Hunting Gear Tests: House of Pain

Hunting Gear Tests: House of Pain

All outdoorsmen and women are total hopeless gear queers from birth, and it's half the reason to be in this magazine business. Hunting gear tests at Petersen's run the gamut, from mild runs up and down stairs for boot testing (our editor standing at the top with a PE coach's whistle) to throwing axes never built for flinging just to see if they can take the shock. We abuse it so you don't have to.

Schoby is a big strong guy for a writer type, and equally adept at both destroying things accidentally and also putting things back together, a real McGruber who can wreck a Landrover one day and then rebuild it using pieces from a wheelbarrow and an old lawn mower. Most importantly, he revived Meat On a Stick, but that's another story.

Me, I walk on my knuckles a lot, and that is harder on most gear than you can imagine. The result when he and I get competitive, which is pretty much always, is our gear tests quickly escalate into attempted Feats of Strength. For example, using multi tool pliers on oversized  chunks of metal just to see how they hold up, if we can bend the handles, or straighten a gun barrel with them'¦Or sometimes we simply have to know just WHAT EXACTLY a crossbow can shoot through before the arrow explodes with a satisfying Pa-WHANG! Only after throwing our backs out from pulling out arrows too deeply buried in targets.

Sometimes, we get more creative in our various and sordid attempts at gear abuse. Lacking reasonable payload to test out the ultra big yet superlight Freighter Frame Pack by Frontier Gear of Alaska, we had to improvise. The pack is light and incredibly strong, obviously supersized for huge moose chunks or whole Dall sheep. It's spendy, at $619, but none of the editors had seen anything quite like it.


So I had the bright idea to throw WILDFOWL associate editor Angela Pham on the back and see how it handled a live human, since dead sheep were in short supply in our offices, and we'd eaten all the roadkill already. The pack has a cool fold down part on the lower frame for freakish large payloads, and happily that creates an unusually nice seat platform on the thing.



I trotted about with Pham on it for a while, so comfortably that my absent-minded thoughts soon turned, as always, to first food then coffee... and then forgetting she was there at all, I inadvertently wandered in the men's room.

(awkward'¦)

Ahem'¦testing concluded'¦


Or was it? Soon after, while back at my desk, I heard loud clomping sounds and look up from my cold Top Ramen ("spork" testing in progress) to see none other than Mike Schoby, all 200+ pounds of him, perched precariously on the pack where Pham had been sitting, while our giant web content and video guy Brock Norman (6 foot 5, I don't care what he says) hauled him around at a near-run like a kid with a book pack late for the bus, Schoby bouncing like a kid who scored a free extra ride ticket at the dog and pony show, and as always, cracking the whip on his underlings.

field test

The pack frame held up astonishingly well, despite Schoby's impression of a mechanical bull ride and prolonged abuse to those creaky metal joints. (the pack's, not Schoby's)


After that, I know just who I'll be calling next time I shoot some big animal far off the road. Brock "the Rock" Norman is not your normal web geek. Our geek could whip your geek's ass anytime.

And I'll bring that monster pack, too. Gear test conclusion: a pass and with flying colors.

Recommended for You

Companies in the outdoor industry know how to get our attention. We know, it might seem cheap, but SHOT Show

Booth Babes from the 2012 SHOT Show

PH Online Editors - January 18, 2012

Companies in the outdoor industry know how to get our attention. We know, it might seem cheap,...

Whether you're pursuing black bears, moose or whitetails, Quebec will put you on the right track. North America

Big-Game Adventure Beckons in Quebec

Lynn Burkhead

Whether you're pursuing black bears, moose or whitetails, Quebec will put you on the right...

Craig Boddington picks his top five over-the-counter hunts to add to your bucket list. Adventure

5 Bucket List DIY Hunts

Craig Boddington

Craig Boddington picks his top five over-the-counter hunts to add to your bucket list.

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

2018 Petersen

2018 Petersen's Hunting Episode 7: Beginner's Luck

Host Kali Parmley takes first-time hunter Danae Hale of CZ-USA to Wyoming for a mule deer hunt. After covering all the basics with Danae, the girls head into the field and what happens next goes way beyond either of their expectations!

2018 Petersen

2018 Petersen's Hunting Episode 10: Snowbound Chamois

Host Brittany Boddington gets more than she bargained for on what turned out to be a grueling, snowbound and extremely physical hunt for chamois in Romania's Carpathian mountains.

2018 Petersen

2018 Petersen's Hunting Episode 13: Forest Buffalo

Craig Boddington returns to Mozambique's fame Coutada 10 for a shot a forest buffalo that's eluded him for 10 years.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

What's The Best Coyote Cartridge? .22-250 Versus .223 Ammo

What's The Best Coyote Cartridge? .22-250 Versus .223

Joseph von Benedikt & David Faubion

What's The Best Coyote Cartridge? .22-250 Versus .223

A new wave of allergies threatens to turn hunters into vegetarians. News

The Ticks Making Hunters Allergic to Meat

David Hart

A new wave of allergies threatens to turn hunters into vegetarians.

Since the first explorers and pilgrims landed, the inhabitants of this glorious country have been Shooting

7 Favorite Truck Guns

Joseph von Benedikt - May 11, 2015

Since the first explorers and pilgrims landed, the inhabitants of this glorious country have...

See More Stories

More Accessories

Introducing the Mystery Ranch TREEHOUSE, a new pack built specifically for whitetail-treestand Accessories

Mystery Ranch Expands With TREEHOUSE Pack

PH Online Editors - January 19, 2018

Introducing the Mystery Ranch TREEHOUSE, a new pack built specifically for whitetail-treestand

Tom Rainey shares some of the latest product offerings from Browning Trail Cameras.



For more of Accessories

Next In Line: What's New From Browning Trail Cameras?

PH Online Editors - January 19, 2018

Tom Rainey shares some of the latest product offerings from Browning Trail Cameras. For...

To help you find the perfect Father's Day gift this year, the PETERSEN'S HUNTING staff Accessories

2018 Father's Day Gift Guide

Kali Parmley - May 14, 2018

To help you find the perfect Father's Day gift this year, the PETERSEN'S HUNTING staff

See More Accessories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save.

Temporary Price Reduction.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.