This is the pack I use for fastpacking trips. It's blue, approx 30 L capacity in the main pocket, has vest straps for water flasks and snacks, and side / back pockets for various items I need during the day.
Specs and Performance
- Materials - Blue is Robic Nylon 100D from Ripstop By The Roll. Black side pockets are Hex 70, also from RBTR. The white mesh is a utility mesh from Joann's. Stretchy vest strap pockets are power mesh (doubled up) from Joann's, and the back pocket is a cargo net mesh also from Joann's.
- Weight - As built, this pack weighs 14.4 oz.
- Capacity - 30L-plus is a very rough estimate.
- Carry - The pack carries nicely. When filled (but not overloaded) it doesn't particularly bounce even at a jog. The shoulder straps are padded over the top, so they don't dig into my trapezius muscles.
- Rolltop closure with Y strap for foam pad or potential bear canister
- Vest-style straps with pockets for 500ml soft water flasks, as well as phone and snacks.
- Side pockets for water bottles or other materials
- Large back mesh pocket for things I need to access during the day
- Daisy-chain webbing for attaching items like trekking poles
- Interior foam sleeve for back padding
- Bottom attachment points to attach a foam pad (if I were to carry a bear canister on the top)
I have built a few Stitchback PZ backpacks and found that pattern very helpful. I also built a prototype fastpack based on the PZ pattern, so I knew some things that worked or didn't work.
Here are the changes I made from the Stitchback PZ pattern:
- I found vest straps to be fairly intuitive to build. Use padding over shoulders to prevent digging into neck. I tried to have the straps just long enough to reach the bottom of my rib cage.
- The pack is not as high - specifically it doesn't extend downward as far as the original. I didn't want it to hit my hips / butt.
- The pack depth (back to front) is one inch less than the pattern, to keep it closer to my center of gravity
- Instead of one big wraparound pocket, I changed it to a large back pocket with two side pockets.