View Full Version : Which Kif pack for SAR do you use?

03-19-2006, 11:19 AM
I was wondering which Kifaru pack other SAR volunteers use for wilderness searches?? I struggle figure out which one I like. My pointman, marauder or a scout?

03-19-2006, 12:39 PM
I don't do sar work, but I've looked at the gear complement they use. Seems like the pointman would be the "universal" ticket. The marauder may be better for organization, but the pointman w/ a few pullouts is nearly as good. Plus it allows you to carry some support gear that you may not expect to have to. I know that SAR has to be very flexible.

The scout is a nice daypack. You need more than that, IMO.

03-20-2006, 10:16 AM

This is a question I've struggled to answer for a while now, even after phone discussions with Mel and laboring over the tech specs.

I've been using an EMS framepack cinched down for my SAR pack this winter just because I haven't ordered a Kifaru pack yet. Truthfully it's a pain in the arse. But here in PA, and for you in OH, the weather shifts so much from summer to winter that I'd almost consider saying it's impossible to have one pack that can fulfill my needs in SAR for any given condition. In the winter, PA DCNR requires we take the appropriate clothing along with items to treat hypothermia. Then, I need more room. If we're heading into a technical rescue situation, I take my rope gear, and again, I need more room. In the summer, I can unload a lot of the things I know I will not need, and I could feasibly fit everything (sans helmet) into a Scout.

I've been looking long and hard at the Express, and Recce Gear had even ordered (or said he'd ordered) fabric for me to have one made in the typical SAR/USCG red/black color scheme. He hasn't been in contact with me since before January, so I went back and started looking again. Scout, Express, or Marauder.

Now with the Omni-Yoke out, I've been thinking that it might be a good meet-in-the-middle solution. I could configure it in any way the weather or situation might need. Stash-it pockets in front, 1L pouches along the sides, and any sort of configuration to affix to the back. Although I haven't put my hands on a Kifaru pack since the AT a couple years back, I can't say this would be perfect, but it just might be my answer.

Or a Marauder, or even an Express. /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif


03-20-2006, 12:07 PM
I found the express body much to small to put anything. I like my sleeping bag in my pack not strap to the outside. The express is nice but I needed lots of pockets to accomidate my load. Since then I have a Pointman, and man is that a comfy pack. But if it isn't full, it is a big sack on your back, not great for organizing small gear. By attaching long pockets, etc you could customize your pack based on mission. It sounds like you and I struggle with the same problem. My problem is even larger because we do Urban/Disaster relief. The Marauder is awesome! But not big enough for tent and mummy bag. But it is great for organizing small technical gear.

My head hurts!

03-20-2006, 12:21 PM
Panzertroop, if you think the Marauder is awesome, but not big enough, and the Pointman is comfy, then you need to try a Navigator for sure. It sounds like you carry more gear in your SAR pack than is typically normal. If the Navigator isn't full, you can compress it very flat, unlike the Pointman. The reason being that the Navigator is a panel loader, and not a top loading single tube design bag. The Navigator has all the organizational features of the Marauder, plus a sleeping bag compartment that has a removable divider. With the 23" stays, you get great shoulder lift, and still have excellent head clearance. It uses the same WrapTech suspension as the Pointman. Give it a closer look, and I think you'll see how it could easily fill the role of a SAR pack.