I have to say that when I got this Montana Backpacker Travel guitar as a gift last Christmas, I never thought I would actually play it. It was cute, like maybe a kid would play it. But I was attached to my full size Yamaha. How could such a tiny, funny-looking instrument put out great sound like a “real” guitar? I thanked my Mom, who thought I would take it on the backpack trips I went on frequently, but I knew I’d still prefer my “grown-up” guitar.
Then in April, when a friend suggested we go on a weekender in his Ford Escort, there really wasn’t room for my big guitar, so on a whim, I threw in the Montana Backpacker. When we finally settled into the campsite, I pulled it out as a joke. As I began to play, I was pretty surprised. The neck was kind of heavy so it kept wanting to hang down, but the sound was really pretty good. It had a nearly full-size fret board which was really nice. I didn’t really care for the cheap strings or the toy like plastic tuning knobs but when I got home, I decided the portability and convenience of its smaller size made it worth the upgrade to some high quality strings and metal tuners. What a difference that made!
The wood Montana used is acceptable. Nothing very high quality but adequate. It’s a relatively cheap guitar, not as expensive as the Washburn or the Martin Backpacker (another funny-looking shape) but probably not as good, either. It weighs a bit more, around 4 pounds, but that is much lighter than my Yamaha. It came with a carrying case that was adequate, but could have had a few more features. I like to have a pocket for picks and extra strings, but this one didn’t have that. Not a big deal though.
This odd-shaped travel guitar has been to several mountains, a Bahamas cruise, and a family reunion. Everywhere I go, people comment on how cute it is (remember I was the first to call it cute!), then they mention how good it sounds. I even made up a song for my Mom on it.Published in