I’ve always just used my hiking backpacks for canoe tripping. I’ve been told that canoeing portaginbg packs would be much better. Is this only for fitting into the hulls most efficiently? Or am I, as usual, just being cheap?
My own experience is that it is mainly a matter of how well they fit in the canoe. Particularly for an external frame pack. If it’s comfortable on a hike it will be on a portage as well. Available volume may be an issue to consider, but probably minor.
In the Boundary waters we used
"Duluth" packs which are larger than a back pack, but also hang down lower on your back so you can portage your canoe with it on, where as a back pack would be too high and interfer with carrying your canoe.
frame pack fan
I don’t have and haven’t used the traditional duluth packs. I did beta test my backpack with the Knupack retrofit this weekend. We portaged round trip 8mi with a 65# boat and lived to tell the tale. I hate portage thwarts since all the weight is on your shoulders. Using the frame pack we could transfer most of the weight to our hips. The real deal would have been two frame packs with the Knu retofits. We’d only have to deal with 30# each then. The fittings seem overpriced at $45 but are rugged and really did the job. They fit old Kelty and camptrails frames. I’ve never had any problem fitting the frame in the canoe, and can’t imagine bringing so much stuff that it wouldn’t fit on two frames. Good luck,Frogge.
Wha Ho, Pilgrim;
just a little experience
I have only been on one canoe trip that had long portages and alot of gear. This was my first trip. There we wree outfitted by the local shop (others of you would probably be familliar with it if you have done the trips to Algonquin Provicial park) and we had the canoe packs. I have since bought a canoe pack. I use it for alot of trips. I personally am a big fan of external frame packs. I like them over the internal packs…just something about that goofy frame that I like. now my canoe pack is pretty nice since the straps pad the shoulders for the portage yoke, and it is so roomy.
I also ended up making my own gear. so now i have a small canoe-stlye pack, but built onto a short military frame. I guess it is personal preference, but I do like the big, low top loading bag. The paddle pockets are a nice little convenience as well. So I don’t think you are being cheap, you are just boasting your preference.