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It Isn't The Size Of Your Pack

Why I don't use a tradtional backpack in the woods
A Major Problem

A few years ago, I was walking to class and got caught in a torrential downpour. I had an important project in my backpack as well as my laptop. I sprinted into the nearest building and waited out the storm. Thankfully, my project wasn't ruined and my laptop was ok. However, the experience was enough for me to spend money to ensure the safety of my belongings.

I went home, got on Amazon, and bought a waterproof backpack from Overboard. Now, almost 4 years later, it's still my go to backpack. I ride my bike to work a large amount of the time. It is not uncommon to get stuck in a downpour and my Overboard pack protects my belongings. What does this have to do with camping deep in the woods?

Still My Favorite

Well, the Overboard pack is still my choice of backpack, even when hiking. I know that it doesn't have the internal frame that traditional packs have and doesn't have all the bells and whistles that other packs have. For me though, it's exactly what I need.

When I'm out hiking in the woods, the last thing I want to think about is if my sleeping bag, tent, and clothes are going to get soaked if a thunderstorm rolls in. I know they have rain covers for regular packs but why buy something extra on top of an already expensive pack?

I know that other packs are made of lighter weight materials but it's not like my bag is heavy, at just about 3 lbs. For far less than a typical pack I get IP66 protection and while that means it's not completely waterproof it performs more than satisfactory. It has a pocket on each side as well as an internal pocket and has various loops to clip items to it on the outside. I am always looking for an upgraded pack that is extremely light and waterproof at the same time, but I rarely find any that offer what I'm looking for. If they do, they are often quite expensive and don't offer a large enough improvement to justify the cost.

What I Thought I Wanted

For awhile, I really wanted the 35L Sea to Summit Hydraulic Pack. I thought it would be my new go to pack. It has 5L more than my current pack and is completely waterproof. There was a great sale so I picked it up. I tried packing all the things I had packed in my 30L pack and found it to be more difficult. Maybe it's the way space is used in the Sea to Summit versus the Overboard. Possibly it was because of the difference in shape, the rectangular Overboard versus the cylindrical Sea to Summit. I'm not sure why it didn't fit as much. This was the bag I had wanted for a few months and when I got it I was disappointed. So for now I will continue to use my Overboard pack.

Remember, Adventure is Calling!

June 16th, 2015