Back Country, Buena Park California Tear Drop Back Pack

Rare label I don’t have too much information on. After scanning old Backpacker Magazine issues I can say that Back Country was like many of its contemporaries a store that both created it’s own products and sold other company’s as well.  Earliest mention I’ve found of the shop is a 1976 ad for Woolrich with Back Country of Buena Park, as a retailer. I suspect they go back a little further than that though.

The pack itself is similar to the designs of others. It does have a few differences that I am a fan of. For one the leather seems to be of exceptional quality. It’s thick, yet still soft and malleable. I suppose this may have some to do with its previous owners treatment, but I have seen enough to know it was good quality leather to begin with.  Secondly the use of nylon on the lower straps and waist belt. where as Alpine Designs would have used leather throughout the strap,  Back Country save a tiny bit of weight and ads a little style of their own by carrying over the orange nylon to these elements.

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Gerry Vagabond Back Pack

Gerry Vagabond Backpack

Late 1960s early 70s model Gerry Vagabond Pack. This is the pack that help solidified Gerry’s role in the outdoor sports manufacturing industry. The design was applied to frame packs and became an icon and a signature style. Whether you’re a fan or not of the horizontal pockets comes down to personal preference I suppose. While allowing for maximum compartmentalized storage and organization the pockets were somewhat limiting of the objects that could fit within.

This pack is an earlier model as denoted by the Gerry Boulder, Colorado logo, Coats & Clark zippers and the very interesting straps. These are unlike any other’s I’ve seen. Nylon straps with a foam pad. The pads are coated like that of a floatation device and adjustable on the strap to provide a good comfort level.  The “wish bone” style pack support is removable and is secured by three snap anchor points.

This model pack was one of several featured in issue five of Backpacker Magazine (1974) and received good marks.

 

Brown Label Gregory Day Pack Backpacks

Vintage Gregory Day Pack Backpack Day and a half pack brown label

A couple older Gregory day pack backpacks. These packs feature many of the quality workmanship and design marks that made Gregory famous. One large main compartment with full arching YKK zipper. Smaller diagonal front zip pocket with YKK zippers. Original large leather pulls on all zips. All zips shielded by large storm flaps. Softer black nylon blend material makes up the bottom of the bag. Padded shoulder straps. Chest strap and waist strap with Fastex buckles.

I believe the orange, larger version is known as the “day and a half pack” a style that is currently being reproduced by Gregory.

Small Gerry Day Pack

Small Vintage Gerry Day Pack

Neat little late 70s early 80s Gerry day pack. Single main top zip compartment with leather pull-stays. Front zip bellowed compartment. Single contrasting blue seat belt webbing shoulder strap with gold nylon lower strap. Perfect for packing in your overnight bag for a day trip.

Measures about:
15″ high
11″ wide at bottom
7.5″ wide at top
5″ deep

Gerry leather Bottom Day Pack

Gerry leather Bottom Day Pack

Early to mid 70s Gerry leather bottom backpack. Two compartments, stacked in the so-called “tear drop” fashion. Sturdy strap construction with thick padded shoulder straps and large D ring /leather top attachment. This model could be considered transitional from the earlier era of felt padded and leather straps. Front lashing with original nylon strap for holding poles or axes. Waist strap features the innovative Gerry two-pronged buckle.

The North Face Leather Bottom Rucksack Backpack – Brown Label Made in the USA

Early TNF larger size semi-rigid tear drop shaped rucksack with extremely impressive ergo dynamics.  Classic TNF navy blue nylon makes up the back and sides, while the back panel is made of a heavy cotton. Two hidden rods, most likely a heavy plastic run from the bottom inside points up along the seam between the back panel and side to the top of the pack. These rods bow so when the pack is worn they start near your shoulder blades and end up on the sides of your hips. It pretty much hugs you when you wear it.

Beautifully styled with a suede leather bottom, lashing squares on the side, front and top flap. Felted strap pads attached to dark olive color nylon web straps. Top flap has zippered access underneath. Adjustable clasp waist strap. Large top and bottom hanging loops.

A truly amazing functional and fashionable pack.

Measures:
17″ from top of straps to bottom of back panel
16″ across at bottom
6.5″ deep
Top flap measures 10.5″x11″

Truckin’ Rucksack Co. Seattle Washington U.S.A.

Unique small rucksack by Truckin’ Rucksack Co of Seattle Washington USA.  Wish I had more details on the company and the origin of this bag, but I don’t and have not found anything out there. I’ve seen similar packs from unknown companies made in Japan but they always seem to be of a little inferior quality to this bag. This ruck sack is very small, almost child size, but such as the label depiction suggests, my guess is that it’s just intended to be used as a small day pack on  backpacking trips.

The nylon bag is coated on the inside with a poly urethane or similar rubberized substance for waterproofing.  The main compartment of the bag is made from a single piece of material with two wedges inserted on the side. One decent sized zip closed canister pocket lives on the outside.  Top draw string and flap closure. 7/8 inch wide nylon straps are gusseted with a piece of brown vinyl.

The label is screened on a cotton blend patch. This one bears the previous owners info.