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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey

I figured i would ask in the AZ forum since it is where i live and you all have experience with the heat. I am getting ready to ditch my crusted out Big-5 brand pack (with a 100oz camelback bladder stuffed in it) for a brand new mule. I am wondering if the "NV" is worth the extra cash? I am a bigger guy at 215, most of my rides are 3+ hours and the problem i have is that when my current pack is loaded with food and and extra bottle required for a 3+ hour ride my lower back kills me until i get the extra bottle and half the camelback drank, then it is fine. I have the feeling that it is because the pack just don't fit. I am hoping that the mule will solve this problem. I know it is the pack and not my bike fit because i don't have any problems on shorter rides without a pack. 600 CI is more than enough room for all my crap. Thanks for your help :thumbsup:

Bob Dylan
 

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Pablo Escobar
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84 Posts
I would buy the HAWG also next time for the extra room. I have the MULE with the air director back panel and I like it. The NV is supposed to not get so sweaty in back and from what I hear it is worth it.
 

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1,891 Posts
My biggest complaint with Camelback - their back venting is not very good. I went with the Deuter Race Air EXP. A little larger than the mule, but the back panel vents great. It also sits right above the hip. No shoulder strain.
 

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parenting for gnarness
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6,251 Posts
i need Paul B to put this in a sticky: Osprey Talon. doesnt feel big at all when its empty. I commute an hour with a laptop in it and it feels great.
 

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Two wheels are better
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193 Posts
I found that most of the comfort comes from the proper size (for your body, not for how much gear it will hold). For example a decent day pack comes in multiple sizes so you can find the proper length for your torso. This way the hip belt is in the appropriate spot and the weight is evenly dispersed on your waist and your shoulders. This is typically more of a concern for hiking, but I have found it does make a difference when riding as well. I am taller and found that most Camelbaks, hydration specific bags, are short in the torso and therefore aren't comfortable over long distances (all the weight is on my shoulders). I recommend checking out daypacks at REI that can handle bladders instead (there are quite a few). They may have a few more cubic inches then you think you need for the bike, but they are typically lighter and usually they compress down, so it isn't a big deal. And as many have pointed out in this post, erring on the side of larger is always better.
 

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2,620 Posts
NV(ENVY)-worth the extra cash.

It's the best back panel Camelbak has ever done.

If you're a Camelbak fan, the NV back panel is fantastic.

Think they do a HAWG NV as well.

Just picked up a Mule NV a few weeks back. It carries better than a standard mule, is more comfortable, and it goes a long way to decreasing/eliminating the nasty sweaty back that's so common with the standard Camelbak back panel.
 

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280 Posts
I rock a mule from camelbak.. but i found it perfect if you don't wanna carry an extra layer or extra ****.

but i wanted to carry a lot.. hoodie, armor, helmet, extra tubes, futon, and cliff bars so i decided to pick up a dakine nomad.. which i've been very happy with thus far.. big enough for a hoodie, straps for armor and helmet holster .. so much goodness.. 3liters of water.. i give mad props for that bag.. i don't think i'd want anything bigger. :)

just thought i'd throw my .02 in.. good luck let us know what you end up with :) //g
 

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2,081 Posts
Nv Hawg

I have the NV HAWG, and like it a lot. It is very comfortable, and has a pocket for everything. Plus it has really good compression straps so with smaller loads it shrinks down nicely, but then I can expand it and have plenty of room for extra layers.

It also carries armor well, with straps on the side. I put my elbow pads inside the main compartment, and the knee guards on each side with the straps. The back panel does help with keeping the back dry.

I tried a Deuter for a few rides and did not like the pressure points on the back, but you would have to try one yourself.
 

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Old-newbie
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382 Posts
I got the Mule NV early in the summer. It was too small for all the crap that I carry. I picked up a Hawg NV a few months ago, and it is much better. The side pockets are a huge plus.

The NV is not very well ventilated (sweaty back, even in cool weather) but it is probably better than no ventilation.

gerG
 

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Dave
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899 Posts
Go check out a Wingnut bag, just got one for Xmas. It sits lower on your body and has side pockets that you can get to without having to take it off. Empty the Hyper 3.0 weighs only 17oz, it can carry a 100oz bladder no problem. Very comfy so far with no shoulder ache. Check them out here.
http://www.wingnutgear.com/product_details.cfm?product_id=116
 

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2,108 Posts
Get the HOSS. only $95 w/ free shipping, ships from Goodyear, so you'll get it in 2 days or less. I got one in Nov, and love it! It compresses down real small, can hold at least 14 pairs of knee high socks, and has good ventilation. I'm 6'1" and it fits me well. I also break a sweat if someone even says 90 degrees, and my back stays pretty dry with this one.

http://www.amazon.com/CamelBak-H-O-...e=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1263487500&sr=8-1
 

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another vote for Osprey

chollaball said:
i need Paul B to put this in a sticky: Osprey Talon. doesnt feel big at all when its empty. I commute an hour with a laptop in it and it feels great.
Osprey is launching their new hydration pack line in Feb. aimed at bikers and hikers.........very well thought out, they did their homework designing these packs over the past 3 years or so. The bladder has an external frame that keeps the shape of the bladder consistent when it's full or empty and doesn't constrict the storage pockets/areas like regular bladders when full,,,,,,,,,,,,,carries well, great ventilation, smart layout of pockets and storage compartments and competively priced,,,,,,,,,,,,,outdoor stores should have them soon and bike shops will soon follow,,,,,,,,,,,,you can get specifics on the Osprey website:thumbsup: :thumbsup:
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
thanks for all the input

I ended up with the standard MULE. I got it a couple days ago from the nice folks at Estrella mountain cyclery. i have got about 5 hours of use since and i have got to say that I LOVE IT! It fits so nice, with the same load as my old pack it feels like 1/2 the weight. So far it has solved my back pain problem. The straps are long with a TON of adjustment. The pockets are well thought out and work for my needs ( wallet, phone, keys, food, pump, co2, chain link, multi tool, I pod, jacket, tire iron, arm warmers) and there is still a ton of room for more crap. I can finally get to my phone before it stops ringing ( although i only pick up when the wife calls) The other nice thing is that the main compartment dose not share the same space as the bladder. I had ruined a cell phone once before because my bladder sprung a leak.

Thanks for the input on the HOSS, but i already have a hellion pack for my long hauls so the MULE seemed like the best fit for my needs. I never got to try on a "NV" MULE but it is hard to imagine that it could get much better than the "standard" MULE. I would recommend the MULE to anybody that caries the same basic stuff i do, if you cary things like armor, FF helmet, trail tools or a sac lunch i would go with the HOSS.

Thanks again for all your input on the subject!

Rock Lobster- Don Knotts:band: :band:
 

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EDR
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10,441 Posts
Ya, if you already have a larger pack the Mule is great. I have had a Mule for years, as well as a HAWG.


FWIW I checked out a HAWG NV at cactus this morning. Very nice but I really don't see it being significantly cooler on the back. It's mesh but still.......it sits the same way. It's never really been a gripe of mine anyway.
 
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