I took some gear out to Sweetwater Creek State Park this past weekend to put it through the paces, and the SOG Prophet 33 Liter Pack carried my load.
Upon first inspection, I already liked this pack. If you can’t tell by now, I’m a huge fan of SOG’s gear. One of my EDC knives is the S30V, and many of my field knives are SOGs. I was a little apprehensive, as SOG is known for their blades, and not their packs. And I was wrong for feeling such a way.
Since the SOG Prophet Backpack is so feature rich, we’ll start from top to bottom, but first, and most important – is how it feels loaded up on the back. I loaded it with roughly 30lbs of gear, and still had plenty of room for more kit. With that load, and a hydration bladders, once I put it on and snapped the waist belt and sternum straps home, I didn’t feel like I was carrying much of anything. Like any good pack, it feels like it’s a part of you – the weight transferring to the hips and shoulders. I rucked 8 miles with it, and only noticed the heft of the load when I took it off to do a blister check every few miles. Short of the SOG logo on the back being soaked with my sweat, it held up amazingly.
On the top, you have a hard clamshell which opens up, revealing a bunch of little pockets for flashlights, pens, some extra kit, etc., with a velcro closure on the top for keep sunglasses, GPS, or cell phones safe from impact.
Next we’ll move on to the zippers – they are super robust, and come with oversized zipper pulls. The main compartment has 4 total zippers, so you can have double pull access from multiple points.
The carry handles are located all over the pack, with one at the top and at the bottom. I would hazard you could even use this as a makeshift sandbag, but obviously that’s not the intended use. However, like many of the readers here, if you wanted to get a workout on at camp, you could easily fill this with sandbags and treat it as such. It also instantly can convert into a dufflebag but tucking the straps into a compartment, or even be lashed to a jeep or boat to tackle your next endeavor. This pack plays double roles as a backpack and duffle with just a few buckles and tucks.
The side flaps – which are cinched with the buckles show below, are designed to carry long or bulky items – like a tripod or a rifle. I used a Kukhri for this loadout, and it didn’t move a millimeter. You can also stow a fishing rod and the like.
In addition, the outer area of the side flaps can accept 1″ webbing, so you can modify it further with MOLLE gear and complete your loadout. It’s made from Hypalon – a proprietary CPSE synthetic rubber, which is strong and used for things like wire insulation, decking for snowshoes, zodiacs, and is lighter and stronger than neoprene. In addition, Hypalon is know for it’s resistance to chemical, liquids, and UV light. That means that something if spills, your pack won’t be wreaking for weeks, and sunlight won’t cause your pack to break down. Both pluses in my book.
Internally, there are several pockets within the SOG Prophet Backpack. Underneath the clamshell, you have a zippable pouch with a key clip – a great touch to keep your necessities like car keys from falling out of one of the external pockets. You also have 2 mesh pockets internally, which I like to use one for firestarting gear, and the other for food procurement and small game gear – in the event you get stranded and need to secure your own food and make a fire.
The main compartment itself has a detachable daisy chain, a slot for your hydration bladder, and MOLLE-type lattice to secure gear complete with velcro applications. You also have a hydration bladder pass through hole. It’s extremely spacious. I loaded it with 25lbs of weightvest bricks, a hatchet, and an E-tool, as well as a first aid kit, and had plenty of room for additional kit. The zipper lets you access a plastic insert which negates the need for a traditional frame, and is extremely lightweight.
Overall the padding is great, from the back to the kidney pads/waist belt, to the shoulder straps. (The sternum strap buckle does have an emergency whistle on it, like many packs). I can honestly say i did not feel the weight of the pack until I dropped it. The fit and finish are superb, and it feels rugged and high quality, while still being lightweight at 58 ozs empty. The picture below shows you how truly spacious it is.
These are just some of the awesome features on this SOG Prophet Backpack, which is made from 500D nylon, but frankly, I’ll probably discover more unique features the more I use this pack. Expect a 30-90 day detailed after action report on this.
Comfort – *****
Extremely comfortable, as stated, I didn’t even realize I was wearing it despite it being loaded with nearly 40 lbs of gear. Great padding on the shoulders, back and hips.
Capacity – *****
At 33L, this is pretty much can hold whatever you will need for a long hike, hell, this could hold whatever you need for a backwoods excursion, especially considering the long item attachments – you can carry a rifle on one side, tent on the other.
Versatility – *****
As this can go from a full size pack, to duffle bag, or workout implement with ease.
Mobility – ***
This being a rather large pack, it’s not recommended as a go-bag, but that’s not its purpose. While you can be mobile with it if you are experienced at rucking, a novice would find it rather cumbersome, especially if it eas packed to the gills.
Overall, this is a great pack with great versatility, capacity and comfort. I highly recommend it to the person looking for a solid pack for multiple uses and various loadouts.