Possible Pack regret? stryker

GiantGreg

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
132
So how many of you bought the greatest thing since sliced bread then ended up more ehhh.

So few things to make clear.
- this is not a review or meant to put down a product, this is more about questioning my choice
- I'm a crappy hunter
- this is my first real hunting pack
- I've not pack a deer out yet with it.
- I've not camped yet with it.
-i kinda feel like this is a "grass is always greener on otherside situation"

So this spring i got this pack right at end if turkey season. A kifaru stryker, my first real pack. Loved it.
Being eastern whitetail. I never went to far back except once, i did kill one about a mile& half back had to drag it..it sucked.
The reason i bought this paricular bag was i seen guys on here and YouTube kill some gut it or quarter and walk Out. This is not a thing people do here at all. Anyway i looked a few online and talked to few companies and ultimately decided on stryker . It was designed more for eastern whitetail day packs and my main reason was i seen pictures of just entire deer and pigs strapped to it. As a bonus you could get camp bag and turn it into a overnighter.
Well having a pack gave me more range. But it Tennessee on WMAs you can't enter until 1 hour before sunrise and be out 1 hour after sunset. Unless you camp. Then basically same , when camp hunting you not supposed to leave camp until 1 hour before /1 hour after
So over summer i thought well maybe i should look into camping further back do give me more advantage on public. So i was gonna try acquire camping gear in time for 2021 deer season. So bought a kifaru camp bag and i got a tent and quilt so far.
Fast forward to early season deer. Love stryker mostly minor nuances of personal prefer but mostly really love it still.
Mid season room in bag getting low, got some external pouches to help.
Late season. Had to add the camp bag to fit cold weather bibs. Annoyed, but i also found out i really like the big open bag on the camp bag vs the traditional zippper on stryker.

So in the stryker i carry kill kit, gamebags, emergency kit, puffy and softshell. That pretty much maxes it out. Gloves and anything extra i put in external pouches.

Well it got me thinking can i really carry camp and a deer with this too. I dunno . I did do a load test where i packed sll i need for a cold hunt and tent and quilt. Welll it really stuck out on my back. Really far Honestly i don't think the camp bag was a plan, it seems like the stryker was designed then the camp bag was an after thought but not really designed and test to fit it very well. Maybe I'm wrong.
Anyway it got me questioning myself. Now i've looking at alot of bags. Honestly i knew nothing about these when i originally Ordered. i think i knew what i wanted, but not what i ultimately needed or liked.

Few more points
- stryker i think. Is a great pack got warm to cool weather day hunts.
- cargo panel is great and its biggest perk.
- the cargo panel to bag straps can cause floppyness

Now I'm looking away bigger bags right now top choices are hoodlum and muskeg 7k.
From what ive learned on what i like and dislike on the stryker these seem like they might be better but that are pushing almost $400. Also they are big. Not sure how great it would be to have such a big bag and little gear on day hunts , which will still be majority of hunts.
Also with these big bags, i guess i would have to quarter it everytime. I couldn't just strap an entire deer to it like with the stryker, which is the main draw of the Stryker and pretty much entire reason i bought it. If i wasnt so tall (6'9") and really need that 28" frame, id consider selling it and getting a SG sky archer 6400. From my experience this past season, that i think would be the ideal bag in my mind.

Its not that the stryker is a bad bag, i just not sure if its for me. Maybe in 2021 i try another bag out either keep both stryker and newbag and swap or sell one. Or i just keep trying to figure out how to use the Stryker to its maximum potential.
Some days i still really like it, others i question my choice. I'm very torn.

a few things i think(as a new guy) would make the bag better.
-up the volume closer to 3k cu inc
- get rid of zipper and go to roll down top.
-make the connecting peice of cordura between the bag and cargo panel 6-9" longer.

How many of you prefer a big day bag?

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Last edited:

bsnedeker

Senior Member
Joined
May 17, 2018
Messages
1,233
Location
MT
Here's the beauty of these bags... you get one based on what you think you like, you find it doesn't quite with for you, you sell it for dang near what you paid for it and get something that works better for you.

I like a big, simple bag so I use the argali from kifaru. They don't make it anymore but you may want to look into getting a used one. It's a simple top load pack, no zippers, no molle webbing, no fuss, no muss.

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Brendan

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 27, 2013
Messages
3,494
Location
Boston, MA
I personally haven't gotten on board with the stryker, and I spend most of my time hunting whitetail, turkey, ducks out east. I could never be without a bigger pack - I've used my Kifaru packs for hauling my sitka fanatic and bibs to the stand, duck decoys, packraft for access, whitetail stands, saddle and sticks, tree stand pack, etc, etc. And that's not even getting into the "expected" uses of a typical elk or deer trip. And I've never been in a scenario where I felt the stryker would be "better" for me.

Long story short, if I can only have one bag it's something big. I am a fan of the EMR2, and also have a Muskeg 5K. But, for a second pack I really love the OG 22 Mag. If I was buying just one Kifaru pack starting out right now for everything, I'd probably try the Hoodlum.

Stryker has always appeared much more "niche" to me.
 

prm

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
Messages
796
Location
No. VA
The only right answer is what works best for you. I haul in 6 days of food and gear for cold CO hunts using my Stryker. You do have be refined in your pack list to make it work.
I used the Reckoning a couple years ago and didn’t like it. Too baggy in day hunt mode and I didn’t like having a big nearly empty bag all the time. I really don’t like a lot of extra material, pockets, etc. The beauty of the Kifaru packs is you can make them what works best for you.
 
OP
G

GiantGreg

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
132
Here's the beauty of these bags... you get one based on what you think you like, you find it doesn't quite with for you, you sell it for dang near what you paid for it and get something that works better for you.

I like a big, simple bag so I use the argali from kifaru. They don't make it anymore but you may want to look into getting a used one. It's a simple top load pack, no zippers, no molle webbing, no fuss, no muss.

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk
Yea i a big simple bag would work well for me. I kinda.wish they made the muskeg in regular cordura i assume thats cheaper than the xpac material.
I guess that would be like the argali.


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N2TRKYS

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2016
Messages
2,706
Location
Alabama
I have an AMR and bought the Stryker thinking I might could shave some weight. Turns out, I prefer the AMR over the Stryker by a mile. Now, I noticed that the AMR is not on their website anymore. Smh

I may sell my Stryker, if it don’t start growing on me.
 

switchback7

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2020
Messages
440
Location
MN
If it's in Ranger Green and you're selling, let me know! I have a 44 mag but want to try the stryker for saddle hunting.
 

FIGJAM

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2019
Messages
154
So how many of you bought the greatest thing since sliced bread then ended up more ehhh.

So few things to make clear.
- this is not a review or meant to put down a product, this is more about questioning my choice
- I'm a crappy hunter
- this is my first real hunting pack
- I've not pack a deer out yet with it.
- I've not camped yet with it.
-i kinda feel like this is a "grass is always greener on otherside situation"

So this spring i got this pack right at end if turkey season. A kifaru stryker, my first real pack. Loved it.
Being eastern whitetail. I never went to far back except once, i did kill one about a mile& half back had to drag it..it sucked.
The reason i bought this paricular bag was i seen guys on here and YouTube kill some gut it or quarter and walk Out. This is not a thing people do here at all. Anyway i looked a few online and talked to few companies and ultimately decided on stryker . It was designed more for eastern whitetail day packs and my main reason was i seen pictures of just entire deer and pigs strapped to it. As a bonus you could get camp bag and turn it into a overnighter.
Well having a pack gave me more range. But it Tennessee on WMAs you can't enter until 1 hour before sunrise and be out 1 hour after sunset. Unless you camp. Then basically same , when camp hunting you not supposed to leave camp until 1 hour before /1 hour after
So over summer i thought well maybe i should look into camping further back do give me more advantage on public. So i was gonna try acquire camping gear in time for 2021 deer season. So bought a kifaru camp bag and i got a tent and quilt so far.
Fast forward to early season deer. Love stryker mostly minor nuances of personal prefer but mostly really love it still.
Mid season room in bag getting low, got some external pouches to help.
Late season. Had to add the camp bag to fit cold weather bibs. Annoyed, but i also found out i really like the big open bag on the camp bag vs the traditional zippper on stryker.

So in the stryker i carry kill kit, gamebags, emergency kit, puffy and softshell. That pretty much maxes it out. Gloves and anything extra i put in external pouches.

Well it got me thinking can i really carry camp and a deer with this too. I dunno . I did do a load test where i packed sll i need for a cold hunt and tent and quilt. Welll it really stuck out on my back. Really far Honestly i don't think the camp bag was a plan, it seems like the stryker was designed then the camp bag was an after thought but not really designed and test to fit it very well. Maybe I'm wrong.
Anyway it got me questioning myself. Now i've looking at alot of bags. Honestly i knew nothing about these when i originally Ordered. i think i knew what i wanted, but not what i ultimately needed or liked.

Few more points
- stryker i think. Is a great pack got warm to cool weather day hunts.
- cargo panel is great and its biggest perk.
- the cargo panel to bag straps can cause floppyness

Now I'm looking away bigger bags right now top choices are hoodlum and muskeg 7k.
From what ive learned on what i like and dislike on the stryker these seem like they might be better but that are pushing almost $400. Also they are big. Not sure how great it would be to have such a big bag and little gear on day hunts , which will still be majority of hunts.
Also with these big bags, i guess i would have to quarter it everytime. I couldn't just strap an entire deer to it like with the stryker, which is the main draw of the Stryker and pretty much entire reason i bought it. If i wasnt so tall (6'9") and really need that 28" frame, id consider selling it and getting a SG sky archer 6400. From my experience this past season, that i think would be the ideal bag in my mind.

Its not that the stryker is a bad bag, i just not sure if its for me. Maybe in 2021 i try another bag out either keep both stryker and newbag and swap or sell one. Or i just keep trying to figure out how to use the Stryker to its maximum potential.
Some days i still really like it, others i question my choice. I'm very torn.

a few things i think(as a new guy) would make the bag better.
-up the volume closer to 3k cu inc
- get rid of zipper and go to roll down top.
-make the connecting peice of cordura between the bag and cargo panel 6-9" longer.

How many of you prefer a big day bag?

Sent from my SM-J327VPP using Tapatalk
I run a combination Kuiu 3600/7200. The 3600 is super light, so I can roll it up and stuff it in the 7200 and then switch bags when I get camp set up and day hike - or I just compress the 7200 down and use it as a day pack. I like have stuff somewhat organized, so I usually do option 1.
 

pyrotechnic

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 7, 2019
Messages
113
I got the Stryker for day hunts, with the capability of hauling game out. I think it is great for that. If the 22mag had a built in water bladder holder I probably would have went with it instead,for more room for layers in the winter.

It can be a floppy turd if you don't secure the bottom of the bag to the frame and use k-clips or something secure the top to the frame vs just using the straps it comes with.

I have a fulcrum for packing in a camp, it works great for that, but is a bit strappy to deal with in daypack mode.
 

fatlander

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2016
Messages
829
There’s basically 3 size categories with bags from kifaru for your intended purposes.

1.) Small day pack with load hauling capabilities. Can do extended trips with a camp bag or utilizing the load shelf. It may be a stretch to get your whole deer and camp out in one trip. (Stryker or 22 mag)

2.) Mid sized pack that can easily get your camp and the quartered deer out in one trip by utilizing the entire bag and meat shelf, if needed. (44 mag or reckoning)

3.) Gigantic pack that you could fit more deer and camp than most folks can carry. (Ma Deuce or 7K muskeg).

If I were you, I’d go with a midsize bag.


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*zap*

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 20, 2018
Messages
3,139
Location
N/E Kansas
I really like the amr for large/small loads.. Got me a coyote color one and have my older highlander camo amr in the classifieds, no matching lid with it thou.
 

BRTreedogs

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2017
Messages
2,826
Location
Central Oregon
Well I think partly your over thinking it.
Stapping a deer and gear on isn't as pretty as Instagram would have you believe.
I think there messing around alot more then you think for a pretty photo.

I had a 44 mag. I think its pretty dang good but just didn't love it. Just didn't seem quite big enough/rite for me.

Id check out the cavern as well.

I bought a used Muskeg 5k that I think mite actually be a 7 because it seems huge.

I like the layout pretty damn well. I haven't used if with all my backpacking gear yet.
Just late season day hunts and it worked great.

One thing to note. And what will probably prevent me frome ever archery hunting with it.
The xpac is LOUD if so much as a tiny twig scrapes it.
Yeah cordura isn't a ninja material but the x pac seems significantly louder when it rubs stuff.
 

dingle

Member
Joined
Aug 2, 2018
Messages
93
There’s basically 3 size categories with bags from kifaru for your intended purposes.

1.) Small day pack with load hauling capabilities. Can do extended trips with a camp bag or utilizing the load shelf. It may be a stretch to get your whole deer and camp out in one trip. (Stryker or 22 mag)

2.) Mid sized pack that can easily get your camp and the quartered deer out in one trip by utilizing the entire bag and meat shelf, if needed. (44 mag or reckoning)

3.) Gigantic pack that you could fit more deer and camp than most folks can carry. (Ma Deuce or 7K muskeg).

If I were you, I’d go with a midsize bag.


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OP, not to muddy the waters, but since you already have a camp bag and value versatility, why not consider the Nomad?

I've loved the simplicity of my Tahr (out of production, midsized and expandable, simple roll top closure) and actually got used to quickly reshuffling the bag to use the meat shelf, but when hunting I catch myself wanting to avoid taking off the pack and opening up the whole thing to get at something inside, or the dreaded juggling of a camp to pull out of it before rearranging to daypack mode. Yes, I run pouches and pockets for easier access but sometimes there's something in the main bag and I'll just say screw it, leave it in there. The versatility of a simple bag is also its drawback. I ordered a Nomad 2 last week to see if it suits my personal preferences better.

I think it makes sense to not overthink it too much and just plunk down a bit of cash for a new option for a season if you can afford the few hundred - or less if you buy used off the classifieds.
 
OP
G

GiantGreg

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
132
Interesting, what are you packing and how?

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OP
G

GiantGreg

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
132
The only right answer is what works best for you. I haul in 6 days of food and gear for cold CO hunts using my Stryker. You do have be refined in your pack list to make it work.
I used the Reckoning a couple years ago and didn’t like it. Too baggy in day hunt mode and I didn’t like having a big nearly empty bag all the time. I really don’t like a lot of extra material, pockets, etc. The beauty of the Kifaru packs is you can make them what works best for you.
Interesting. What are you packing and how?

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thewileyone

Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
53
I have purchased mostly Eberlestock packs over the years. I have had some Cabelas, Camelback, Badlands and a few others also. I have never held a Kifaru but have heard great things about them. My current Eberlestock's are a Team Elk pack and an X1. I have had the Blue Widow, J34 Dragonfly and the gunslinger. I also have a Mystery Ranch that I havent used much. I think my next pack will be either an EXO or stone glacier. I really like how the EXO fits and you can compress it way down when you're using for a day pack. I have been able to use one and really liked how it fit me and felt loaded.

The current companies all have some good options and good warranties. I would try and figure out what you plan on taking with you and then find the pack that suits your needs. Unfortunately I have played the order it online and see how you like it game way too much. And just because I like how a pack fits me, you might absolutely hate it... the newer, lighter, modular packs are awesome.
 

roosiebull

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
1,144
Location
oregon coast
There are lots of options luckily, just have to find the best system for you. You own the stryker, so if you can keep it do, it will be handy to have

I think you would be fine with what you have. If your compression straps fit around your camp bag and meat, you should be fine. I’m sure it seems like the load would get really bulky adding meat, but it won’t be as bad as you think, and the weight will still be pretty tight to your back.

getting a bigger bag makes things easy though, and you’ll probably like it, but what you have should work if you need it to
 

Farmingdale's Finest

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2017
Messages
711
Location
NEW JERSEY
The Stryker was designed for us eastern hunters that do an occasional longer trip. The camp bag is just that. You put your sleeping bag, shelter and food in it and drop it off at camp. Then you have a lighter day pack with your kill kit, some food for the day and extra layers. Then if you get an animal you have the area between the bag and the frame to pack out your whitetail or elk quarters.

I am using a Mystery Ranch Terraframe 50 for this exact purpose. The MR has 3000 cubic inches in the bag vs I think 1200 for the Stryker. So far I haven’t used it for overnighters but I can fit all of camp and food for three days inside the bag and then use the load shelf for game or more stuff for a longer trip.

So far this year I have packed out three field dressed whitetails between 80 and 140 pounds. It is much easier and faster packing it out than dragging them out. In each case it has cut between 20 minutes and over an hour in getting it back to my truck.

I take a contractors bag to minimize blood transfer onto the pack and slide it over the body and position it on the load shelf pull the pack bag over the top of the body and cinch it tight.




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