APPLICATION to Test: Osprey TALON 33 Backpack
MIKE J. DAURIO JR.
closing date: 11/09/07
I have read The BackpackGearTest.org Bylaws v. 0609, the appendices,
and the Survival Guide.
My tester agreement is on file. I agree to comply with requirements
as outlined in the Bylaws.
Name: Mike J. Daurio Jr.
Height: 6' 0"
Weight: 185 lb
Email Address: MIKEJR232323 AT aol DOT com
Location: WONDER LAKE IL USA
Backpacking background: I've been camping as long as I can
remember. My first visual memory is a cross country car trek from
Chicago to California and back with my parents when I was 4. This
trip was important because we did it with a canvas 75 pole tent.
Every time I shop for a new piece of gear I think of this tent and
am "Wowed" by the advancements of the industry. Throughout my life I
have camped in almost every state in the lower 48.
My backpacking experience is quite new. I lead a wilderness canoe
trip to the Ozark national scenic waterways every year. We canoe up
to 60 miles of the Current River and do day hikes about every other
day. This year we completed a 20 mi section of the Ozark trail when
finished canoeing. We will be returning this year. I also spend time
in Voyageurs National Park every year as my fiancée's family owns a
home on Lake Kabetogama. We spend about a week canoeing and
exploring the islands. This year we completed a 2-day adventure
on the Locator lake trail and another two day trip to Cruiser Lake.
My spring and summer are also filled with many day hikes and small
camping trips to the many state parks in Illinois and Wisconsin. My
favorite being Kettle Moraine State park in Wisconsin.
In October of 2005 I backpacked Thailand for 10 days. This was the
start of my love for backpacking and carrying all my supplies on my
My pack varies in size due to the nature of the trip. They range
from a larger camelback style on dayhikes, to an Ultra Light pack that
can hold a weeks worth of clothes and supplies. I am mostly a
spring, summer and fall backpacker.
I have two overnight trips planned in the cold. I am
inexperienced in the cold weather camping category but figure I must
try it if I ever want to upgrade to mountain trips. I will be
spending the night on a 34 mile (55 km) trip to Kettle Moraine State
Park in Wisconsin. I have just added, to my itinerary, a long
weekend trip where I will travel back up to Lake Kabetogama In
Minnesota for my future brother in-law's birthday. I do have a few
day hikes planned for Menominee and Nicolet National forests. If
awarded the opportunity to test the pack It will get a tremendous
amount of use. In addition to the planned trips I will be using the
pack to assist me in geocaching which I do 3-5 times per month, a
potential Utah snowboarding adventure and if not a guaranteed upper
Michigan weekend of snowboarding, and numerous day hikes in the 7
conservation areas and state parks in my town and my neighboring
town. I am planning a trip to Peru. I am trying to work out the
finances and scheduling for this trip but the pack looks like a great
pack to bring along for day excursions. It is possible the pack
would make it Peru depending on the test schedule.
Temperatures in the Chicago land area can get down below 0 degrees
F (-18 C). I am hoping to test the pack and plan my trips in
temperatures between 30-40 degrees F (-1-5 C). Terrain will consist
of dense boreal forests and glacial formed hills covered in meadow
grasses. Although Chicago's snowfall in unpredictable the pack
should see snow on the trail and guaranteed snow on the slopes.
If I could make it to Peru the temperature could be between 50-90
degrees F (10-32 C) and terrain would be rocky mountainous regions.
I plan my test around a few categories: Comfort, function, and
I am intrigued by the looks of the support and harness. The
website's photo's make it look comfortable with a bunch of
engineering. I will be commenting on its fit for my stature, its
comfort for a heavy load and how stable the load is in the different
activities. I will also be commenting on the range of adjustments
that can be made, in addition to, the ease of making them. The
feature that I am eager to test is the adjustable sternum strap. It
seems this is the single thing I can't get right on the three packs
that I've owned. I also really would like try out the AirScape
backpanel. I continuously sweat in my lower back region.
Function: The most intriguing thing about the pack is its many
features and compartments. I plan to pack this thing full and
comment on how much it can hold, as well as how easily accessible
things are. Each pocket will get recognized in the test and
commented on. I will state the range of items stored in each. The
external hydration compartment. It seems that your hydration bladder
can be removed and filled without unpacking the pack. I will comment
on this feature heavily as I will be hiking and snowboarding with
water at all times. I will try to expose the material to rain and
like I said It will definitely see snow. I will comment on how
waterproof it is. I do not see myself using the blinker feature and
will try to discover a substitute use for the Ice ax loop as I will
not be carrying one (or two). I will comment on the two features in
my initial review and will comment on any other uses I can find for
them. The dual side, bungee tool tie-offs look useful to tie my
lightweight tripod to it. I am haven't come to a conclusion on what
they mean by "woven energy gel pockets". If it means they have gel
inserted in the straps I will comment on the feel. If it means that
they are perfect size for the energy gel type products put out by
Power Bar and Clif, I will purchase some of these items, comment on
their fit in the pack's specialty pockets, and write owner reviews on
the various brands purchased (Bonus).
Durability: I will be commenting on the seams and the method they
use to stitch or weld them, I will test the durability and
construction of the three different types of nylon used to construct
the pack. It will be subject to branches and trees as I trample in
the woods. I will revisit all the straps, buckles, tie-offs, and
compartments for durability in my LTR.
I am indifferent on the color chosen to test, but kinda like the acid
green color. I would like to test the Large pack as I have a larger
torso. My pack load will be between 20-30 lbs (9-14 kg)which is in
the recommended range for this pack. I will weigh each load and
comment on them in the reporting series.
I am currently in the long term reporting phase for the Katadyn Camp
Filter. It is due in December.
I have been selected for the Go Lite Echo jacket and am awaiting
shipment. I won't have a problem completing both test series.
I have also completed six owner reviews and am working on two more.
My stuff is found here:
Thank you for your consideration. If awarded the opportunity to test
the pack I ensure the report to be accurate and thorough.
Mike J. Daurio Jr.