HPG goodness and some big plans

Discussion in 'Packs, Bags & Pouches' started by mtwarden, May 4, 2017.

  1. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    received a box today from @andy.t and 5col survival w/ some HPG goodies! :4:

    I purchased a Runner's kit bag, Recon harness and 1 liter Source Tactical 1 liter bladder

    [​IMG]

    and also a Tarahumara pack

    [​IMG]


    I wanted a setup that would allow me to carry a minimal kit (sometimes including a firearm) when running/hiking in the mountains, hence the runner's kit bag, also wanted something that would extend this kit for longer days in the mountains, hence the recon harness and bladder.

    I also wanted something for very long days in the mountains and even the occasional minimal overnighter, hence the tarahumara. The fact that the kit bag can be used in conjunction with the pack was a real plus. I'm thinking the 500D should stand up well for off trail use, while not being overly heavy.

    I have owned a lot of packs (dozens and dozens), but never anything from HPG- I can say that the sewing, construction and materials look very good. The harness layout is very similar to some of my running packs, they really carry nice and comfortable- hoping it's the same for the tara

    while 15 liters (tara volume) is a wee small for an overnighter, but I'm pretty sure I squeeze a night or two with this pack; I'm even going to try and squeeze an overnighter with the kit bag and recon harness :)

    looking forward to getting some trail time with my new HPG stuff- thanks Andy!
     
  2. Hawkcreek

    Hawkcreek Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    The HPG packs have a surprising amount of volume above their listed sizes. I'm far from an ultra lighter but I know I could do an overnighter with a tara. It would be sleeping in clothes without a sleeping bag kind of uncomfortable but there is a lot of room in that tiny little bag.
     
  3. justinspicher

    justinspicher Tracker

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    I'm am of the opposite in opinion of the Tara pack. I hated it. I gave it away. I didn't like the shoulder harness or the lack of space the pack didn't have.
     
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  4. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    I would agree they might be a little conservative on the volume. My thought on an overnighter is using a dry sack of similar dimensions to this HPG pic, to hold a very lightweight Apex quilt

    [​IMG]

    the harness might be a love it or hate it affair; I find with this type of setup the wider straps of the harness distribute the weight better and maybe more importantly for me, they carry the pack much more securely when moving quickly over uneven terrain
     
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  5. GreenFrog

    GreenFrog Hardwoodsman #8 Supporter Bushclass III

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    Don't have anything to add on the gear except that it looks top quality and that we'll be looking forward to your trip reports.
     
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  6. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    I just noticed the sleeve behind the main pack- I have some various thickness ccf pads I'll play around with and maybe come up w/ a short torso pad that'll fit in their- I'll score the pad like a z-lite so it folds up
     
  7. Panzer

    Panzer Prepared Wanderer Supporter Bushclass I

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    Based on your posts and what you do in the mountains. I cant believe you havent come to this set up before. LOL. It's perfect for what you do. I think you will be very pleased.
     
  8. superpaco

    superpaco Scout

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    I am with @Panzer on this. I believe you will be very happy with this set-up. I have a Highlander (discontinued) which is the same design as the Tarahumara just a bit more volume. The harness for me is crazy comfortable, even with 25lbs. in it. So I think you could easily overload it with all that sweet ultralight gear you use, putting the overflow into a waterproof sack like you said and still have a reasonably well balanced kit that carries like a dream. I'd ask you to keep us posted, but I know there is no way you'll keep your experience under your hat!:18::54::4:
     
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  9. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    Good deal :) I think I might try and give it it's maiden voyage tomorrow; will be a long loop with snowshoes and with luck, bagging two peaks along the way.

    Got to get everything gathered up tonight and will try to snap a couple of pics.
     
  10. Fretful7

    Fretful7 III Supporter

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    I know its a little mix-match, but I use a Kifaru Side Pocket with my HPG Tara. It fits PERFECTLY, has a great contour, and the buckles are conducive to the HPG's attachment system. Plus they're on sale right now !!! :dblthumb:
    [​IMG]
     
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  11. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    ^ that looks like a viable option for sure- thanks! :)

    I took some 1/4" ccf pad I had- 32" (long enough for a torso pad and plenty big for a sit/kneel pad) and scored it into four sections to fit the slot in the pack- it was 21" wide and had to trim to ~ 18" so it was sticking up too far on the pack- it sticks up a couple of inches, but doesn't interfere with anything with the pack on- if I trimmed even with the pack it would only be ~ 15" which is a little narrow for a pad

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    here's my 45 degree Apex quilt w/ the pack and dry bag (it's a 5 liter bag from Outdoor Research)

    [​IMG]

    I stuffed the quilt in and still quite bit of room

    [​IMG]

    so I grabbed one of my light puffies- a Marmot Isotherm pullover and stuffed it in w/ no problem- Tiny Elvis had to bring his friend over and check it out too :4:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    next I loaded up my SOL Escape bivy, a 5x7' tarp and another ccf pad- this one is 1/8" thick and 20x50"- all into the bottom of the pack itself

    [​IMG]

    plenty of room still in the main bag

    I picked up some small dry bags from Outdoor Research, probably a liter, maybe a 1.5 liters??? I grabbed my hood fleece (Patagonia Thermal weight grid fleece), a fleece balaclava and some light fleece gloves for that dry bag- Tiny E thought he could use the gloves more than I could

    [​IMG]

    still plenty of room in the main bag

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. Dave_Markowitz

    Dave_Markowitz Scout

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    I think you'll like the HPG stuff. Like you said, it's very well made. I find their shoulder harness to be extremely comfortable. I want to try it on my Spec Ops Recon Ruck, which has ALICE-style shoulder straps.

    I have a Tara and found a couple ways to increase the capacity. First, hanging a MOLLE sustainment pouch off the compression straps:

    [​IMG]


    Another option is the MOLLE waist pack, which will actually clip onto the compression straps like it was made for them:

    [​IMG]

    I got this idea from "Creaky Bones" here on BCUSA.

    Aside from the Tara I also have an original Kit Bag and a Recon Kit Bag. They are the most comfortable way I've found to carry a handgun. I can comfortably carry a Beretta M9 or CZ P-09 in one, plus some gear.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2017
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  13. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    ^ good ideas! slick that the waist pack clicks right in :)

    grabbed my "essentials" - fire kit, first aid kit, tp, repair kit, headlamp, dyneema cord, aquatabs and a polycro ground sheet, put them in a little dry bag too, still decent room in the main bag

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. trust_no_one

    trust_no_one Tracker

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    I utilize a tara and a recon chest pack and can do a overnight with minimal difficulty.
     
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  15. Hawkcreek

    Hawkcreek Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    I've never used the recon harness but please follow the direction on the HPG site if you dock the kit bag to the Tara with lifter straps... I didn't and the first time I wore it I was unimpressed. I was skipping step #5 and it's night and day different... Yes I feel dumb admitting that but it's an easy but avoidable mistake (for a dumb redneck anyway) to make.

    https://hillpeoplegear.com/Products/CategoryID/1/ProductID/29
     
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  16. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    ^ wasn't aware of that either- thanks!

    as this isn't a planned overnighter and I have to carry snowshoes, made a few changes- pulled the quilt out, put the puffie in a smaller dry bag

    [​IMG]

    pulled the larger ccf pad and replaced with a z-lite sit pad, pulled the Escape bivy and replaced it with a Blizzard Bag

    kept the thinner ccf pad and tarp, still have a viable shelter- just not as viable if this was a planned overnighter (minus snowshoes)

    [​IMG]

    pack all packed, two 1 liter Platypus bottles in the side pockets, hardshell on the bottom using their setup (might replace the paracord with shock cord???) and the snowshoes on the back

    [​IMG]

    weighs in at just under 12 lbs (4.4 being water, probably a pound-ish of food)

    kit bag main compartment- J frame .38 with one stop worth of snacks (buffalo jerky and Mojo bar)

    [​IMG]

    other compartment- topo map, compass, two speed loaders, sunscreen, anti-chaff and pic stick (fits on end of trekking pole to take pcis w/ camera)

    [​IMG]
     
  17. xRangerx

    xRangerx Woods wandering bird nerd Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    This is awesome! Good stuff. I really like the looks of that OR dry bag with the roll top and compression straps. I don't believe I have ever seen that before. Hmmmm...
     
  18. Charlie Lima

    Charlie Lima Tracker

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    Are they discontinuing these ?
    I don't see coyote in the drop down menu.
    CL
     
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  19. Fretful7

    Fretful7 III Supporter

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    Not sure, but it is possible. I don't know why they would...they are very useful for all sorts of things. I would contact them if the Coyote is what your looking for.
     
  20. geologist2

    geologist2 Supporter Supporter

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    20170506_185204.jpg 20170506_185231.jpg I do the same thing as Fretful. A mixup of kifaru and HPG. The kifaru pocket works great when you need extra room.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2017
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  21. Fretful7

    Fretful7 III Supporter

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    Mine is EXCATLY the same :dblthumb: Kryptek and all... :D
     
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  22. geologist2

    geologist2 Supporter Supporter

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    Not too many of the highlander patterns around. Very cool.
     
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  23. Fretful7

    Fretful7 III Supporter

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    :dblthumb: Its a great combo. Her's an older photo. Picked this one up from @Phantom X
    IMG_9322.JPG
     
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  24. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    yeah- didn't see a coyote either, will give them a call

    a pretty epic day today w/ the Tara and kit bag, roughly 15 miles, 4500' of gain and two peaks, ~ 12 of the 15 miles on snowshoes, a big day!

    have to say that the Tara and kit bag carried very nicely, early on the straps from the top of the pack and the shoulder harness came undone- just looped the straps back into themselves and that was that; almost half the route was off trail and had to bushwack through some pretty dense whitebark pine and snagged up several times- a lighter material pack might have gotten torn

    I couldn't access the platy bottles on the move, but not a super big deal- a bladder would have worked, but taken up too much real estate

    all in all, very pleased with both

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  25. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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  26. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    evidently they are going to be discontinued, no coyote available; he did point me in the direction of their spotting scope pouch- it's similar sized, but opens differently and looks like it attaches differently as well????
     
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  27. geologist2

    geologist2 Supporter Supporter

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    You may be able to find one in the kifaru forums trading post. I see them pop up now and again.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2017
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  28. Fretful7

    Fretful7 III Supporter

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    I had looked at those as well. Sorry to hear this....its a pretty simple / universal pouch, and doesn't make a lot of sense IMO...
     
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  29. Fretful7

    Fretful7 III Supporter

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    Also, I suppose you could sew some webbing (front and back) on to the scope pouch and have almost the same thing....
     
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  30. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    ^^^ I'll keep an eyeball open :)

    yeah not sure why they would discontinue such a general purpose pouch???

    I started playing around with the Recon Harness- figured I could fit a thin sit pad easily enough and give a little padding to boot. I used some 1/4" ccf pad and cut to roughly 14x16", scored a line down the center and folded it over to yield a 14" long by 8" wide pad
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    the 1 liter bladder I'll be using doesn't take up the full length of the sleeve, so I wanted to see if it would fit any possible shelter options- I have a SOL heavy duty blanket (5x8') that fits almost perfectly in that space :)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I also added a couple of shock cords to the bottom of the Recon and attached a small 1/8" ccf pad (~ 20x50")

    [​IMG]
     
  31. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    got some g-hooks, buckle and some 1" webbing and made a little waist belt for the Tara; not for load bearing, but just to keep the pack in place when moving around a lot

    [​IMG]
     
  32. Fretful7

    Fretful7 III Supporter

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    That's a great idea !!
     
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  33. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    very easy :) those g-hooks are spendy, but they work like a charm- makes it easily removable as well
     
  34. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    worked a little more on the Recon harness; going to give it a whirl in the mountains tomorrow

    added a medium pocket at the top of the Recon

    I used a smaller OR dry bag to put in a light insulated jacket, beanie and gloves- I wanted more security than what the shock cord setup provides, so put a couple of g-hooks to work and built a small compressions strap

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    teamed up with a Snubby kit bag

    [​IMG]
     
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  35. geologist2

    geologist2 Supporter Supporter

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    Where did you find the 1/8 inch ccf pad?
     
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  36. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    gossamer gear carries both the 1/8 and 1/4" ccf pads- might be other sources as well???
     
  37. The Woodsrunner

    The Woodsrunner Bush Nerd Hobbyist

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    Yep, that is where I get mine.
     
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  38. The Woodsrunner

    The Woodsrunner Bush Nerd Hobbyist

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    I am liking your rig so far! Looking good.
     
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  39. mtwarden

    mtwarden Supporter Supporter

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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    used the setup over the weekend; sweet little setup

    carried great and low profile so you could squeeze through tight little spots with ease; even did a little slow paced running with it and still carried nicely
     
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