Canvas Portage Packs

I’m looking to buy a couple of canvas portage packs. Dose any one know which is better, Duluth Pack or Frost River? Also where can I find the best prices? Thanks for your help.

Ah’ use de Duluth

– Last Updated: Feb-04-07 10:36 AM EST –

packs. Have for many decades. They be excellent packs. Alot of wampum - yup but very well made. The Duluths come in standard 15 ounce or the heavy duty 18 ounce versions. Never used or even saw a Frost River yet, so ah' kin not give ye a good answer on how they actually compare. Wat ah' kin see from de ads they look about the same as de Duluths. Frost River had the waxed canvas version of their packs out first and now ah' see dat Duluth is offering some of their packs in waxed canvas too. Ah' always bought mine mail order directly from Duluth. Ah'll probably not buy anymore - de ones ah' gots will probably outlast me.


Best prices

– Last Updated: Feb-05-07 8:13 AM EST –

I’ve been looking for portage packs too. Settled on Frost River and the best prices I have found is at and they have some great pictures of the packs. I’ve never use either pack but I like the look of the Frost River Pack.

Either is Fine
The Frost River company was founded by a long-time worker at Duluth Pack who knew all the tricks of the trade, and they use the same materials and same building methods as used by Duluth Pack. I actually prefer the look of the waxed canvas that you can get from Frost River (makes them look like the old packs you see in 50-year-old photos), and the waxing provides better waterproofing. I have one Frost River pack that’s made from standard green, non-waxed canvas, and it looks exactly like a Duluth Pack. I believe the build quality of the two brands to be identical, and I’d happily buy either one. You can’t go wrong!

Is your heart set
on a canvas model?

I have a Granite Gear Quetico. I went that route due to issues with neck vertebra and worrying about using a tum[line. I just recently discovered a feature that I really like about this pack: Before loading it into a canoe, reach down through the flat pocket behind the padded panel of the pack’s back. Grab the middle of the hip belt, and pull it upwards toward the “V” where the shoulder straps are attached. The belt effectively disappears into the pocket, leaving the buckle ends barely protruding. That should keep the belt out of the bilgewater. For the next portage, just pull the buckle halves and t ebelt pops back into place. QED!


Just got mine
Just got a Frost River Old #7 from Northwest Woodsman. What an awesome pack! Can’t wait for the ice to melt and hit the water. Got a folding bucksaw also. Thanks for the tip pathnpaddle. Happy paddling all!!!