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CLOTHING & BOOTS
Badlands Ox review by Andy Backus of the Long Range Hunting Store:
The Badlands Ox Pack is not your Granddad's external frame pack. The first time I put my hands on the Badlands Ox Pack I was blown away by all the unique and modern features that have been designed into this pack. The guys at Badlands have designed the new modern frame hauler capable of hauling all your gear plus more meat, cape, etc. than you probably want to carry!
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The Badlands Ox Pack is built around a simple, extremely strong yet lightweight frame made of T-6 aircraft aluminum. The Ox's vertical beams are curved to follow the contours of your body resulting in a pack that rides much closer to your body than traditional pack frames do. This means that, when fully loaded, the ride is much better balanced over your center of gravity and feels less like it's pulling you backwards. It also means that after you hike deep into the wilderness and unload your gear, you can use the Ox as a daypack and it feels tighter to your body and less cumbersome than traditional external frame packs. There are just 2 crossmembers, one at the top and one at the bottom of the Badlands Ox. They are attached to the vertical beams with quick release clamps that allow you to quickly disassemble the Ox and remove the main pack body when you want to use the frame by itself without a pack. The last feature I'll mention about the Badlands Ox's frame is that there are absolutely no loose parts that could make any noise while hunting. The Ox is the quietest external frame pack I've seen.
The harness on the Badlands Ox Pack is extremely comfortable under a heavy load. I especially like how the hip belt padding is recessed for your hip bones and how the back padding is aggressively sculptured to fit just right. The shoulder harness, although well padded, is fairly compact for such a large pack, giving the ability to shoot a gun or bow while wearing the pack. The shoulder harness has a bit of vertical adjustment to fit different torso lengths. The hip belt features nice sized pockets for rangefinder, calls, extra ammo, etc.
The Badlands Ox Pack is comprised of a large main compartment flanked on either side by vertical side pockets. The main compartment is accessed by a zipper that runs up both sides and across the top allowing for excellent access. The side pockets are designed specifically to carry your tripod and spotting scope safely and quietly with a soft interior and tethering system. On the rear of the main compartment is a smaller compartment with dual organization compartments inside. This compartment also has great access. On top of the main compartment is a generous lid compartment with dual vertical compression straps. On the underside of the lid is a mesh compartment meant for a 96 oz water bladder (sold seperately).
The Badlands Ox features tons of vertical and horizontal compression staps allowing you to change the size and shape of the pack depending on what you are hauling, and also providing almost unlimited ability to lash things to the outside of the pack. Two long compression straps allow you to tip the entire pack back to make room between the frame and the pack to carry your meat or any other bulky items. The frame itself includes a blaze orange shelf panel to lash your meat or bulky items to the frame as well as 3 horizontal and 2 vertical compression straps. Also included is a gun scabbard which is a pocket that can hang off the rear-center or the side of the pack and holds your rifle butt-down. A buckle on the top of the frame can be moved to the right or left side and holds your barrel while being accessible for quick access to your gun when using the scabbard on the side of the pack. When using the scabbard on the rear of your pack, the barrel is held in place with a solid loop and/or some unique bungee attachments. The scabbard and bungees also work well to carry a bow.
The Badlands Ox Pack is available in Medium or Large sizes. Choose Medium if you are under 5'-11" tall and have a waist size of 34" or less.
Capacity - 4400 cubic inches
Weight - 9 lbs. 11 oz
Bladder - 95 oz (sold seperately)
CLICK HERE to link to the Realtree website for information about the different camo patterns.