MHM Flatiron Review
In August of 2010 a few of the UpaDowna crew ventured to Salt Lake City, Utah for the Summer Outdoor Retailer Show. While there we saw tons of gear and products that we have been sharing with you over the past year. One of the new upcoming companies we met with, partied with, and became friends with was Mile High Mountaineering (MHM).
Out of all the companies we saw, this is one that really stuck out, and has made a lasting impression. They are a good group of people that are extremely knowledgeable and passionate about their products, and leading the charge was the President and Founder Jeff Popp. It didn't take long to figure out that the MHM crew was our type of people, they had beer at their booth. From the get go we were interested in their products and ready to test run the packs. There was only one problem, they didn't have any packs to test or sell at show, just prototypes.
For the past few months Jeff has received a lot of harassment from UpaDowna via Yeti and Bunny, while waiting for his packs to arrive from the manufacturers. From throwing UpaDowna stickers on Jeff's truck to dubbing his backpacks with mythical nicknames like Unicorns due to their nonexistence, Jeff took it look a champ. He even got in on the fun by creating the MHM unicorn picture seen above. Now in April 2011, it looks like MHM gets the last laugh. Not only is the MHM inventory now full, Jeff also got me to come up to Denver and help them unload their first shipment. It was well worth it though, UpaDowna snagged the first of the packs and I couldn't be happier!
Weight: 3 lbs. 6 oz.
Capacity: 38 liters
Rated at 38 liters the Flatiron is the baby of the Mile High Mountaineering family, but don't let this smaller sized technical pack fool you. MHM spared no bells or whistles while designing the Flatiron. It was built much like their larger technical packs, from the suspension to the accessibility. All the features that usually get left behind on smaller packs are easily found on the Flatiron.
One of these features is the Rip n' Pull Torso Harness. This adjustable harness allows you to fit the pack to torso lengths from 17-21 inches, which I extremely appreciated. Yes a smaller size pack that fits larger size frames, score!!!
Also adding to the comfort of this pack is the variCant dualpivoting fully adjustable hip belt. The pivoting hip belt allows you to to lean from side to side without the weight of the pack swaying or pulling you off balance, which makes conquering obstacles much easier.
The pivoting hip belt combined with the adjustable harness creates a total package suspension system. It allows you to experience carrying weight on your back in an ergonomic nonrestrictive fashion that helps you hike freely with a full range of motion while carrying heavy loads. This means comfortable hiking, and comfortable hiking means hiking further.
Rule number 32: Enjoy the little things. Another plus I'd like to point out is that all MHM packs include a rain-fly, even the Flatiron. Unfortunately not every backpack company includes a fly, and you see it even less with smaller packs. Rain-flies can easily run for as much as an additional $40, leaving many of us using the old trash bag method.
- Flow A.C. suspension
- Backdraft Air Channeled backpanel
- Rip n' Pull adjustable harness
- variCant dualpivoting/fully adjustable hipbelt
- integrated Packslicker rainfly
- hydration bladder pocket
- top and front panel access
- external compression straps
- 8 gear loops
- 5 pockets + main compartment
- quickclip accessory clips
- 2 adjustable ice axe loops
At 38 liters the Flatiron is no ultralight flash pack, but it sure makes for an excellent day pack, as well as for over night trips. This pack has plenty of room for all the essentials and then some, while still allowing you to move fast. I think the versatility of the Flatiron makes it a great pack for the likes of Wilderness First Responders, and Search and Rescue members to weekend warriors. This pack has something for everyone! I keep the Flatiron ready to go at all times, it has become my all around go to pack.