Mystery Ranch

2ski

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2012
Messages
1,253
Location
Bozeman
I started a thread a few weeks ago on getting a new pack, but wanted to get some feedback on just MR. Since I live in Bozeman, I can easily go to the MR showroom and check out everything they have. Went in today a little before they closed because they used to be in a different location and I went there first. Talked to the very helpful girl inside, and she suggested I come back and plan to spend about an hour checking stuff out, trying stuff on, ect. She even suggested I bring in everything that I plan to carry, gun included, so we can pack it up to see how everything feels. So I wanted to get some feed back of those with some experience with them, so I knew some things to look for, if you will. What are people's opinions of some of the packs? Favorites? I kind of like the idea of the NICE frame and being able to get multiple packs for it. I know its heavier than Kufaru, but what else do you guys think? A few questions to get started...Is the Crewcab enough pack to do a couple day hike in the summer, but enough to haul meat out on a day hunt? Would the Alpha be a better option for that? Thanks for any and all the help.
 

fillthefreezer

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 10, 2012
Messages
2,804
Location
eatonvile, wa
HEAVY, hard to justify starting with something lbs, not ounces heavier when i spend so $$$ to save weight everywhere...
to take the weight penalty it would have to do things other packs can't, above and beyond. i just don't see that to be the case.
you won't break one though...
 

Ridgerunner

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2012
Messages
390
They are heavier but they do carry the weight very well, I really like my crew cab, I think it's a great offer to have you come in with all your gear and pack it up. The crew cab is perfect for what you want to do with it and Dana is known as one of the best pack builders there is.
 

belly-deep

Senior Member
Joined
May 23, 2012
Messages
707
I bought one last year.

I think that if I were a deer hunter only, I wouldn't have bothered with it. I bought mine mostly for elk hunting and the heavy loads that go along with it.

As others said, a little heavy but very well-built.
 

7mag.

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2012
Messages
1,412
Location
Buckley, Wa.
I have a BDSB, pretty much the same as the Grizzly, and I really like it. I just did a little over 10 miles with 71 lbs, and it handled it really well. I don't know how it compares to Kifaru, because I've never had my hands on one, but I'm happy with it.
 

sk1

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2012
Messages
1,203
Location
SE Wisconsin
not from experience, but i always hear when using the crewcab the load lifters are moot......that would be high on my list of concerns....although i think they are more functional on the bigger packs like the 6500. just maybe something to look for or add to your list of questions to ask when you go back and visit
 

Jager

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2012
Messages
658
Location
Australia
The only issue I had when looking at MR was the padding against your back, I prefer something hollow, as in the 'chimney' that Kifaru suspension has, this is a very personnel preference though.
 

Hike&Hunt

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2012
Messages
43
Yes they have a weight penalty, but when hauling 150+ lbs comfortably its well worth it. Disclaimer: comfortably is a relative term here. I run the 6500 and longbow, pack camp in and out with the 6500 (loaded 6500 or longbow goes on a horse depending on number of horses and other gear, hunters, etc) then dayhunt/2day bivy with the longbow. I try to use the 6500 for loads over 70lbs for the load lifters when possible (longbow clips to the nice frame just like crew cab) but this year packed 165+ lbs 4 miles to the truck with the longbow just fine. If you dont plan to run two packs or more specifically if you dont plan to run the longbow, go with the crew cab. The cc will surely haul more than you or I want to carry.
 

broncoformudv

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 25, 2012
Messages
186
Location
Anchorage, Alaska
I have a NICE 6500 and love it, but I do wish it weighed less. It carries anything and everything I can stuff in and attach to the outside and never complains. They are built hell for stout and will never wear out in my lifetime. I have complete confidence that I can drop mine off a cliff or roll it down a mountain and it will survive the trip.

I mainly use mine for sheep hunts and will use it for goats as well so I need to be able to pack my entire camp in and camp and an animal back out.
 

bbrown

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 9, 2012
Messages
2,276
Location
Fort Collins - CO
I have the Dragonslayer with 2 long pockets it weighs in at just over 5lb 2 oz and 3100 CI. I can comfortably get out to 7 days 6 nights (or more just have not done it yet) with it - given I have pretty light/minimalist and I use a dry bag with my sleeping bag stuffed inside attached to the bottom. I packed a clients bull with out both front sholders, backstraps and tenderloins with it and it handled that much weight easily. I really wanted the Longbow but the weight and extra cost of the NICE frame steered me to the DS.
Is it the perfect pack - not quite but pretty close for my needs.
 

ScottR_EHJ

Senior Member
Rokslide Sponsor
Joined
Mar 8, 2012
Messages
1,293
Location
Wyoming
I am in the process of trading my mollex for a MR Bighorn. I use the Mollex every day and will do the same with the bighorn. The reason for the tradeout is that I can gain 700 cui and not much of a weight penalty. It will work great for the overnighters and will carry my computer to work well.

Load lift was pretty tough to achieve on my Mollex, so I don't expect it with the Bighorn. I expect a solid pack from a reputable company.

The biggest complaint is always the weight penalty, and lack of load lifters on NICE frames.
 

Benny

Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2012
Messages
65
They are a great company and make great packs. Bombproof would be an understatement.
 

luke moffat

Administrator
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
4
The only issue I had when looking at MR was the padding against your back, I prefer something hollow, as in the 'chimney' that Kifaru suspension has, this is a very personnel preference though.

Having run both, I will say the "chimney" doesn't keep my back any drier....
 

wapitibob

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
3,264
Location
Bend Oregon
I have had a CC for few years now. Heavy and short. Short as in 20" from btm of belt to lifters. I've been wanting to get rid of it for a while but every time I need to haul some odd stuff, like half a compressed alfalfa bale, the CC is the go to pack. It just seems to "work" for most everything I do.
I over came the "short" aspect by increasing the frame by 6". Not something joe6pack is going to do unfortunately.
If I get a new pack it will be a Kifaru but you won't be packing hay unless you start replacing bags and stuff. I have really come to like the batwing style but as pointed out by Aron, a Kifaru with the hunting cargo panel and some bags will do pretty much the same thing.
 

stephen b

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
489
Location
Mckenzie Valley, Oregon
IMO- MR makes some of the nicest pack bags out there.

But as far as suspension in the current packs offered- the Kifaru duplex suspension is better than what MR has ( ESP. The Nice frame). A good combo, as as been stated before would be a marriage of the MR pack bags and the Kifaru suspension for hvy load carry.

I had a MR Nice frame and a couple bags for it and I tried to like it for a few years. But, besides the ht. of the frame itself, the main issue for me was the total lack of any curve to the center horizontal and the center vertical stay. They are built tough- but the nice frame to me was the least comfortable Mystery Ranch or Dana Design pack that I have ever owned. In fact- for me and my fit, the Nice frame was one of the least comfortable packs I have ever used. It is a lot less comfortable than my old Dana Design ext. metal frame that I still have and sometimes use.

I still have a couple MR packs and I think they make some of the nicest pack bags out there. I and my wife sometimes uses a current MR Glacier pack. It has the same hipbelt (and I got it with belt pocket upgrade) and harness as a Nice frame- but it is 24" tall and the stays have a more comfortable flex to them. It would not carry quite the wt. that a Nice frame would; but it is fine up to 80 lbs. , and it is a dream carry for 35-45 lbs. all day carry bivy loads when compared to how the Nice frame was for me.

The Mystery Ranch people are a great company and they are great to work with. If they work for you, you can't go wrong with that company.
 
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SDHNTR

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2012
Messages
1,864
I LOVE my crew cab once it is on my back. But I HATE lifting that thing up off the ground onto my shoulders. Even with barely a few day hunting items in it every time I pick it up I find myself asking WTF is in here? It hauls meat out like a champ, but it's a heavy SOB!
 

AZ Ron

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2012
Messages
128
Location
Chandler, AZ
I LOVE my crew cab once it is on my back. But I HATE lifting that thing up off the ground onto my shoulders. Even with barely a few day hunting items in it every time I pick it up I find myself asking WTF is in here? It hauls meat out like a champ, but it's a heavy SOB!

That is exactly how I feel about my crew cab too! A great 'do all' pack, but every time I pick it up I'm wondering what is making it so heavy! :) I find myself carrying my Longbow more than my crew cab just because it is lighter by a lb or so... The pack does comfortably carry a load though!

Ron
 

WV Hunter

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
116
Location
West "By God" Virginia
I've got a Crew Cab that I used for the first time on an elk hunt a couple of weeks ago. The pack was good as far as comfort but the pack weight was probably more than the gear in it and wasn't much of a test. Yesterday I decided I would try it with some weight so I stuffed a blanket in the bottom put a 20# dumbbell in, stuffed a kids blanket in and another 20# dumbell. I was probably right at 50# total counting the pack, blankets and weights. I hit the local college stadium and did some stair climbing. This pack was on par with the bluewidow I sold as far as UNcomfort was concerned. To be fair, the waist belt was cranked all the way down and I had a hair bit more room to go. The belt is medium so I called MR and ordered the small to see if this helps. The yolk is in the right spot according to the tutorial on their site and the right size according to their chart. I'm going to give it another whirl when the belt comes in and if I can't make the steps for 30 minutes without a headache or my arm and neck going numb I'm going to sell it.
 
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