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gabby13

Geocacheing Backpack

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I have larger backpacks (2400 cub. in) that are really too large for local family hikes.

Any recomendations on size and type/model to look at?

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Basically there is one key question that needs to be asked.

 

What do you normally carry with you?

 

Once that is answered it will help you determine what size you need.

 

For me while caching I have a little schwag bag and pen, plus my GPS unit. Since I do most of the caching as a park and grab currently I don't really need much more than a zip-lock baggy, granted that's starting to get a bit old as the baggie will eventually rip and need to be replaced.

 

Are you doing day hikes or hiking a couple of miles at a time? Do you need water easily accessible, etc.?

 

Maybe a little waist pack is all that you need, or possibly a sling bag. But again it really comes down to your needs for your caching trip.

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Check an Army Surplus store near you. There they should have a good selection of tactical bags. Just last week i went to my local Ranger Surplus store and found this bag from Fox Tactile.

https://www.foxoutdoor.com/ItemDetails.aspx?cid=1&ccid=5&cscid=23

 

It holds everything i had in my old pack pluss gives me a place to carry a bottle of water and snack items.

In it i keep the following with some room to spare:

 

Leather gloves

2 30 gal trash bags

4 freezer bags

note pad

Bottle of water

50+ft paracord

Pen

hand sanitizer pen

Swag items (small toys)

4+ cereal bars

3 or 4 film cans

Folding saw

large camping knife

3 sets of spare batteries

Garmin eTrex Legend H

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I just ordered a sling bag off the net. It's an Urban Sport. I can't recommend the bag that I bought as it's already starting to come unglued, but I love the sling bag vs. a two armed bag. There are times when I'd prefer to have a camelback style rather than carrying bottles of water though.

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I just ordered a sling bag off the net. It's an Urban Sport. I can't recommend the bag that I bought as it's already starting to come unglued, but I love the sling bag vs. a two armed bag. There are times when I'd prefer to have a camelback style rather than carrying bottles of water though.

 

If you buy the camelback style you also need to buy the kit to clean it.

A while ago a lot of articles came out on the bacteria build up in water bottles of people who don't clean them. The problem is worse in camelbacks because it is hard to dry them. A great breeding ground for mold and bacteria.

Once you price the cleaning kit, I think it's a lot easier to buy a water bottle that can be cleaned well.

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If you buy the camelback style you also need to buy the kit to clean it.

A while ago a lot of articles came out on the bacteria build up in water bottles of people who don't clean them. The problem is worse in camelbacks because it is hard to dry them. A great breeding ground for mold and bacteria.

Once you price the cleaning kit, I think it's a lot easier to buy a water bottle that can be cleaned well.

If one keeps his camelback in the refrigerator and changes the water at least once a week, then you will never have any problems with mold etc.

 

As to the pack any thing that is small and holds what you need is what you should get. Kelty has some good packs.

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I just ordered a sling bag off the net. It's an Urban Sport. I can't recommend the bag that I bought as it's already starting to come unglued, but I love the sling bag vs. a two armed bag. There are times when I'd prefer to have a camelback style rather than carrying bottles of water though.

 

If you buy the camelback style you also need to buy the kit to clean it.

A while ago a lot of articles came out on the bacteria build up in water bottles of people who don't clean them. The problem is worse in camelbacks because it is hard to dry them. A great breeding ground for mold and bacteria.

Once you price the cleaning kit, I think it's a lot easier to buy a water bottle that can be cleaned well.

 

You don't need to buy the cleaning kit. Denture tablets work great for disinfecting. The fridge/freezer method helps prevent stuff from growing in the first place. I just wash mine out with dish soap prior to use. I actually prefer the Hydrapack brand bladders over the Camelbak ones. I like the Camelbak bite valve slightly more, but parts can usually be retrofitted.

 

Right now, I mostly use an Osprey Talon 22 pack, but it's mostly empty when I cache unless I'm really getting away. For simplicity's sake, I tend to use the same pack more often. If I'm going on a string of urban caching, I might switch to my Mountainsmith Day lumbar/sling bag. Space for bottles instead of a bladder, but the pack capacity is much lower, so it's a more efficient use of space for my caching supplies.

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If you buy the camelback style you also need to buy the kit to clean it.

A while ago a lot of articles came out on the bacteria build up in water bottles of people who don't clean them. The problem is worse in camelbacks because it is hard to dry them. A great breeding ground for mold and bacteria.

Once you price the cleaning kit, I think it's a lot easier to buy a water bottle that can be cleaned well.

If one keeps his camelback in the refrigerator and changes the water at least once a week, then you will never have any problems with mold etc.

 

As to the pack any thing that is small and holds what you need is what you should get. Kelty has some good packs.

 

Go one farther, and keep the empty bladder in the freezer.

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I'm going to recommend the UTG Tactical Bag. Less than 30 bucks on Amazon and will hold everything you need.

Very similar to the one i have minus a pocket near the strap. Looks more rugged as well. Plus that one's side pouch isn't mesh like the Fox Tactical version.

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I'm going to recommend the UTG Tactical Bag. Less than 30 bucks on Amazon and will hold everything you need.

Very similar to the one i have minus a pocket near the strap. Looks more rugged as well. Plus that one's side pouch isn't mesh like the Fox Tactical version.

I got the real maxpedition bag last year after wearing out a cheaper look-alike. The maxpedition is just 'better'. Of course it is 3 times as expensive as well.

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I bought and use a lumbar pack....it is WAY more comfortable than a backpack and holds many things including two water bottles...just Google Lumbar pack and you can pick from many and find one that suits your needs.

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I have an M17A1 gas mask bag I picked up for a couple bucks at a surplus place when I was getting some ammo cans.

I can fit all my caching goodies in it for short walks. Camera, lots of pencils, compass, my log book, swag, TBs, tweezers etc.

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If price isn't a problem, you just can't go wrong with Maxpedition. It's the only pack I carry, because it's the only pack I've needed. I can't break it, I can't tear it, I can't wear it out. I carry a Vulture 3-day pack, which is big, but the compression straps on all sides help cut down the size when I'm only out for the day. It literally goes everywhere with me.

 

G&C's Maxpedition GeoPack GeoCoin

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I have a Camelbak Consigliere and it's perfect for day hikes/rides. I would highly recommend the hydration pack system at least. Go for brands like Camelbak, Hyrdapak and Dakine.

My Camelbak fits my GPS, camera, air pump, spare tube, first aid kit, notebook, rain poncho, 2L of water and there's still room for snacks and other stuff. Get a pack with a waist strap no matter the size, it's really helpful.

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I have 3 young children whome are girls that are usually caching with me plus my wife so my supply list is a tad larger than what id need if I went alone but my main pack is a Camelbak H.A.W.G.NV carries all I need when were doing some of the more woodsy hiking terrain. I carry things like first aid kit, emergency blankets, fire starter kit (flint and steel, fuel sticks, and tinder) spare flashlights, an emergency weather radio,bug spray, spare batteries for lights and radio, raincoats, emergency glow sticks, snacks, and of course the 3 liters of water the bladder holds and lots of swag, it may sound a bit much but I'm a better safe than sorry when it come to the family. As far as when I go alone or just me and my wife I carry a fanny style pack made by outdoor products Mojave 8.0 which carries 2 water bottles, lots of swag, snacks, small first aid kit, flashlight, and whatever extra I decide to throw in there. Another thing I've found extremely useful is purchasing one of those fisher space pensthat are pressurized because when it comes to signing logs that are damp or soaked it always writes on it without any trouble.

Edited by Hilbilly_Ern

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I carry a Maxpedition SaberCat Versipack seems to fit everything I need for a day hike.

If I am going to carry a back pack I ust the Maxpedition Condor II .You cant go wrong with Maxpedition gear it's a bit pricy but worth it.I really like the ability to add extra pouches etc. to there gear.

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Curious what people think as between the Camelbak HAWG and the Camelbak MULE. This pack will double as my MTB pack, so want the hydration AND keep it as small as possible, so the MULE would be ideal. However, need to make sure it has room for all the following:

 

1. trinkets/swag

2. pen

3. ziplock bags

4. flashlight

5. trackables (travelbugs, geocoins, etc.

6. logbooks

7. binoculars

8. multi-tool

9. camera

10. bug spray & anti-itch

11. rain ponchos

12. first aid kit

13. compass

14. gloves

 

Any thoughts on the list would also be helpful, but really interested in thoughts on the pack.

 

Thanks!

 

--Matt

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I have my service issued MULE, and I keept the following inside it:

100 oz bladder

a bunch of wooden nickels in a zip lock bag

gloves

extra bags

a Silva Ranger compass

50' of 550 cord

a poncho (I have straps on the outside where I can tie that onto, as well as attach my jacket)

A large field knife (I always carry one)

snacks

a boo boo kit (couple of band aids, a tick remover, some sports tape)

a small survival kit (its in a small pouch that I attach to the webbing straps as well)

a Heatsheet

 

In addition to this, I also have, on my person:

my pocketknife

my multitool

2 flashlights

 

There is enough room in this that, if I wanted to put a small pair of binos, I could fit them. This is my primary go-to caching pack now. I also have a Mountainsmitth Lumbar pack, thats rarely used anymore. Which is too bad, its a nice pack-I just have no use for it now.

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Since the OP is a Premium Member, there is a 2 page Off-Topic thread on the subject that may be worth checking out: http://forums.Ground...howtopic=272647

 

I'd like to be able to read that thread.

 

You can. For $30 a year. And you'll get Pocket Queries, Cache Along a Route, and more as a bonus! :lol:

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Since the OP is a Premium Member, there is a 2 page Off-Topic thread on the subject that may be worth checking out: http://forums.Ground...howtopic=272647

 

I'd like to be able to read that thread.

 

You can. For $30 a year. And you'll get Pocket Queries, Cache Along a Route, and more as a bonus! :lol:

 

I paid my $30.00 but still don't have a premium member status on the forum. I get all the benefits on the main site. My link :mad:

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Since the OP is a Premium Member, there is a 2 page Off-Topic thread on the subject that may be worth checking out: http://forums.Ground...howtopic=272647

 

I'd like to be able to read that thread.

 

You can. For $30 a year. And you'll get Pocket Queries, Cache Along a Route, and more as a bonus! :lol:

 

I paid my $30.00 but still don't have a premium member status on the forum. I get all the benefits on the main site. My link :mad:

 

Log out of the forums temporarily. Or have you tried that?

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I have my service issued MULE, and I keept the following inside it:

100 oz bladder

a bunch of wooden nickels in a zip lock bag

gloves

extra bags

a Silva Ranger compass

50' of 550 cord

a poncho (I have straps on the outside where I can tie that onto, as well as attach my jacket)

A large field knife (I always carry one)

snacks

a boo boo kit (couple of band aids, a tick remover, some sports tape)

a small survival kit (its in a small pouch that I attach to the webbing straps as well)

a Heatsheet

 

In addition to this, I also have, on my person:

my pocketknife

my multitool

2 flashlights

 

There is enough room in this that, if I wanted to put a small pair of binos, I could fit them. This is my primary go-to caching pack now. I also have a Mountainsmitth Lumbar pack, thats rarely used anymore. Which is too bad, its a nice pack-I just have no use for it now.

 

Sweet. Do you otherwise like the Mule?

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Since the OP is a Premium Member, there is a 2 page Off-Topic thread on the subject that may be worth checking out: http://forums.Ground...howtopic=272647

 

I'd like to be able to read that thread.

 

You can. For $30 a year. And you'll get Pocket Queries, Cache Along a Route, and more as a bonus! :lol:

 

I paid my $30.00 but still don't have a premium member status on the forum. I get all the benefits on the main site. My link :mad:

 

Log out of the forums temporarily. Or have you tried that?

 

Ive tried everything I can think of. I emailed Groundspeak on Friday. I'm sure it is only a matter of time.

 

I'm sorry I do not want to lead this thread off topic any further. If you have something to add please do so in my thread.

 

Apologizes for the short hijack.

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Sweet. Do you otherwise like the Mule?

My boss issued me a CamelBak Mule, which I use on any trips long enough to require hydration.

I have an older Camelbak with a lot more storage, but it's growing dust bunnies somewhere in the garage.

The two pouches on the Mule seem pretty small when you look at them, but they hold a surprising amount.

The two things I don't store in the pouches are my Gerber BMF, which I've affixed to the outside, and my LED flashlight, which slides into the bladder area.

My camera, bag of antique foreign coins and bag of Pathtags (swag) go in the top pouch.

My notepad, compass, whistle, ink pens, Sharpie markers, tweezers, multitool, cellphone, wallet and Glock go in the bottom pouch.

I do need to replace the bite valve though.

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Curious what people think as between the Camelbak HAWG and the Camelbak MULE. This pack will double as my MTB pack, so want the hydration AND keep it as small as possible, so the MULE would be ideal. However, need to make sure it has room for all the following:

 

1. trinkets/swag

2. pen

3. ziplock bags

4. flashlight

5. trackables (travelbugs, geocoins, etc.

6. logbooks

7. binoculars

8. multi-tool

9. camera

10. bug spray & anti-itch

11. rain ponchos

12. first aid kit

13. compass

14. gloves

 

Any thoughts on the list would also be helpful, but really interested in thoughts on the pack.

 

Thanks!

 

--Matt

 

Great List! Thanks.

I posted my own in "Getting Started" but it was not as comprehensive.

 

Quoting:

 

5. Prepare for any contingency by bringing along what I call a “cache-pack.” This is a carry-bag or knapsack that includes:

• prizes of different sizes, as you don’t know what will fit in any given cache

• pens, pencils, and note pad

• water bottle

• camera

• GPS unit

• extra batteries

• compass

• hand wipe

• cell phone

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If price is an issue... I find tons of backpacks at local thrift stores. I'm always keeping an eye out for good ones, because I work with scouts and because I can't resist anything with lots of pockets. :D Some are in great shape, others not, but it's worth checking out.

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Since the OP is a Premium Member, there is a 2 page Off-Topic thread on the subject that may be worth checking out: http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=272647

 

Do you have another link? That one didn't work for me (I'm a premium member). Thanks!

 

--Matt

 

Looks like you might have the same issue as Clint Cachewood. Under your avatar, the group just says +Members; it should say +Premium Members. You might want to check out the thread Clint linked to, and e-mail Groundspeak about your inability to access Off Topic.

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My favorite backpack is the Merrell Territory Backpack in amazon green. :3 Since I live in Hawaii I keep both my geocaching supplies and my beach stuff in it at all times.

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I use a sling bag (Mountain Equipment Co-op) which is ideal for me. Holds my purse, camera, pens, flashlights, cellphone and a few other tools and swag. I love the fact that I can just swing it around to my front for access, and it stays there in the car.

http://www.mec.ca/Products/product_detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524442625562&FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=2534374302699713 is the link if you want a peek. There is a larger one called the "Big Pod"

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I've been looking for an all-purpose day pack, not just for caching, but also for trips to the zoo, museum, etc. I've got 2 kids (7 and 10), so I need something to carry snacks, jackets, water, and anything else they hand me. I'm female, and kinda short (5'3"), so finding a pack that fits right isn't always easy. I ordered a few from LL Bean and REI to try, here's my results:

 

LL Bean Mountain Heather Day Pack link This one is teeny, really too small for what I need, but it's light and cute, so I'll keep it for those times (rare!) that I go out on my own. Any thoughts of returning it were banished when my 7 year old decided it was perfect for hauling Barbie's to her friend's house! :lol: The waist strap is just a webbing strap, not really made for support, but it is generously sized.

 

LL Bean Ridge Runner Day Pack link I really wanted to like this pack, because I loved the pockets and configuration of it, but it just didn't fit me. It has a nice waist belt, and I loved the mesh pockets on the outside, but the torso is too long and the straps hit my neck weird. One annoying thing--no matter how it is packed, it doesn't stand up on its own.

 

LL Bean Quad Pack link Similar size as the Ridge Runner Pack, I didn't like the pockets as well, but they were okay. It was more comfortable that the Ridge Runner for me, but still a bit long in the torso, and the straps were too wide. The waist strap is just a webbed belt, no padding, but the pack will stand up on its own when at least partially full. Both of these packs would probably fit a taller man, not so good for smaller women.

 

REI Venturi 30 Women's link This one was interesting--you can't really tell from the picture, but the frame actually holds the pack completely away from your back. It would probably be neat if you do a lot of hiking when it's very hot, but really not what I need right now.

 

REI Traverse Women's link This is the one I decided to keep. The pockets are pretty basic, okay. It fit well, and I decided that I liked the more substantial waist belt--I think that will help with carrying the load for longer hours, though it might be in the way if you don't want that. Packed carefully, it will stand upright on its own.

 

REI The North Face Recon Pack Women's link It was close between this one and the Traverse. I liked the pockets on this one better, but the waist strap is just a webbing belt, so doesn't offer a whole lot of support. This would be a good choice if someone really doesn't want a waist strap or belt.

 

This little exercise in trying different packs made me realize how different the same weight can feel in different packs, and made me appreciate women-specific packs.

 

edit to fix links

Edited by BuckeyeClan

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I just ordered a sling bag off the net. It's an Urban Sport. I can't recommend the bag that I bought as it's already starting to come unglued, but I love the sling bag vs. a two armed bag. There are times when I'd prefer to have a camelback style rather than carrying bottles of water though.

 

If you buy the camelback style you also need to buy the kit to clean it.

A while ago a lot of articles came out on the bacteria build up in water bottles of people who don't clean them. The problem is worse in camelbacks because it is hard to dry them. A great breeding ground for mold and bacteria.

Once you price the cleaning kit, I think it's a lot easier to buy a water bottle that can be cleaned well.

 

There is no need to purchase a cleaning kit for a Camelbak. If they start to get yuky all you need to do is fill it with water, add a tablespoon or two of chlorine bleach, let it sit for a few minutes, then remove the bite valve and run it through the hose. Rinse and you are done.

 

But you can keep them from getting nasty by drying it thoroughly if you aren't going to use it for a while. They sell an expanding plastic device that keeps it open so air can circulate and it can dry. Costs about $3. If you will be using the bladder frequently, simply fill it with water and store it it the fridge and it will be fine.

 

Of course this depends upon using water in it only. If you use Gatorade or other sweetened beverages all bets are off.

 

For the OP I'd suggest the Osprey Raptor, Osprey Manta, Osprey Talon or Osprey Stratos. They come in several sizes from 300 ci to 2,000+ ci. They are hydration system compatible and also have external pockets for water bottles.

 

Here is the Raptor 18

 

41AGHdHUQbL._AA300_.jpg

 

Some of the LL Bean packs mentioned in previous posts would also be good choices. LL Bean packs are usually very good values and well made. I still use a Bean day pack I bought over 25 years ago. Had the zipper fixed after 20 years and it's still going strong.

Edited by briansnat

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I finally found a small and cheap back pack through amazon which was exactly what I wanted. Simple and canvas. No frills. Nothing fancy. No waist belt. Love it.

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