Backpacker: Rip & Go!

Backpacker: Rip & Go!

Matthew Bates, DD at Backpacker, sends along a look at some new pages:
Here at Backpacker, we are constantly trying to come up with new ways to create unique pages that help go beyond the beautiful scenic photo. We are blessed with a subject matter that lends itself to stunning images of beautiful locations, but as a vertical title, we are always looking to create pages that change up the pace a bit or add some extra texture to the outdoors. We redesigned the magazine this past spring with this in mind.
Read on for a fantastic in-depth look at the mag's Rip & Go pages and more, and be prepared to want to take off, immediately, yourself...

Our Rip & Go pages are intended to give the reader everything they need for a weekend trip, including the elevation profile showing highlights from the trip text and distances between each highlight. We also include which section of the trip you cover each day, and the location of the photo (with GPS coordinates). We really wanted to pack as much service on the page without getting things too cluttered up. The pages were designed so the reader could rip them out and take it with them, so there are additional service items on the back including trip specific skill, gear, recipes and even a shopping list at the nearest grocery store with the aisle number for each item.
For some fun, we have been working with Headcase Design on a page called The Predicament. We wanted to develop a survival page that was service oriented but also fun for the readers. We created a game style page where the reader tests their survival knowledge with different questions on a certain life and death scenario. Lunchbox the Cadaver Dog (who appears in each one) has developed an immediate following among the readers.
It has been fun to try and think a bit beyond just the beautiful scenic image (which we still love and have plenty of).
When it fits, we have been playing up portraits like Kevin Zacher's image of Jordan Romero, who is trying to become the youngest person to climb the seven summits.
We have also been working illustration into the feature well when appropriate. Tomer Hanuka's amazing piece that accompanied a feature we just sent to the printer about a
reporter's "unusual" experience in the woods with a ghost was a great way to break up the pacing in the November feature well.
The Backpacker creative team includes:

Matthew Bates :: Design Director

Julia Vandenoever :: Photo Editor

Jackie McCaffrey :: Assistant Art Director

Genny Fullerton :: Senior Associate Photo Editor

Hey! You've probably got some NEW WORK to share, and we want to see it! We'll welcome anything that's gone to the printer recently, something you're especially proud of and think might be inspiring to the membership and readers of Grids. We'll note the credits and the publication and shine a little light on the latest and greatest in publication design.

Please reduce your layouts to no larger than 1200 pixels wide and don't forget to include all relevant credits and a little background (if you feel like). Send your submissions to and we'll post them as we get them.

PREVIOUSLY: Ocala Magazine
PREVIOUSLY: Footwear Plus

  • Shane Luitjens

    As a backpacker and hiker, I have come to embrace the editorial of Backpacker as my own hiking buddy! As an AD, I appreciate the utility of the tear out pages, the informational pages made into fun experiences and the clean modern approach to design. Kudos from a subscriber and fan!

  • Brian Taylor Illustration

    Love the Tomer / Ozark spread.

  • Mark Montgomery

    Great integration of photography, illustration and text. The information graphics in the Rip & Go section are well designed, giving the reader vital hiking information within a compact space. Great job!

  • Mike Solita

    Love the utility of pages designed to be ripped out. Magazines are meant to be scribbled on, thrown in bags and back-pockets, cut up and stuck on the refrigerator. Awesome work. :)

  • Tim Leong

    Love the TOC!

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