Just to clarify: I don’t consider this a review of the product, the Mystery Ranch NICE Frame. I have no appreciable time carrying or using this, so all this is meant as is a photo chronicle of an excellent piece of kit. This was lent to me by Andrew Kent, (who also lent me the ERYX Frame) because I expressed an interest in it. I hope that someone considering purchasing one might glean a little more ideas what it’s all about from these photos.
Being a lanky 203 cm (6'7"), the main reason I haven’t put much time under it, is that it’s not so well suited to my height. I know OV Innovations have their load lifter kit, which might make it a little better for the vertically advantaged. The Kifaru Duplex Frame, up till this point is still a better option for me.
This frame was devised by Dana Gleason to be a better ALICE frame. NICE stands for Nylinear Individual Carrying Equipment. (I chuckle every time I see it written as MR NICE, as it makes me think of Dennis Howard Marks’ autobiographical Mr. Nice.)
As is to be expected from Mystery Ranch, this is a very well built pack, made to exacting standards. It’s certainly a very viable option for anyone looking at a pack frame system. I like the look of the Crew Cab, that’s an option for this system. From my admittedly limited use of it, my only issue with it, is that isn’t suited to my galootish frame. Since I’m an outlier, many others will likely find this a good choice.
Two views of the face with the vertical compression straps.
Two views side on.
A view of the shoulder straps and back side.
The load lifter straps, both connected and disconnected, as well as the carrying handle.
Hydration tube (and maybe comm wires) management. Present on both shoulder straps.
Logo at the bottom of the shoulder strap and shoulder strap adjustment tri-glide.
There’s no quick release feature on the shoulder straps NICE frame.
Bolsters on the sides. Relevant mainly to anyone wearing body armour. The zippers allow for washing or replacement I think. There’s no zipper pull because it’s not like it will be opened very much. There’s a gap behind it.
A better view of the back panel and waist belt with the shoulder straps folded out of the way.
And a more detailed view of the waist belt. I like how the waist belt and lumbar strap connect with the pack. A centre pad with kidney pads on each side, and then adjustable waist pads.
Kidney pad and waist belt.
A view of them from underneath.
Another view from underneath.
One thing I wonder about though is that the (attached) straps aren’t that long.
The straps use Mojave Auto-Lock Buckles.
Strap ends feature Velcro to manage excess length.