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A frame skis on backpack, why?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I just got an Osprey Kode 32 bag to have the option of carrying skis on it. I just tested out skis in an A frame on it, and I'm wondering, why even make an A frame? Why not leave the skis on each side without touching? The A frame seemed to put stress on the straps of the bag and the ski strap I used to hold it. This bag also has a way to carry a helmet right on top of it, so that may get in the way of making an A frame (didn't think of trying it out at the time).

post #2 of 5

In carrying skis on a pack, many people prefer either an A-frame or diagonal.  I have used just skis on the side, an A-frame carry, and a diagonal.  A lot depends on how far you are going to carry the skis and how much the skis (+ bindings & skins) weigh.  Heavy skis on the sides than a less-than-full pack can sway with movement and sag.  An A-frame carry, depending on the widith of the skis, can either help distribute the weight throughout the packs suspension and keep the ski tails higher and to the outside than side carry (avoiding hitting your calves after kicking steps up a steep slope then walking on a level or descending slope) or even potentially hitting you in the head or helmet.  The diagonal carry has worked well for me with skinnier skis (allowing ski removal w/o shedding the pack) but not with wide skis (causes pack deformation).  So, for stability use the A-frame; for ease and short carries just use the skis on the sides.  So the answer is: try it and you will like it (whatever works for you).

post #3 of 5

Pretty much what Andy said, A-framing the skis stops them swaying about as opposed to carrying them diagonally.  Also moves the tails of the skis out the way of your legs a bit.  Pack size and the fullness of your pack can also make a difference. So on my 35ltr Osprey Switch 35 I will A-frame and on my Macpac Ascent XPD (60+ ltr) I will just strap them to the sides if the pack is full or A-frame if heading out for the day from base with a mostly empty pack.  


YMMV, so use what works best for you.

post #4 of 5

Post Script...... my ice axe and crampons strap to be back of my Macpac Ascent XPD, so carrying the skis diagonally is out of the question.

post #5 of 5

The ski tails tend to hit the back of your knees if they are not splayed out wider than the width of your pack, thus the A-frame or diagonal carry.  Also, when climbing something really steep the tips can hit stuff above you and one point of contact is easier to deal with than two.  Plus, it is really hard to tightly secure your skis to the sides of your pack without the tips being tied together.

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