5 comments on “How To Pack Your Frameless Backpack

  1. This is pretty close to how I do it too. For sub 10 lb loads, I’m using the Gossamer Gear Murmur. Instead of rolling up my foam pad, I put it in the exterior pad pocket. However in the pack itself, I do what you do: a liner plastic bag, and then everything is kept loose without stuff sacks to maximize volume usage. Close the plastic bag. Then the food sack, and a bunch of loose stuff on top. My tarp, rain pants, wind shirt, and frontier pro go in the back mesh pocket.

  2. MANY THANKS FOR TAKING THE TIME TO EXPLAIN HOW TO PACK A FRAMELESS PACK.IHAVE JUST ACQUIRED A FRAMELESS PACK AND EVERY BIT OF KNOWLEDGE HELPS. THE ONE THING I DONT UNDERSTAND IS WHY THE SLEEPING BAG IS ON THE BOTTOM. i ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT A BAG, DOWN THAT IS ,SHOULD BE LEFT UNCOMPREESSED AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE. ON A LONG HIKE HAVING ALL THE WEIGHT ON TOP OF IT ALL DAY EVERYDAY SURELY WILL DAMAGE THE LOFT?I NORMALLY PACK MINE FAIRLY LOOSELY IN A TRASH BAG AND STRAP IT TO THE OUTSIDE, THIS ALSO HELPS TO NEGATE THE POSSIBILITY OF SOMETHING SHARP DAMAGING THE BAG IF I PUSHED STUFF DOWN INTO IT, IF YOU SEE WHAT I MEAN. lOOK FORWARD TO YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS, mEANWHILE, THANKS AGAIN FOR A GREAT BLOG. CHRIS.

    • Hey Chris, glad you like the “guide.” I prefer to keep everything inside the pack, since the outer fabric of the pack is more durable than a trash bag or other outer compartment. The way I stuff the sleeping bag, not in a stuff sack but just in a trash bag in the bottom of the pack, is still less compression than the sleeping bag would be subjected to in a stuff sack, so it won’t significantly damage the loft of the sleeping bag. In fact, on my AT through hike in 2007, I compressed my sleeping bag in a small stuff sack every night for four months, and it didn’t kill the loft– as long as you don’t leave the down stored in a stuff sack for many days on end, compressing it daily doesn’t really impact the down too badly.

      You would think that leaving the sleeping bag uncompressed in the top of the backpack would be good, too, but there are a few reasons I prefer the bottom of the pack. Mainly, I keep the sleeping bag on bottom because I pack things in the order that I will need them. When I take out my sleeping bag from the bottom of the pack, I know I’m in camp and ready to go to bed. I don’t want to have to take it out and put it back in the pack several times during the day.

      As for sharp things on top of the sleeping bag damaging it, I’ve never had that happen before. Since I tend to put food on top of the sleeping bag, I think the sharp and pokey things tend to get blocked by bags of food.

      Hope that helps!

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