Backpacks that fit a woman's shorter torso, without compromising capacity?

Suz

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Aug 24, 2018
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I'll be going out for multiple days in backcountry, and I need a pack that has the capacity for gear and that's expandable to pack out meat, but that also fits my torso length. I bought a pack last year that was too long and thought it would be fine. It wasn't. I've looked at stone glacier packs because they seem to be the most adjustable, but i'm not willing to pay that kind of money unless it is a perfect fit. (and even then...sheesh! expensive!) I saw the Monarch backpack by alps outdoorz, but it's just a day pack and doesn't fit the bill. Any recommendations?
 

Camdu7

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Get a good measurement of what size you need and call the manufactures. If they don't make one short enough, they may be willing to adjust one. My wife and I both use Exo. They do go fairly short and the way they attach the harness it looks easy to add a section of mollie to shorten it up more. Otherwise there are the backpacking packs like Gregory ect. But as nice and they are they sure can't handle meat like a high end hunting pack.

Welcome by the way.
 
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BrentD

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You should visit a good shop and try out packs made specifically for women. An REI shop generally have very knowledgeable people and quality equipment. They can fit you specifically. Even if you have to travel a bit to do it, getting fitted correctly will be worth it. Sometimes, buying on line just won't cut it.
 

375H&H

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There really is nothing that compares to a high end hunting backpack that is made for the purpose. I resisted getting one for years but after I did I will never look back.

I went with exo and they are quite adjustable so I would believe that with the correct belt size they could be made comfortable for a woman's sizing.

Having said that I am 6'4" and haven't needed to adjust mine much, but I got my wife the alps outdoors pack in women's and she likes it a lot. It is not made for packing meat though nor is it optimized for hunting like a high end pack will be.
 

Anyfish

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I’ve had a Bull Pac for a dozen years and love the versatility. I use it for hiking, packing meat, and packing decoys. Highly recommend their quality. Give them a call. Bullpacs.com
 

belly-deep

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As posted above, Mystery Ranch makes hunting packs designed specifically for women. I doubt you’ll find a mans pack that will fit better than that.

And they are excellent packs to boot.
 

cedahm

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Colorado
I have an Eberlestock Team Elk (I purchased used, but new is $329) that even at it's longest setting is a hair "too short" for me (6'2") . It's a short frame and works well hauling meat (tested on two elk last year and I am still using it this year mostly because I'm too busy/lazy to hunt down a different pack :) ). I would imagine on the shorter settings it would fit a small frame perfectly.

If you're planning weeklong trips it is too small @ ~2900 cubic inches (it's 3100 WITH the rifle scabbard - but the top 2/3 of the scabbard compartment is usable space for other stuff with the muzzle end of the scabbard zipped in, so I'm calling it 2900) , but I've used on 1-2 night trips and it works fine for that with a compact sleep system (e.g. summertime trips).

ALl that said - I think Bozone and Brent are correct in that length isn't the only design factor, Mystery Ranch and Osprey (and probably others) make packs designed specifically for womens forms. More $ but worth a look.

If you're interested in the Team Elk after looking at it and absorbing all the other information - feel free to PM me - I'd be willing to part with it.
 

courtks92

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Agreed on the Mystery Ranch route. Honestly if you live close to a decent outdoors store, swing in there and talk to them about packs for various outdoors gear. I live in Kansas and found a retailer in a location I was visiting for vacation so I was able to swing in, get fitted, and pick the right pack for me. I actually ended up going with the regular Mystery Ranch line instead of the women's BUT I also happen to have a longer torso. If possible, see if you can find one of the higher end packs for sale on something like geartrade.com or rokslide.com - it'll be used but typically you'll save yourself a bit of cash. The investment is worth it though - I learned the hard way packing out deer quarters with a simple Cabela's day pack (was NOT planning on being successful that day).
 

OhHeyThereBen

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Unless you're set on a strictly hunting pack, if I were you I'd head to your local REI and try on a bunch of backpacking packs. My wife really loves her Gregory but there are a whole bunch of packs that are perfectly sized for different body types. That route I've found is much better than a pack with a bunch of adjustability.
 

Bambistew

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Chugiak, AK
My wife uses a woman's Osprey pack, I want to say its about 70L. Its packed out a couple sheep, a bear hide, lots of moose meat and caribou. She loves it. She can only pack about 60lbs and the pack is more than capable.
 

MTGomer

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My wife also has an osprey pack. She likes it. The one we bought was $230 at Scheels amd we found it for about half that on backcountry.com
 

Artemis.Agrotera

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Nov 10, 2019
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USA
Allow me to revive this thread from the dead with a question. If there are any ladies here with some experience on the matter, would a 70L or 85L backpacking pack be better for backpack hunting? The AAR from my recent camping trip up in Maine confirmed that my current pack is not the right fit for my needs r.e. winter camping and backpack hunting (will not fit a BV500 bear can or 4 season tent/sleeping bag). I've strongly considered a Stone Glacier or Mystery Ranch pack for 2020 (i have all of the other camping items, so the pack is the last thing), but Stone Glacier has no women's specific fit and Mystery Ranch is heavy. I am... blessed (cursed?) and won't be able to comfortably use men's pack straps. So, I started looking at the Osprey Xena. It comes in 70L or 85L, is still heavy (but lighter than the MR), and is $175 cheaper than a women's Metcalf. I'm not concerned about hauling 100 lbs of meat at a time, as I wouldn't be able to do that effectively anyway.

Is the 70L plenty for a Mule Deer/Cow Elk hunt, or would the 85L be a better move (price different is minimal); or, is the MR Metcalf so magical that I should go for it and let it do double duty as a winter pack?
 
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