Kifaru UL Duplex with Icon Pro 5200 Bag

nphunter

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Jul 27, 2016
Messages
1,084
Location
Oregon
I have been having a rough time over the last few years finding the perfect pack for me. I always day hunt with a pack on and often go deep into the woods several times a week during hunting season or even spiking in. Having multiple packs isn't an option because often times i would be swapping everything back and forth from one day to the next. One day we may be day hunting from the vehicle and do a few miles and the next day we will be doing 15 miles in the back country with the possibility to staying the night. I also want the ability to be able to throw in my elk decoy or a coat or two for my kids when they go.

I started with sitka day packs which were ok but they don't haul weight well and after packing out a 6 point bull without a good load capable pack I was ready to upgrade to a load hauling pack. I went from Sitka to Horn Hunter and they did ok for a day pack that could haul meat well but for long all day trips with moderate loads (camping) they were not comfortable. Went to a T2 and didn't like the fact i had to put meat in the bag and it was a pain to access when sucked up into day pack mode. Have a Nomad but it sucks to try to get anything out of the pack without unhooking all the compression straps and even then because of the small diameter deep pockets you are constantly digging for gear. I tried the Nomad in several configurations and just don't care for it for a day pack or an overnight bag, i had to add an extra pouch for a bladder, an extra long bag for food and a dry sack for an over night sack, since all the pockets are deep most with no zippers every thing has to go in a UL pullout and I ended up with a $900 Cluster that is a pain to access and find stuff in. The frame is awesome and very comfortable so i just need to find the perfect pack for it.

I purchased a used Icon Pro 1850 bag and put it on my frame for a day pack which fit really well, It was a good pack for shed hunting this spring but lacked the room inside for long days or even any cold weather gear. I came to the conclusion that when fully loaded for an overnight trip with my boys (10 & 7) that i need approx. 5000 +/- ci.

I decided i would try the Icon Pro 5200 on my Kifaru Frame. I really like the pockets for keeping things organized without digging through a stack of UL pullouts. I got the bag yesterday and the first thing i realized is that the horseshoe zipper opens from the bottom to the top??? I tore the zippers apart and swapped them so they open top to bottom instead. The pack installed on the frame very nicely with the straps that came with the pack, I chose to use K clips to keep the sides compressed instead of the compression straps when in day hunting mode to keep from having access straps flopping around. The top of the pack i connected right to the load lifters by sliding the load lifter strap through the Kuiu slider and connecting the k-clip on it. The bottom is also held to the frame with supplied Kuiu compression straps. In day hunting mode as pictured I can fit all of my day hunting gear, bladder and still have room to stuff coats and food inside the main bag or even a spotting scope and tri-pod without having to undo the side and expand the bag. I have the Kuiu lid with compression straps inside the bottom of the pack incase i want to expand out and compress a load in between the bag and frame. I also have my Kifaru grab it strapped to the frame between the frame and bag so if i want to just drop the bag and haul a load of meat out i can do that too. It takes about 2 minutes to disconnect the k-clips and expand the bag to a full 5200 ci which is enough for a several night backpacking trip or a late season trip with my SO tent and Stove.

I am happy with the way this has turned out so far and am excited to put it through the paces this summer and fall backpacking. I was pretty set on the 3200 but for the couple extra oz added by the 5200 i think i am going to be much better off when it comes time to use the extra space. I really like how small this pack gets in day hunt mode and how i was able to secure it to the frame compressed without having straps flopping everywhere.

Anyway, hope this ends up being what i am after, Its been a long bumpy road of trying out packs but i feel like i am getting close to figuring out the perfect pack for what I need. I didn't find a ton of info on doing this so i figured i would post up some pictures of mine and how I did it. The frame is a 24"

IMG_0727.jpg

IMG_0728.jpg

IMG_0731.jpg

IMG_0733.jpg

IMG_0734.jpg
 
OP
nphunter

nphunter

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Jul 27, 2016
Messages
1,084
Location
Oregon
It was super simple. I made a post about it if you search Kuiu zipper fix.
 
Last edited:
Top