We test the load capability, comfort, and versatility of nine new backpacks for hunters
a technical pack with a serious price tag, the 1,850-cubic-inch Icon Pro is designed for backcountry jaunts and extended day hunts, enabling the goal of every mountain hunter: to go in light and come out heavy. The modular pack—you can add pockets, bow or rifle carriers, and straps, or you can attach the Icon’s bag to other Kuiu frames—is built around an adjustable carbon frame that fits a range of torso lengths, although it was too small for the largest of our team and too large for the smaller testers. The pack is strong as hell. The frame is rated to 125 pounds, and under a load of 80 pounds of rocks and potatoes, the Icon was balanced and comfortable.
The Icon scored well on adjustability and versatility considerations, but the moisture-repelling ripstop nylon material abraded easily. Still, for an extra-duty meat-hauling champ, the investment-grade Icon is at the head of the class.
Kuiu’s Icon Pro 1850 is a superb backcountry backpack. score: 84.7 price: $425