Stuff sacks. Honestly, not many of us give them much thought. When we purchase sleeping bags, pads, etc we simply use the standard stuff sacks that come with the items. When you purchase an item such as a tent, you are talking numerous stuff sacks for the tent, poles and stakes. In addition, if you use additional stuff sacks for storage like I do, we can be talking between 6-8 stuff sacks in our pack at any given time.
Granted, all of the sacks put together don’t necessarily weigh a tremendous amount, but if we could save a fraction of an ounce on each stuff sack, it definitely adds up.
Nowadays, we all want the most high tech gear available for our hunts – your stuff sacks should be no different. It’s time to retire the old nylon stuff sacks and move to a lighter, stronger stuff sack.
The stuff sacks I will be using this year are made by Hyperlite Mountain Gear (HMG) out of Maine. They are made in the USA and are constructed with insanely ultra-lightweight cuben fiber material. Cuben fiber is a 100% waterproof laminate with Dyneema fibers added for strength. This results in the lightest, strongest stuff sack on the planet.
HMG offers two different lines of cuben fiber stuff sacks: CF8 and CF11. The CF8 sacks are the lightest option and are transparent which allows you to see all of the sacks contents. The CF11 are only available in black and are a bit more durable. Both lines are available in either roll-top or drawstring options.
Here are a few examples of how you can shave those last few final ounces off your pack weight by switching to cuben fiber stuff sacks:
Most tents come with three different stuff sacks: one for stakes, one for poles and the main stuff sack that all contents stuff into. As you can see in the two pics below, I saved 0.7 ounce by replacing the main stuff sack.
Next, I replaced the small stuff sack the stakes came in resulting in another 0.2 ounce weight savings.
I typically don’t use a stuff sack for my poles, I simply strap them on the outside of my pack. Not only does this reduce weight by eliminating a stuff sack, it allows me to compress the tent down into a much smaller stuff sack. By totally eliminating the pole stuff sack, I saved an additional 0.5 ounce.
On my sleeping bag, I can shave an additional 0.4 ounce by replacing the standard stuff sack.
And yet another 0.3 ounces are saved by swapping out the sleeping pad stuff sack.
In addition to all of the above, I will typically have at least two other stuff sacks for food, snacks, etc. I can save 0.4 ounces on each bag for an additional .8 ounce total.
In the end, by swapping out the old nylon sacks with the high tech cuben fiber sacks, I have shaved a total of 2.9 ounces off my pack weight. While that may not seem like a lot, in my opinion, every ounce counts.
I'm excited to be partnered with HMG this year. Be sure to do yourself a favor and check out HMG’s high tech cuben fiber stuff sacks at www.hyperlitemountaingear.com