Outdoor Products Backpack for Kids

OutdoorProductsArrowheadWhen I do talks and workshops on backpacking for new Scouts, I put an emphases on making the backpack one of the last buys people should make.

Those just starting off in lightweight backpacking should focus first on other gear, like their sleeping bag, shelter and clothing, then choose a pack that best accommodates their gear choices.

My suggestion is to borrow or rent before buying. However, for a younger boy, you may want to consider a pack I recently discovered. It is inexpensive, plenty big for beginning lightweight enthusiasts and can be purchased at Walmart.

Also found at various online stores, including Amazon.com, this lightweight backpack has all the features any Boy Scout would need for most weekend or week-long backpack trips. The best part is that it is 46 liters, weighs about 1.5 pounds and costs about $35!

The Outdoor Products Arrowhead is a small-framed pack, designed for kids. Some adults have purchased this pack and it simply does not fit most people over the age of 13. Based on the reviews I’ve read, the Arrowhead is a decent piece of gear.

Arrowhead Backpack Reviews>>

To learn more about how to choose a backpack, read my post, Choosing a Backpack.

Why Use a Go Box?

In an effort to help Scouts and adult backpackers better prepare, I explain the importance of a Go Box.

A Case for the Go Box

Even with the aid of a checklist, I found myself still having to rummage through the house, attic, basement and garage for my equipment. That takes time and a lot of mental effort. So to remedy the problem, our family each has a personal, Continue reading

Ultralight Buys for a Buck


99¢ Only Store — “Ultralight Depot”

One of the exciting aspects of ultralight backpacking is the on-going quest for light, small and cheap equipment.

Typically, “small and light” comes at a higher price, but what if I could show you how to buy ultralight items at an ultracool price of a dollar each? Continue reading

Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles for Under $30 — Updated

Recently, while at Costco, I came across a killer deal: Costco is selling carbon fiber trekking poles for $27! So I bought a pair, stripped them down (removed the strap, basket, etc.) and weighed each pole in at 7.1 oz. Although they are no longer offered at Costco, they can be purchased on Amazon.com (click here).

If you have any thoughts of using poles for hiking and backpacking, these are a great find and probably worth checking out.

I use trekking poles to help take pressure off my knees on the down hills, makes the uphills easier, helps me balance, especially on tricky trails and stream crossings. They also serve as my tarp/tent poles, monopod for taking photos and is a handy duct tape dispenser. Talk about multipurpose! Here is a review from Andrew Skurka>>

Backpack Quick List

How could anyone forget their shoes on a backpack! I did — but only once.

Have you ever been a few miles from the trailhead and forgot something, or had a feeling that you may have left an essential piece of gear at home? If so, chances are you were not using a checklist.

Big List vs. Small List

QuickListMost ultralight backpackers maintain a gear list. Some “gear wienies” like me, keep a list of each item on a spreadsheet and/or online, including their category and weight–down to the gram. Gear lists help keep track of what you have and help determine base weight, yet most of us don’t carry a gear list with us to the trailhead, and virtually no one carries it with them on the trip. Heck, a sheet of paper weighs 5 grams…, right?

I found a quick and easy way to Continue reading

Choosing A Backpack

Before you buy a backpack, you need to decide what type of backpacker you want to: A traditionalist who carries 30-50 pounds of gear on a weekend,  or a more modern, lightweight backpacker who carries smaller, lighter and smarter gear, lowering their weight to a comfortable 15 pounds?

Try Before You Buy

Always rent or borrow before making your purchase. REI rents packs at a reasonable price and you probably don’t know what you (or your son) needs until you try them in the field.

Once you have some experience backpacking and get a good feel of the gear you plan to take, then it’s time to consult an expert. Continue reading