Alpine Packs are famous for their simplicity,
fail-safe ruggedness, and outstanding performance level. They have
been used on many Expeditions around the world over the last 30
years and have adapted well to general backpacking. McHale
Packs are Custom Made entirely in Seattle Washington.
If you insist
on minimum pack weights, McHale Packs offers these ultra-light packs.
You may be able to find even lighter packs, but consider the mechanical
advantage McHale Packs offer. Our packs comfortably carry more weight
per cubic inch of volume and per ounce of weight. People that go
out regularly year after year know that pack performance trumps
pack weight. These are not fragile packs. They are made from our
standard selection of tough US made and quality imported fabrics
( we tear test all of our fabrics to make sure they meet our standards
) and are built to our reliable high standards.
Back in the mid 80s we called our climbing rucksack 'rocksac'. This
is were the acronym SARC came from: Super
with McHale Super-Sarc packs in the North Cascades near Eldorado
Peak in 1992 . Jim Nelson and Mark Bebier checking out the McAlester
Glacier. Jim and Mark did the 2nd ascent of the Infinite Spur
on Mt. Foraker in 13 days in 1989 with McHale Super Sarcs. Over
20 years later people are still choosing S-Sarcs when they want
the ULTIMATE in reliability and performance. Dan McHale photos.
on the images below for detail pages
- Everything you see in photos below
is an option and can be mixed and matched on any volume of pack.
To help figure volume compared to a pack you currently have, click
Volumes - Go Figure! Start with volume then add to
that from example features in any pack photo. It is far easier
to start with examples like those below and add or subtract features
from them. Any feature that is seen on one pack can be applied
on any other pack with few exceptions. P&G
Bayonet Frame Extensions - example photo click here.....
Mass packs are at the very bottom of the page.
are on the detail pages
after you click the thumbnail images below. For pack accessories
click here or at top right corner of page at Sarc
examples below - click images.
38 , LBP
P&G 37, 39 click images or numbers - LBP
UnLtd S- SARC P&G (S-Sarc+1",+2"....)
6 packs below: Click color
examples below of more Dyed Full Spectra packs.
Critical Mass Packs; Critical Mass
pack developement began back in 1977. They really hit their stride in
the mid 90s and were ahead of their time then....and still are!
Critical Mass Packs are no longer made with Dyneema as shown in the
detail pages. They are now made with Full Spectra fabric laminated to
a Mylar/Dyneema backing (Cuben Fiber) which creates an ultra-strong
Dyneema and Spectra are essentially the same thing with Spectra being
the USA tradename for the fibers from Allied Chemical that make up the
fabrics. Most of our suppliers have switched to using Spectra and at
the same time have stopped coating it, so we are using various Spectra
fabrics with various laminates to create the waterproof side. Dyneema
is the product name for the fibers of the European company DSM.
Spectra pack bottoms are no longer included in the base price of CM
Expedition climbers and backpackers appreciate
the way Critical Mass packs can carry a load. These were the first packs
we made, under the label Alpine Style, back in 1977. If you truly need
a pack to carry loads that are 60, 70, 80, and 90 lbs, do yourself a
favor and try one of these amazing packs. They are not the 'standard
formula' packs found in stores. They are more like what people
'wish' internal frame packs AND external frame packs were like. They
are a very different machine and the best big load packs on the market,
as well as the lightest big packs (that actually work) . You can match
the frame strength in the pack to your activity. We have the strongest
dimensions and alloys of stays available. If the price throws you: a
thousand dollar pack amortized over 5 years of GREAT trips isn't so
bad, and they'll easily last ten years and more. The pack is not the
place to save money - do that with the stuff you put in it! If you need
or want to carry big loads, that activity is the toughest part of being
out there - why not invest in making it enjoyable?
Bypass Harness Information Critical
Mass Frame Strength Information Hip Belt
Critical Mass Lumbar Pad Information
Packs below are color examples of Critical Mass packs
Above: Color examples of various Critical Mass packs.
"Big load, long trail & hard climb, all eliminate by
my Critical Mass Alpine II Bayonet. I just focus to climb until summit
and safety down. A great success on Mt. Yari with my friends and McHale
Pack. Thanks a lot, Ben" (click image for blow-up)