CARRY ON!

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					     GUY GEAR:    BACKPACKS




          CARRYON!
           Here’s an Eagle Scout’s advice on picking the
           perfect pack.
           By Mark Anders                          “Backpacking lets
                                                   you get away from
                                               the city and go to
                                               places that are magical
                                               and special,” says Eagle Scout
                                               Jon Almquist, who works for
                                               national outdoors retailer REI. “Not
                                               everybody can see those places. In
                                               order to get there you have to pay
                                               your dues a little bit. But if you do it
                                               right, getting there is half the fun.”
                                                 Doing it right means having a
                                               backpack that fits all your gear and,
                                               more important, fits you. There are
                                               some tricks to pack shopping, so we
                                               asked Almquist to fill you in. >>>




                                                Jon Almquist shows you how to
                                                fit a backpack in an exclusive
                                                video blog at www.boyslife.org



26   BOYS’ LIFE F MAY 2009
                   THIS GUY’S GEAR
                   Name: Jon Almquist




                                                                                                                 CREDIT
                   Job: Product line manager for REI Gear and Apparel
                   Home: Seattle, Wash.
                   Eagle Scout, Troop 360, Seattle


                   J     on Almquist started backpacking in grade school when his best friend’s
                         parents let him tag along on family backcountry trips. He was hooked right
                   away. And once he joined Scouting, Almquist jumped at the ample opportuni-
                   ties to get outdoors. After college he began working as a kayak instructor and
                   river guide, then became the lead gear buyer for an outfitters paddling shop.
                   Eventually he landed a gig at Cascade Designs (makers of Therm-a-rest and
                    MSR gear) and then scored a dream job working at REI headquarters. Naturally,
                    Almquist has easy access to any kind of gear he wants. This is the stuff he
                      brings on the trail:

                                   < Osprey Crescent (No longer available; www.boyslife.org/links/
                                   ospreypacks) “This is my big backpack.
				
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Description: [...] Almquist has easy access to any kind of gear he wants. [...] the comfort of a pack's shoulder straps and hipbelt are among the most important considerations, but thoughtful extras and handy accessories are worth mentioning. The hipbelt should rest on your hipbones, not your waist, and the shoulder straps should come within three or four inches of your armpit when cinched down tight.
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