Backpack Reviews – Stone Glacier Sky 5100

Stone

Sky-1After many years of solo hunts for sheep in Alaska and Montana, Kurt Racicot was driven to make a better pack. He wasn’t satisfied with the status quo, and began by making modifications to existing frames. The dream and vision evolved until just a few years ago when he took a leap of faith and created Stone Glacier Packs.

His packs are based on the premise of using quality, lightweight materials, a minimalist overall approach, and increasing the available weight for other gear/supplies or increasing backcountry efficiency.

Frame/suspension: The Krux frame is comprised of an “X” carbon/composite four-stay frame design. Other materials include 500D Cordura and X-Pac fabric. It is a modular frame system, designed to be interchangeable with the Sky 7400, and you can buy bags separately.

The frame can be used completely independently if you chose to keep your camp in the pack bag for a Sky-3return trip. The included Minimalist Buckle Kit is needed to switch two of the buckles on the frame from “male” to “female”.

The suspension is somewhat adjustable by changing the contact points of the shoulder straps against the Velcro backing. The shoulder straps and waist belt are made of nitrogen-infused foam and industrial hook and loop. This makes the harness very comfortable and strong.

The pack bag separates away from the frame, bridged by a flexible load shelf. This allows a 2500-c.i. roll-top meat bag to be placed between frame and main bag, for a total of 7600 c.i.

A 2” strap on the belt allows for attachments/accessories. There are two belt options – the simple one-piece and a three-piece with removable and adjustable lumbar pad ($15 extra).

Sky-2Bag: The bag is built from 500D Cordura and X-Pac fabric for high wear areas, with weather-sealed YKK zippers. The bag compresses to practically nothing when empty, and expands very vertically when full. The main bag features an expandable shroud with a roll-top and buckle, and is topped with an adjustable lid that rises and falls with the load.

The main compartment has access via the top and also a 2/3 zipper in the front. There are four small interior pockets that lay on the inside wall of the main compartment near the zipper. There are no side pockets.

On the lower front portion is a small flap designed to hold the foot of a tripod, and once the tripod is taken off, the idea is to have the spotting scope lying in wait directly underneath the zipper in the main compartment for quick access. If you don’t like that method, there is a spotting scope pocket (not designed specifically for the Sky but does fit it) that you could by to have in on the side.

Other items to note are that the lid is removable, the bag comes with a double-layer bottom, and the load shelf can be reversed and used to either add support to the bottom of the main bag or for additional support in holding a rifle or bow.Sky-6

Color/camo options: Gray.Sky-4

Best qualities: Extremely lightweight; vertical load design; beautiful system for separating frame from bag and putting meat in between, complete with 2500 c.i. meat bag designed just for that purpose; comfortable to wear.

Could be better: No side pockets and few pockets overall limits some practical use and organizational capabilities; the four interior pockets are difficult to access with a full load; slightly more padding could be beneficial..

Cost: $599. Contact: www.stoneglacier.com.

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Recommended accessories: Weapon Sling (1 oz.) -$22; Hip Pocket (1 oz.) – $21; Load Cell Dry Bag (2500-c.i., 4 oz.) -$34; 3-piece belt – $79; Hip Belt Pull – $5.

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