torrie's travels


Travel Packs March 7, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Torrie Schneider @ 2:33 pm

February was the tablet.  April will likely be plane tickets. So I’ve decided March (or May, see below) is going to be my travel pack.  My techie friends (and relatives) came through for me on the tablet.  I am now leaning on my camping/hiking/backpacking friends for some advice.  I am in the market for a good (and large…I mean, LARGE) travel pack.  Packing is going to be seriously interesting, to say the least.

Anyway, I went to REI today after doing a decent amount of online research and I was pleased with their selections.  But I was more pleased with the employee who helped me.  I was considering an Osprey 75 liter and a Gregory 70 liter (both women’s packs).  The guy goes, you won’t miss those 5 liters.  Ha!  He’s never seen me pack.  (Though he did say that the one thing women have to learn is not to pack so many shoes, so….)

He was very helpful and said that I could probably also get a men’s pack because I’m taller and have broader shoulders (though he also said I have a short torso for someone of my height…apparently he is very observant).  The benefit of a men’s pack is size…80-85 liters.  So I am wondering how important is it for a woman to have a women’s pack?  How much IS 5 liters when it comes to packing?  Any favorite brands?  Thoughts on splitting liters (e.g. the Osprey has a “fanny pack”, so that could account for some of the extra liters…how helpful is that knowing I will not detach it and actually WEAR a fanny pack?).  I feel like if the extra was a smaller backpack, that would be different.

So weirdly enough, the Gregory (70 liters) is $40 more expensive than the Osprey (75 liters).  But the employee, again super helpful, told me that I would be getting a 20% off coupon later this month that will be good starting on March 28.  Also, both Gregory and Osprey people will be in the store that weekend.  (He also indicated that in May the store will be having a big sale, potentially including these packs, and there will be another 20% off coupon.  Score!)



2 Responses to “Travel Packs”

  1. Mallory Says:

    Oh, I’ve got an opinion on this one too! I have the Gregory Jade 60 Women’s pack. I used it when I went to Guatemala and Belize. It was perfect for me. It provided a lot of airflow which was good because it was super hot there and fit my body perfectly. I don’t think I could have handled any heavier, but we did quite a bit of walking so that will probably make a difference (also I was wearing a walking cast on my left foot so that didn’t help either). It held up really well; I’ve had it for over a year now and used it a couple other times for short trips and it still looks basically brand new.

    I used a pack I rented from the U of M in undergrad to go for a 3 day hiking trip and it was very uncomfortable for my back and shoulders, even though I’m pretty sure I had less stuff. I blame the uncomfortable-ness on the fact that it was probably a bad fit, so I would say fit is probably the most important. And if you are actually having to carry it a lot, you might not be happy about having a ton of weight either 🙂

    • thanks for the info!!! i think i do like the gregory. it is slightly smaller (5 liter, though maybe they have a larger one or the ability to order me a larger one), but i like what you had to say about the fit. whether i make the purchase the weekend of the 28th, i will definitely go in there when their representatives are there doing professional fittings. and i’m glad to hear that you had a distinctly different experience with another, generic bag. that tells me that there really IS a difference in these things!

      i don’t know how much i will be walking. not as much as if i were hiking/backpacking in the wilderness, but i also won’t really know how far i will have to walk from train stations to accommodations (or how far i will have to walk to find suitable accommodations). so i can’t plan on minimal walking, but i doubt it will be as much as they are designed for.

      that said, being gone for 3 months, i want the largest pack i can get! they do have weights at REI that i can try out. so that will help me gauge, too. thanks for your input!! keep it coming!! and start figuring out where you are going to meet me!! 🙂

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