I think it’s important to always match a product to its intended use and function. I often get asked “is this the best?” but I instead always encourage getting people to think “is this fit for purpose”. This review is about the KarrimorSF Predator Patrol 45
Introduction for Predator Patrol 45
When it comes to rucksacks I have been through a fair few in my time out in the field, and when it comes to being aware of what’s out there I’m sure in my judgement to avoid the gimmicks and get the goods I want and need.
Storing everything from bivi poles to small forest axes the Karrimor SF Predator Patrol 45 copes with it all.
Match a product to its intended use; it’s with this in mind that I will tell you now the Predator Patrol is not a super lightweight pack. It’s a tough beast intended on being put to its limits travelling through tough terrain and getting out the other end intact. So for super lightweight trips I would perhaps look elsewhere.
However for when you are moving through tough terrain, practising bushcraft, or wanting some real expansion options, then there is not much on the market and the Predator Patrol 45 has served me well in these environments.
The Predator has a no punches pulled design and solid construction; it is the only pack I would consider to take into a survival/bushcraft expedition as I know I could depend on it.
Quick access to your gear is always essential, here Ed is taking his axe out of the Karrimor SF Predator Patrol.
I can safely say this as I have been using it solidly for almost a year now; it has seen snow, heavy rain, humidity and baking summer heat. It’s been through the lot! It has excelled at being my go to pack for the toughest conditions. I will go on to discuss the pack in detail but the only down side to me is that at the end of the day it is a military pack and therefore the hip belts are designed to sit above webbing, which your average person on the street doesn’t wear and so as a result all the weight is on your shoulders. This takes a while getting used to but once you are comfortable with it then you notice it less and less. Just make sure you pack your rucksack correctly with most of the weight closest to your back and centre of gravity.
The Predator Patrol 45 has some of the best expansion options on anything I have seen or used. With its MOLLE webbing you can easily attach two 20 litre side pouches (called rocket packs). You can fit smaller ‘Omni’ pouches and ammo pouches too. Firstly the pouches fit ration packs really well and secondly the ammo pouches hold folding saws too. Above all the adaptability of this rucksack is great.
I use the Predator when I’m out teaching, survival hiking or practising bushcraft. It suits being dropped, taken through sharp thorny undergrowth, and soaked with rain and just generally being abused. It sees off all of this with ease.
The different storage options of the Predator Patrol 45 are one of its strong points.
The fabric used is super tough 1000 Denier Nylon coated with silicon and PU, in other words these help protect against tears and make it really water resistant. I have been out in the heavy rain with the pack and you can see water collect in little pools on the fabric. The water doesn’t soak in; it actually sits there on the surface – fantastic! It has a DWR (durable water repellent finish) applied and to clarify this can always be replenished by Nikwax or similar brands.
Couple of other nice features are both front and back carry loops. Great for when you are carrying a lot of weight and want to move the pack around, you can grab either side of the pack which makes for an easier lift.
The thread used in the pack is rot proof. If you out and about in all weathers then it’s an extra reassurance to have. Just remember as with all your gear to dry it out completely before storing it at home.
To accomodate extra gear you can loosen the top lid. The pack can easily fit a Small Forest Axe too.
Moving through tough terrain? This rucksack can handle anything.
Some of the webbing straps are annoyingly long. I use some black tape to stick the webbing together which shortens it.
Its good to neaten up your buckle straps. Don’t wanna look like a newb do we?
However coming back to all the expansion options, if you are going on a multi day backcountry hike? Well stick the two 20litre rocket packs on each side and you have an extra 40litres to use. Simply travelling around town with a small load? You can shrink the size of the pack by using the side zips. The expansion system means instead of buying different packs for different uses you can simply alter the one you have.
Buy yours here! Amazon link