- Sep 30, 2014
Ahhhhh, Old School. My first pack was a wood frame/cotton webbing affair with a fold down shelf and no bag. I bought that at the local surplus store when I was 12, in 1957. The rest of the "kit" was a post WWII Coleman one burner stove/pot, Sears 2 person canvas pup tent, and a sleeping bag with a R value close to zero type insulation. My younger brother, along with a couple of friends, would just head out the back door of my parent's place and hike a few miles into the Bridger's. No mentors, just on-the-job training. I used that primitive set up for several years by which time another friend and I had explored just about every lake in the Madison and Gallatin Ranges. It was late 60's before that was upgraded to a Camptrails frame/REI bag, REI "two person" tent, REI McKinley D5 bag, Seva 123 with a Sigg Tourist kit. That kit accumulated quite a few miles and sometime in the early 70's I acquired a very early Jan Sport D3 from the local rep. Over the next decade, a Sierra Design Flashlight and an MSR GK stove were swapped in but the rest soldiered on. It was mid 90's before a lighter REI bag and GKX stove were added. That D3 continued to be used, primarily because I made the mistake of using an early Lowe internal frame pack on a 70 something mile off trail trip in the Beartooth's about 1981 and decided I didn't want anything more to do with internal frames based on that experience. It was late 90's before I finally tried one of Osprey's infinitely better internal frame packs. Photos? I probably have a few hundred from 1970 (when I bought my first camera-Canon FTb QL) and 2004 when I finally went digital but alas, virtually none scanned at this point.