop so the thing doesn't completely come off.

bcrider wrote:
Second thought is regarding your pad. I'm from the school of though that the less lashed to the outside of the pack the better, especially when it comes to to a wide sleeping pad. Are you using a Thermarest style pad or closed cell? Most Thermarest pads are small enough to be stored inside and even a closed cell pad can be too. if using a closed cell, take your empty pack and put your pad inside in an open O shape. Then fill your contents into the pack. The pad gives the empty pack structure and makes it easy to fill. It also solves the issue of carrying it on the outside. Since you pack has the extra volume you should still be able to fit everything inside and have a nice clean, snag free outer. Food for thought. :)


You know, I never thought of the open O shape technique ... not bad!

I actually have both types. The thermarest prolite 4 is a lot smaller and lighter, but I think my MHW dual-layer foam (one layer of closed cell and one layer of eggcrate) just feels more cushy to me. I'm more familiar with the foam pad and it can't puncture so I tend to go with that unless I want a really light setup.

Anyway, I'll try out that trick next time.


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 11:22 pm 
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Location: California
Here's some pics of the webbing tether mod Schralp M.

It's on a smaller pack (homemade btw :) ) but you can do the same thing on wider webbing.

Attachment:
2.jpg


Attachment:
1.jpg


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2008 11:52 am 
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PSA... Backcountry Experience has the Osprey Exposure 66 on clearance for $109.50. Sizes S,M & L.

http://www.bcexp.com/product_info.php?products_id=706

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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Mon Nov 03, 2008 9:13 am 
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Yoda wrote:
PSA... Backcountry Experience has the Osprey Exposure 66 on clearance for $109.50. Sizes S,M & L.

http://www.bcexp.com/product_info.php?products_id=706


Trigger pulled. Screaming deal. Thanks Yoda.


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:12 pm 
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Parties seeking Osprey Exposure 66 can find a deal at Backcountry Gear for ~$130+free shipping:

here

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Chris

165 Venture Divide, Spark Franken-Burner, LaSportiva Spantik
163W Jones Solution, Phantom Alphas, Dynafit TLT5
162 Furberg


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Tue Jun 15, 2010 8:12 am 
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Just resurrecting this thread to see how the Mountainsmith Phoenix is holding up for those who have it. Im about to pull the trigger on this pack but cant find many reviews online. Mostly curious about the durability.


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 4:45 pm 
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Posts: 253
This one could a winner for some of you guys (and me)

Image

I've always found the fully featured packs to have 90% of the features I want, and the same number of features I don't. The stripped-down alpine style packs seem have to none of the features I don't want, but only half the features I do want, with semi-satisfactory bodges for the balance.

This one is stripped down, but with the ability to set it up any way you want, without compromise. The five daisy chains mean you can set up straps to carry A-frame or vertical, ice tools, cinch down the volume by crass lacing with cord. Comes in 30L, 40L, 50L versions.

Follow the linky picture and the link to details ("Mountain pro features" from facewest . Someone's thought a lot about this pack. Bit much to call putting ice tool handles between shoulder strap and back a function of the pack though! More of a tip!

Not going to be perfect for everybody: no internal frame, no easy access snow tools pocket (although you can set it up so your straight in the main pocket with one clip of a karabiner) and no back access.

I'm mightily tempted...


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 9:11 pm 
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Allannn wrote:
Just resurrecting this thread to see how the Mountainsmith Phoenix is holding up for those who have it. Im about to pull the trigger on this pack but cant find many reviews online. Mostly curious about the durability.


my apologies for not seeing this inquiry earlier...i was on bed rest at the time. so far i am completely happy, though truth be told its more pack than i really need most of the time (so you really have to be meticulous when you pack to avoid bringing too much). haven't loaded it to the max yet, but the suspension should be quite comfortable even when loaded with 70+. fabric is holding up well, though wish i had the opportunity to beat it up more frequently.

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Chris

165 Venture Divide, Spark Franken-Burner, LaSportiva Spantik
163W Jones Solution, Phantom Alphas, Dynafit TLT5
162 Furberg


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 Post subject: Re: Snowboard Compatible Mountaineering Packs
PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:37 am 
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Location: Routt County Co.
Keep the Palisade, it's an easy retrofit. I purchased mine when I was 18 @ campmor and have used it on every summer and winter trip since. I admit some of the new lighter packs are tempting but after 20 years of service my Palisade is an old, (really old friend).

PS- I did bend a few needles on the sewing machine.


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