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Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review.

 
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BIGHORNtracks
(104 posts)
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Jun-28-15, 
03:44 PM (MST)
"Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Lets say, just for the sake of seeing how much we can get into these packs, that we are going on a November muzzleloader elk hunt in Utah's Uinta mountains.

We will need a good supply of clothing.
We will need a warm place to sleep.
We will need the ability to cook food.

So, you buy a pack.
You want one with the ability to carry elk meat on the load shelf so you narrow it down to a Stone Glacier or a Kuiu.

The Sky 5100 or the Icon pro 5200.

Well, lets see what we can get in there!

Things we are going to need.
Clothing.

Sleep system.

Cook system.

Misc items.

I am a big fan of ultra light dry bags.
Nothing worse than getting dumped on, or taking a dunk in a creek to ruin a trip.
Wet clothes, wet tent, wet sleeping bag, wet everything.

You may have noticed that I am also packing a very big tent, and wood burning stove.
Its November in the Uintas, its gonna snow.

So, lets see how the two packs pack up.

First the Stone Glacier Sky 5100.

All that crap has got to go in here.

Sleep system in. Tent in first, bag and sleep pad on top.

Clothing in next.

I know, its not typical to carry that many clothes. This is just for the sake of a pack comparison. I usually only have one dry bag of clothes. The other is food.

Next cook system, optics, misc items fill in the space.

And that, is the Stone Glacier Sky 5100.

The top bag is empty. Nothing in it. All gear in.
So, we can fill the top bag with food, or if we eliminate some clothes, we can have lots of extra space.

Now, what about hauling elk meat?

Well, lets say we have that extra dry bag full of elk meat.

Its load shelf time.

As you can see, the Stone Glacier is sleek. Its about getting it done. Its a narrow pack, it does not stick out past your body. This is nice when going off trail to get to a spot.

The Sky 5100 handles the gear well. Its great to wear. The feel of the loaded pack on your back is very nice.

So, lets look at the Kuiu Icon pro 5200.
With 100 cubic inches of extra space, this should be easy.

Sleep system in first.

Clothing in next.

To be honest, the full zipper thing was a big selling point for me. But I hate it.
The gear tends to fall out of the pack if its open, and once its full, trying to close it can be a pain. Its not an issue though, you can top load it through the sack.

Next, cook system.

Hey! what the crap? the bag is totally full!
Well folks, thats because the space is used in sewn on pockets, not the main bag.
Bummer!

Lets get the rest of the gear in there.

Spotting scope and tripod.

Now, the bag is packed.

The top bag is again, empty. We could fill it with freeze dried meals, extra gear, whatever. Also the side pocket on the far side is empty.

And the meat bag, for the load sling.

Whatever you think about these companies or the products, that is a lot of gear to fit into a pack. Both companies make larger offerings, but I find that this size is plenty.

As you can see, I don't use all the space in either.
And I am packing a very large tent, and a wood burning stove.

Both packs wear very nicely, even with the weight.

My personal belief is that you cant go wrong with either.

So, what is the difference?
Well, weight is one. The Kuiu weighs 5 lbs 9 oz v/s the Stone Glacier is much less at 4.1 lbs.
But, that comes at a cost. The stone Glacier is stupid expensive at just over $600 where the Kuiu is a much better bargain at $450.

Any frugal consumer can see that the Kuiu is more economical.

Also, one thing to note, these packs were designed by the same man. Kurt from Stone Glacier was hired by Kuiu to design the icon packs. Then Kurt broke off and started his own company, Stone Glacier. The fit and feel of the packs is very similar.

I bet they would both claim to have completely different products, and have major design differences, but if you own both, you know its not true.
They are both very good packs.

I prefer the Stone Glacier.
I don't need, or use the pockets and the 10 million zippers on the Kuiu. It all just adds weight and reduces the usable space in my opinion.

But, some guys like that kind of thing. For you, the Kuiu might be the better option.

Both packs are most than enough for early fall hunts where you don't need so much gear. The frames on these packs are sweet. If you keep your pack around 40 pounds or less, you won't even know you are wearing it.

That is, if you get it set up right. Some people seem to have issues with this.

Also, if you are obsessed by the need to have every piece of your gear camo, the Kuiu is a the choice. Stone Glacier only comes in grey. Hopefully that never changes.

Both packs come with a host of options from gun and bow holders to hip belt pockets and more.

I find both of these packs to be superior to the other three packs I own. But thats just my opinion. There are loads of guys who are fanboys for those brands as well.

Don't make the mistake of buying a horn hunter system. That thing deserves its own nightmare of a review. Heavy, uncomfortable terror of a mess.

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  Table of Contents  

 Subject   Author   Message Date   ID 
 RE: Stone glac...  smitty      Jun-28-15   1 
 RE: Stone glac...  OLDHORNHUNT...      Jun-29-15   2 
  RE: Stone glac...  Deerlove      Jun-29-15   3 
   RE: Stone glac...  fatrooster      Jun-29-15   4 
    RE: Stone glac...  BIGHORNtrac...      Jul-02-15   5 
     RE: Stone glac...  Mallards_On...      Jul-03-15   6 
     RE: Stone glac...  Mallards_On...      Jul-03-15   7 
      RE: Stone glac...  fatrooster      Jul-06-15   8 
 RE: Stone glac...  Murph      Jul-29-15   9 
  RE: Stone glac...  BPKHunter      Jul-31-15   10 
   RE: Stone glac...  one_dryboot      Aug-09-15   11 
    RE: Stone glac...  COLOelkman      Feb-04-16   12 

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  Messages in this topic  

smitty
(1568 posts)
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Jun-28-15, 
05:57 PM (MST)
1. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

THAT WAS AWESOME!

Thankyou.

I'm like alot of guys that have spent way too much money trying to find the best pack. I currently have a mystery ranch crew cab and an outdoorsmans. Do you have any experience with these 2 packs and if so how do they stack up with the stone glacier?

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OLDHORNHUNTER
(710 posts)
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Jun-29-15, 
11:13 AM (MST)
2. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Awesome article I bought the 5200 earlier this year have used it on several weekend horn hunts packed over 70 # of elk horns a couple of times !! OH & the BEST part I got my 5200 when they had them 25 % Off so mine was only $337 I love it !!!

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Deerlove
(3992 posts)
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Jun-29-15, 
01:33 PM (MST)
3. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Thanks for the write up. Maybe next year I can have one on my back.

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fatrooster
(4028 posts)
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Jun-29-15, 
06:48 PM (MST)
4. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Bighorntracks, what are the other three packs that you owne if you don't mind me asking? fatrooster

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BIGHORNtracks
(104 posts)
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Jul-02-15, 
06:42 PM (MST)
5. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Rooster,

Horn hunter full curl system, sitka bivy 45, and my newest acquisition…. mystery ranch metcalf.

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Mallards_Only
(466 posts)
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Jul-03-15, 
07:09 AM (MST)
6. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

You must be a better packer than I am. I had a 5200 that I used for several hunts. Eventually though, I just decided it was too small, especially for week-long hunts. I now own a 7000. Unused capacity doesn't weigh anything.

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Mallards_Only
(466 posts)
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Jul-03-15, 
07:12 AM (MST)
7. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Incidentally, not sure how long this hunt is that you're doing this demonstration for but there's a lot of stuff you left out that I would be carrying on such a hunt.

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fatrooster
(4028 posts)
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Jul-06-15, 
07:19 PM (MST)
8. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

I'd like to know how much each bag weighs after being loaded for the hunt. If the pockets and zippers add a lot of extra weight to the kuiu then I would imagine that the stuff sacks do the same for the stone glacier. Fatrooster.

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Murph
(16 posts)
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Jul-29-15, 
05:11 PM (MST)
9. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Wow, awesome article very informative, and the pictures really show the similarities. I have both kuiu and stone glacier as well and am eager to really put each to the test.

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BPKHunter
(1567 posts)
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Jul-31-15, 
09:55 AM (MST)
10. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

I too notice some essentials for a hunt(knives, headlamp,game bags, firt aid, etc.) missing, but also know you already have plenty of available space for those filler items as well. Love the layout of your presentation, very helpfull for us more novice backpack hunters.

FYI, I have the KUIU Ultralight 6000. I bought it because I couldn't take the 10lb Eberlestock I had any longer. It's 3lbs. I don't have anything else to compare it to, but it's nice when loaded to haul in camp. Had a few issues when loading my Mt Goat off the mountain, as a few buckles broke trying to tighten them up to walk off the 30deg slope. Big bag also makes for a crappy day pack, so I am ordering a smaller one(bag).

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one_dryboot
(4400 posts)
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Aug-09-15, 
10:26 PM (MST)
11. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

Great reviews of both packs. I just bought the Icon Pro 5200 and prefer the extra pockets. I like to organize and store so I can keep things separate and have easy access so I don't have to tear everything apart. I also bought the 1850 bag to use as a day pack once I'm at Basecamp. Maybe I'm over thinking it but I don't want the 5200 on my back while stalking an animal

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COLOelkman
(740 posts)
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Feb-04-16, 
07:45 AM (MST)
12. "RE: Stone glacier and Kuiu pack review."

I use the 1850 Icon Pro for my day pack and also have a 6000 ultra for packing in camp. Nice to be able to keep gear in the 6000, then just switch the frame to the daypack for daily hunting. Haven't tried the 6000 yet but I really enjoyed my 1850 last year. Got to pack out elk on the 1850 and it was only about an hour from the road so I just left the bag on as there are a lot of straps to undo if you only want to use the frame and belt for packing.

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