Ray's 1958 Duluth Pack #PersonBehindThePack
One of our favorite things at Duluth Pack is hearing stories about people using their packs on great adventures. These packs are sometimes very old and have been passed down from generation to generation which means they have a lot of history to them. This story was provided to us by Ray and we felt the need to share it because of how cool the old pack looks.
I read with interest the account of inheriting your Grandpa’s boot pack. I too have a pack that was my Dad’s and every time I look at it, great memories of our trips to the cabin in Canada are stirred.
In 1958 my dad purchased a pack from a hardware store in Fort Frances. The pack was purchased because he was building our wilderness cabin in Canada and needed a durable pack to haul gear in and out. Back then the price was simply written on the goods with a permanent marker. If you look closely in the pictures you can see $6.39 IAE (In American Exchange) since the pack was purchased in Canada. Prices have gone up somewhat since then, huh?
If we had only taken more photos of trips in the ‘50s and ‘60s. We used to board the train in Fort Frances—with the pack—that was still powered by a steam engine. I still remember the engineer inviting us kids to look over the locomotive cab one day. The locomotive number was 5152. A small thing to remember but like the Duluth Pack, a small thing can open the door to long-ago memories. When we were dropped off at a very small station the pack continued its job carrying our gear down to the lake landing where we took a wood and canvas Old Town canoe over to the cabin. A picture of the pack in the canoe would be priceless to me today but a camera was always something extra to tote along and rarely brought with.
We still use the pack on trips to the cabin after all of these years. It is no longer a wilderness cabin since a road was put through to the lake in 1965. We have to cross the lake to get there and the pack is still as useful now as the day it was purchased. I have used it on many deer hunting trips as well.
Last summer the pack suffered three broken straps at the same time. Two are on the shoulder straps and one on the tumpline strap. The three front straps are still intact but so dried and cracked
that they are ready to go anytime. I am hopeful that the pack can be fixed and can continue to haul gear for many years to come creating new memories.
For a chance to be featured on our blog send us your travel stories with your Duluth Pack or why you love your pack using #PersonBehindThePack on social media and by sending in stories using the link found on our blog page.
Adventure on friends.