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3/29/2016 8:36 PM


I've known about HPG for quite a while, and have finally decided to make my first purchase. I'm an avid outdoorsman (here in the Great Smokey's in Tennessee!), runner, and new hunter. After reading what feels like half of all the forum posts, I'm looking at buying a Tarahumara, a 717 stuff sack, and a runner's kit.

The Tarahumara looks like a great day bag for hiking, a decent every-day bag, and a good bag for running. For non-runs I'd be looking at carrying:

  • Jetboil Flash or GSI Soloist

  • Some food (most likely ramen or a backpacking meal)

  • First Aid Kit (booboos, major bleeds, etc)

  • 3L bladder or 2 1-L bottles (with a sawyer mini or some chlorine dioxide)

  • Bahco Laplander and Tops BOB

  • Rain Jacket 

  • Fleece or Kifaru woobie in colder weather (yeah... no serape sadly)

  • Headlamp

Does the Tara make sense for what I'm looking for? Or would a Connor or Umilindi be a better choice? Sometimes I feel like I'm searching for a unicorn pack - small and light enough to run with, big enough to go on day hikes and short hunts. Right now I basically have a bag barely big enough to fit a 1.5L camelbak and a Kelty 90 for longer backpacking trips... You can see the appeal of a more intermediate sized bag. 

The 717 stuff sack would be mostly used if I wanted to make the Tara into an overnighter... Though I haven considered using it to pack out (small) game. Anyone ever used a 717 for that? Is that crazy? I'm not imagining stuffing a couple whitetail quarters in there... 

The runner's kit seems pretty self-explanatory. Anyone on here run in them much? This is honestly the piece of gear I'm least sure about, but seems like it has some great potential, especially for smaller hunting possibles bag. Are they thick enough to hold some Leupold 10x25 binocs? 

Anyone care to chime in? Have I had too little sleep and too much coffee over here? 

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3/30/2016 10:32 AM

Glad to see someone from my neck of the woods (I'm here in Knoxvegas).  In terms of capacity, I don't think you'll get that loadout in a Tara very easily if at all.  It would be a tight fit in the old Highlander but doable, so the Connor ought fit your needs pretty well.  You might want to get some feedback from folks of different heights/torso-lengths to see how the Connor carries as a pack--one issue that people with short torsos had with the Highlander in "pack mode" was its length.  The Connor with its stay/sheet no doubt carries a lot better, but depending on your build it might mean that a Lindi would be a better option for you.

New Post
3/30/2016 6:02 PM
Hey Creation Bear!

Thanks for your input, I appreciate it. I had debated long and hard between the Umlindi, Connor and the Tara. Do you have any of those? I'm what I'd consider average athletic - 6', 205lbs (210lbs if I forgot I was 30 and ate like teenager), so I doubt any of the packs would be "too big." I could be wrong! Maybe they grow them bigger out in Colorado?

Again, thanks for the input.
New Post
3/30/2016 6:13 PM
The highlander was not designed to be used as a pack so there was no provision to adjust for torso length, nor was torso length taken into account in its design. The Connor is designed to be either a pack or pocket, as such there is torso length adjustment.

Co-Owner Hill People Gear "If anything goes wrong it will be a fight to the end, if your training is good enough, survival is there; if not nature claims its foreit." - Dougal Haston
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3/30/2016 6:24 PM

Maybe they grow them bigger out in Colorado?

Ha, I think both Evan and Scot are pretty burly--I'm sure they'll be able to tell you what they think about fitting the Connor for trail-running.  My guess, though, is that your optimal kit would be a Lindi/Tara combination--i.e. run with the Tara/Kit Bag, overnight with the Lindi, using the Tara as a pocket if you need cubes. (Great gear, no matter what you come up with--I owned a Ute/Highlander combo that served me well in the GSMNP.)


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3/31/2016 7:17 PM
Thanks for the input CreationBear. I'm leaning towards the Umilindi, and just sticking with my current 1.5L Camelbak hydration system for runs - until I can pick up a Tara! Reading several of the reviews of the Umilindi really sold me on how awesome that bag is (can be).
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