Deuter in the pumpkin patch

It was a beautiful October day in Colorado so we loaded both kids, a picnic lunch, an arsenal of snacks, diapers, and layers into the car and drove just 10 minutes north of Fort Collins to the Bartel Farm pumpkin patch.  The pumpkins looked like little orange dots as far as you could see and our two-year-old sat up with sudden interest.

We parked, loaded our Deuter Kid Comfort II with everything in the car, and headed out.  Our older daughter loved the view from up high where she could see the multitude of colorful pumpkins, gourds and squashes and could safely enjoy the rooster that was running around the grounds.

Where once we would have loaded a similar-sized pack with backpacking gear for a week-long trip, we now are thankful to have equipment that holds a similar-sized load with a stylish child carrier to take us into our new version of the backcountry: the back forty.  We took turns drinking from the water reservoir hose as we wove in and out of rows of pumpkins looking for the right one.

Certainly the perfect pumpkin had to be any one of these nearly identical beauties I kept thinking as our kiddo pointed further and further on.  I couldn't help but feel I'd been in this situation before. It reminded me of my dating days when my now-husband would be hiking ahead pointing up trails to the next bend, summit, or bench where surely the best camping spot lay.  Like father, like daughter.  Most likely it won't be long until we'll be backpacking in the less agricultural wilderness again, when she can carry her own pack and they can find the perfect tent site together.

Meegan Flenniken

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