I love me some fall camping with the family! It’s cool and crisp and uncrowded, making it the perfect time to pack up your family for a weekend camp trip… While getting out into the great outdoors is all about kissing some gear goodbye (we’re looking at you, iPhones and computers…), there definitely is some other gear that can make camping with your kids a whole lot easier. After spending a month on the road this summer with my family of five, I’ve rounded up a few of my recent fall camping gear favorites for families.
4. Kid-friendly supply packs
Recently we’ve been trying out some of the new kid packs from Osprey. The Moki Hydration Pack is perfectly kid-sized for biking or hiking and includes a 1.5-liter water reservoir, a zippered pocket for snacks and headlamps, and a quick-stash storage area to hold a long sleeve shirt. It’s so much easier to keep my kids hydrated with a pack like this than bugging them to get drinks of water.
For older kids who are ready for their first overnight backpacking trip, the Jet 18 backpack is lightweight and kid-friendly, but designed with many of the same features as Osprey’s adult backpacks like their AirScape™ back panel for comfortable support, an external water reservoir pocket, and lots of zippered compartments and mesh pockets to keep everything organized.
Twenty years ago my first “technical backpack” was a beast. A massive, lunky external frame pack, it swaggered and swayed like a ship at sea, constantly striving to move opposite my every direction. Thankfully, times have changed. The new Anti-Gravity suspension system from Osprey makes antiquated backpacking experiences a definitive thing of the past. From this point forward the Atmos AG and Aura AG ensure that you’ll be crushing the miles in serious comfort.
On Performance and Design…
We took the Atmos AG deep into the heart of California’s Desolation Wilderness and knocked out countless backcountry miles. Then we headed out to the Eastern Sierra and did it all over again. While we aren’t quite sure exactly when it happened – perhaps somewhere near mile 5, or maybe halfway through the first set of switchbacks – it was out there in the wild where we fell in love with this pack.
A few noteworthy odds and ends from Mountain Flyer corrospondent Zach White – Camelback, Cross Racing, Fox, Hope, Full Windsor, Santa Cruz, Leyneze, Park Tool, Sweetwood, X-Fusion, WTB, and TLD (not necessarily in that order)…
Osprey continues to broaden its mountain bike hydration pack line, adding a Viper/Verve(his and hers) pack for 2016. A smaller pack within the line, it comes with a 2.5-liter bladder, and volume options of 3-liters, 9-liters. The men’s Viper offers a third volume option of 13-liters. Both the Verve and Viper feature Osprey’s Air Escape back panel…
Osprey Women’s Verve 3 Pack
The Verve pack from Osprey has been around for a while, but never before in such a small size. The Verve 3 is the thinnest, most compact version of the pack yet, and will be ideal for women looking to hydrate on shorter mountain bike rides. Women’s design is prominent in the belt and chest construction, and the Verve 3’s slim profile means that it won’t get in the way as you’re shredding trails.
For 2016, Colorado packmeisters Osprey continue to evolve their well-regarded line of hydration packs with redesigns of the Raptor/Raven and Viper/Verve series.
Going even faster and lighter than their predecessors, the women’s Verve and men’s Viper series add 3L pack options while the ladies’ Verve 13 is trimmed from the line. Given their short ride remit, the packs get a smaller 2.5L reservoir, which has the added benefit of reducing the bags’ footprint. Osprey’s tidy full-zip In-strap cable routing has also been added- but it’s right-only, so left-hosers will want to grab a ’15 before they’re gone.
More in the ‘ready for anything’ vein, the updated Raptor and Raven models should be an organisers’ delight, coming as they do with dedicated tool rolls and extensive internal pocketry. Osprey’s Lid Lock helmet holder has been updated for the first time, with a revised shape and dual-compound construction that will make for more secure portage.