More Time In The Woods

I’ve been swamped at work lately, which accounts for the lack of posting.  Nothing too exciting since Red River Gorge, although I did make a few medium-sized purchases.  First and foremost, I bit the bullet and purchased a new hiking backpack.  I know I know.  I don’t “need” another one, but I’ve been eyeing this particular pack since March, and I finally was able to get it through an employee purchase program at work for a killer deal and decided to capitalize on the opportunity.  The current pack I’ve been using (an Osprey Atmos 65) is a little bigger than necessary for long weekend and five day trips, and I could feel the weight jostle around after one day on the trail.  The much bigger reason though, is that it was hurting my hips and pinching my sides, leaving bruises at the end of each trip.  I had this same problem on the AT with my old Atmos 65 (size large), but my body built up a resistance to it over time.  Since then, that resistance has softened and the bruises have returned.  I was leery about the Arcteryx pack since I didn’t have the opportunity to properly size myself or really test it, but I couldn’t pass up on the deal.

I took the pack out this weekend for a quick over-nighter in the Hocking Hills and the pack did not disappoint.  No more load jostling.  No more hip bruises.  I’m in love with the light, simple design and the big back pocket on the outside is very conducive for the other big purchase I made (more on that later).  I didn’t push the limits of the pack; only putting in about 30 pounds total, but I doubt I would use it for anything beyond that weight.  Now the next task is to ditch the Atmos and find a quality full-featured 70 liter pack for extended trips/mountaineering to add to the gear closet…

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