Anna has been outfitting her dogs with our dog packs for a long time. She just sent us these nice pictures of Eve (left) and Astrid (below). Eve is standing on the summit marker of Tennent Mountain. It is part of the Pisgah Ridge and leads to the Art Loeb and Ivestor Gap.
This is what Anna has to say about her dogs:
Here are some pics of my girls wearing their Banzai packs. Eve, now a 10 year old Chow mix, has the red one and Astrid, a 14 month old Central Asian Shepherd Dog, has the purple one. Eve's pack is nearly as old as she is!
Jaeger and Tate hauled their supplies in matching Reflector packs to the windy rim of Mount Saint Helens. Their owner wrote the following about their adventures:
I just want to let you know how great your packs have been for us and our dogs, Jaeger and Tate, both Goldendoodles. The packs have carried supplies across so many miles; from across the Goat Rocks Wilderness in summer to the top of Mt. St Helens in winter. Even now after about three years, if I give the packs a thorough washing they look just like they did when we received them. I also really appreciate that our packs were (and still are) made in the USA. That is actually what led me to try out your packs in the first place. Thank you for a great product!
Mike Grue sent us this beautiful photo of his mixed breed dog named Chewbacca, along with the following message:
I just wanted to let you know how well your Banzai pack performed for Chewbacca and I on our recent hikes around Mammoth Lakes area. Chewbacca is a 60lbs 1.5 year old shepherd mix who has never worn a pack before. I bought the small size and it fit him so well he didn't even flinch when I put it on. He was in charge of carrying his food and water while we were on the trail and I have to imagine that it gave him a sense of purpose to be carrying his own gear.
He gets excited now whenever he sees me loading up his pack, and I have to admit that not having to carry an extra 10lbs in my own pack makes my trip more enjoyable! I thought you might like to see my favorite photo of Chewey at Convict Lake just south of Mammoth Lakes.
Oh, and btw-I was very impressed that a few hours after I ordered the pack on a Sunday, I got an email showing that the item was being shipped the very next morning. Good work!
Leila, a Siberian Husky rescue, has enjoyed the active Pacific Northwest outdoor lifestyle with her owner John Rettig in all four seasons: hiking, backpacking, alpine climbing, and backcountry snowshoeing. He writes:
Up to age six, her endurance usually outlasted even the toughest human in the group – she was always in the lead, always pushing ahead to see what was around the next corner. She has summited Mount Saint Helens, ascended 7,000 vertical feet in six hours, backpacked Northwest wilderness for several days, and traversed higher elevation winter backcountry routes on top of 170” snowpack.
She is seen here at age 10 in her well-used Banzai pack on the PCT in the Mount Hood National Forest, Oregon.
January 26, 2010 - Filed in:Dog Packs: Banzai | X Breed | Rhodesian Ridgeback | Central Asian Shepherd Dog
Anna sent us this different view of three Banzai dog packs in action. Hope her photo makes you smile as much as it did us. Anna included the following message:
I just wanted to share a photo my friend and I took recently of our girls wearing their Banzai Wolf Packs on our trip to Saluda, North Carolina. Wearing the red pack is Eve, a 10 1/2 year old Chow mix. Pretty in pink is Kioni, a 2 year old Rhodesian Ridgeback. Posing in purple is Astrid, a 17 month old Central Asian Shepherd. Hope you like!
Anna C. Abney
Here are Glen Fess’ dogs backpacking in the Sacramento Mountains of central New Mexico. Tapio, the Finnish Spitz, wears one of our Banzai dog packs. Fifteen pound Rowdy, the Schipperke, wears a dog pack from another company. Glen contacted us to check whether we make a pack small enough for the little guy, which we don’t unfortunately. This is what Glen had to say about his packs:
I currently have one of your Banzai packs for my Finnish Spitz (Tapio) and he luvs it!! I'll be getting another in the near future for a Karelian Bear Dog that I hope to get in February, 2010. I also have a Schipperke (Rowdy) that carries a 2 piece Kelty K-9 Sherpa pack since he is too small for any of the Wolf Packs. The Banzai seems to ride much better than the Kelty pack and is much easier to put on and take off.
This is Jean Lawlor's dog Anna, wearing her Reflector dog pack during a trip in the rugged Bighorn Mountains. Along with this nice picture, Jean sent us the following message:
Attached is a photo (taken yesterday) of my Black Lab mix, Anna, on the trail in the Bighorn Mountains in Wyoming. She has been backpacking with me for years, but this is only the second trip with her new Reflector pack. I bought it recently to replace her old pack that she managed to lose in a willow thicket elsewhere in WY over July 4th (I think she was giving me a giant hint).
This pack so far seems to be well worth it, as it is far superior to the last one! The fabric, zippers, buckles, and seams are all high quality, and the pack fastens securely and balances on Anna so much more easily than the old one (that used to sag and hang awfully to one side or the other no matter what I tried to balance the bags). She seems able to walk and run (after antelope, deer, elk, moose) without any interference from the bag; I think it must be more comfortable for her than her previous pack. I know that upgrading my own backpack to a better one changed my attitude toward backpacking from "once in awhile when I can take the pain," to "as often as I can get out there." When my little Border Collie's aging pack finally poops out (he's very hard on it, dragging it through brush, etc.), I expect I'll buy another Reflector to replace it.
This handsome Samoyed is Tacoma. He is one of Lightning’s sons who lives in Washington. His owner, Kevin Silis, is training to climb Mount Rainier in June, 2009. Tacoma is a very lucky boy, as he gets to accompany Kevin on his training hikes.
Kevin took this picture of Tacoma on the Duckabush Trail in the Olympic Mountains (Hood Canal side). It was an eleven-mile trip. Tacoma was carrying eleven pounds in his Banzai dog pack, and Kevin’s pack held 52 pounds.
Julie Wood's wonderful Schipperke Bearette is a Search and Rescue Dog in training. For identification in the field, she uses a red ID Cape with a special SAR patch. Julie and her husband love this breed so much that they are considering training their new Schipperke puppy Hawk to accompany Bearette on search assignments.
You might find Julie's comments (see Bearette's ID Cape) about Bearette's gear of interest.
Samoyeds Reef, Fierce, and their owner Diana Steele joined in an event for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) by participating in a fund-raising walk. Their team raised the most money. The dogs were very popular and looked sharp as they wore their ID Capes. Fierce has his head turned so that you can't see his cape in this picture. Diana is almost hidden behind his tail. This picture was taken after the walk, and as you can see, it was a hot day. They'll be doing this again in May 2009.
Here is a close-up of Reef wearing his ID Cape.
Forest Godsey's Leslie Ann shows that even fine boned greyhounds have what it takes to help carry the load. This photo shows her hiking in her red Trekker dog pack on a trail close to Forest's home. The photo below shows a different view in a local park.
Forest has two dogs, both outfitted with our dog packs. He says, "All I have to do is get their packs out of the closet and the dogs get excited. They associate the packs with fun! I honestly think my dogs enjoy walks more when I put their packs on them and make them carry something. If I've been careless and not put their packs in the closet, my Lab will bring me his pack instead of his leash to indicate it's time for a walk."
You might enjoy reading Forest's comments (see Keeping Cool) about how Leslie Ann stays cool with her dog pack.
Expedition Samoyeds show off their custom embroidered Reflector dog packs while hiking in Yosemite National Park.
These two beautiful Samoyeds, owned by Kelvin Lem, send holiday cheer in their red Reflector dog pack (front dog) and red ID Cape (rear dog). They are Australian natives, thus seldom see a 'white Christmas'.
You might be interested in reading Kelvin's comments (see The Boys Go Nuts!) about his dogs' equipment.
Colleen and Marty Hovind hike among the wildflowers with their lovely Siberian Huskies P.J. and Mitchell. Both are using their burgundy Trekker dog packs. Colleen and Marty Hovind's kennel is Heirborn Siberians, located in Craven, Saskatchewan.
Mufasa (burgundy Trekker), Taiyna, and Tundra (black Trekker) hike with owners Phil and Lisa Gravelle. Phil, Lisa, and one year old Santana Gravelle hike among a beautiful display of spring wildflowers with their three Samoyeds. Mufasa wears a burgundy Trekker, while Taiyna and Tundra both use black Trekker dog packs, all size medium. Phil and Lisa operate Philisa Samoyeds in Lumsden, Saskatchewan.
This group organized an order for all seven dog packs together into one order, so we gave her a discount for the group. Hopefully this helped with import fees and shipping costs to Canada. You might be interested to read her comments about her dog's packs.
A group of friends with Northern-breed dogs gets together for sledding in the winter and now for packing in the summer. The image above shows Phil and Lisa Gravelle & Moira, Conrad, and Hartley Towriss-Smith all hiking with their Samoyeds in the lush Hidden Valley near Craven, Saskatchewan, Canada. They hope to encourage more of their friends to take up packing and join them on the trail.
Eight year old Conrad Smith sits with Buffy who wears a medium teal Banzai pack. Next to him is Moira Towriss-Smith with Kazan in his royal blue Trekker. Hartley Smith is next to Rick (red dog pack) who appears to be howling with delight. Moira told us that Buffy could have used a Small pack for her size, but navigates very well with the medium. The Towriss-Smiths kennel name is Anoka Samoyeds, which is located near Regina, Saskatchewan.
Turner, owned by David Halpern, is the official Ranger Dog for Shelby County Park in Tennessee. Here he wears his Saddle Bag with official Park Ranger patch. David says Turner's pack comes in very handy to carry frequently asked for items such as park maps, park rules, and trail maps. About 100 maps and rule sheets are carried in each pannier, which weigh about four pounds total. David says, "Turner didn't mind the extra weight at all. Visitors absolutly loved it when they asked for info and found that it was available on Turners back! I guess the only downside, as far as Turner is concerned, is that he can't go swimming while wearing the saddlebags!"
Quincy, owned by Becky Majesky, enjoys a cool dip in a creek during a hike. Becky and Quincy often hike in the backwoods of northern Michigan. This is what Becky said about Quincy's Saddle Bag: "I have had a red Saddle Bag pack for my German Shepherd, Quincy, for about a year now. She knows only good things come when her pack is on. It really is the best day pack out there."
Cody, owned by Karen Faddis, looks like he really enjoys his new Saddle Bag pack. Karen told us she likes the small pack size for hikes and short outings. Cody, has also worn it to the nursing home they visit, to carry small presents for patients and treats. Karen says, "The size works well for my purposes, and the dog enjoys wearing it."
Yukon, a Malamute/Husky mix owned by Vickey and Matt Wong, is pictured here during a trip to Diamond Peak Ski Resort in California. His red Banzai dog pack contains his own food, water, and the potty bags. Vickey tells us that Yukon also had matching color boots in his dog pack which he decided not to wear. As a result got his feet dirty. Yukon loves to run freely (especially in snow), but hates the bath when he gets home.
Tom Willcox enjoys hiking with his lovely German Shepherd Casey. She is wears a red Banzai pack and Limited Slip collar. Tom sent us this message about his pack:
I just thought I'd drop you a line to let you know how much I love your pack design -- my GSD Casey loves it! No chafing, rides well, and has a lot of space. Also, after more than a year of use it still looks new!
Here is Casey hiking in the winter conditions of New England. She looks like she really enjoys the outdoors!
Trapper relaxes in his red Banzai dog pack during their hike in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. One of the nice features of our designs is that they all allow dogs to lay down and relax while wearing their dog packs. As you can see in the photos, Trapper is resting peacefully after a long hike. He doesn't look like he's aware that his pack is still attached.
We received several email messages about Trapper's pack, which we will share below.
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 1996 20:57:03
From: Geoffrey Blair
Subject: Trapper's new backpack!
Hi Linda -
Can't tell you how pleased we are with Trapper's (our Golden) new pack. We dove right in and bought the top of your line and are glad we did. He is not easy on it and it has been through the toughest of brush, rock, snow and ice without losing a stitch! It's also hard to believe how much better he walks / runs with it over the last pack he had (from another manufacturer). It sort of just hung on him, hitting his elbows and shifting forward whenever descending a mountain.
Your pack is terrific. Thanks for all your help on the phone just before we ordered it.
Geoff and Fran Blair (Bloom)
Date: Sat, 22 Jan 2000 18:42:46 -0500
From: Geoff Blair
Subject: Our Banzai
Hi Linda -
Was looking at your new site (new to us anyway). It's great.
In doing so, I saw that we had bought Trapper's pack almost four years ago. Trapper has somewhat retired from the arduous hiking and our new addition Summit is taking over, WITH the four year old Banzai! Not a stitch has broken...not a tear in the cloth. Trapper has climbed 39 of New Hampshire's 4,000 footers with his Banzai...through narrow rock openings, under low blow downs, through ice arches, and has been swimming with it on virtually every hike and the Banzai keeps on ticking! I can't say enough for the overall quality. It was certainly worth the few dollars over what was certain to be a far inferior product!
Hope things are well with you. Looks like the company is in a steady growth mode!