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RE: [at-l] Thanksgiving hike



> I'd really like to hear a report on that pack when you get back
> please....k./\

Hi,

Sorry it is taking so long to get this report to you, even so, it will have
to be short.

The Contour IV I bought is of course, last years model. which explains why
Campor is selling it for only $150. As a large capacity internal frame pack
I would have to recommend it, especially considering the price. It was very
adjustable and included capability to expand/compress for varying loads. The
frame is adjustable for different back lengths in 1" increments, something
which I approved of enormously. I really detest one size fits all type
packs.

A weeks provisions will normally require you to extend the top which is
easily done via adjustable straps on the lid and a double drawstring closure
on the top compartment. The bottom sleeping bag compartment was roomy enough
for my 20 degree down bag plus a few odds and ends that I didn't want to
unpack the whole pack to get to. The top includes a large pocket for things
like snacks and maps and such which I usually had stuffed to the gills. That
brings up the single weakness that I found, lack of pockets. It does provide
external lash points on each side for optional accessories, I recommend
buying the pockets right of the bat.

If you already have a self inflating mattress, the built in lash points on
the pack of the top compartment are perfect. They will not however, hold a
foam pad such as a Ridgerest. You will either have to use the lash points on
the lid, making the pack VERY tall or change the straps on the back which is
easily done (I didn't discover that they came off until the fourth day of
being attacked by tree branches and blow downs).

The waist belt was very comfortable and supported the load without chaffing.
The shoulder straps also fit well, I spent much of my time in just a tank
top and still didn't get chaffed. If your waist size is smaller than 30",
get the smaller version of the pack. The belt on this one will not go any
smaller.

All in all I would say it compares very well with a Mountainsmith or Gregory
pack (they each have two models which are remarkably similar although
pricier).

BTW, my load started at 50 pounds with full water bottles and fuel canister
and was down to 40 pounds by the last day. This is probably the heaviest
load I've ever carried in an internal frame pack for a long hike. I've had
my Mountainsmith technical pack loaded that heavy, but it was mostly
climbing gear and I didn't carry it for more than a few hours.

Lee I Joe

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