How to Choose a Backpack for Hiking 2022 Ultimate Guide FOR YOUR ADVENTURES

Read our blog post and learn more about how to choose a backpack for hiking so that you can stay safe, healthy, comfortable, and happy while exploring this beautiful world we live in.

how to choose a backpack for hiking

Choosing the right backpack, and the length of your hike is the very first thing to consider. For a normal day hike, a backpack between 10 and 25 liters should be sufficient. You could fit your water bottle in your backpack and your meal in this pack, as well as a jacket and sunscreen, to cater to all weather situations!

Also Read: 10 Best Hydration Packs for Hiking in 2021

For hikes choosing the best backpack for hiking isn’t easy because the market is flooded with so many types of backpacks, making it harder for you to choose the best one for your hiking needs. How do you know what size or features to look for if you have no experience? How can you find that ideal backpack that is comfortable and durable enough to last a lifetime of hiking?

When choosing a pack, consider all the advantages and disadvantages of each one. How much you carry, your body shape and size as well as how long will you be hiking are all important factors to consider when choosing the best hiking backpack for you. How do you know what size or features to look for if you have no experience? How can you find that ideal backpack that is comfortable and durable enough to last a lifetime of hiking?

Also Read: Top 10 Best Kids Hydration Pack [2021] Ultimate Review

How do you pack your backpack?

Please note: How you pack your backpack is just as important as choosing a backpack that’s right for you. Make sure to squeeze everything in and avoid putting too much weight on the bottom of your bag. It takes time to get used to packing correctly, but it’s time well spent so make sure you take the time to get it right!

The Types of Hiking Backpacks

There are different types of backpacks on the market: internal frames, external frames, and frameless packs. The most popular choice is an internal frame backpack because they have a solid support structure that is built into its design.

Our Top Picks ( internal frames, external frames, and frameless packs )

Osprey Atmos AG 65 Men’s Backpacking Backpack ( internal frame )

  • Anti-Gravity suspension – feels like you are carrying less weight than is in your pack.
  • Adjustable harness and Fit-on-the-Fly hipbelt to dial in the perfect fit.
  • Front stretch mesh pocket for quick storage of rain gear or extra layers.
  • Internal hydration reservoir sleeve.
  • load range: 30-50 lbs..
  • Pack weight 4.56 lbs.

Vargo Exotic 50 Backpack, Blue/Gray ( external frame )

types of hiking backpacks ( external frame )
  • Ultralight titanium alloy external frame.
  • Ergonomic Lumbar support plate.
  • Ventilated, adjustable shoulder harness.
  • Load lifting compression strap system.
  • Hydration bladder compatible.
  • Full-size 50-liter bag holds plenty of gear for overnight or weekend guards.
  • Highly stable to carry.
  • Ultralight during Hiking

Venture Pal 40L Lightweight Travel Hiking Backpack Daypack ( frameless )

How to choose your hiking backpack
  • Upgraded Wet Pocket Design.
  • The backpack is made of high-quality tear and water-resistant nylon fabric.
  • Heavy-duty metal zippers.
  • Compact & Comfortable.
  • It weighs only 0.7 pounds.
  • Breathable mesh padded shoulder straps.
  • Large Capacity & Multi-Compartment.
  • 40L storage space.You can easily fold it into its own pocket for storage, and unfold it when you need it.
  • Available in many colors.

How sturdy your backpack is will depend on the number of aluminum stays it has. How much you carry, your body shape and size as well as how long will you be hiking are all important factors to consider when choosing the best hiking backpack for you.

The first thing to decide is if this is going to be a day hike or an overnight trip? Check out the FAQ section below if you’re not sure what type of backpack will work best.

Day packs

If you are planning to hike only for a day, 10 liters should be plenty. Keep in mind that the larger your backpack, the more weight it will carry on your back. It’s important that whatever size you choose, give yourself room to breathe; don’t overload it! How much you pack also depends on how far away you plan on hiking.

The most important feature to look for is comfort and the best way to achieve this is to find a backpack that fits your body type. How high it sits on your back, whether or not it has a hip belt as well as where it rests against your back will make all the difference when you set off on your hike.

An external frame backpack is an option for both overnight and multi-day trips, but it’s not ideal for day hikes because of its bulky nature. The reason is that a heavy external frame backpack can cause fatigue and a sore back if you carry too much weight.

The internal frame backpack is better when it comes to breathability and with the support of an adjustable, padded hip belt – these are usually built-in – you will be able to carry more weight without feeling awkward or uncomfortable. How sturdy your backpack is will depend on the number of aluminum stays it has.

This type of pack is ideal for day hikes because it is usually lighter than an external frame pack and offers excellent back ventilation.

Our Top Picks ( Day packs Hiking Backpacks )

Osprey Packs Talon 22 Hiking Backpack

Osprey Packs Talon 22 Hiking Backpack Day packs
  • External hydration sleeve accommodates up to a 3L
  • Adjustable shoulder harness
  • Stretch mesh pockets on both sides of the pack
  • Two zippered hip belt pockets and LidLock helmet attachment.

This lightweight trail backpack is a great option for day hikes and short overnight trips. It has an ergonomic fit that will hug your body as you move, and two water bottle pockets that are easily accessible so that you can refill on the go. Not only is this a comfortable pack to carry, but it’s also built with an OrthoLite® Classic EVA foam back panel that is both form-fitting and breathable.

Gregory Mountain Hydration Backpack

Gregory Mountain Hydration Backpack
  • Soft Molded, 3D Hydro Reservoir Included with integrated drying hanger
  • VaporSpan ventilated suspension with moisture-wicking mesh and ActiveFlex harness
  • Drylock Magnetic bite valve attachment system allows for one-handed magnetic buckling of the sternum strap
  • Highly Recommended for Camping & Hiking

Osprey Daylite Plus Daypack

Day packs Hiking Backpacks
  • Large loading main compartment provides accessibility to inside contents.
  • Dual stretch mesh side pockets.
  • Multi-function interior sleeve.
  • Spacer meshes padded shoulder straps with integrated handle.
  • The internal padded laptop section.
  • Comfortable Backpanel.
  • Total capacity: 20L.

Multi-day hiking backpacks

Multi-day hiking backpacks are often designed to provide room for storage of additional equipment such as extra clothes, sleeping bags, and other miscellaneous items.

How much you carry is another important factor when deciding on which backpack to buy. How much food and water will you need? How many items do you plan on bringing?

These questions are easy to answer if your hike is short but can be more difficult to answer if you are planning a long hike.

How much do you carry in your hiking backpack?

How much you carry is important because the weight of your backpack has an impact on how comfortable and enjoyable your hike will be. There are lighter backpacks available, but they might not last as long as those that are made of a material that is up to the job.

How often do you plan on going hiking?

How often you hike will directly affect your choice of the backpack as well. If you are planning to make several hiking trips and want to spend a significant amount of time in the wild then you should consider buying a more expensive but more durable hiking backpack.

How much durability do you need?

The price of hiking backpacks is often determined by the amount of durability that they offer. How much durability you need will depend on how often you plan on using your backpack. How often you go hiking should have an impact on how much money you are willing to spend.

If your hiking trip is a once-in-a-lifetime experience then it might not be worth spending a lot of money on a durable hiking backpack, but if you are planning on going backpacking again then it might be better to invest in one that will last for years and years.

How often do you intend on using your backpack?

How often you use your backpack is also a factor in choosing the ideal one for you. How much do you want to spend? A more expensive backpacking bag will be designed with durability, comfort, and ease of carrying in mind while a cheaper bag may not.

Our Top Picks ( Multi-day Hiking Backpacks )

If you’re planning on hiking for more than one day it’s important to choose a backpack that is comfortable and will last the distance. Two great options if you’re after a multi-day backpack are the Osprey Porter 55 Women’s or Osprey Porter 65 backpack. These packs have all of the right features:

  • These are very comfortable,
  • A sleeping bag compartment where you can keep your overnight gear separate from the main compartment of your bag.
  • These backpacks have ventilated padding along the back to help keep you cool on hot days.
  • Both have tons of space and come at a more than reasonable price.

Note: How you pack this pack is also important?

Try to avoid putting on heavy items.

Osprey Aura AG 50 Women’s Backpacking Backpack (25-40 lbs Capacity)

Multi-day hiking backpacks for women
  • Anti-Gravity suspension – feels like you are carrying less weight than is in your pack.
  • Adjustable harness and Fit-on-the-Fly hip belt to dial in a perfect fit.
  • Front stretch mesh pocket for quick storage of rain gear or extra layers.
  • Removable floating top lid with dual zippered pockets and web attachment points.
  • Internal hydration reservoir sleeve accommodates up to a 3L reservoir.
  • Recommended load range: 25-40 lbs. – Pack weight 4.1 lbs.
Check Latest Price

Osprey Exos 58 Men’s Backpacking Backpack (20-40 lbs Capacity)

Multi-day hiking backpacks for men
  • AirSpeed suspension
  • Highly ventilated
  • Dual access stretch mesh side pockets
  • Front stretch mesh pocket for quick storage of rain gear or extra layers
  • Internal hydration reservoir sleeve accommodates up to a 3L reservoir
  • Recommended load range: 20-40 lbs.
  • Pack weight 2.68 lbs.

Sleeping Bag Backpack

There are some backpacks designed to make the transportation of a sleeping bag easier, such as the FriXion Down Sleeping Bag Backpack. This backpack is designed to carry a sleeping bag with room for other gear and supplies.

If you are going on Multi-day hiking then it is a must to have a sleeping bag compartment in your backpack.

Our Top Picks ( Sleeping Bag Backpack )

TETON Sports LEEF Lightweight Mummy Sleeping Bag

  • EN rated sleeping bag; Extreme -8F (-22C), Limit 23F (-5C), Comfort 34F (1C)
  • TETON provides a great compression sack for stuffing your sleeping bag;

Material of backpack

The most common material is nylon because of its excellent durability, lightweight, and weather resistance properties. There are also nylon backpacks that use a waterproof fabric to repel water.

Your backpacking needs depend on the duration and distance of your trip. When choosing a backpack, consider all the advantages and disadvantages that different types have. How much you carry, your body shape and size as well as how long will you be hiking are all important factors to consider when choosing the best hiking backpack for you.

How to wear a hiking backpack?

There are many different ways in which you can wear a hiking backpack. The most common way is to distribute the weight through both shoulders and hips so that it feels more natural. If you don’t know what I mean by this, just look at how people carry their backpacks all over campus! You may also want to consider wearing your pack backward if you have a sore shoulder from carrying it on one side for too long. There are many other ways of wearing your pack, but these two will help alleviate some of the pain caused by carrying around heavy gear while trekking up mountains!

Features of hiking backpacks


The design of your backpack’s pockets will affect their usefulness. A good hiking backpack will have a pocket for everything you want to carry.

Suspension systems

The suspension system of a backpack is what transfers the weight from your shoulders to your hips.

Consider the following question before analyzing any backpack suspension.

How well does this work? How does it support the backpack? How easily adjustable is it? How well do all of the individual straps work separately and come together to give you a comfortable fit?

The suspension system is the most important feature of your backpack as it will affect how well you travel and the comfort of your trip. So, buy a good quality backpack and don’t skimp on the suspension system. A backpack with an adjustable suspension system will make your hike comfortable.

Back padding

How padded is the back of the backpack and does that padding improve its comfort?

Back padding is an important factor to remember while purchasing a hiking backpack.

Padded shoulder straps

The more padded your hiking backpack’s shoulder straps are, the more comfortable your trip will be.

Waist belt

The more padded your backpack’s waist belt is, the more comfortable your trip will be.

Is the waist belt designed to evenly distribute the weight of the backpack over a broad area of your torso?

It is also an important point to consider.

Internal compartments

Most of the hiking backpacks come with an internal or lower compartment. So consider the following to have a good backpack.

Is there a compartment for everything you might want to carry? How many internal compartments are there and where are they? How easily accessible are they while your backpack is on;

Hydration Compatible Backpack

Some backpacks are designed to carry a hydration bladder. So, consider a backpack that has a hydration bladder for your hiking trip.


So, we have discussed How to choose a backpack for hiking. I hope this article will help you in choosing the best and most comfortable hiking backpack for you.

Choosing the right backpack can be difficult. You want it to fit your needs, but also not weigh you down with unnecessary features that are too heavy for what you need it for. We hope this has helped shed some light on which type of hiking backpack might work best for you and your next hike!

If you are not well aware of hiking backpacks and need a little help choosing, we have the top picks for you. We know how hard it can be to find what is best when there are so many options out there.

To make your decision easier, we’ve put together this list of our favorite hiking backpacks on the market today. Remember that if all these choices still seem overwhelming or confusing at first glance, contact us with any questions! Our team members will always do their best to answer quickly and offer support in finding the perfect backpack for your needs. Which one of these packs would work best for you?

Hiking backpacks are a crucial piece of gear for anyone who plans on spending any time outside. Whether you’re hiking the Appalachian Trail or just going out to enjoy nature, it’s important that your backpack is up to the task and will last as long as you need it to!

If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comment section at the bottom of this blog. Feel free to share your experience related to How to choose a backpack for hiking with us.

Happy Hiking..!

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