MR Metcalf/Pintler/Sawtooth/Pop Up 38

Dakota24

Newbie
Joined
Apr 12, 2021
Messages
2
Hi all,
New hunter here so I apologize in advance if I am a little slow :). I am currently shopping for my first hunting pack for this fall. I have it down to MR because I get a decent discount with them, but I am unsure of which size to get. I will be rifle elk hunting in CO with no need for overnight capability quite yet, but want to eventually do some backpack hunting. So I guess 95% of the time it will be used as a day pack with the capability to haul out an elk with a buddy. I like the idea of being able to have an overnight bag in the future and not have to shell out another $500. I have read that the Metcalf is very versatile and has the capability to be a day pack, but it is still quite large (4335 CI). I have also heard that a full size frame is less than ideal for a day pack, hence why I am looking at the Pop Up (2320 CI). The Sawtooth and Pintler are in between, CI wise (2745 and 2355), but I'm not entirely sure the ideal volume I'm looking for and if the Guide Light frame is too bulky for what I'll be doing. Thank you!
 

Drenalin

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2018
Messages
805
The Metcalf cinches up pretty good, as far as the bag. The frame and hipbelt are bulkier than a daypack would be, but even as a whitetail hunter I've never had the bulk be an issue for me with similar packs. I only had my Metcalf a few days though, just couldn't make the Guide Light MT work for me.
 

Mighty Mouse

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2019
Messages
1,037
Location
Oklahoma
I'd go with the Guide Light frame to give myself a wider range of bag sizes. A 1405 CI Mule bag all the way up to a 6405 CI Marshall are compatible with a Guide Light frame. If you find yourself needing more or less capacity in the future, you could keep the frame and buy another bag. Unfortunately, MR doesn't offer a full lineup of bag only options (which is a mistake that's costing them some market share IMO), but you can likely find any bag you want for sale secondhand. I believe only the Mule, Pintler, and Beartooth are currently available for purchase from MR as bags only. These bags all have enough compression straps that they can be cinched down for day pack use. I've day hunted with a MR Marshall and didn't think it was excessively bulky or cumbersome.
 

Ron.C

Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2021
Messages
64
Location
Vancouver Island British Columbia
For comparison, this is my MR Selway. Its 62L which is between the sawtooth and metcalf. The left pic is my daypack load. Center is compressed with nothing but a 2L water bladder, right is loaded with my gear for a 6 night hunt.

The pack is not bulky at all but I think the smaller pintler is the ticket if you want a daypack with meat hauling capability. A hunting friend of mine has one and loves it for this purpose.

If my primary use was a daypack with no plans for multi day overnights, I would have went with the pintler.
 

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bruceleroy

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2015
Messages
189
I looked at thensame packs. When I got my hands on the the Sawtooth made the most sense to me. I was very disappointed with the pop up. I really was hoping that one would work out. It was...floppy.
 

ChasingSqwach

Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2020
Messages
50
I have the pintler and the Metcalf. Pintler has a better layout And is an awesome daypack. I would consider the selway for what you described, I love the tri-zip.

Metcalf is great too but is definately more of a 2-4 day pack.
 

Bushfire

Member
Joined
May 2, 2021
Messages
98
I love my plinter sweet day pack. I added a large lid and side pouches and spiked out of it for a few days no problem. Great pack.
 

Desk Jockey

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 5, 2015
Messages
4,262
Welcome.

bit of an MR fanboy here so fair warning.

Metcalf is a great bag. It is a bit too much for something that is going to be mainly a daypack, but if I only had one backpack it would be a Metcalf.

a smaller 40l pack like a sawtooth runs a little tighter as a daypack and works for a night or so. You can do longer trips using the meatshelf but I don’t care for it As a long term solution. That selway is a good compromise between the two but you may find it tight for more than 2-3 days.

I have a pop up 38 as well. It is my go to for day hunting. It is compact and works as a hell of a day pack. I have hauled bags of corn, deer stands and quartered whitetails in mine. It gets it done but it isn’t as comfortable as a full sized frame. The pop ups can work for overnight or longer using the meat shelf but I don’t care for this as a long term solution either.

f you are looking for the most versatile pack, that selway or a Metcalf is probably your best bet. If you want to spend a little more, buy a 40l pack with a frame now and then add a bigger bag later when you start doing longer hunts.
 

lose_money

Junior Member
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Messages
29
I have the pintler I like it a lot but I use it mostly as a day hunt bag
 

brimow

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2019
Messages
118
Location
Colorado
I have the Sawtooth and use it as a daypack. Just have to be careful not to take too much stuff with you because you have the room. (just adds weight) Packing out meat it is hard to beat and I don't have to run back to camp/truck to carry out the first load. I am not a backcountry hunter though so have never used it to pack camp in/out.
 

roosiebull

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
1,598
Location
oregon coast
Hi all,
New hunter here so I apologize in advance if I am a little slow :). I am currently shopping for my first hunting pack for this fall. I have it down to MR because I get a decent discount with them, but I am unsure of which size to get. I will be rifle elk hunting in CO with no need for overnight capability quite yet, but want to eventually do some backpack hunting. So I guess 95% of the time it will be used as a day pack with the capability to haul out an elk with a buddy. I like the idea of being able to have an overnight bag in the future and not have to shell out another $500. I have read that the Metcalf is very versatile and has the capability to be a day pack, but it is still quite large (4335 CI). I have also heard that a full size frame is less than ideal for a day pack, hence why I am looking at the Pop Up (2320 CI). The Sawtooth and Pintler are in between, CI wise (2745 and 2355), but I'm not entirely sure the ideal volume I'm looking for and if the Guide Light frame is too bulky for what I'll be doing. Thank you!
for your needs, the Metcalf is the most versatile and practical imo. the full size frame is fine unless you spend a lot of time crawling under brush, and gives you more options for future hunts. the metcalf cinches down just fine for a day pack too. it's tempting to get the smallest pack you think you might need, but that concept will bite you, doesn't translate well to real world
 
Joined
Nov 3, 2020
Messages
86
Love my metcalf, use it on day trips a lot but it is a little much for those. I like it have it ready to pack out meat and for gear intensive day trips.
 

eaglemountainman

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
626
Location
Florida,Dwneast Me,Catskills
I agree with others that the Pintler or Sawtooth 45 would be good choices for you. I went with the Sawtooth because I prefer the 270* U zipper for access vs the trizip/Yzip on the Pintler. That's just a personal choice though. Both come on the Guide Light MT frame which is very comfortable (relatively speaking) when packing out weight. The frame also allows for the future purchase of larger bags if need be.

If you can hold out till Father's Day, BlackOvis usually has a 25% sale that can save you some real money. Good Luck.
 

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