Tips & Tricks: Cragging Packs
Spring and summer – bring on the climbing season! Deuter, while known for the Guide Series of packs, has a few other options that excel at cragging, sport climbing and beyond. We’ll look at the Spectro 38 and Speed Lite 30 here from a recent trip to Red Rocks.
Generally speaking, a rope coil will go under the top lid – that easily distributes the weight of the rope and makes the carry easy. Some people prefer to put their coil in the on the front of the pack – say, in the pocket – but that tends to pull weight off the back.
Packing the rest of the pack, you’ll want things like your draws, trad gear and the like at the bottom so it doesn’t poke you and it’s easy to drop in. Things like your helmet can go on the outside, but slings, your harness and your layers should easily fit internally. Generally speaking, you pack the pack in the opposite way of how you rack up for a climb safely.
- Helmet goes on first
- Harness gets put on
- Slings / gear gets arranged
Here’s the Spectro 38 in that mode. My partner is getting organized and almost ready to put on the helmet, harness and gear up. Another note of consideration (and this can be very personal) - water bottles work really well cragging. There are more opportunities to grab your water independently than reach down or wear a pack while belaying. While getting to the crag, by all means, fill up your Streamer and hike away! All the packs are made to hold them.
Packing your pack becomes a little personal. I like to keep my guidebook easy to grab. I’m using my Speed Lite 30 down in Red Rocks in this shot – gear at the bottom, helmet inside and rope coil getting ready to be put under the lid.
Other packs like the ACT Trail 32 and ACT Trail 28 SL are great cragging packs as well. Light and fast climbers trend toward the packs used on this recent trip, but who’s to say that any pack won’t work well.