which ultralight hiking pack?

Do I deserve a new hiking pack? Lighter than my Granite Gear Virga (photo).

Yes. Because I’m worth it.

But which?

uberlitejpg.pngThe G6 Whisper Ultralight Backpack was designed in response to Ryan Jordan’s desire for a freakishly light, subcompact, overnight pack. The G6 Whisper Ultralight Backpack is a cornerstone of Ryan’s Super-UltraLight Backpacking (overnight backpacking with less than five pounds of gear) strategy. …

The G6 Whisper, at only 3.7 ounces (99 g), is the lightest commercially-available rucksack with enough volume for overnight backpacking by the accomplished ultralight backpacker. With more than 1800 cubic inches (30L) of main packbag capacity, an expandable rear pocket, and a short extension collar, the G6 Whisper Ultralight Backpack provides enough volume for virtually any serious ultralighter out for two or three days, and enough volume for the extraordinarily disciplined ultralight hiker with a very low equipment kit volume to spend several days to a week in the backcountry. …


Gossamer Gear G6 Whisper “Uberlite” Backpack @ Backpacking Light

What about the GoLite Ion?

The epitome of ultra-lite simplicity, the Ion was designed for ultra-lite fast-packing, summit bids, and adventure travel. Constructed of super durable Dyneema® gridstop fabric and a single watertight zipper at the opening, this top-loader features spacer mesh shoulder straps for comfort, an adjustable sternum strap and webbing hip belt, a hydration tube opening and a haul loop. Extremely compact and a true minimalist piece, the Ion is a featherweight 9 ounces!


GoLite Product Detail

As the Crow Flies linked to home made gear by Samurai Joe Valesko. He uses cuben fiber.


Joe Says:

“I carried a single Blast 26 backpack my entire PCT thru-hike (2,663 miles). I carried a base weight of around 5 lbs (gear list), and generally 12-20 lbs with full food and water.

At one point I carried 35 lbs for an 11 day stretch without re-supply through the High Sierras of California. My shoulders weren’t happy about that much weight, but the pack took it like a champ! (Under 20 lbs is a more comfortable weight with frameless packs)

By the end of the five month trip the pack was quite a bit frayed, but still in very usable condition. Not bad for a 3.5 ounce backpack!”

Zpacks.com Ultralight Backpacking Gear

That water bottle side pocket is excessive, don’t you think? Could shave some grams there, Joe.

(Incidentally, Kraig, I recall pooh poohing your suggestion to use an air mattress as the frame of a backpack. But now I do it all the time with my Virga.)

Leave a comment if you have other recommendations. Thanks!

4 Replies to “which ultralight hiking pack?”

  1. I think that you just might have to comparison test them all Rick. I mean, after all that’s why we visit this site. Getting an unbiased opinion from the hiking guru himself. I’ve done my part in donating the Virga (which should therefore at the moment put it at the top of the list based on price vs usability). To make things fair, perhaps other readers can sacrifice their ultralight gear for such a noble cause.

  2. I’ll vote for the GoLite. I’ve used their stuff for awhile now, and have always been very impressed with the quality for how much it weighs.

    Also, glad to hear that air mattress trick is working for you. 😉

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