A Tribute to the Campfire & Bak-Pak Camper

In 2008 when Sierra Custom Interiors of Bristol, Indiana became the manufacturer of Serro Scotty Worldwide trailers, it wasn’t long before they too came out with their own line of small campers for the 2009 model year called the Campfire…

and the entry level Bak-Pak:

(photo courtesy Missouri Teardrops)

Designed by Sierra owners Mike & Greg Greene, the 12’9″ trailers were a throwback to the old canned ham trailers from the 1940′s-60′s. They featured air conditioning, furnace, and optional microwave, toilet, and range. Serro Scotty also got in on the act with their 2009 line-up featuring the Serro Scotty Pup…

(photo courtesy Shane Wolfe)

and the Silver Series Pup:

Both Serro Scotty models were identical to the Sierra versions with respect to shape, floor plan and everything else except the badging and, in the case of the Silver Pup, the silver aluminum. Also, the regular Pup featured the signature Scotty turquoise and white.

For the 2010 models, Sierra came out with the Campfire 15, a longer version of its 13 model, that featured a toilet and optional wet bath.

The final entry in the Campfire lineup was the Campfire XL, a 16′ unit with a similar floor plan to that of the Serro Scotty HiLander.

You may notice that I’ve been speaking of the Sierra Campfire and Bak-Pak in the past tense. Unfortunately, that’s the case. Early in 2011, the Greenes decided to pull the plug on their travel trailer ventures and stick with building custom interiors for horse trailers. As we wrote in September 2011, this decision not only included their own line of trailers, but also meant all Serro Scotty models as well, leaving Bill Kerola to find a new manufacturer for the entire Scotty line.

Neither the Bak-Pak nor the Campfire were mass produced, but those who own them are loyal to their camper and get many inquiries from the curious at the campgrounds. There aren’t many other campers on the market (with the possible exception of the T@B ) that offer a compact, lightweight package like the Campfire and Bak-Pak do. And while a rebirth of the Sierra camper division is unlikely, current owners cling to the hope that one day they can remove their orphan label. Afterall, it wouldn’t be the first time a brand came back to life.

The Campfire website, once a fine site with plenty of pictures, specs, and floor plans, now reads more like an obituary. But all is not lost. There are still Campfires, Bak-Paks, and even a few brand new Scotty Pups (at present time) still available for purchase on ebay, Craigslist, or rvtraderonline.com. There is also a Yahoo Group where owners of the Sierra-built Scottys and Campfires/Bak-Paks can congregate for discussion. And so we say so long to yet another line of campers that didn’t make it…for now.


16 Comments

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16 Responses to A Tribute to the Campfire & Bak-Pak Camper

  1. Jim Wilson

    I am so glad I purchased my Bak Pak when I did. It didn’t make any sense, ordering in December and picking up in January 2011, but something told me the whole concept was too cool to be true. I am wondering if maybe I own the final production Bak Pak. There were no Bak Paks or Campfires in sight when I picked mine up.

    • Steve Lawrence

      Jim, If you got the last Bak Pak, I probably got the last Campfire.

      It’s really a shame since the basic trailer design and the construction were top notch. I attribute the demise of the the Sierra built trailers to a failure to properly idenrtify their target audience and to maket to that audience via a supportive dealer network. Like you, our Campfire has been the hit at virtually every rally or outing. People (usually couples retired or without kids) are curious abot the diminutive size of the camper. However, once they learn the price, see the maple interior, realize the extent of the creature comforts and consider the implications of the towing weight, they begin to get really excited. There’s always significant disappointment when I tell them that the trailer is no longer in production… Like you, I’m so glad we got ours while they were still around….

    • John P Jones

      what will you do for parts? I am considering a used on right now

      • Steve Lawrence

        Really not concerned with obtaining parts since Sierra is still in business and they used normal industry suppliers for all components. They are still using these components for their horse trailer conversion business so it’s really not an issue. Besides, the people at Sierra are very customer focused even though they decided to eliminate this particular line of trailers.

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  3. Sheila

    I have been looking for a tiny trailer for over 20 years..wanted vintage but too heavy, thought of teardrop but too small. I just stumbled across ONE Bak Pak for sale in Pennsylvania and I had never seen one or heard of it but after seeing the specs and actually seeing the pic, it was love at first sight and I knew it was meant for me! I drove from Texas to PA and bought it! I was approached the whole way home with questions on where I got it and where could they get one! I slept in it 2 nights coming home, drove through snow, sleet and rain but once. I was in bed, I was snug as a bug in a rug! I absolutely ADORE my Bak Pak and thank the designers/makers every day! I haven’t even had it a month but know it was exactly what I have been looking for!!! I have already been asked twice if I would sell it…NO WAY!!!

    • Steve Lawrence

      Shelia, Take care of that baby because it’s not replaceable.

      I’ve had the same experience with people falling in love with our little Campfire. While traveling and camping, many people have inquired about buying it and I’ve even turned down several offers for more than our purchase price. By the way, most of the interest has come from tear drop enthusiasts that want a little more space and are tired of the lack of amenities.

      If I had more time and were I more into “manufacturing”, I’d seriously consider trying to resurrect the brand and then marketing it “very” differently than what was done previously.

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  5. Steve graman

    We love our 2009 campfire Sierra. It has everything we need. Tons of storage for such a small compact trailer. It is top of the line. Does anyone know what it’s worth is today, since it is retired? Just curious. It’s quality is outstanding!!!
    So glad we have it!!!

    • Steve Lawrence

      That’s a tough one Steve.

      Our Campfire has a few custom tweaks, but the response from people (mostly retirees) has been outstanding. On four separate occasions (most recently a week ago), I’ve been offered more than we paid. I’ve merely suggested that it’s not for sale…

      I think it will be an artful negotiation assuming the purchaser is indeed interested. There aren’t any more Campfires which argues for its retaining it’s value in a sea of RV’s that traditionally lose in value…

  6. Johnny Jordan

    I traded for a Campfire Camper slide-in and can’t find any info on it. It is an older unit but the condition and quality looks really good. Can anyone direct me to a website or tell me where I can get a manual, etc ??
    Thanks, Johnny Jordan

  7. kcfrnsb

    Can anyone tell me the price of a 2010 Bak Pak when purchased new? Thx.

    • Pat

      Depending on the dealer, I believe a basic Bak-Pak would be in the $8000-$8500 ballpark. The Campfire would go for a little more than that since it was decked out with a few more options.

  8. kcamper

    Thx, Pat! Two more questions at this point: 1) Looking for a Bak Pak Owner’s Manual, or pdf of same; 2) Will the awning for a T@B trailer fit the Bak Pak?

  9. John Kroner

    July 2014 – I have got an extremely clean 2009 Bak Pak Camper that I am getting ready to sell – asking $5,300. Contact me at kronerproperties@gmail.com for info and pictures. Located in St. Louis, Missouri

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