Kifaru Minikeg

hunterjmj

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 3, 2019
Messages
628
Location
Montana
I've had my eye on the Minikeg for a while now and finally ordered it on April 1st. Pack was on my doorstep when I got home today. I've been running a Kifaru Longhunter for twenty years and it has served me well but it is overkill for what I do now and it weights 7+ pounds. The Minikeg looks to fill the need I'm looking for.
Just wanted to share my first impressions with this pack and Kifaru for all you roksliders. First of all, I bought my first Kifaru in 2001 for a sheep hunt at last minute and they made it happen despite the extremely short notice. So, my experience with them has been positive and that pack has seen many miles and a lot of animals since then. I normally don't backpack hunt so the Longhunter has been overkill in terms of volume and weight so I've wanted a new pack for many years and last week I finally pulled the trigger on the Minikeg. When I opened the box the first thing I noticed was the quality. This pack is so well put together, the stitching is perfect and it just looks good. I've been messing with all the features, working on fitment, and I loaded it with all my gear I normally hunt with. My tripod, glassing pad and trekking poles fit nicely and securely in the side pockets, and access to my gear is easy with the two way center zip.

Anyhow, I'll spare you with more words but I will say I'm very impressed and the Kifaru pack of 2001 is not the Kifaru packs of today. 20 years has really changed in the world of packs.
 

CodyB

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
May 28, 2013
Messages
137
Location
Great Basin
Thanks for the update. I’ve been looking at this pack for light day use and travel.
 

Malifice

Newbie
Joined
Jun 10, 2021
Messages
7
Hey all - first time poster.

I'm in the same camp as the OP - Just purchased me a Minikeg (plus sherman, chamber sider, and a few other odds and bobs). Yet to get her in the mail (I'm based in Australia) but cant wait.

Many thanks to @TheRambler who helped me out on Facebook with his You Tube review videos on the pack, and sending me some extra info via Messenger. Mate - If I'm ever in the US, I owe you a few beers!

I'm a short ass at 5' 8 and a half (swore I used be taller back in my 20's and 30's), and will need the pack to be airline compatible for travel (so the Minikeg dimensions are perfect at 22 x 12 x 9), and then be able to hit the ground and hike with her when I get to where I'm going.

Weight is a factor for both applications as well (hiking and carry on weight restrictions of 7kg or under on most airlines) so that also drew me to this pack.

OP (or anyone else) - how are you finding the pack after using her for a while? Any issues to report?
 
OP
hunterjmj

hunterjmj

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 3, 2019
Messages
628
Location
Montana
Hey all - first time poster.

I'm in the same camp as the OP - Just purchased me a Minikeg (plus sherman, chamber sider, and a few other odds and bobs). Yet to get her in the mail (I'm based in Australia) but cant wait.

Many thanks to @TheRambler who helped me out on Facebook with his You Tube review videos on the pack, and sending me some extra info via Messenger. Mate - If I'm ever in the US, I owe you a few beers!

I'm a short ass at 5' 8 and a half (swore I used be taller back in my 20's and 30's), and will need the pack to be airline compatible for travel (so the Minikeg dimensions are perfect at 22 x 12 x 9), and then be able to hit the ground and hike with her when I get to where I'm going.

Weight is a factor for both applications as well (hiking and carry on weight restrictions of 7kg or under on most airlines) so that also drew me to this pack.

OP (or anyone else) - how are you finding the pack after using her for a while? Any issues to report?

I've only put it on and walked around my neighborhood so far. I loaded up everything I hunt with and feel like I have it adjusted correctly. It holds everything I hunt with including food and water and I still have a bit of room but not to much. Pack size is just what I was looking for.
This may seem petty but having a big pack for a day hunt all cinched down to take up the slack drives me nuts. Personal preference I suppose.

I agree that The Rambler has great videos and the reason I got the muskeg.
 

Malifice

Newbie
Joined
Jun 10, 2021
Messages
7
I've only put it on and walked around my neighborhood so far. I loaded up everything I hunt with and feel like I have it adjusted correctly. It holds everything I hunt with including food and water and I still have a bit of room but not to much. Pack size is just what I was looking for.
This may seem petty but having a big pack for a day hunt all cinched down to take up the slack drives me nuts. Personal preference I suppose.

I agree that The Rambler has great videos and the reason I got the muskeg.

Awesome!

If you dont mind me asking, how tall are you? Were you able to get the 22 inch stays to lift the load, or is it mainly on the shoulders?
 

Malifice

Newbie
Joined
Jun 10, 2021
Messages
7
Now a proud Minikeg owner :)

Firstly I love it.

For those interested, the stays are right on the edge of a 45 degree load lift for me (5'9) - I have a very curved lower back and a bum that Beyonce would be proud of, so I need the Lumbar pad to sit right in the small of my back perfectly with a pretty small margin for error (or I either get chafing, or my shoulders do all the work).

I have the straps dialed in so they're on roughly a 25 degree angle, which lets the lumbar pad sit exactly where it feels the most comfortable resting just above on the top curve of my bum in my lower back.

Tightening the shoulder straps lifts the stays up an inch to get a 45 degree angle on them, or I can loosen the straps and the load lifters move to a nearly horizontal position. This shifts the balance of the weight between my hips and shoulders nicely, and the lumbar pad stays where it needs to be (either in the small of my back, or just on top of my bum).

I actually like it at this setting because it lets me make micro adjustments as I hike and give my legs and glutes a rest and take the weight more on my shoulders from time to time, or to transfer nearly all the weight to my legs, and it feels super comfortable in all three carry positions.

Took a long time to get the adjustments right, but it is one insanely comfortable pack either way to carry.

It's replaced my old hiking pack (MR Coulee 40) with the comfort being on par with the Futura Yoke they do, but with better ventilation (and I sweat a lot).

Id go so far as to say it's my favorite pack ever.

Just dropped another few hundred on a few belt pouches, and buckles to go with the pack and the XPAC Sherman I'm running it with.

Im a convert.
 

Malifice

Newbie
Joined
Jun 10, 2021
Messages
7
The Sherman is a great little pouch. Having a claymore or lid is nice as well.

Agree with the Sherman.

I debated throwing a pouch on top like the Claymore or medium belt pouch for a sleeker look than the claymore, but II need this sucker to be carry on compatible, and the extra size, bulk and weight push it over.

Just ran some shock cord through the belt pouch attachment on the snow collar to stuff a jacket through.

Ill have the 2 bet pouches and shermman for quickgrabs and thats enough for what I need them for.
 

arock

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Sep 10, 2020
Messages
168
Location
Colorado
Agree with the Sherman.

I debated throwing a pouch on top like the Claymore or medium belt pouch for a sleeker look than the claymore, but II need this sucker to be carry on compatible, and the extra size, bulk and weight push it over.

Just ran some shock cord through the belt pouch attachment on the snow collar to stuff a jacket through.

Ill have the 2 bet pouches and shermman for quickgrabs and thats enough for what I need them for.
Gotcha. That makes sense. I picked up a Claymore for the top of my muskeg more to cram my puffy in than anything else. A bit less of a footprint then the guide lid but hopefully less digging and rummaging through the tube (even with the zipper) which got frustrating on the last camping trip.

I'm new to camping and western hunting and the amount of space food, puffy stuff and shelters take up is pretty crazy even if it is relatively light and you have it compressed down. I've lived out of a 26L goruck GR1 for two or three weeks on vacation with no issues so it is a bit of a shock to fill up 5000ci sack and still be like where the heck do I put this last thing lol.
 

Malifice

Newbie
Joined
Jun 10, 2021
Messages
7
Ok so I can vouch for the comfort of this bad boy on long hikes with 15kgs (35lbs or so) in the pack.

It's like it's not even there.

Ex military so I hike with bivvy and tarp, cup canteen, racing spoon, change of clothes and poncho (and that's pretty much it) so my baseweight is around 20lbs (leaving the rest for food and water).

I did however find its limit the other day when I took it grocery shopping. Loaded it up to the top of the snow collar with 2 weeks groceries and stomped home from the supermarket (a 1 mile walk).

Weighed it when I got home, and it was sitting at just under 24kgs (50lbs).

A pretty uncomfortable walk home. At those weights it starts to sag down and you lose any load lift. You've pretty much gotta hoik the load lifters snug to your body. It would be a pretty miserable day on the trail at that weight.

No diss to the pack by the way. I was clearly overloaded past its rec'd max load specs.

You really need to keep your loads down to under 40lbs/ 20kg (15kg or less is better) because it's a real Jeckyl and Hyde once you cross its max load out limit.
 
OP
hunterjmj

hunterjmj

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 3, 2019
Messages
628
Location
Montana
Ok so I can vouch for the comfort of this bad boy on long hikes with 15kgs (35lbs or so) in the pack.

It's like it's not even there.

Ex military so I hike with bivvy and tarp, cup canteen, racing spoon, change of clothes and poncho (and that's pretty much it) so my baseweight is around 20lbs (leaving the rest for food and water).

I did however find its limit the other day when I took it grocery shopping. Loaded it up to the top of the snow collar with 2 weeks groceries and stomped home from the supermarket (a 1 mile walk).

Weighed it when I got home, and it was sitting at just under 24kgs (50lbs).

A pretty uncomfortable walk home. At those weights it starts to sag down and you lose any load lift. You've pretty much gotta hoik the load lifters snug to your body. It would be a pretty miserable day on the trail at that weight.

No diss to the pack by the way. I was clearly overloaded past its rec'd max load specs.

You really need to keep your loads down to under 40lbs/ 20kg (15kg or less is better) because it's a real Jeckyl and Hyde once you cross its max load out limit.

That's good to know. I only plan on using it as intended but that is good info. I've yet to order a couple pouches and a new gun bearer but will do that soon. I loaded my pack just as I would while hunting and I was about 17lbs total not including my rifle. It super comfortable and like it's not there. Looking forward to really using this thing come fall.
 

strongarm

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2021
Messages
50
That's good to know. I only plan on using it as intended but that is good info. I've yet to order a couple pouches and a new gun bearer but will do that soon. I loaded my pack just as I would while hunting and I was about 17lbs total not including my rifle. It super comfortable and like it's not there. Looking forward to really using this thing come fall.
@hunterjmj Thanks for the previous insights. Curious of your torso length as related to the Minikeg. I'm considering options for a day-only bag and like the overall size of the Minikeg for my needs but know it's stays won't provide lift for longer torsos. This is less of an issue for me since it's for day-use, which inherently has lower weights, but you mentioned you found its max point with weight. I wondered about its relationship with your torso, if longer.
 
OP
hunterjmj

hunterjmj

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 3, 2019
Messages
628
Location
Montana
@hunterjmj Thanks for the previous insights. Curious of your torso length as related to the Minikeg. I'm considering options for a day-only bag and like the overall size of the Minikeg for my needs but know it's stays won't provide lift for longer torsos. This is less of an issue for me since it's for day-use, which inherently has lower weights, but you mentioned you found its max point with weight. I wondered about its relationship with your torso, if longer.
I'm not sure. My wife measured my torso at one point but I can't remember. Im 5'10 and it has a bit of lift but I'm not carrying any weight to speak of. I used it deer and elk hunting this year and couldn't be happier. I wore it 7 days straight with just about 15-18 pounds total weight. It rides like a dream. I'm going to buy another one for my wife since she's hunting a bit more each year.
 

strongarm

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2021
Messages
50
I'm not sure. My wife measured my torso at one point but I can't remember. Im 5'10 and it has a bit of lift but I'm not carrying any weight to speak of. I used it deer and elk hunting this year and couldn't be happier. I wore it 7 days straight with just about 15-18 pounds total weight. It rides like a dream. I'm going to buy another one for my wife since she's hunting a bit more each year.
@hunterjmj

OK thank you. Glad to hear it worked well for your day use. If sometime convenient, would be curious where you fall in torso length as height isn't always totally proportional to height. Or, do you know your inseam? If say 34" inseam you may have shorter torso, but if 28-30" inseam, you may have longer torso. Minikeg is attractive to me since it's a smaller bag that uses the Duplex suspension as compared to the Omni-type suspensions in other EDC Kiraru bags. Appreciate your own feedback from the field!
 

Substance-p

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2022
Messages
18
I can't add much from usage of the pack with much weight in it; however, I picked up a pre-owned minikeg with long straps. I am 5'9 and I think around 20" torso. Without much weight in the bag, I was surprised by how much lift it has.
 
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