Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

We gotta carry the stuff, so why not carry it lite! Discuss your pack and bag creations or modifications.
sudden
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Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby sudden » Sat May 07, 2011 6:23 pm

I need a small pack for myself.
Alice packs are cheap.
Talk me out of it.

My limitations are that I am not supposed to lift more than 10lbs or carry more than 3lbs.
That's pretty close to reality but it has to do with my spine not my hips.

If I'm correct, I should be able to carry some gear weight if it sits on my hips instead of my shoulders.

Consider connied's minimum survival stuff for a "day hike" plus water, food and coffee as the bare minimum I will need if I have trouble getting back to base camp. This is a real possibility for me (not any great danger but I might need to rest, possibly for several hours).

I think a lightweight hammock should go in the pack to be used as a chair or to lie down and rest. There are plenty of trees where I plan to go.

Back to the pack. The alice packs are all over ebay. They seem very inexpensive to me. They are an external frame style and if I read correctly, the external frame style while old is the easier way to distribute the load to your hips and away from your shoulders. Even if an alice pack is not ultralight, I don't think it should be a problem because I will not be carrying much equipment to begin with.

I have seen ultralight chairs that are just over 1lb. That is an option but the hammock ideas seems better because of weight and packability.

I don't want to spend a fortune on a pack since it will not get heavy use.

What say you, guru's of ultralight. What is my cheapest/best option for a day hike without too much back pain?

And don't say a wagon :lol: (I did consider a cart of some sort)
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ConnieD
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby ConnieD » Sat May 07, 2011 6:42 pm

The large Alice pack is huge. Do you want to carry duck decoys?

The medium Alice pack has a more reasonable volume.

If you wanted to use it as a rucksack, you would have to add shoulder straps and a waistband, because those attach to the packframe.

The Alice packframe is a "kidney puncher".

That is why people fit their Alice packframe with "alternate" waistbands. Also, there are "alternate" packframes, some quite expensive.

I would watch the Campmore website for bargains. Other retailers have bargain bins, of discontinued or superceeded model packs. I watch a pack I am interested in, waiting for it to either go on sale or hit the bargain bin.

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Ridgerunner
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby Ridgerunner » Sat May 07, 2011 8:18 pm

My limitations are that I am not supposed to lift more than 10lbs or carry more than 3lbs


Carry more than 3 lbs? I wouldn't even bother with an alice pack if your problem is in your spine. You might be surprised at the volume some waist packs carry. As a hunter, I haver seen waist packs that are very compartmentized(is that a word :lol: ) and some have game pouched and some have two water bottle attachments. A good waist pack may reduce much undue stress to the spine. ;)
"Many of lifes failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up".....Thomas Edison

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sudden
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby sudden » Sat May 07, 2011 9:55 pm

Ridgerunner wrote:
My limitations are that I am not supposed to lift more than 10lbs or carry more than 3lbs


Carry more than 3 lbs? I wouldn't even bother with an alice pack if your problem is in your spine. You might be surprised at the volume some waist packs carry. As a hunter, I haver seen waist packs that are very compartmentized(is that a word :lol: ) and some have game pouched and some have two water bottle attachments. A good waist pack may reduce much undue stress to the spine. ;)


I have a few waist packs for hunting but nothing I have will carry much volume. I'd have to see one in person to believe it wouldn't be hanging against the backs of my knees if they are any bigger than packs I already have :). I'll search em out on google. Thanks for the tip.

My old favorite was a turkey vest with integrated seat cushion but that does not have the waist belt.

The 3 lb rule hardly matters since I usually have enough trouble without the added weight. I have my trusty Leki poles (like RG's tent pole) that should help, now all I need is an inexpensive pack with waist belts and a few more useful items to pack.

I have my zelph woodgaz and superstove; a fire starting kit; first aid kit (needs tweaked); emergency tarp/blanket; flashlight; frog togs or poncho; etc etc plus a nice lightweight pair of Leica bino's; nikon camera; and possibly a fly rod/reel. I also have a GPS radio and wrist compass, a whistle, signal mirror, more etc. Time to weight everything!

I want to have the ability to stay out and stay comfortable. I should do fine with a pack large enough to carry connied's recommended items plus my personal extras.

ConnieD,
What I'm not sure of is whether or not anyone has considered an alice pack for the short distances I'm talking about. Thanks for the heads up on the waist belt but the real question is when does it become uncomfortable and at what weight. If I can find a commercial pack for a similar low price I'm all for it. I have been looking on ebay, there are hundreds to choose from. 400 yards is my goal. I know that because I've gone that far and come back without aggravating anything (but no pack). There are plenty of places I know of from fishing that can be reached in a short distance and still be secluded and peaceful. If this works out, I may be able to leap frog all day walking and resting and add some distance.

My campervan is calling and so is the weather. :mrgreen:
It's time to get out or die of spring fever.
"People are not persuaded by what we say, but rather by what they understand."

sudden
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby sudden » Sat May 07, 2011 10:55 pm

Image Image
This must be what you're talking about ridgerunner. Best of both worlds, lumbar pack, shoulder straps, waist belt. $90 plus shipping
"People are not persuaded by what we say, but rather by what they understand."

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zelph
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby zelph » Sat May 07, 2011 11:01 pm

I can give you one of these. I was thinking it would make for a easy sit down and rest pack. No need to take it off, just sit down and lean back, stop and rest every 15 min. Adapt it to what you want to carry, a DIY project. It's in my garage somewhere. You can have it, no charge, free is good ;) I'll weigh it and get a cost for shipping.

http://www.rei.com/gear/feature/search/ ... KgodtkQXEQ
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realityguy
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby realityguy » Sat May 07, 2011 11:16 pm

My day pack weighed in about 12oz..but I added a lot of straps to it and i think it might be almost up to a whopping 16oz now.. :roll: .It is a fanny pack..but with a top that extends for use as a "backpack".I usually carry the heavier stuff in the bottom compartment(cooking,food,etc) and the bulky items(clothes,hammock or tent,lightweight bag,hat,etc) in the upper "pouch"..placing most of the weight down low and not pulling me back..A lot can also be tied on outside(the travelling salesman look.. :mrgreen: )if it doesn't fit inside because of the added "equipment straps"...LINK---> viewtopic.php?f=4&t=4624&p=32212#p32212
It's easy enough to buy/make a very light pack that has a waist belt..If your back or shoulders get tired,sinch up the belt and carry it on your hips for awhile.Adding suspension adjustment straps over the shoulder straps can help distribute/adjust the weight more off the areas that hurt and closer to your shoulders.Some pouches on your belt can take more weight off your shoulders and back.
Buy cargo pants with lots of big pockets... :roll:

:lol:
The views and opinions expressed by this person are his own and not the general consensus of others on this website.Realityguy

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zelph
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby zelph » Sat May 07, 2011 11:25 pm

Fanny packs limit bending forward and irritate my arms when they swing as I walk. I tried them and gave up on them.

As I bend forward, the weight of the stuff in the rear of the pack puts resistance on the waist against the belt area, does not allow the pack to raise up when bending. The thick front portion digs into the belly.
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Ridgerunner
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby Ridgerunner » Sat May 07, 2011 11:43 pm

"Many of lifes failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up".....Thomas Edison

"Live Life....Love Life....Ask More !

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ConnieD
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Re: Why shouldn't I buy an alice pack?

Postby ConnieD » Sun May 08, 2011 1:58 am

This one doesn't make a great camera bag, but it makes a pretty good lumbar pack.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5 ... tpack.html

The best use is to carry it in back and to slide it around to the front to reach the contents, if foot placement is no big deal.

I know I need to be able to see my feet, if foot placement is a big deal.

I think, rather than your shoulders, get the weight on your hips, specifically the iliac crests of your pelvis.

I do think the one you have pictured is quite good, because you can vary the load from shoulders to "hips" (read: iliac crests of pelvis) by loosening or tightening the shoulder straps and/or waist straps. I think you may want to redistribute the weight load, by that means, to find your "comfort zone".

I would remove those outboard side pockets. That's just me. I don't like interference with natural movement of my arms while walking. My elbows brush against outboard side pockets, like those. If your body has more girth, that may not be noticed. I personally can't stand pockets that stick out like that.


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