REI XT 85 pack, ideas for attaching a bow?

sk1

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So I have been looking for a reasonably priced pack for my father-in-law from wisconsin to use on his western hunts, and had narrowed it down to the arcteryx bora 80 and the rei xt 85. Arcteryx discontinued their bora line this year, so I decided I think we will give the REI XT 85 a shot. The color slate grey is not ideal, but it is what it is. I considered trying to find a used standard timberline2, but the price point is still a bit high, i think the max we are looking to go is $450.

So does anyone have any creative ideas for attaching a bow to a hiking backpack, more specifically the REI XT 85? http://www.rei.com/product/844652/rei-xt-85-pack I need to look at one in person to really get a better feel for it, I just wanted to see if anyone has already come up with creative ideas for this situation. I do notice some horizontal compression straps towards the frame maybe i could buy a set and do a loop through those, the bow, and across to the other side, not ideal but would probably work.

thoughts anyone?
 

Rob P

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I have an XT85 and I have no problem securing my bow with four additional 3/4 inch nylon straps. You should not have any problem.
 
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sk1

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I have an XT85 and I have no problem securing my bow with four additional 3/4 inch nylon straps. You should not have any problem.

thanks rob, how do you like the pack, can you tell me anymore about it? comfort and what type of weight you have carried around? also maybe your opinion on how durable you think the pack is? it says its made with cordura but i dont know what amount. i still need to do the 45 minute drive to go down to REI and actually put my hands on one.
 

dotman

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How many days worth of gear does he need? If you get a duplex frame $336. HPG bag $45, grabit $31, make your own lash straps $10 and 35L dry sack $25 you are at $447 and pretty modular. Then next year he could get a Kifaru bag if needed. Just a thought and the cheapest way to slowly get into Kifaru.

With some planning you could probably make this work for 7 days. You could also add some Kifaru pods or a HPG terra pocket. Tons of options to make it work in your price range.

I read somewhere though that the XT 85 has been updated with more durable material. I would think you could use lash straps on it for a bow.
 
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sk1

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How many days worth of gear does he need? If you get a duplex frame $336. HPG bag $45, grabit $31, make your own lash straps $10 and 35L dry sack $25 you are at $447 and pretty modular. Then next year he could get a Kifaru bag if needed. Just a thought and the cheapest way to slowly get into Kifaru.

With some planning you could probably make this work for 7 days. You could also add some Kifaru pods or a HPG terra pocket. Tons of options to make it work in your price range.

I read somewhere though that the XT 85 has been updated with more durable material. I would think you could use lash straps on it for a bow.

i think around 5000 CU is going to be the magic number, we will probably take enough food in for 8 days....i want to keep it as light as possible for him until he gets one down and then he can suffer through it with me. 5000 is enough for some gear (ill be carrying more than him so he will have some extra room) and still be able to pack meat out with gear on the first trip. 4000 is starting to get small and 6000 is too much unless it really compacts well and is fairly lightweight.

right now REI XT 85 is the front runner, but he gave me a budget to pick out all of his gear, maybe we can swing a standard T2 with aluminum stays, we shall see...its not that he cant afford it, but trying to keep it somewhat reasonable when considering how often he will use it.
 

dotman

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Too bad Kifau is out of the ku5200, with aluminum stays it was right over his budget.

I think the XT 85 is probably your best bet for a pay once item instead of building up multiple items. The setup I listed above would he close to 5000ci but not all in 1 bag and zero pockets.
 

Bighub1

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I used the badlands 4500 for a couple hunts. You can pick one up used for a couple hundred or a new one from camofire for $250. You could get most of your money back if he loses interest. It is setup for hunting and on a budget. Jmtc
 

CM

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I have the old model REI XT-85. To attach my bow I cannibalized an old Badlands 2800 and used the butt bucket they have for carrying a rifle. I attach the butt bucket to the XT-85 with some excess straps off the XT-85. I then buckle some of the straps off the XT-85 across the hand-grip of the bow and anchor the top with a bungee cord. I only do this for the pack in since it takes a minute to get it all situated right. This explanation is probably confusing. I will see if I can find a picture.

I really like the pack. For the money I don't think it can be beat. It is about 1000 times more comfortable than the Eberlestock J107 I had before it and several pounds lighter. I carried about 85 pounds of mule deer and camp out in mine this year and it wasn't terribly enjoyable but I don't know if that would be enjoyable with any pack. It is probably not as comfortable as a Kifaru, but I got it on ebay for 100 bucks. I haven't had any durability issues, it has held up great and hopefully it will make it until I get out of college. But I have heard that the handle on the top will tear easily if the pack is loaded down; I try to avoid picking it up by the handle if I can.

If you have any specific questions let me know.
 
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sk1

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I used the badlands 4500 for a couple hunts. You can pick one up used for a couple hundred or a new one from camofire for $250. You could get most of your money back if he loses interest. It is setup for hunting and on a budget. Jmtc

loss of interest is not an issue. i hate badlands, but that's not to say it wouldnt work for him...i considered the 4500, but its really on the heavy side. they have their new summit pack coming out in july that replaced the 4500 and i think 3 pounds lighter, but i am not very optimistic. you never know though.

i really think its going to come down to the XT85 or pony up for a kifaru depending on what kind of deals i can find on the rest of the gear he needs
 

Rob P

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To me the pack is very comfortable. A problem I had in the past with other packs was they made my back hot and I did not have this problem with the XT85. I can cinch it down pretty tight once I've dropped camp. I actually picked mine up at a used gear sale and I've had no problems. I think it weighs slightly over 5lbs empty. I think I was packing about 60 lbs with it. However, I have yet to pack a deer out with it.
 

trophytaka

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i recently purchased an XT85 and absolutely love it so far! ive been hiking 3 days a week carrying 65 lbs in the pack. Very cumfy, fits well, and is reasonably priced. also with REIs return policy why not give it a shot? ill be leaving for a week long spring bear hunt in a week so the real test is hopefully soon to come!
 

Lawnboi

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I agree with dotman on the frame and HPG bag, or even a big dry sac with the grab it and a few

You could also look at the kifaru late season and add a few pockets to bring it to 5000cu. The main bag of the late season is the same as the t2.

Or even a frame/cargo panel setup. That is still under 450

At least with the rei though you can return it whenever if you decide to upgrade.
 
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