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Gear Review

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Ruffwear Palisades Dog Pack

  • Gender: Male
  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

My pup has used this pack on quite a few hikes in our local mountains, plus two wilderness high country backpack trips, all this last summer.

The pack is a bit involved to put on as one has to fold up one front leg to slip it between the front yoke and second belly strap. It's easiest to fit the harness first, then attach the bags. This removability of the bags is a very nice feature so on rest stops she can relax more, or when negotiating gnarly, rocky terrain I can just snap off the bags and carry them myself so they can't catch on narrow rocky passages, or throw off her balance on super steeps. The harness with handle is very "handy" for assistance over obstacles or for security when there is some serious exposure, and is available even with the bags on the harness.

The construction is super beefy and should hold up well for a long time. Can't notice any abrasion after quite a bit of rock scraping. The beefy build of this pack makes it weigh more than I first liked, but its features are worth the extra weight and the price which is fairly high as these things go. The volume of the bags seems somewhat small. In order to fill the bags with enough to get her to carry up to about 15-20% of her weight I have to select the most dense load items, and even so the bags are almost over full and seem to stick out pretty far. Because the next-to-dog parts of the bags are just one layer of nylon, I felt I needed to put some cut-to-fit cardboard into the inner sides of the bags to protect my dog's ribs from irregular load items that might poke into her and cause sore spots in those areas where the harness does not protect. Some light weight, thin, but semi stiff layer built in here would be a good design modification.

Ruffwear Palisades Dog Pack
Responded on

Hello just wondering how big your dog is and what size you went with? I ordered the Medium for my Lab and she is about 75lbs. right now it seems a little tight around the neck?

Responded on

My dog is about 70 pounds now, 5 pounds more than last summer when this photo was taken, so hope the pack still fits this season. It's a Medium, and the large was definitely too big, when I bought it last summer. Might have been good to have the larger bags of the large.