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Back pack- what size and best shape?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Looking to buy a small(ish) day back pack. Just need one big enough to put a lightweight fleece gilet in, spare gloves, sunglasses, wallet, drink and snacks in. I'm not going off piste, so don't need anything fancy. Don't need one that allows you to attach skis. Ski ones, like Dankine Heli are too expensive. I've seen lots on line of what I consider may be suitable, marketed for for cycling and day hiking. What size do most people use? I've been looking at 12L to 15L. But my main question is - is there a preferred shape for skiing? I.e. narrow at the top and wider at the bootom, narrow for the full length; shallow depth. Or doesn't it really matter about the shape?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
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@Awdbugga, Are you sure you need one? I was sure I needed one until I bought one, now I'm sure I don't (on piste).
Bear in mind you are supposed to take backpacks off on chairlifts - variably enforced though.. Then the faff factor kicks in, every time you want something you have to take the bag off. Want a drink? Take your backpack off etc. Need sunblock/ lip salve? take your backpack off. I find a flexible water pouch in my jacket google pocket much more convenient (and it won't freeze there) - fits nicely with my spare lens too. I don't take spare gloves, but I do take spare silk glove liners - so when they get too sweaty I just swap the liner. sunblock, lipsalve, tissues, sunnies, piste map go in my chest pockets. Phone and minimal wallet in my inside security pocket.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Tubaski, I'm not 100% to be honest. Main reason I was thinking of getting one was to keep a spare layer in, or to take a layer off and stow it away. Having never been on a skiing holiday, I've gone by comments about previous MyashBash's. People have said it's between -10 and -15 in the mornings and one can get cold on the chair lifts. But then I've been told, as a beginner, I'll probably run hot (fear does that); so would probably need to take a layer off at some point. I've seen a cheap pack (£9.99). If it's crap, or as you suggest I won't use it; the most I've wasted is a tenner. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Waterproof-Backpack-Lightweight-Shoulder-Mountain/dp/B01LYYWFX2/ref=sr_1_11/258-9921110-8309042?s=camping-hiking&ie=UTF8&qid=1507909270&sr=1-11&keywords=12l%2Bbackpack&refinements=p_n_feature_eleven_browse-bin%3A11968024031&th=1&tag=amz07b-21


Last edited by Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see? on Fri 13-10-17 17:19; edited 1 time in total
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Pockets FTW if resort skiing. Otherwise a compact camelbak style would work - I use the tiny Decathlon manbag backpack to carry water, phone, wallet, granola bar etc low level hiking in summer - they have varying sizes in basic packs.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Same as Tubaski here. Much prefer to ski without a pack. Everything above except the gilet fits in jacket or salopettes pockets. Temperature control is via main zip in the jacket and ventilation zips in both. I take a thin spare pair of gloves that in an emergency would get me home or to a shop. If the forecast is really variable I might stuff in a spare base layer or balaclava somewhere, but not sure I have ever needed to use them.
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Someone posted a link to a backpack that you could pull round to your front when you get on the lift and put it back, without taking it off.

Anyway, I have an Evoc slope 18, which is very slim and never been a problem on the lifts. Probably it’s got more features than you need, ski carry, pockets for avi gear, but it is a comfortable and quality pack.

The little chest clips and waist straps are essential for skiiing. The one you posted a link to looks like it should be fine though.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I'd agree with @Tubaski, Failing that go for the smallest you can. The bigger it is, the more stuff you'll carry and never use. I prefer tall and narrow ones, like a larger Camel-baks type (ie. still small). I even managed to squeeze a shovel and probe in one this year and I think its probably <8lt.
I carry spare gloves in mine and have never used them... only reason they're there is to stop other stuff rattling around. Spare top/gillet is often quoted as something to carry and I've seen loads pulled out of packs when people have been looking for other stuff then forced back in but never seen anyone put an extra layer on (except maybe outside a bar).
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@Awdbugga, for your purposes that's perfect. Get a camelback for water, use the hip belt pocket for lippy. It's compact enough to not get in the way on lifts so you won't have to take it off and on again all the time.

As an aside, I've found taking a bag pack off on lifts is more dangerous than just keeping the thing on, loads of straps and clips dangling around to get caught up in the seat when getting off.
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I don't understand why more people don't ski with "Camel-baks".

Through the course of a days invigorating ski-ing I can easily get through the contents......... and yes, it still leaves me room for a Jager-tee or 2 at the end snowHead

(I wouldn't dream of going out on a 6 hour bike ride without my water bottles)
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I dehydrate really easily, so if I'm skiing on my own I take camel-bak (with no space for anything else, just the bladder) and wear it under my jacket. That way there's no issue with loose straps, and nothing freezes. I may look a little hunchbacked though Laughing
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kiteman69 wrote:
I don't understand why more people don't ski with "Camel-baks".

Through the course of a days invigorating ski-ing I can easily get through the contents......... and yes, it still leaves me room for a Jager-tee or 2 at the end snowHead

(I wouldn't dream of going out on a 6 hour bike ride without my water bottles)


Some of my buddies used them a lot a few years back, but had a lot of issues with the tubes freezing.

As to the original question, I used to take a wee 15 l pack religiously every time, it ended up being the repository for other peoples cameras etc - now I cannae be arsed and just stuff the essentials in pockets.

Rehydration? Thats what beer stops are for, eh Toofy Grin Toofy Grin
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@Awdbugga, The one in your link looks fine - even got hip belt pockets for your stash of mini mars bars (or whatever)
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I would just not buy all that stuff, so you won't need a bag to carry it around in.
Whilst heli-packs are thin enough to fit on chair lifts (or indeed in helicopters), you will usually be asked to remove them anyway.
Heli-packs are horrible to cycle with, great for skiing/ snowboarding, in my experience. I would not assume generic bags will work well.

I'd never carry a backpack in-bounds/ at a resort.
  • Ski clothing is designed to cope with temperature differences. Look at the weather, use an appropriate number of layers and it's fine.
  • I don't carry spare gloves - one pair of decent mitts is fine.
  • You can easily carry sunglasses in a jacket pocket. I just use photochromic goggles.
  • Most resorts will be delighted to sell you drinks and food, but you can always get water for free.
In-bounds/on piste I carry credit card, phone, sunscreen, lip stick, car key, nothing more. The main challenge is working out which of the huge number of pockets my jacket/ pants have that I've put the things in.

---
Camel-baks... I still see people bring those out now and then, but they usually don't bother two days in a row once they learn that they freeze up.
I like the industrial design of their stuff, but I've no desire to take my fluid through a tube just yet.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@kiteman69, I know its down to personal physiology, but I'm with you. In summer I can get though a full 3ltr Camelbak on a mountain bike in 3 to 4 hours. When skiing it varies, but on a long day there won't be much left in it.

If its cold enough to freeze your Camelbak tube, just blow the water out of the tube into the bladder after drinking, it works way better than any insulated shoulder strap or neoprene cover.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Awdbugga, I've tried narrow/slim backpacks but find them a pain. Some lifties enforce the rule of switching them to your chest. There's a risk of straps catching on lift hardware and yes it has happened to me, with much embarrassment

I always get jackets with plenty of pocket space. Then if extra needed I use a decent sized bumbag, but with the bag worn at the front, outside my jacket. Apart from base layer, I wear items all with zips, making it easy to adjust for temperature without taking anything off.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Problem I have is my jacket doesn't have many pockets. Just two zip ones on the front (and they aren't large) and two open mesh pouches inside. I bought the jacket when I thought I'd only be going to the Chillfactore with my daughter. I didn't think for one moment I'd be going on a skiing holiday (bash) and hadn't even heard of the Snowheads, and I'm not about to buy another. You live and learn. I'll go for the cheap backpack I've seen. I've skied before with a back pack on (cross country in the forces). I'll be fine balance wise. As the one I'm getting is small and will not be heavy; I'll sling it over one shoulder when approaching the lift. If I have to have it on my front, I can just swing it around. I'll make sure the straps are not flailing around. Shouldn't be an issue.

Thanks for all the advice. I've noticed there is rarely a consensus on threads, regardless of topic. Everyone seems to have differing views; some polar opposites. Who's to say who's right. Makes for an interesting forum though.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
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Totally agree with @philwig, I see no need for a back pack inbounds unless you have children or a large camera with multiple lenses.

That said, often don’t really know what terrain we might end up on so often have packs and avvy kit just in case. E.g. we decide to hit Punta Indren and they’re controlling kit. Or whatever.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Awdbugga, If you do end up getting one, I'd recommend:

As low profile and back-hugging as possible to keep you sitting comfortably on lifts
Smaller than you think you need!!
Simple design on the outside without a bunch of catchy toggles/straps/whatever (though you can cut some stuff off)
Waist and chest straps essential, cut off any dangly excess
As many pockets for small things as an uncluttered design allows
Nice easily accessible place to keep a soft water bottle (cheap ebay ones have worked well for me so far)
Keeping contents of a half empty pack still, compact, and evenly distributed can be achieved with some sort of compression system.


Last edited by Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see? on Sat 14-10-17 9:21; edited 1 time in total
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This on works for me...

http://www.deutergb.co.uk/products/alpine/speed-lite-10/

Avoid brands like Osprey which have a gazillion silly little straps and clips all seemingly designed to lasso you to the chair lift
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Still questionning why you need one at all ..
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not really important. Have you got a small rucksack? If yes - use that one. If no either a) don't worry or b) get something low priced- have you looked at Decathlon?

Most important preparation for skiing- lose weight get fit save money for beer.

Have a great time.
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@Awdbugga, how come you do not have one already? I seem to have a cuboard full of them of varies sizes from a week's backpacking to a tiny one to carry my waterproofs and shoes up a rock climb. But I am with the rest of the people here - you do not need one for piste skiing.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@johnE, I have a large 70L hiking one; a mid size camo one for fishing up trout rivers and an old battered one I used to wear on my motorcycle, that has seen far better days and no longer weatherproof. The one I'm looking at buying is only a tenner, so if it falls apart after Myasbash, it's hardly broken the bank.
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nelly0168 wrote:
kiteman69 wrote:
I don't understand why more people don't ski with "Camel-baks".

Through the course of a days invigorating ski-ing I can easily get through the contents......... and yes, it still leaves me room for a Jager-tee or 2 at the end snowHead

(I wouldn't dream of going out on a 6 hour bike ride without my water bottles)


Some of my buddies used them a lot a few years back, but had a lot of issues with the tubes freezing.

As to the original question, I used to take a wee 15 l pack religiously every time, it ended up being the repository for other peoples cameras etc - now I cannae be arsed and just stuff the essentials in pockets.

Rehydration? Thats what beer stops are for, eh Toofy Grin Toofy Grin

I use an Osprey Kode 22 the insulated pocket for the bite valve along with the neoprene cover for the tube stops me from having any icing problems as long as I don't leave it hanging out too long wink

red 27 wrote:
Avoid brands like Osprey which have a gazillion silly little straps and clips all seemingly designed to lasso you to the chair lift

I've shortened the extra straps on mine, good point though, when I replace it I'll be looking for one with less straps to start with.

Have to say if I wasn't carrying avi gear I'd be cutting down what I carry to avoid using a pack completely, much nicer skiing without even a small one.
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Awdbugga wrote:
@Tubaski, I'm not 100% to be honest. Main reason I was thinking of getting one was to keep a spare layer in, or to take a layer off and stow it away. Having never been on a skiing holiday, I've gone by comments about previous MyashBash's. People have said it's between -10 and -15 in the mornings and one can get cold on the chair lifts.


Once you get out and start exercising you'll stay warm. I've never needed a warm layer out skiing. Doing guided Off-piste days I take a compact warm layer in case we get stuck somewhere, but in your position there is no need.

IMO you don't need a backpack from what you've said. Just get a jacket with decent zipped pockets.

I am somebody who skis with a backpack all the time though.
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@Awdbugga, getting cold on chairlifts, IMV, is down to poor layering.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@awdbugga at myashbash you'll be going out for lessons in the early morning cold, but the lessons end at 11 (I think) and then you'll be back at the hotel, so you can drop your extra layers off and set off for the warm sunny day suitably attired. No need for backpack.

I've tried skiing with one before and instructors hate it as it throws your centre of gravity a little off, plus the hassle with straps getting caught in lifts. If you can manage without (remember trouser pockets as well as jacket pockets) then all's the better.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@Rcav, thanks for that heads up. I'll stick the cheap pack in my ski hold-all, as it's lightweight. I'll see how I manage without one. If I find I do need one, it's there. If not, it's only cost me a tenner.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
under a new name wrote:
@Awdbugga, getting cold on chairlifts, IMV, is down to poor layering.


..and if you're not feeling a slight chill on a chair lift, you'll probably be too hot when skiing. Getting too hot gets you sweaty and that gets you even colder on the next chair. Putting layers on and off for the lifts just isn't practical.
Also as a newbie you'll not be too confident getting off the chairs at first, especially if they're busy, so coping with carrying a bag will complicate matters even more.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
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@adithorp, again, thanks for the advice. I'll see how I get on without one. See you tommorow in OktoberTest. Very Happy
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@adithorp agreed about layering. You can also achieve a lot with body warmth by just adjusting your jacket zip (top keeps hot air in, half-undone lets it out) and if necessary, adding a buff around your neck to form a better seal with your jacket. (@Awdbugga you'll be provided a free buff when you arrive, if you're lucky in a rather dashing bright yellow!)

I find if you start with it done up, you can quickly cool yourself down by running the zip down and letting the cold air in, and when you're at a better temperature just zip it back up. That's a pretty efficient way to control your temperature without any faff.

Just beware: On a cold morning, having your jacket undone half way will catch the wind nicely yet unexpectedly when you're steaming down something steep and blast you with a chilling breeze that would wake the dead. So use with caution.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Canadian instructors say they can always spot British skiers because they always have to have a rucksack to spoil their posture and style. They spot this even before the union jack bobble hat.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
You only need a pack if you have kids with you and need to carry all the extras they need. Otherwise pockets are usually fine. Not sure why you need a spare pair of gloves or loads of drinks/snacks. And having skied with and without it does change how you ski so if you can avoid it do.
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Double post removed


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Sat 14-10-17 20:03; edited 1 time in total
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Well from the title, I thought this thread was about backpack recommendations, rather than being told not to wear one, but anyway....

https://www.decathlon.co.uk/C-309737-ski-backpacks

Good value, can unclip them to slide round to the front when getting on the lifts also
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Salomon Trail 10

https://www.castlebergoutdoors.co.uk/salomon-trail-10?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIrda6g-zw1gIVCLftCh1HSwrnEAkYBiABEgKQPfD_BwE#166=84&165=667

Very light, breathable and just big enough to carry layers/locks/sunglasses/spares . . .designed for running so doesn't get sweaty . .. very low profile with no clips to get caught on lifts . . .sternum strap to keep it in place . . .much better than the Dakine 12L. Only prob is its not totally waterproof (new spec one might be?) . . .I stuff gilet/spare gloves in a waterproof inner
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Nowt wrong with the one you suggested in post 3.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@Awdbugga, as you describe yourself as a beginner, I'd advise against a backpack. It is ime easier to learn without one. I carried one as a teenager- but that is coz I ate like a wolf, and it was full of sandwiches, juice and Kendal mint cake. Now I have a piste map, sunscreen, ski pass, camera, hat (in case it gets cold) in my jacket, money in my ski pants. You should fit that lot into two pockets.
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Well I ordered the backpack and it's arrived. It's a perfect size and design, should I decide to use one. However, I'm totally gobsmacked how anyone can make a backpack as neat as that; ship it half way round the world, sell it wholesale at a profit to a retailer, then the retailer sell it and still make a profit - on a £9.99 pack. I know it's probably made in some sweat shop by a 12 year old; but even so. £9.99 is crazy. I'm amazed, but quietly chuffed at the same time.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Waterproof-Backpack-Lightweight-Shoulder-Mountain/dp/B01LYYWFX2/ref=sr_1_11/258-9921110-8309042?s=camping-hiking&ie=UTF8&qid=1507909270&sr=1-11&keywords=12l%2Bbackpack&refinements=p_n_feature_eleven_browse-bin%3A11968024031&th=1&tag=amz07b-21
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@Awdbugga, Well it was £30, which makes more sense. Don't forget at £10, 20% is VAT, so £8.

Almost certainly bankruptcy stock or similar, bought at pennies on the pound.
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