Planning for a backpacking trip? You will want the right kind of backpack for all of your essentials. Luckily, there are so many variations of backpacks to choose from on the market today; however, it can also overwhelm you. Furthermore, in choosing the right kind of backpack and what size backpack for backpacking, you should consider 3 things.
Backpack capacity: Finding the Right Size Backpack for Backpacking
This refers to the capacity of the backpack, and in choosing what capacity works best for you means that you would need to consider the length of your trip and how much weight you want to carry during this trip.
If you are planning a 1 to 3 day trip, then you will want to consider a backpack with a capacity of at least 30L to 50L. It is important to look for a backpack that is not too bulky and as much as possible, it should be lightweight. Keep in mind that in the process of packing light, you should carefully consider what to pack; it requires discipline.
If your trip will last for 3 to 5 days then you should look for a backpack with a capacity of at least 50L to 80L. These backpacks work best for when you are backcountry skiing and hiking as well. For extended trips (5 nights or more), you would need at least 70L and above.
These are also considered the perfect choice for when you are going on a winter trek lasting for more than one night since it will be necessary for you to carry extra clothing, a thicker and warmer sleeping bag and a 4-season tent. Adults who would like to take their children along will want to carry more things (kids’ gear) than usual.
This pertain to the refinements that the backpack can offer. Some of these include internal and external frame backpacks, ventilation, pack access, top lid, sleeping bag compartment and more.
For the frame of the backpack, there are 3 types: internal, external, and frameless. Internal frame backpacks are body-hugging backpacks that are designed to keep the user in a stable position even on an off-trail terrain. Internal frame backpacks can feature many kinds of support technology which allows the weight to be transferred to the hips.
The external frame backpack, on the other hand, may be more appropriate if your load is heavy or irregular. Say you are carrying an inflatable kayak to a lake, this would be the perfect choice for you. External framed backpacks also offer a good ventilation system and feature many organizing options for your gear.
Lastly, frameless backpacks are perfect for those who want to pack light. Those who hike fast and light will appreciate this type of backpack because without the frame, you save on weight.
Another backpack feature is the ventilation system of the backpack. There are a great number of backpacks that have a back panel of suspended mesh. This is to avoid the “sweaty back syndrome” that you normally get with internal framed backpacks. This tension-mesh suspension is similar to that of a trampoline where the frame is supported and it rides along a few inches from your back. Instead, it rests against the mesh, which is highly breathable.
A backpack can either have a top-load opening as pack access or panel access. The top-load openings are very standard and can be seen on almost every backpack. Panel access, on the other hand, refers to the front panel of the backpack which is zippered to provide an easy way of accessing the main compartment.
Some also feature sleeping bag compartments and it is usually situated at the bottom of the backpack. While its main purpose is to hold your sleeping bag, it can also be used to store other essential things.
Fit of the backpack
The backpack fit pertains to your torso length. You should look for a backpack that is appropriate for your torso length and not typically your overall height. In this way, you can ensure that the backpack will hug your hips comfortably.
We hope that this article was able to provide you with a sense of direction as to what to look for when choosing a backpack, and what size backpack for backpacking is the best option for your needs