Each spring thousands of hikers prepare to hit the trails. Whether you are planning a day hike, a backpacking expedition, or simply going camping for a long weekend, a quality hiking backpack is essential. Here we will take a look at a few of the best hiking backpack models available today and offer some insight into selecting the best one according to your needs and requirements.
Things to Consider When Choosing a Hiking Backpack
- Construction. When choosing the best hiking backpack to get you through your next outdoor expedition, it is wise to carefully consider the construction of the backpack. You should consider things like the stitching, strength of seams, and material. Strength and durability are of the utmost importance. You may also want to consider a compartmentalized hiking backpack to help stay organized.
- Size and Adjustability. The size of your hiking backpack is everything. If it is too big you will be carrying unnecessary extra weight. If your hiking backpack is too small, you will find yourself having to leave essential items behind. It is also important to choose the best hiking backpack that fits your body. Many are adjustable in various ways so just make sure that you know how to make it work best for you. There are even hiking backpacks that can fit a baby as well. There is nothing worse than going on a long hike and finding that your backpack does not fit properly, chafes, or is otherwise uncomfortable.
- Features. The most popular hiking backpacks come in a variety of shapes and sizes. As such, they also come in many styles and with many features to best personalize it for you. Different configurations offer an array of organizational capabilities and external hooks, loops, and pockets keep your essentials within easy reach. Some of the best hiking backpack options even come with built in pack cover to keep the rain out. This is all a matter of personal preference. There are many ways to prepare for a hike, and what works for one may not for another. Be sure to give it some thought.
- Price. As with any purchase, consider your budget. While more expensive is not always better, there is often a reason for the higher price point on an item. The same is true when it comes to purchasing the best hiking backpack. If this is something you intend use over many years, perhaps you should spend a little more. If this is your first rodeo and you are not sure you will continue hiking then maybe spend a little less. Whatever your choice, whatever your budget, make sure that your selection is the best hiking backpack for you!
Best Hiking Backpack Top 10 Comparison Guide
Reviews of the Top Rated Hiking Backpacks
The High Sierra Tech 2 Series Titan 55 Internal Frame Pack is a 55 liter top load hiking backpack featuring drawstring closure and an adjustable top lid. The lid offers both an outer and an inner zippered pocket for storing small gear for easy accessibility. External zippered pockets on the backpack itself make quick access a breeze.
The compression straps, bungee cords, and even a key fob make packing a cinch. The main straps are adjustable for height and contoured for a comfortable fit while adjustable load lifters make it easy to regulate the center of gravity. A great midsized backpack for the hiker on a budget, the Tech 2 Series Titan 55 can stand up to a long day on the trail or even an overnight during the warm months of the year.
The Osprey Kestrel 32 is a best hiking backpack option for those looking to spend an afternoon on the trail without overloading themselves. Made of lightweight nylon material, the Kestrel incorporates many features for ease of use and comfort on the path.
Osprey’s stow on the go trekking pole attachment keeps your poles out of the way and securely attached when not in use and the two external loops and clove hitch style bungee tie offs make it easy to secure other gear to the bag as well. Additionally, Osprey has integrated a detachable rain cover and hydration reservoir sleeve into this little gem. A little more expensive than some others on our list, the Kestrel 32 will provide years of enjoyment in the great outdoors.
Kelty is another big name in the world of hiking and camping equipment. Offered here is the Red Cloud 90 Backpack. This top rated hiking backpack was designed for the back country trekker with its extra large capacity, simple organization, heavy duty suspension, and durable construction. Kelty’s PerfectFIT™ suspension system provides maximum adjustability for any torso length along with the HDPE frame sheet and reinforced waist belt for stability and comfort on the trail.
One of the coolest features of this hiking backpack is the detachable lid that functions as a daypack for those short excursions from base camp. Versatility and durability are the name of the game with the red Cloud 90. This hiking backpack is sure to please for many years.
The Topsky Internal Frame Backpack caters to many hikers with this next bag as it comes in a range of sizes including 40L, 50L, and 60L. Three compartments, a hydration reservoir, and myriad other pockets make this the demanding hikers dream come true. On the outside of the pack are daisy chains, D shape hooks, compression straps, bottom loops, soft latching loops, key rings, and bottom straps for hanging accessories allowing anyone to outfit themselves for any eventuality on the trail.
Heavy duty buckles and zippers, water repellent material, and tear resistant fabric ensure durability and safety in the wild. Overall, this reliable hiking backpack has everything the avid outdoorsman might want. Topsky offers great value and all the bells and whistles to please just about anyone.
Another day pack, the Deuter Futura 32 Backpack is designed for comfort no matter where the trail may lead. Their signature Aircomfort FlexLite System integrates load lifters, anatomically designed shoulder straps with hip fins, and a ventilation system to keep even the sweatiest hiker cool and comfortable during a day in the woods. Deuter even includes a wet laundry pocket and a built in rainfly to keep your gear safe and dry.
This backpack is also hydration system ready. Deuter has got you fully covered wherever water is concerned. A nice bang for the buck, this hiking backpack might be a little on the small side for the backcountry trekker, but it is sure to provide great value to those enjoying primarily day hikes.
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