Kids-pack review

>>As a full time Forest Kindergarten we do appreciate well made gear. In no way however do we feel a need or desire to influence our families or readers to purchase any gear in particular. Rather, we aim to share our opinions and knowledge based on our years of outdoor experience, our outdoor preschool experience and our experience as parents. We do not receive sponsorship nor are we compensated in any way by any brands we post about.<<


Here’s our 2019 top picks for packs

REI Tarn 12 and Tarn 18 

This mighty little pack is one of our favorites with a snug fit and bottle holders large enough for a Nalgene it can go anywhere! The front pouch has some stretch, great for stuffing a hat or jacket or teddy in. It also has room in the back for a hydration pouch and with plenty of tough loops for hanging those extra shoes, or bug spray, or utensils on to.

Pro tip: Get the Tarn 12 for kids 5 and under and the Tarn 18 for 6 and up.

Have a book lover on your hands? Try the REI Workload Mini Pack

Similar in size to the Tarn, the Workload has a larger main compartment specifically designed to hold notebooks and binders. So while they may be spending most of their time outdoors, they can bring their favorite items along too. Thing future landscape artist or the next Rachel Carson!

For the already saavy outdoors-child: Deuter Schmusebar

Features (copied straight from rei‘s website – this pack is peak)
  • Breathable shoulder straps and foam back panel
  • Spacious main compartment; mesh side pockets; zippered front pocket
  • Customizable name tag inside; teddy bear included
  • The Deuter Schmusebar pack has 3M® reflective accents

If you and your family are headed for the early hours departure and late night return adventure trip and your child is packed the night before and asleep with his shoes on you should probably check out this mini-pack.


The North Face Youth Recon Squash 

Built for the smaller aged kid in mind, ages six to ten, so they can comfortably carry whatever is important to them.

Here’s what’s great about this pack;

  • The break-away buckle in the front is perfect for securing a lunch box or treasure tote.
  • The deep mesh pockets will last longer and make for easy accessories stuffing.
  • The name tag on inside…. well you why that’s nice.


Osprey Kids’ HydraJet 15 

Mostly what we love about this pack is it’s tight design. Everything is rounded and made to fit just enough stuff. The main compartment is big and deep while the front has inside pockets, with key clips and smaller compartments for snacks. The bungee cord is perfect for stuffing a jacket or teddy on the outside and of course like all the others it has its waist and check buckles for easy carrying.