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mbravenboer
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PostMon Jul 02, 2018 9:57 pm 
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I'm looking for a comfortable backpack that my toddler can carry himself (age range 3-5 years let's say). He has one for daycare, but it has no padding and the straps slip from his shoulder. I'm looking for a miniature version of a normal backpack so that he can carry a few small things for himself like snacks and some toys.

I've checked Amazon, but that's all toy stuff in the backpacks for kids category. REI doesn't have anything on the website that even resembles what I'm looking for.

When I was a kid I had one of these (no idea what it was) and I thought it was super cool to carry my own stuff. I want to excite my kid in the same way.

Any ideas? Thanks!

(in Google it's all about backpacks for *me* to carry the toddler, but that's different wink.gif )

Edit: I just read in the comments that somebody did use this one from age 2.5, so that may work ... https://www.rei.com/product/114843/camelbak-mini-mule-hydration-pack-kids-15-liters . Anything else?
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contour5
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PostMon Jul 02, 2018 10:51 pm 
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I instantly thought hydration pack when I saw your post- I keep seeing these sleek little packs everywhere. Cool looking packs that I unfortunately have no use for. I often paw at them while trolling for bargains in the sad, neglected sporting goods sections of local retailers.

I like this one: Outdoor Products Arroyo Hydration Pack
Built for 10 year olds but it looks like there's lots of adjustment in the shoulder straps...
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Ski
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PostMon Jul 02, 2018 11:32 pm 
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awfully spendy, but it's the first thing that came to mind:
https://www.rei.com/product/123736/fjallraven-kanken-mini-pack

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DIYSteve
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PostTue Jul 03, 2018 8:14 am 
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RandyHiker
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PostTue Jul 03, 2018 9:14 am 
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My grandson has one that fits well.  His aunt (my daughter) sewed it for him using leftover material.   Just remember that while the kiddo may wear it on the way in, but you will likely carry it and the kiddo on the way out.
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mbravenboer
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PostWed Jul 04, 2018 8:14 am 
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Thanks all for the help!

It looks like hydration packs are they way to go for now then yeah. He'll probably enjoy drinking from it. The typical 12L backpacks for young kids are still a little too big for him and I would prefer one that has a little strap to keep the shoulder straps on.

Unfortunately neither me nor my wife are handy enough to make one ourselves! Would be cool though to be able to do that.
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Hiker Mama
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PostSat Jul 07, 2018 8:23 pm 
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Have you been to REI yet to look in person? They do have little kid packs - ones like this one:
https://www.rei.com/product/102017/rei-co-op-tarn-18-pack-kids
We used the REI brand kid packs from that age until upper elementary/early middle school. Deuter and possibly Osprey make preschool/toddler packs, too. The store in Lynnwood had several on the rack last time I was in (that was several months ago, though.) You'll want to have the child try them on in person, just like an adult. They may be a bit large for a toddler, but there should be at least one or two choices there for a preschooler.

My kids loved having their own packs. I'd put in their hat and gloves and maybe a snack and a small water bottle (I'd carry extra water to refill their bottles). When I interviewed a dad who hikes with his kids and also works for SAR, he talked about making sure they had a rain coat, warm hat, hand warmers, and a sit pad, as well as a whistle, and teaching them young to stay put and hunker down if they get separated from the parent. Having their own pack makes that possible. Plus it's the beginning of being able to transfer all the gear of theirs that you are carrying to the rightful owner! embarassedlaugh.gif

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treeswarper
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PostMon Jul 09, 2018 6:05 am 
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DIYSteve wrote:

Those backpacks are not very strong. smile.gif    I used one for my saw stuff.  I like to demasculinize saw work.  My files poked holes in it.  Perhaps a Barbie pack would be tougher?

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mbravenboer
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PostWed Jul 11, 2018 9:47 am 
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Hiker Mama, thanks for the detailed response!

I assumed (possibly incorrectly) that the 12 and 18 liter packs would still be too big for my 3 year old. We really should have checked in person, but my kid is not a fan of shopping trips and we ordered the hydration pack online for now (out of stock at REI also). He loves drinking the water, but despite the pack being super tiny the straps still slip from has shoulders a little bit. It worked out okay, but not perfect. If we end up at REI some time I'll check the other packs.

Jake in the first boulder field
Jake in the first boulder field

Thanks all for the help. If I find anything else that works great I'll follow-up.
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treeswarper
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PostWed Jul 11, 2018 11:20 am 
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You probably have, but I would suggest putting a strap around the shoulder straps to fasten over the chest.   That might stop the slipping.  Or maybe it doesn't.

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What's especially fun about sock puppets is that you can make each one unique and individual, so that they each have special characters. And they don't have to be human––animals and aliens are great possibilities
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mbravenboer
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PostWed Jul 11, 2018 11:23 am 
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Thanks, yeah, the pack has one but it doesn't quite solve it yet (can't make it too tight otherwise it will be unpleasant)
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Hiker Mama
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PostFri Jul 20, 2018 6:03 pm 
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Well, the good news is, they do grow quickly at this age!  clown.gif

I had issues when my kids were little using packs that were too big for them, even if they were tiny packs. The straps would never fit right, the waist belt wouldn't fit, something would always be frustrating. But it didn't seem to scar them psychologically, they just appreciated it when I did manage to get them a pack that fit right!  lol.gif

We were in Winthrop a few days ago, and popped into the outdoor store downtown. There was a section with some tiny packs for toddlers/preschoolers, from various brands, and they looked awesome. I'm sure they will be at other retailers, too, when you get a chance to look around some more. If you are going out with your kiddo all the time, I do think it's worth getting something that fits correctly, it's just one less thing to whine about. But I do understand the hassle factor about shopping. We are only a mile from the closest REI, so it was fairly easy for me to pop in with my kids and shop real fast, and then get home quick when they were little.  I guess we are kind of spoiled....

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