If it’s wrong, fix it.
I’ve been beyond happy with my pack weight, the food I brought, and all of my gear…except the pack itself.
I was never worried about becoming the 25% that doesn’t make it past Neels Gap, but I have to admit that the Blue Devil, aka my first pack, wasn’t making it easy on me.
When the staff at Neels first checked out my pack I think I scored an 0 for 3 on proper fit. I’m not going to point fingers to the REI that fitted me, but let’s just say that all gear is worth a second opinion. Honestly, I love that place and this isn’t smack talk, but again, if something doesn’t feel right (even from an outfitter) FIX IT. I think my back still has PTSD from the first pack
I’m now rocking a Granite Gear Lusten 55L that feels more like a circus monkey clinging tightly to my back than a baby elephant barely holding on.
Not to mention ditching my sleeping bag stuff sack for a trash compactor liner and better pack organization to fill all the nooks and crannies. Seriously, even if you’re happy with everything you brought, just chat with the staff at Neels. Those guys have some serious trail knowledge. I can’t thank them enough.
The super-nerdy pack updates:
– Lining the pack with a trash compactor bag and stuffing sleeping bag in the bottom.
– Cutting the bottom section off my sleeping pad to minimize the size and create a butt pad for sitting on wet surfaces. I was actually able to make 2 butt pads and donated the other to a hiker box. Happy butts for everyone!
Always more to learn and I can’t wait. Cheers!
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