Originally Posted by terjeness
I'm reaching out - so I don't have to buy both packs:
I'm looking for a pack for hunting/hauling both gear for spike camps as well as being able to haul home the meat. I'd like a pack that'll convert into a nice little day pack, while have the frame to carry home the meat at the end of the day. Is there one pack that'll do it all? Eberlestock's or Outdoorsman's?
Might check out the Kifaru Long Hunter Hauler. It comes with about 1K cu. in. of space to haul stuff (This is also a detachable fanny pack) on the packframe with a swing down platform to haul out your game on. This thing is designed to carry some serious weight if need be. I've had over 100 lbs. on it several times.
Snoop around the site some... The 'Gun Bearer' is a great piece of kit as well and comes standard.
Edit: and check out the Gun Bearer System: https://www.kifaru.net/gunbearer_hunt.htm
Low amount of movement required to access, hands free system and quick enough access to be able to trap shoot (faster than a shoulder sling and the trap shooting is just and example used to indicate how quickly the system alows you to deploy your rifle). Used this for years and am very happy with it. Rifle is very accessible and weight is supported on the hip belt making it very comfortable to carry this way. With an Eberlestock scabbard where the rifle is between your load and your body, the load is moved away from your center of gravity--exactly the opposite of what you want to do when creating a backpacking load that will move with you well. Kifaru's system doesn't do that and is much more quickly accessible with less movement. The Gun Bearer can be purchased separately and used in nearly any pack. My brother did this for a Lowe pack and is very happy with it.
When I was working my way through college as a smokejumper in the early 90's for several years, we routinely carried loads x-country that exceeded 120 lbs. and I can tell you this Kifaru Long Hunter Hauler is one of the most comfortable heavy hauler packs I've had on.
They are custom sized to your dimensions and if you have any questions at all, make sure and contact the owner, Patrick Smith, and have him walk you through the issue...he's more than happy to do it. He's also the past owner of MountainSmith, which before he sold it was a very well respected high end mountaineering pack making company.
You can make or purchase a packbag to go with the Long Hunter Hauler. I made my own and have a total capacity exceeding 8K cubic inches.
Integral fleece cover I made for quietness if sneaking..
More shots: Hunting Backpacking Equipment, etc. pictures from hiking & backpacking photos on webshots