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[at-l] Kelty Trekker 4300

Man, do I hate advertising.  According to this here Internet thing, Kelty
doesn't make a Trekker 4300--but Campmore and others sell 'em.

If it's just a bigger model than my Kelty Trekker--Kelty makes a Trekker 3950,
then it'll be fine--if you can make it fit.  Be sure to read Kelty's Internet
instructions on how to adjust the pack.  Then, load it and hike awhile.  It
will be uncomfortable so reload it, readjust it and hike some more--repeat
until satisfied.

I carried my sleeping bag, tent and foam pad outside the pack and was able to
put more than 50 pounds on it.  Don't do that.  The hip belt will start sliding
down at about 50 pounds.  That's a good thing since that's way too much weight.
 Throw some stuff away.

I just now learned that the lower pocket is for the sleeping bag.  Even if you
keep your bag in a waterproof bag (trash compactor bag?) and even if you have a
pack cover (I did not) that pocket will STILL fill up with water.  If I do it
again with a similar pack I'll install a grommet at the very bottom to let the
water drain out. (Something to remember if you fall down on your back in a
creek...been there.)

The straps can be adjusted for shoulder width.  If the adjustment is right, the
sternum strap is a waste.  I cut mine off.

Nevertheless, an external frame pack does not ride easily if you have to lean
sideways very much.  I carried an extra bit of luggage on a strap tied to the
top of the frame.  When you get as old as I am, your hands will swell if you
hike with them at your sides so I could rest one on the luggage/pouch and the
other on the other strap.  In that position, you have much better control over
where the pack goes if you slip or if you have to scramble.
In that pouch, I carried Wingfoot's book, camera, hat, gloves, Snickers and
small amounts of trash. Even with the camera right at hand, my picture of my
one and only moose is of his backside.  Think fast!

None of that matters if you use hiking poles.  I don't think hiking poles and
an external frame pack are a good combination.

The Trekker weighs anywhere from 5#3oz. (Kelty's number) to 5#10oz.
(Campmore's) which is too much but once you've bought it, you're going to carry
it.  I took out the aluminum rod that's in there to make it easier to load--I
did a lot more hiking than loading.

Two different bears touched my pack but it survived pretty much intact after
hard use.  If you take better care of it than I did, it'll be good for another

--- Leslie Booher <lbooher@pure.net> wrote:
> FYI, external frame packs are considered somewhat passé.
> (Since you asked, an' all...)  sez camojack
> Actually, they tried to make a comeback.  I still consider them much more
> comfortable and easier to use than the lightweight junk we're using now. 
> I've never had a pack before or since that was as comfortable as my Jansport
> Bryce.  It was a good carry.  OTOH, I couldn't stuff it into my tiny tent the
> way I can the essentially frameless pack that I really don't like very well. 
> It's all a trade-off, and one that I wish I hadn't been forced to make.  My
> 2¢.
> anklebear
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JestBill  Ga--->Me '03

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