One comment on the video, I’ve compressed the Backpacker Pro into a 9L stuff sack & recommend the Sea to Summit ultramesh medium size to reduce the volume to easily fit in a backpack. This is what is pictured in the “photos” at www.wildernesslitefloattubes.com showing ~16” length of the float tube in the stuff sack.
Regarding use for backpacking, I have used Wood River float tubes weighing 4 to 5 pounds for backpacking wilderness areas for week long trips since 2002. For full disclosure, because Wood River went out of business, I developed the Backpacker Pro so I could replace my old Wood River tubes and have even lighter tubes available for new friends to join us in wilderness fishing with their own, new float tube. Our week long hike last summer was the final “road test” of the Backpacker Pro, and we’re planning to take 2 this year….including one with our daughters carrying Backpacker Pro’s. These tubes compress into a 9 liter stuff sack to fit nicely inside my 85L expedition backpack (Mountainsmith Specter LT). We’re still backpacking with Backpacker Pro float tubes including all the gear for 7 days, and we’re, unfortunately, really, really close to 60. We just carry a bit more ibuprofen each year…. and hope to have many more wilderness days in a Backpacker Pro on a mountain lake, which is why we are so pleased to make them available once again to others who wish the same.
Believe me, 3.8 pounds is very packable, and we’re very proud to note the Backpacker Pro is MADE IN THE USA.
The photos on the website (www.wildernesslitefloattubes.com) include a young man (age 16) in a Wood River Summer Breeze float tube that weighs ~4.5 pounds, which is heavier than the 3.8 pound Backpacker Pro. This young man, his 14 year old friend, and their fathers (age early 50’s) carried tubes, waders, flippers, life jacket, net, water shoes, fly rods & reel, food, clothing, and tent for a week (packs weighing 40-50 pounds) on a 48.7 mile round trip into a wilderness area to fish 6 lakes at 7,000 to 9,000 foot elevation. The hike began at 5,500 feet. Suitable for backpacking---well, yes, proven suitable for ages 14 to 58!
Phil Hayes for Wilderness Lite LLC….the ultralight float tubes