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Snowboarding Packs

Info, conditions and gear related to skiing or riding Colorado Peaks, including the 14ers! Ski/Ride Trip Reports
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Snowboarding Packs

Postby dehrlich101 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:35 pm

Finally signed up for an AAIRE I class, now I need a pack for the equipment. Anyone have any recommendations for good backcountry snowboarding packs?

Ideally I'd like something that allows for avalanche tool pocket, easily accommodate a snowboard while hiking, and snowshoes while heading down, enough room for extra clothing, water, food and other necessities.

I really like the Black Diamond Outlaw Ski Pack. http://www.rei.com/product/837513/black-diamond-outlaw-avalung-ski-pack

Anyone have any experience with this pack? Good buy? Cons/Pros?

Is an Avalung something that I should definitely have on a pack or buy separately?

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby Upstate Hiker » Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:37 pm

I don't board but spent hours finding my winter pack. I have a Dakine Poacher and love it!

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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby d_baker » Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:52 pm

Upstate Hiker wrote:I have a Dakine Poacher...

Built for trench poachers, I suppose?!

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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby SolarAlex » Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:53 pm

arc teryx silo 30 is what i use

Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby shredthegnar10 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 7:31 pm

I have a Mammut Nirvana. It's around 35L ... it has a little fold-out pouch that you can put the tail of your snowboard into for carrying it; helps keep it sitting too low when secured only by straps which is the main problem I have had with other packs.

Not sure about an avalung; I don't have one and no plans to get one any time soon. I'm usually somewhat conservative when it comes to avalanche danger (especially in Colorado).
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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby Peakjumper » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:23 am

If you are looking for a day pack just look at something in the 30-40l size. BCA is a good company and local also. For my day pack I have the BCA stash rider,
and for my longer rides/weekends I have the Black Diamond anarchist with avalung ( not a snowboard specific pack)
If you get a split board you can get away with almost any ski pack... both of these have the avy pockets, hydration compatible, hipbelt pockets, and plenty of room for the essentials required for the trip planned. My main riding partner has the mammut one mentioned above and has had nothing but problems since the first use.
Any questions let me know. I will even let you use one or the other to test them out if you want!

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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby tylermacguire » Tue Nov 13, 2012 12:15 pm

dehrlich101 wrote:Finally signed up for an AAIRE I class, now I need a pack for the equipment. Anyone have any recommendations for good backcountry snowboarding packs?

Ideally I'd like something that allows for avalanche tool pocket, easily accommodate a snowboard while hiking, and snowshoes while heading down, enough room for extra clothing, water, food and other necessities.

I really like the Black Diamond Outlaw Ski Pack. http://www.rei.com/product/837513/black-diamond-outlaw-avalung-ski-pack

Anyone have any experience with this pack? Good buy? Cons/Pros?

Is an Avalung something that I should definitely have on a pack or buy separately?

Thanks in advance!


I have a pack similar to this one but it is an older model. It may be called the Covert but, I don't recall. I have tried both avalung slings and the avalung packs and prefer the pack any day. If you have the sling it is one more thing that needs to be taken off and put back on every time you need to add or remove a layer. It may not sound that bad but, I felt it was a huge pain in the butt. Also, if you are doing side country laps it is nice to be able to easily tuck away the avalung so you are not the "cool guy" standing in a lift line with an avalung hanging out.

The pack is definitely big enough to hold everything you need for day trips including avalanche gear. A feature I really like is that the back panel of it unzips so you don't have to empty your pack to get something that is in the bottom. I don't know why more packs are not made this way. My only complaint about the pack is that having the avalung in a pack strap makes that strap more rigid and is a bit uncomfortable. That being said I personally think it is well worth it.

Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby Jon Frohlich » Tue Nov 13, 2012 12:49 pm

I'll just say don't get an Osprey Kode 30. First time I was disappointed in an Osprey pack. Hard to use, heavy, and just not very well thought out. Lots of features that should work better than they actually do. I ended up selling mine and barely used it.

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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby ak47 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 1:57 pm

Black Diamond Outlaw Avalung Pack. Awesome snowboard straps, outer avy gear pocket with plenty of room inside. Pack is light, straps are stiff and strong so it stays on if you do go for a ride. I've had mine for 5 years of heavy use splitboarding and also snowshoeing with board strapped to the back, works great for both purposes, and shows incredibly minimal wear. It also feels good while riding; snug, compact, not bulky: this was very important to me. Last I checked this was one of the only avalung packs with snowboard straps. AK

Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby Bean » Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:48 pm

The BD Outlaw is terrible at carrying weight. That said, I use it almost exclusively because of the avalung and back-panel access.
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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby ballackout » Tue Nov 13, 2012 5:08 pm

I use the Volcom Defender Heli-pack. I love it. No avalung which is definitely a down side but to me it wasn't a deal breaker. It's Volcom so everything is board specific. Has the option to carry the board vertically or horizontally, straps on the side hold my poles on the way down, has back panel as well as top access and also has a pocket specifically for shovel and probe. Oh it also has a felt pocket for your goggs.

Super sick day pack and works for resort, sidecountry and splitboarding. Just no avalung...

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Re: Snowboarding Packs

Postby CDecker40 » Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:22 pm

Ballackout brings up a really important point I wanted to make - horizontal and vertical carry. If you're ever going to ride a sled with your board on your pack, then you have to have horizontal carriers.

The vertical straps are nice for quick in-and-out, but keep in mind a basic rule of pack loading - that the heaviest stuff goes low and close to your back. Your board will hopefully be the heaviest thing on your back. Most vertical carriers are on the outside, most horizontal carriers are close to your back.

I run the Dakine Pro II - and I guess I'd call it serviceable but don't highly recommend it. It just isn't the right shape and "rides" weird. That Volcom Defender gets great reviews but I haven't tried it out just yet. Seems very full-featured. Check out the new guys MHM too. I heard they have a few great solutions.

Good Luck!

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