Friday, June 29, 2012

D.Y. / Woods Canada Renewed Canoe Packs.


This project has been months in the works. What started as a idea has finally taken shape into some rare, one of a kind pieces of kit. Woods started in 1885, when James W. Woods starts supplying lumbermen, miners, surveyors and other pioneers with canvas products, tents, sleeping bags and clothing to meet the rough and tough conditions required to explore and work in Canada deep forests. From the Klondike Gold rush of the 1890’s to the first sailing of the Northwest Passage in 1905; from the early Arctic Expeditions and to the first ascent of Canada’s highest peak, Mt. Logan, Woods Canada has been there. Unfortunatly the need for tough canvas goods dwindled over the years and woods only makes a couple of their original dry goods, like their prospecter tent and their two canoe packs. 

The story is that I had heard through some forums of a gentlemen selling the old beat up Woods packs on behalf of a Muskoka area summer camp. After many email back and forth I was able to purchase the last 4 packs from him. When The package arrived I was surprised to see that I got two No.100's and two No.200's. The goal of this project was to save these iconic pieces of Canadian outdoor history from the trash and to put them once again into the hands canoeists and adventurers alike. To breath new life into these beat up, used and abused canvas packs.

Original bag with old straps.
Woods Pack DY No.02 is the first Damn Yak / Woods refurbished Canoe pack to be released to the public. The process to get these packs from trash to treasure was not as easy as I though.  I received them in terrible shape; missing their handy tump lines and all in need of a complete tear down.  I started by ripping out all the old rivets, some were original and some were replaced by the camp. After taking off the old rotted leather straps, I cleaned the bags with some heavy duty biodegradable cleaner, scrubbing the living daylights out of them. they hung in my basement with a fan for 2 days, and from there I soaked all remaining leather pieces with US made Obenauf's Leather oil to rejuvenate them and put some life back into the leather. 

Front of original bag.

Before starting on the new leather work I went through the bags and patched all the holes that required attention, Using heavy nylon thread they were backed with canvas for added durability. Some of the small holes were left for character as they posed no effect on the integrity of the bag.

I started the leather-work using 9 oz veg tan tooling leather, cutting all the straps and constructing new tump lines for each of the bags. Each strap what then rubbed down with the leather oil for a good foundation to build on. When riveting (copper rivets) the new bag together I had to place new leather washers on top of all the original tabs to make sure that they would be strong enough to provide the new owner at least 40 more years of solid use.

Each bag is numbered and has about 4 hours of careful labor into them. These packs are meant to be used, and abused again. The beautiful thing about canvas packs is the fact that they can be repair countless times and passed down from parent to child, capturing within the fibers of the canvas all your early mornings, raging rapids, cool nights, and warm fires. 

The dimensions are approx 32" x 20" x 8" about 69L, however when taking the photo the pack the 8" was pushed out to 15" wide with pillows.

I will be selling them one at a time as I construct them, remember only 2 left after this one. If you have any other questions please let me know.

Price: $120 Plus shipping based on customers location (paypal only).

To purchuse please send me an email: Damnyak(at) When sold I will update this Post.


  1. Is this pack available? We would like to purchase it.

    1. Hello Barbara, I just have to verify when I get home, but I think I do. Can you please send me an email to

    2. Barbara, I have it ready to go, please send me an email to coordinate shipping etc.



  2. I closed my eyes after reading this blog. What amazing feeling. I wish to experience even 1 time. Thanks for your sharing.

  3. This pack is also very good at hunting and it will help a lot for hunters. Thanks for useful information you brought to me. I will introduce my friends about your packs

  4. Thanks for great information . I will come here

  5. Great Info, admire your work! Keep it up my man!

  6. Thanks for your great information. This bag is really helpful for hunting and camping. I think it is a traditional bag.

  7. Very informative post. thanks a lot

  8. Helpful article. waiting for next article.

  9. Keep posting informative article.

  10. Those bags are very uniques on the market, I suppose no boday can buy the same one now.

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