/ 45-50l Alpine rucksack

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spenser - on 27 May 2013
I'm going on one of the conville alpine mountaineering courses in a couple of weeks time and the kit list says I need a 45-50l rucksack, I've currently got a 33l Osprey Talon which I find to be a little on the small side for doing Trad once I'm carrying a rack and rope etc, so whatever I buy will get used once back in the UK as well. I'd prefer to try the bag on with some weight in it before I buy it so that unfortunately restricts me to Go Outdoors and Cotswold Outdoor, the options which leap out at me are these: - Quite heavy but if it's really comfy then the extra weight may be worth it. - Has one of the suspension systems on the back, I've not really used any bags with this on before, I've been told that bags with these on are often optimistic with the quoted volumes. - The smaller one is the mutts nuts so I'd imagine this is pretty good as well.
With price matching and bmc discounts I can get all of these to roughly the same price.
I'm happy to look at other options as well if there's anything which I've missed or that have a very similar fit to a talon. Which of these would I be best off going with?
tomjagger - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser:
i did the conville course last year with a deuter 32l sack, i reckon its big for a 32l but that was plenty big enough, i could just about squeeze bivvi kit into it too, so i would say you dont absolutely need one.

if youre gonna get one though the deuter packs are great and i think the back system on the exos isnt the best for alpine stuff.
tomjagger - on 27 May 2013
In reply to tomjagger: also the extra weight of the deuter probably comes from the much tougher fabrics used... the exos is more of a trekking rucksack and is made accordingly
alexm198 - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser: I'm on a conville course in a couple of weeks time as well. I plan on taking out my Black Diamond Speed 30, I think a 45-50l sack would be way too much. The BD speed is plenty enough for scottish winter so I figure it should be fine.
Solaris - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser:

I'd suggest thinking long-term: a rucksack should last you a good number of years, so it's well worth getting something that will do all (or most) of what you anticipate you are likely to require from a rucksack over the next few years.

So, if you envisage carrying bivvy gear at some stage - but not necessarily this year - buy a sack that will enable you to do that. Despite what some more macho threads and posts on UKC might suggest, a sac under 45l is unlikely to be suitable.

Again, because a sack should last you for years, it is better to pay more now than to end up having to pay twice at some later date because you have bought a less good quality one now. In addition to quality of fabrics and design, I'd also be aiming for simplicity of design. Finally, I'd suggest heading to your local independent climbing shop and asking their advice.
Lion Bakes on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser:

As long as you are staying in huts then your current sac will be fine. The larger rucksack will only encourage you to take more than you need. Fast and light is your principle and for good reasons.
Neil Pratt - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser:

The Talon 44 has a tubular aluminium frame supporting the back that I found very uncomfortable when I tried to store my axe down the back of my sack. It's also made of very lightweight material, and the thin straps and buckles are a real pain to use with gloved hands. If you fancy an Osprey, the Mutant 38 or Variant 37 might be better bets.

I like the Talon for summer walking, but have gone back to my Lowe Alpine Alpine Attack 45 for winter climbing and cragging use - mine is about 15 years old now, tough as old boots and still in remarkably good nick given the hammering it's taken over the years.
Sam_in_Leeds - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser:

If anyone's interested in taking a "vintage" MacPac Pursuit rucksack (old fashioned one in indestructable material without a metal frame so weighs peanuts let me) let me know.

The Mrs' has been nagging me to have a clear out for ages.

£20 if you can pick it up in Leeds or surrounding area!
alasdair19 on 27 May 2013
In reply to Sam_in_Leeds: what back size?
joe.91 - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser: you can always strap kit to the pack. When I'm taking bivi kit my mat, helmet, crampons, axes and rope are all strapped on the outside.
GridNorth - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser: I have a Deuter-guide-45 plus and have to say it's the most comfy rucksack I've ever owned but for alpine climbing I prefer something lighter and smaller and currently use a 35 litre OMM Jirishanka. It has a built in basic sleeping mat which helps with support to the back and an elasticated panel at the front for putting the helmet under as well as zipped pockets on the waist belt for keeping snacks and sweets in. I don't have a problem with attaching stuff to the outside as when you are climbing most of it is about your person but would have to admit that it's not the comfiest pack on the market when the load is heavy.
spenser - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser:
From what people have said it looks as though I may well be able to get by with my current bag for now, thinking about it I'll probably not be taking a full rack anyway which will massively cut down on the size and and someone else will carry the rope so if I'm relatively careful with packing it should not be a real issue. Ice axe and helmet were always going to go on the outside.
Thanks for the advice everyone.
Petarghh - on 27 May 2013
In reply to spenser: I use a warthog 26 for day routes, huts and really light bivis (suffering!)

and i've got a larger aiguille 40L pack for more serious stuff.

Talon 33 will be fine for the conville, the problem with large packs is you take too much stuff then you've got to carry it !
RobHumphries on 27 May 2013 -
In reply to spenser: For a 45-50l alpine pack does anyone have any experience of the Black Diamond Speed or Podsacs Black Ice? They look pretty similar but I was wondering if there's anything in particular that makes one stand out from the other? Cheers.
ice.solo - on 28 May 2013
In reply to spenser:

if i was shelling out for a new 45L id be looking at the latest montane and MHW offerings.
needvert on 28 May 2013 - whois?
In reply to Sam_in_Leeds:

I have a maybe 3 year old pursuit. Frame is removable, most of the time I don't use the frame, use the pack every weekend though. Really good size at 55l for my one pack does all role. Really like that the parts against your shoulders back hips aren't faced with delicate material like a lot of packs. Material for the pack body is still plenty solid. Not as stiff as my 12ish year old Macpac though.

Is heavy though. Cilogear dyneema packs sure look interesting.
LJC - on 28 May 2013
In reply to RobHumphries: Big fan of the BD speed series. Most of the podsacs I've seen only have basic loops for axes - these never seem secure with modern tools. MHW ones are nice too.
Sieto on 28 May 2013 -
In reply to spenser:
I'm a big fan of the Mountain Hardwear SummitRocket 40. I find that using it on tours where you sleep in huts it's on the large side, but it's just big enough for bivy gear or a small tent.
Sam_in_Leeds - on 28 May 2013
In reply to alasdair19:

size 2 I think.
alasdair19 on 29 May 2013
In reply to Sam_in_Leeds: shame I'm a 3.

Have used AK47, good but broken 2 of them as stitching failed.

Have a black ice which is excellent quite big in size 3. Used for multi day routes has worn extremely well.

Tore a.hole in a go lite putting My boots in.....
Henrycuillin on 04 Jun 2013 -
In reply to spenser: Try the Montane torque 40 and grand tour 55, I find they have very comfy back systems.

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