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The Catalyst remains the tried and true workhorse of the ULA Pack line. Ready to carry loads of up to 40 pounds, haul a bear canister, or easily carry your fishing, climbing or photo gear.
Sewn with our new ULA 210 Robic fabric, the toughest stuff ounce for ounce that we've ever seen, this pack should give you years of hiking bliss, even if you are a bit tough on your gear.
This is a great pack for people who need to carry a good sized load, or want a bag that can be checked as baggage on a plane. Weighing only 48 oz, including all the extras, this pack will lighten you up, but still handle the toughest duties. (Camo Cordura will add about 2 oz to the total weight) The Catalyst is now available in four colors, standard green and purple blaze in the ULA 210 Robic, and Woodland Camo and Multicam in 500 Cordura.
Bottom Line? An updated, tougher and lighter pack for traditional backpackers
Hipbelt Sizing Made Simple
For men, use the waist of your pants, and add 2 inches, and then go to the belt sizing section on the order page. For example, the waist of your pants is 36, add 2 to get 38. If you are on the edge of a size go up, so you would wear a large belt
For women, measure the smallest part of your waist, then add 5 inches and go to the chart. For example, your waist is 26, add 5=31, you would be a small belt.
Choosing A Shoulder Strap Style
The J straps are the traditional straps, and work best on most men with average builds. If you are very large in the upper body you might need XL shoulder straps, give us a call for that. Many men with athletic builds, i.e. strong, square shoulders will find the S straps work better. Swimmers, climbers, weight lifters, triathletes, XC skiers, etc usually prefer the S straps.
The S straps work best on almost all women and men with square shoulders and good posture. If you are a short torso, but with a larger upper body, give us a call, we may want to give you a slightly longer strap, there's no charge for it, so don't be shy, pick up the phone or send us an email
Measuring Your Torso Length
Torso measurement is the best guide we have for proper pack fit, but it isn't foolproof. Generally we find that if you are between sizes on the torso it's best to go with the smaller size, if you are between sizes on the hipbelt it's best to go with the larger size. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to call or email.
To accurately measure your torso length for a correct pack fit, grab a buddy and follow the steps below...
Have any questions or don’t quite fall in the normal range? Give us a call or email!
Watch this video to learn how to measure your torso length and get the best fitting ULA-Equipment Backpack possible.
Q: What does Rec'd Base Weight mean?
A: Recommended Base Weight refers to the total weight of all gear carried (including the weight of your ULA backpack). This includes water bottles and food stuff sacks but not water and food as this will vary during each trip. Knowing your base weight will help you determine which suspension system can best handle your on the trail load.
Q: Can a water bottle fit in the side pockets? If so, can I reach it? How do they close?
A: Each side pocket can accommodate two 1-Liter 'Big Slam' style bottles. A Nalgene-style bottle will also fit, but in your quest to lighten up, that should have been replaced a long time ago! In general most people can reach back and retrieve a bottle, drink, and return the bottle to the pocket without removing the pack. The top of the side pockets are angled for easier access, and adjust single-handedly with a cord lock and internal bungee to open and close.
Q: Can I fit a bear canister into the Catalyst? Can it fit horizontally?
A: Yes. Every bear canister on the market other than the Bearikade Expedition will fit into the Catalyst horizontally. Keep in mind it is best to pack something between the hard sided canister and the bottom of the pack.
Q: Where do I strap my sleeping pad?
A: If you are using an inflatable pad, I recommended storing it in the interior of the pack to avoid punctures. A foam pad can easily be secured either behind the front compression shock cord, or beneath the top compression strap that goes over the top of the pack.
Q: Q: What is the 'Twin Stay' Framesheet?
A: The standard framesheet is comprised of a very dense piece of foam and two ½ aluminum stays which are positioned in a 'V' shape. The stays can be bent to give the framesheet a specific contour to your spinal curve.
The standard, twin stay framesheet is ideal for loads between 32-40 lbs. It offers plenty of stability and load control within that load range and is well suited for on or off trail hiking.
Q: How does the top of the pack close? Is it easy to access the main body of the packbag?
A: The top of the pack closes like a drybag (also known as a rolltop) very similar to what river runners use to create a water resistant seal for their gear bags. Basically, the back of the collar is slightly taller than the front. Once you are packed, the collar can be rolled down upon itself to effectively create a barrier to water penetration. Once rolled, each side of the collar can be buckled to the sides of the pack or the two yellow buckles on the top can also be fastened to each other.
As for access, once the collar is rolled and fastened shut, you would need to unbuckle the compression straps and unroll the collar to access the inside of the pack. However, the rolltop only needs to be rolled shut when the weather dictates. If the sky is dry, the collar can simply be folded forward. Vertical compression can still be achieved by buckling the collar to the sides of the pack..