Photo: Badlands Timber
I have a few addictions. Hunting packs are one of them. A great pack keeps your gear organized and with you at all times. Whether you’re 20 feet up a white oak or skirting a mountainside trail, a quality pack is a must-have item. Here are three that captured my attention at the SHOT Show.
Badlands Timber Pack
A whitetail hunter’s dream, the all-new Badlands Timber is a treestand-friendly pack with a wide-mouth opening. Cloaked in the manufacturer’s new-for-2018 Approach FX pattern, this pack will keep calls, wind checker, scents and other necessities close at hand thanks to its many compartments.
Like all Badlands packs, the Timber features quality construction and offers a lightweight yet durable build. I like the fact that the pack’s construction means attaching a stand to it won’t be a problem. Another notable feature is the reinforced cut-resistant back suspension, which was designed to prevent damage to the back of the pack when it’s hugging the rough bark of a tree.
Mystery Ranch Treehouse
I’m kind of on a whitetail kick here, but I was drawn to Mystery Ranch’s all-new Treehouse. Two-zipper access allows the face panel to open up to a whopping 45 degrees, securing the pack’s inner contents and preventing items from falling to the ground below. Inside, the pack showcases quiet interior fabrication and a rigid structure that will keep the pack from taking on that “deflated” look when you hang it in a tree.
Bow and stand transport is easy via the outer compression straps, and the telescoping yoke guarantees a custom fit. MOLLE webbing inside and out offers customized accessory attachment, and I really liked the front stretch woven stash pocket, which is the perfect place to keep an outer layer or rain gear.
ALPS OutdoorZ Hybrid X
The newest member of the ALPS Extreme pack line is the Hybrid X, and it’s a winner. It’s a multipurpose pack that will work as well for the adventurous whitetail hunter as it will for those who chase bugling bulls in the Rockies.
This is a quality meat-hauler and a spacious pack all in one. For the whitetail hunter, the space between the pack and the hauler system can easily facilitate a stand. Total weight with the pack attached to the frame is 6 pounds, 3 ounces.
A top-loading pack with a bow drop-down pocket, the Hybrid X has an included rain cover, hydration pocket with port and Lycra shoulder straps. Other features that jumped out at me were the spacious front pocket, which provides immediate access to the pack’s main compartment, and the dual-pocket waist belt.