Gear Packs By Brandon Cox / May 27, 2016 When Elk hunting season is upon us, you want to be prepared and by prepared, we mean having the best elk hunting pack to keep you company. A good hunting pack can mean the make or break in your hunting trip. When you’re out there, possibly alone, it is good to know that you can have all that you need right at your fingertips.But with so many choices on the market, it becomes a minefield. What size, what shape, what material and what brand, are all questions milling around in your head when you gaze at the many ranges of hunting packs.To help you along we have collated a simple but comprehensive list of our best of the best elk hunting packs.But before we get into these, let have a look at the factors to consider before purchasing your pack.Top 6 Best Elk Hunting Pack - Comparison TableProduct NameQuality Price Our RatingEberlestock J34 Just One PackA-$$$ Eberlestock M5 Team Elk Pack B+$$$ Eberlestock V90 Battleship Pack A+ $$$ Eberlestock F1 Mainframe Pack A+ $$ Slumberjack Rail Hauler 2500 FrameB+$$$ ALPS OutdoorZ Commander Freighter Frame Plus Pack BagA+$$ ** Below, you will find buying guide as well as our review of each particular product, but you can also click links above to see the current price and customer reviews on Amazon Are You Game For The Best Elk Hunting Pack?1. Factors to Consider Before Buying2. Our Top Reviews on The Best Elk Hunting PackEberlestock J34 Just One PackEberlestock M5 Team Elk PackEberlestock V90 Battleship PackEberlestock F1 Mainframe PackSlumberjack Rail Hauler 2500 FrameALPS OutdoorZ Commander Freighter Frame Plus Pack Bag3. In ending …1. Factors to Consider Before BuyingCAPACITYThe size of your hunting pack will depend greatly on what kind of hunter you are. And in that we mean, are you a day hunter, who goes out for a few hours and comes back to his truck or campsite to replenish and off-load, or are you the type that spends days and nights out in the wilderness. For the latter you will need a larger hunting pack, big enough for all your camping goods as well as place to store your meat. For the day hunter, a smaller pack will suffice.COMFORTComfort is key! Whether you’re out there for just a few hours or a few days, you want to know that, the hunting pack on your back is sitting correctly and not causing any unnecessary pain. Try the pack out first, if you can. The chest strap should go directly across the middle of your chest and the belt securely around your waist. Most of the weight should be resting on your hips.FUNCTIONALITYMake a list of what you want out of the pack. Some like to have a water bladder for easy sipping as they go, others prefer a ton of pockets to store their bits and pieces. If you’re out somewhere where it rains a lot, ensure your pack has a rain cover or you can purchase one separately.MEAT MANAGEMENTThe obvious one, but not always well thought out, is the meat management. You need to carry the meat, in such a manner, that firstly, it doesn’t leak out and secondly that it has fresh air flowing through. This will ensure the meat stays cool but also isn’t influenced by your sweat. In addition, make sure your pack has a good drainage system once you get your elk back to camp.DURABILITYThis comes down to the capacity again. If you’re overloading your pack, the chances of it breaking halfway through your trip is high. Check what volume and weight the pack can carry. Generally the better known brands will last longer than their cheaper counterparts, so quality does count here.SWEAT FACTORThere is nothing worse than a pack causing you to sweat. Yes, you’re going to sweat, no matter the weather, but having a pack that allows airflow is paramount.EASY ACCESSWhen you spot that elk, you want to know you can reach over to your pack, pull out your weapon of choice and be ready for action in seconds. Having easy, quick access to your bow sling or rifle is paramount and holding these constantly will become tiring. Besides the facility to attach your weapon, you want to be able to reach into close pockets for that snack or a pair of sunglasses.2. Our Top Reviews on The Best Elk Hunting PackProduct NameQuality Price Our RatingEberlestock J34 Just One PackA-$$$ Eberlestock M5 Team Elk Pack B+$$$ Eberlestock V90 Battleship Pack A+ $$$ Eberlestock F1 Mainframe Pack A+ $$ Slumberjack Rail Hauler 2500 FrameB+$$$ ALPS OutdoorZ Commander Freighter Frame Plus Pack BagA+$$ 1Eberlestock J34 Just One Pack Via Amazon.comAdjustable: This pack is adjustable for any body shape and comes with real comfortable straps. Make sure you get the waist belt secured nicely and have the pack sitting on top of your hips, to avoid any nasty chafing.Water: While it has the facility for a water bladder, the compartment is a little tight for getting the bladder in and out. A pocket for a water bottle would have been a good idea, but isn’t included.Expandable And Shrinkable: This baby is expandable from 2300 cubic inches to 4600! So, dependent on the size of your elk, you have the facility to pack in much more. In addition, you can add their Super Spike Duffel, which takes 3500 cubic inches.When you’re done with your pack for the day, you can compress him down to a nice manageable size.Waterproof: When the weather gets bad, you can be confident in knowing the zippers are waterproof, and your contents will stay dry.Accessibility: When you want to access your weapon, whether it be your rifle or a bow, you don’t want to be taking your time in pulling the backpack off and generally making a real noise. With the Quickdraw Backscabbard attachment you can just reach over your shoulder and draw your weapon out in seconds. Very handy!Price: Not a bad price and for all the functionalities it is worth the spend! 2Eberlestock M5 Team Elk Pack Via Amazon.comSizable: This pack can hold up to 3100 cubic inches, which means you can load a fair amount of elk meat in here.Adjustability: Easy to adjust to most body sizes, but not great with really tall folk.Comfort factor: Good solid straps and padded as well, you can be assured of a comfy ride.Accessibility: With two easy access points, front-loading and top loading, you will find this pack is quite hassle-free when it comes to packing.Pockets: The pack boasts a good amount of pockets and strategically placed, however the spotting scope pocket proves to be a little too small and needs to be a bit wider for scopes over 85mm.Weapons: One can easily tie a bow to the back as well as slot a rifle into the built in scabbard.Cool Design: For that camouflage look, which will be helpful out there in the wilderness, this pack covers that base perfectly. 3Eberlestock V90 Battleship Pack Large Capacity: This hunting pack can carry just about anything. It is huge! With a capacity load of 6100 cubic inches, you can be assured you will fit the entire elk here and then some.Pockets: A myriad of pockets in different sizes and depths, you pretty much can store everything.Adjustable: Very adjustable pack, up and down and well as around the chest and hips. You will be sitting comfortable with this guy on your back, even when heavily loaded.Rain Cover: When the weather turns, you can pull the full rain cover over the pack and be assured your contents will stay dry. And when you’re done, the rain cover is easily pocketed away in its very own pocket at the bottom.Accessibility: With front and top loading areas, you will most definitely find it a breeze to pack and unpack. The largeness of the cavity makes it easy to see what’s happening inside too.Price: Not the cheapest, but a quality product nonetheless. 4Eberlestock F1 Mainframe Pack Via Amazon.comWeight: Weighing only 4 pounds, you won't be dragged down by this pack, especially when fully loaded. He can handle a good-sized load too, without causing too much discomfort for you.Durable: This pack can take a beating. It is built for rough terrain and even rougher weather.Construction: A short pack that sits neatly on your hips but doesn’t go beyond your shoulders, makes for easy walking and navigating through tight vegetation. There is an adjustable harness system as well to add to the comfort factor.Price: Amazing price and one of the cheapest out there. But in terms of the awesome features included, you are getting quality as well.Quiet: Due to its fantastic makeup, this pack is super quiet, which is what you want when hunting, right?Capacity: You will be able to easily carry a huge load of elk with this frame. A solid little number.Add-ons: With the zipper attachment points, you can add on as many Eberlestock accessories as you want, such as Small Padded Accessory Military Pouch; Saddle Bag; Hydration System 2L and Bolt Sniper Rifle Side Scabbard to name but a few. 5Slumberjack Rail Hauler 2500 Frame Heavy Duty: This pack can carry a big load with ease and comfort for you. An easy 200 pounds.Adjustable: With adjustable straps this guy will suit most body sizes, even long torsos, however, the padding could be a bit better.Noise Factor: While an all round quiet pack, the straps do squeak a bit against the frame. Not ideal when trailing that elusive elk. (the suggestion has been made to apply some duct tape on the frame areas, where they touch the straps).The Long Haul: For those long trips, you will be happy with the size and accessibility factor. The fact that it’s an external frame pack means you have more room.Take A Seat: When fully loaded you can use it as resting chair or at least a backrest. Its that sturdy.Color: The muted camouflage coloring means you won’t be an easy target or at least not easily noticed out there. Good to know! 6ALPS OutdoorZ Commander Freighter Frame Plus Pack Bag Via Amazon.comPrice: Amazing low price!Quality: A good sturdy and solid frame makes for a very durable pack.Packing Space Additions: By adding on the 90-liter kayak dry-bag you have so much more packing space. Already the ALPS gives you 5250 cubic inches. So, for the long and heavy haul this guy is tops.Load-ability: With access to load from the top and lower doors, you will find packing and unpacking a real treat.Weapons: Your rifle will fit snug into the specific rifle retainer-pocket, which is elasticized and has upper cinch straps.Straps: The strapping could do with a little bit of adjusting in design stage for better adjustability and comfort. The straps are not the most comfortable and with a little added padding and a broader diameter these would then work perfectly.3. In ending …A little bit of prep work is needed before you decide and commit to a specific elk hunting pack. Ask yourself the questions:How long will I be out there hunting?Will I be overnighting?Do I intend to haul the entire elk back to camp or home?Do I need loads of packing space for other goodies?Is comfort key or do I just want to get on with it and slug it out?What are the weather conditions I normally hunt in?At the end of the day you want to be hands free and essentially not even know your backpack is on your back. Quiet, comfortable and practical.