Holiday time is coming up. You’ve booked a nice trekking trip and you are ready to gear up for your next adventure challenge. Whatever destination or altitude, traveling light is essential to make your trip an enjoyable moment. But choosing the right backpack is sometimes a tough task.
However if you stick to some easy to remember tips, you would be able to pick up the backpack that suits your needs.
1 – Think comfy
Whether you’re on the trail for an altitude trek like Everest Base Camp or on a trekking peak like Kilimanjaro, your backpack must fit you comfortably. A 40 Liter pack is the right size to stuff warm clothes, snack bars, a camera, gloves and your water bottles.When carrying your backpack the weight have to be transferred to your hips, not to your shoulders. Then, always adjust your waist belt first on your hips. Make sure your straps are well padded and body adjustable. The backpanels should maintain your lumbar in full comfort. A cooling mesh system will allow air ventilation to wick moisture and perspiration. Most bags are designed with adjustable straps and released buckles for a greater support. Some outfitters also propose ergonomic shoulder straps to prevent all constraint. Finally, adjust your padded shoulder strap system and the chest strap to prevent shoulder straps from sliding down.
2 – Body balance
Inner framed backpack are commonly used to strengthen the structure of your bag. The inner frame provides maximum support, safe balance and prevents the bag from folding when carrying heavy loads. It keeps you stable and well-balanced at all times whilst giving you the freedom of movement. Walking on narrow trails, hiking down steep slopes or crossing streams is no longer a problem when your bag stick to your back and follows your movements in full safety.Exterior compression straps are wisely stitched throughout your backpack. Tight them firmly to maintain the load in place and avoid unpleasant swaying on uneven terrain. Use the external loops to attach bedroll or mattress to save space in your bag.
3 – Pocket or not pocket?
Your bag may look nice with all that side pockets! Some backpacks have plenty of storage pockets while others are fully pocket free. Your choice will depend on your trekking activity, not on the fancy look of your bag. Hiking backpack designed for gentle walk will generally have deep meshy side pockets to store bottles of water or little gear. Your stuff are then handy and easy to grab. Those bags are fine for low trekking with less than 4/5 hours walk a day on gentle terrain. As you get through mountain trails or uneven terrain, trekking conditions can be harsh and tracks become really treacherous. A Slim backpack profile designed for mountaineering activities is more appropriate. Pack your gear in inner compartments to keep all gear tidy and stabilize the load to maintain body balance. Free pocket bags prevent gear from hanging and hooking up. Top lid pocket is usually safer and more convenient to hold extra gear. On mountain trips, front stretch mesh pocket for additional stowage, ice axe loops and elastic cord compression system usually offer excellent gear stability.
4 – Hydration compartment
Drinking while active prevents muscle cramps and, in altitude, early symptoms of Acute Mountain sickness. Store your flexible bladder in an internal hydration pouch equipped with a hose guide to keep the nozzle accessible to drink regularly. The benefits? No need to take off your backpack to drink. Less bottles to carry. And once the bladder is sealed, the liquid won’t leak inside and soak your fluffy slipping bag for the night!
5 – Extra features
Water-resistant and anti-abrasive liner, a good and robust lock system and a bright (but fancy) color that would ease the job of a rescue team to locate you in alpine terrain, are the final touch before setting off to your next adventure trekking trip.
And finally, have fun!