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Thread started 27 Aug 2013 (Tuesday) 19:58
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Hiking backpack insert - Still not satisfied! I need help.

 
WaterVsAnchor
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Aug 27, 2013 19:58 |  #1

I have been searching for a good, well protected insert for my Osprey Kestrel backpack since early winter. I've still yet to find something that I like! So far, I've purchased a few cheaper ones off of Amazon $20-$40 but none of them have felt "right". I'm still considering the ICU's from F-Stop but can't find a way to try one out without throwing down $100.

So my question is - what the heck do you guys use for hiking? Do you put an actual camera bag within your backpack? Have a favorite insert? Do you have any experience with the F-Stop ICU's? I'd really like to find a solution soon so I can do some comfortable hiking in the fall.


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-Sam- | FUJI X-E2 | Fuji 35 1.4 | Fuji 18-55 2.8-4 | Rokinon 12 2

  
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pdrober2
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Aug 27, 2013 20:11 |  #2

I used to put a lowepro 180aw inside my backpack for traveling and hiking. I have recently upgraded to fstop and am very impressed. I'm not sure how well they would work in a normal pack, as opposed to the back panel access with the fstop bags.

Have you considered just investing in a camera/hiking backpack? How much gear are you looking to carry?


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tat3406
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Aug 27, 2013 20:28 |  #3

Normally I will carry my camera with holster camera bag on my belt, so I can easily take in and out. others lens only put in normal hiking bag in lens case. My biggest hiking bag only 45L always full of other hiking and camping gear, the place to put the camera bag at all.


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Jon
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Aug 27, 2013 20:30 |  #4

I put a Domke insert (external link) or two in, depending on how much gear I'm carrying. From my experience they'll work well with either top-loading or back-loading packs.


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Wilt
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Aug 28, 2013 10:08 |  #5

I have taken non-photographic packs and then


  1. used Domke inserts to subdivide, and/or
  2. fabricated custom made inserts from closed cell foam


To do #2, I purchase a roll of ground pad closed cell foam from camping supply, custom cut and folded sections and cement them together.

The advantage to #1 is convenience. The advantage to #2 is the custom fit to the lenses and accessories and camera to be carried.

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doidinho
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Aug 28, 2013 13:55 |  #6

Check these out.

http://www.crumpler.co​m …Code=EN&SKU=HVN​001-X06G60 (external link)

My buddy who works at a camera store swears that one of these tossed into a hiking pack is the way to go. He prefers these over both the Clik bags and the new mindshift bags.


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waterrockets
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Aug 28, 2013 14:11 |  #7

Three possibilities for myself:

I sometimes use the insert that came with my Domke Propack 418, which is larger than I need for a camera to backpack with. So, I take out dividers in unused areas, and re-purpose for backpacking gear, then shove the whole thing into my Arc'teryx pack.

Another route I've gone is to use the laptop insert that came with the Propack 418. In my day pack, I cut one of the side zipper pockets out of it, so the zipper goes straight inside. This is large enough to shove my Rebel in and out of the laptop insert, among the rest of the gear in the pack.

The other route I often go is to use my Lowepro Toploader Pro 75 AW as a front pack, under my backpack straps. This is very comfortable, and makes the camera more accessible than the other options. Great for skiing too. It also moves your center of gravity the right direction rather than further back if the camera is on your back. Disadvantage is that the weight is carried on my shoulders, rather than hips, but but a camera isn't too bad for both shoulders to manage on a 6-hour hike.

Note that nowhere do I recommend hiking with the Propack 418 itself ;) For $100 though, I can't see how you'd beat it for a travel pack... and a great pair of inserts.


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shikhan
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Aug 28, 2013 15:04 as a reply to  @ waterrockets's post |  #8

I just was looking into this and had a similar question to you. In one of my many trips to REI, I found this: http://www.rei.com …t-cube-camera-compartment (external link)

and decided it was worth a try. I've taken it out on 2 backpack trips now and have been pretty happy with it. It fits well both in my 60L bag and my wifes 45L bag, and gives pretty easy access.

Granted, it isn't that big, so it depends on how much equipment you want to take.

Things I really liked about this:
* It is one of the lighter inserts I've found. Almost all the inserts around this size I found were almost 1-2 pounds! At 7 ounces, this is fantastic.

* Compared to basic inserts, this cinch top lets you pull this out of your bag easily while still securing the gear inside (this was important to me as I kept the camera bag on top of all of the other gear in my bag for easy access to my other lenses).

* It was cheap! Just $22!

* Since I bought it from REI, I could try it out and their 1 year return policy allows me to return it if I didn't like it.




  
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Left ­ Handed ­ Brisket
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Aug 28, 2013 15:20 |  #9

Wilt wrote in post #16247125 (external link)
I have taken non-photographic packs and then

  1. used Domke inserts to subdivide, and/or
  2. fabricated custom made inserts from closed cell foam


To do #2, I purchase a roll of ground pad closed cell foam from camping supply, custom cut and folded sections and cement them together.

The advantage to #1 is convenience. The advantage to #2 is the custom fit to the lenses and accessories and camera to be carried.

YES!

My usual bag, whether camping or not, is a small NF backpack not much bigger than a book bag that I cut a card board box down to fit inside and the lined with some leftover foam from a hassleblad case. That foam is thicker than I need and tends to collect dust. Sleeping pad material would be perfect.

This thing is cool too

http://petapixel.com …h-pins-rather-than-velcro (external link)

I think I'll get some plastic corrugated material and glue the foam to it DIY style


PSA: The above post may contain sarcasm, reply at your own risk | Not in gear database: Auto Sears 50mm 2.0 / 3x CL-360, Nikon SB-28, SunPak auto 322 D, Minolta 20

  
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gremlin75
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Aug 28, 2013 18:26 |  #10

I personally have the camera attached to my backpack via the capture clip.

When it's not attached I just wrap it in extra cloth and put it in side a dry bag. Ounces=pounds so if I can protect it with gear I'm already carrying all the better (but I have just recently switched from carrying a dslr to a micro 4/3 camera for backpacking to save even more weight)

Above is what I do for multi day backpacking. If I'm just doing small hikes I use a dedicated camera backpack (I use a clik pack) as I'm carrying more camera gear that camping gear.




  
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WaterVsAnchor
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Aug 28, 2013 22:53 |  #11

Thanks guys. You've thrown out a lot of good suggestions! I think I'll go through each one and see what I can come up with.

The Domke inserts look great and so does the Crumpler Haven (Which I'd seen before but never in person). Are these large enough to fit my 60D with lens + 1-2 other lenses and a few smaller items? I guess the camera stuff is all that matters, I can throw accessories in something else.


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-Sam- | FUJI X-E2 | Fuji 35 1.4 | Fuji 18-55 2.8-4 | Rokinon 12 2

  
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YARDBURNER
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Aug 28, 2013 23:47 |  #12

Mountainsmith kit cube.
Holds a 60D w/18-135 and hood attached in center
55-250 and 50mm 1.8 on one side and
a 10-22 with hood on the other.
Not bad for $30.




  
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stink ­ tooth
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Sep 01, 2013 16:51 |  #13

doidinho wrote in post #16247808 (external link)
Check these out.

http://www.crumpler.co​m …Code=EN&SKU=HVN​001-X06G60 (external link)

My buddy who works at a camera store swears that one of these tossed into a hiking pack is the way to go. He prefers these over both the Clik bags and the new mindshift bags.

This

I have my whole OMD travel kit in a Medium one and tossed into my every day carry back pack that goes with me everywhere. Its great for that and I am going to get a Large one to go with it to put my extra stuff in for my canon outfit for my hiking pack when at home as well




  
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CaptBob
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Sep 02, 2013 07:48 |  #14

check out TrekPak - they make a new divider system that is customizable, also pre-made systems for pelican and other cases. I used it to make my waterproof Patagonia backpack into a pretty great totally waterproof camera bag for use on my boat


1Dmk4,1DXmk2, 600 F4 L IS mk2,100-400 L IS mk2, 16-35 F4 L IS, 24-105 F4L, canon 1.4xmk3, 2xmk3

  
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stever1000
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Sep 04, 2013 02:14 |  #15

gremlin75 wrote in post #16248559 (external link)
I personally have the camera attached to my backpack via the capture clip.

.

What is the capture clip?




  
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Hiking backpack insert - Still not satisfied! I need help.
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