Granite Gear Crown 2 ???

Discussion in 'Backpacking' started by CaliforniaCanuck, Aug 7, 2018.

  1. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Messages:
    3,893
    Likes Received:
    3,999
    Not sure if I'd be wasting money on another pack as I've already bought 3 in the last 5 years.
    - Mountainsmith Scream - not much support, no load lifters, but it was light weight.
    - sixmoon designs fusion 50l - turned out smaller than 50l, and didn't fit well,
    - Externo external frame pack 60l - love it but it's heavy, weighs 5 lbs!

    The Crown 2 looks interesting and if I buy another one it better be the last! This one weighs 2 lbs 5 oz.
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MTFHLWE/ref=twister_B072MR3MPT?th=1&psc=1

    Do any of you have it? How heavy can you load it to before it stops feeling comfortable? What else can you tell me about your experience with it?

    Thanks!
     
    Midwest.Bushlore and M.Hatfield like this.
  2. 41magfan

    41magfan Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    467
    I don't own a Crown 2 but the specs say 35 lbs is the limit for that particular suspension system (Vapor Current). The comfort factor regarding carry weight is fairly subjective but having owned four (4) different GG packs I've found their load limit recommendations to be pretty spot-on.
     
    Seeker and M.Hatfield like this.
  3. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2013
    Messages:
    4,346
    Likes Received:
    11,912
    Location:
    Portsmouth Virginia
    Whenever possible you should take your gear and go try on a pack. I didn't follow this advice myself but I did at least take my measurements and got a pack to fit them. The most important one in my experience is the torso height.

    I went with a large REI Flash 45 which is actually 50L for the large size, but also fits my torso which is long for my height. Lucky for me the pack has worked out great. If I had $200 to spend on a pack at the time I probably would have gone with an Osprey as their packs are very well made, regarded, designed, and comfortable. But honestly after using my Flash for a couple of years I'd consider getting another one.

    [​IMG]Three Ridges Loop Overnighter by MJGEGB, on Flickr

    Only issue with it now is that it's a little big for my gear at this point. That's assuming I take my 1 man tent and solo mug pot. It's pictured with a full gear load out including food and water for my last solo trip. You can tell that it's a bit much pack for the load at 50L, but it's very comfortable.
     
    Ptpalpha likes this.
  4. CoolBreeze135

    CoolBreeze135 Scholarly Woodsman Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2014
    Messages:
    5,048
    Likes Received:
    23,389
    Location:
    East TN, Smoky Mtns
    About a year and a half ago, I was in the market for a new backpacking pack. I had my eye on 2 different products: the Crown 2 and the Osprey Atmos AG. I purchased both, with the intent to load them up with weight, carry them around the house for a bit, and return the one that didn't work for me.

    I first tried the Crown 2. I loved that pack instantly. It had several good features, yet was super light. It was better than a frameless pack, but a lot lighter than a typical internal frame pack. I loaded it up with about 18 lbs and walked around the house a few times. It felt great and carried well. Then I packed it to about 30 lbs. I was pretty unhappy with the comfort and carry with that load.

    I'm no ultralighter, but I do keep my base weight pretty trim. It's about 15-17 lbs in the summer and 18-20 in the winter. With food and two liters of water, I'm often in the 25-30 lb range for a shorter trip. I decided that the Crown 2 was on the edge of being unsuitable for me. If you have a 10-12 lb base weight and a total weight under 20 lbs, I think it would be fantastic. Probably my favorite pack on the market.

    I ended up with the Osprey, but not because I had any issue with the Crown 2. Rather, I had an issue with all my other gear being slightly too heavy for it. They are two different styles of packs targeted at 2 different crowds. The Crown is very trim and minimal, and the Osprey is fuller featured and heavier. Best thing you can do is buy one from REI, load it up with weight, and see how it feels. Returns are easy and free.
     
  5. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Messages:
    3,893
    Likes Received:
    3,999
    Thanks for the detailed feedback!

    My total pack weight last trip was 49 lbs, including the ~5lb external frame pack.

    Stupid heavy as I fooslishy packed luxuries but the pack felt good, even during the 1,100 ft elev gain hike out.

    The lightest I think I ever got my total pack down to was 36 lbs but this isn’t “thru hiking” so it’s nice to have a pillow, shade tarp, and a chair, once you’ve set up camp for a few days. I don’t see myself becoming an ultralight thru hiker, so the pack needs to hold some weight!

    Last year my right should strap broke where it attaches to the frame, an inside pocket got unstitched, a shock cord on an outside pocket came unattached, and the back vent mesh tore.

    I tied the strap and repaired the shock cord but I still need to do some stitching and mending, or buy a new pack.

    Your comments are leading me to think I should just mend my pack!
     
    Midwest.Bushlore likes this.
  6. 41magfan

    41magfan Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    467
    While actual pack weight is an absolute metric, how you perceive the weight is not.

    I've worn lightweight packs that made 25 pounds feel like 40 .... middle weight packs that made 25 pounds feel like 25 ..... and some relatively heavy packs (with a well designed suspension system) that made 25 pounds feel like 15.
     
  7. ra2bach

    ra2bach Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    5,463
    Likes Received:
    7,716
    Location:
    ATL
    Midwest.Bushlore likes this.
  8. ra2bach

    ra2bach Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    5,463
    Likes Received:
    7,716
    Location:
    ATL
    what type of frame does the GG have? some of their packs use the inflatable "air frame" suspension made by Klymit. I have this in my Klymit Motion 35 pack and it's pretty cool, literally...

    it's basically a removable mini-air mattress that you vary the inflation based on weight and shape of contents in your pack. it uses a tube construction inside a mesh pocket so there is plenty of ventilation on your back. I'm a fan...
     
  9. CoolBreeze135

    CoolBreeze135 Scholarly Woodsman Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2014
    Messages:
    5,048
    Likes Received:
    23,389
    Location:
    East TN, Smoky Mtns
    The Crown 2 has a flexible HDPE sheet that slides into a sleeve between the straps and the main compartment of the pack.
     
    ra2bach likes this.
  10. CoolBreeze135

    CoolBreeze135 Scholarly Woodsman Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2014
    Messages:
    5,048
    Likes Received:
    23,389
    Location:
    East TN, Smoky Mtns
    crown 2 frame.PNG
     
    ra2bach likes this.
  11. Morty

    Morty Tracker

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    May 3, 2013
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    139
    Location:
    Chicago
  12. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2013
    Messages:
    4,346
    Likes Received:
    11,912
    Location:
    Portsmouth Virginia
    Just a note on internal frames. The Flash is the only one I have ever owned or used. It has an intergraded frame that ties into the actual hip belt, or at least mine does. It's got an aluminum top bar and then flexible rods that connect the top bar to the hip belt to help transfer the load properly while still allowing the pack to flex. My base weight is around 10 lbs, and my load out for my last trip was right around 20 with food, water, a hatchet, and my DSLR camera. I've carried heavier loads in it as well that added a larger tent, 2 sleeping bags, 2 or three mats, and food for up to three as well. It handled those loads just fine as well. The best part is that it weighs 2 lbs 4 oz! Now I don't know if they changed the frame for the current version, but it's working out well for me. I don't think I've come close to carrying 50lbs though, light is right.
     
    ra2bach likes this.
  13. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Messages:
    3,893
    Likes Received:
    3,999
    OK you guys convinced me. I’m going to get more life out of my existing pack!

    There’s no point in revisiting ultralight packs if my experience is going to be the same as with my other two packs.

    When is someone going to make a titanium version of the Kelty external frame pack??

    Before someone says it, I know there is a ti frame pack but it’s design is unique and doesn’t work nearly as well as the standard aluminum external frames.

    Keep the design the same as the aluminum but use ti tubing. I’d be willing to pay for that if it can be my last back!
     
  14. 41magfan

    41magfan Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Messages:
    432
    Likes Received:
    467
    Just to be clear, I didn't mean to imply that a heaver pack always equates to more comfort, because it doesn't.

    I started out with an EF and bought a top of the line Kelty many years ago and wasn't very impressed as it was still pretty much a 1960's design. Having a frame constructed of Ti would make it a few ounces lighter I suppose, but it would do nothing to alter the basic design, IMO.

    Anyhow, it got sold pretty quickly and I bought what was left of the truly well-designed external frame paradigm; a Dana Design from the Loadmaster series. It carried weight VERY well, but it weighed almost 7 lbs empty. So, I quickly stopped carrying 50 lbs and thus had no use for a 7 pound pack. I worked my way backwards over the years, lightening my load and testing the limits of various packs. My personal sweet spot is a load of less than 30 lbs all-out (food and 2 qts of water) and a pack that weighs between 2.5 and 3 pounds. It just happens to be a Granite Gear.

    In my mind, an "ultralight" pack means something weighing closer to one pound than two. That's a tough (if not impossible) threshold to conquer and still be useful at carrying weight IMO. However, a decently designed and constructed pack in the 2 - 3 pound range (like the GG pack) will carry 30 pounds pretty well.

    ETA: Taking note of your post indicating that the lightest you've been is 36 lbs, I'd move up to the Nimbus Trace Access series. That series is @ 4 lbs but has a load limit of 60 lbs. Those packs will carry your 30-something pounds with ease.

    https://www.granitegear.com/outlet/nimbus-trace-access-60.html

    https://www.granitegear.com/outlet/nimbus-trace-access-70.html

    It appears GG is discontinuing that line of packs which makes sense as I've seen them heavily discounted at quite a few places here lately.

     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2018
  15. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Messages:
    3,893
    Likes Received:
    3,999
    Mag41 thanks for the reply.

    I just finished mending my pack. Took a couple hours but it's all patched up!

    I looked at the packs in your links and I can't justify buying a pack that weighs 1 lb less than I'm using now. It would need to be 2 lbs or close to it.

    I cut out a divider and removed a some unnecessary straps so I reduced it's weight a little. I'll have to weight it on a proper scale but I think it's good enough!

    From here I'll just need to pack a little smarter!

    Thanks everyone for you replies and suggestions!!
     
    Midwest.Bushlore likes this.
  16. Morty

    Morty Tracker

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    May 3, 2013
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    139
    Location:
    Chicago

    Heres one titanium external frame pack : https://www.vargooutdoors.com/exoti-50-backpack.html#prod-0
     
  17. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Messages:
    3,893
    Likes Received:
    3,999
    I know of that one. Reviews are not favorable considering its price, size, weight, and payload.

    I wouldn’t mind a ti replica of th frame I have for my pack. I think thinks it’s design is as good as it gets.
     
  18. Keithturkjr

    Keithturkjr Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2017
    Messages:
    304
    Likes Received:
    565
    Location:
    Alabama
    I’ve got other packs that meet my various needs but I’ve always thought granite gear had sweet packs. Blaze ac 60 looks cool.
    My ULA fills the same niche a granite gear would fill and I like it so I’m off that market. The mass drop crown looks like a good deal for someone in the market for a lightweight backpacking pack though. Not my choice of colors but it is a nice looking pack
     

Share This Page