I was watching some show called Travel Living on Cable TV in my room; I have trouble watching these travel shows or reading travel magazines as they annoy me because they to me are just large commercial and little good advice. They had a backpack for 225 Dollars and a sleeping bag for 225 Dollars and they were saying what a great value that was.
My research tells me I can make a down backpack for around 10-12 dollars USA and a sleeping bag around 20 dollars. The shipping is the biggest expense.
I really do not think people care about the price and they think price equates to quality. The biggest problem for the world traveler is how to replace all the junk you buy after you fall in love with it, most of this stuff cannot be purchased outside your home country. I keep thinking it would be nice to pay the 225 and this pays for two and has the second one shipped anywhere on the planet when you lose or have the other one stolen.
I normally do not buy any gear I cannot buy off the shelf in cities like Guayaquil where they do not sell gear.