A backpack is an essential piece of gear for outdoor enthusiasts and finding just the right backpack is invaluable to ensuring your preparedness. Today’s sporting goods market provides a wide range of specialized packs, offering products that are tailored to just about any activity you can think of. With a backpack that has been designed for specific needs, you will be ready to enjoy your chosen adventure.
Before choosing a pack, make sure you consider the features that will be most helpful to you. What elements will be most beneficial for you for outdoor excursions? What capacity of pack is needed to carry your essential supplies and equipment? And would it benefit you to have a few specialized packs, particularly if your different chosen activities have very different needs? Review the pack types below to see several options available, then evaluate what will work best for your requirements and budget.
This type of pack has been available on the sporting goods market for years, but there are size and style choices to match any individual preferences. A good hiking daypack has enough space for all your critical gear, including food and water for the day and an emergency supply just in case. Some packs feature a few extras, such as space for hiking poles, and external loops that allow you to hook various items to the outside of the pack. The Hu Wai Jian Feng outdoor hiking waterproof backpack is one product option; it offers 40 liters of storage space and several compartments to keep your gear organized.
Hiking Overnight Pack
When you are headed out on a hike that involves staying in the outdoors for one or even several nights, you need a sturdy pack with enough room to hold all your food, water and supplies needed for the days you will be out on your hiking adventure. There are packs on the market with capacities between 40 and 85 liters, depending on how many days’ worth of supplies you would like the capability to carry. Hiking packs also come with either external or internal frames; external frames typically hold more weight and ipacks such as the 50-liter Stansport internal frame pack are designed to enhance comfort while hiking.
Rock Climbing Pack
For rock climbing you want to minimize what you carry as much as possible, so a compact and lightweight pack is ideal. You will likely want something waterproof to keep things dry in any weather, and adjustable straps that let you make sure everything is secure when you are high in the air. Deep pockets on the sides are also beneficial, as they allow you to store items confident that they will not slip out while you are climbing. Another key feature of these bags is an easy-to-open fastening system, so you can access items as needed while in precarious positions. A pack with just a few key features will be sufficient for the climber who is paying close attention to his/her every move.
A pack for mountaineering needs to be fairly substantial, as it must contain all the equipment you need for several days in the wilderness. These types of packs have sizeable hydration systems to allow storage of up to three liters of water. Separate compartments allow for items to be divided up appropriately, such as keeping dirty clothing away from clean items. Mountaineering packs also typically offer a built-in rain cover to protect the whole pack from water penetration.
Mountain Biking Pack
An effective cycling backpack should stay secure as you ride and provide sufficient storage for water as well as necessary gear. Another important feature of a biking pack is ventilation, to ensure that you feel comfortable at all times. Many packs of this type also have a lower pouch that allows you to keep tools handy just in case you have a bike malfunction. Other valuable storage areas include a space for your helmet and an exterior loop where a light can be attached if needed.
Trail Running Pack
Packs for runners are extra lightweight but have sufficient room to store several liters of water and keep it cold for hours. These packs typically feature adjustable straps and even a front pouch for easy access to keys and other essential items. Running packs are also quite lightweight and close fitting to stay out of the way during your run. Newer features include ventilation channels to send cooling air across your back and keep you from becoming overheated.
To be fully prepared while out enjoying the snow, it is helpful to have a bag that provides straps for attaching skis and snowboards. Some packs even allow you to carry your equipment both horizontally and vertically. A pack used for fun on the slopes usually also has a zippered space just for your helmet and may even come with an avalanche airbag for added safety. This type of safety feature is invaluable if you plan to venture out into the backcountry. These snowsport packs also typically have a safe pocket to keep essential safety equipment handy and protected. The pack will work best if it fits close to your body, allowing for ease of movement as you head down the slopes.
The primary requirement for an effective rafting pack is its ability to keep all your gear dry. Packs for this type of outdoor adventure feature waterproof materials, as well as a roll-lock fastener that stays shut tight to prevent water from entering the bag. Rafting packs also typically offer shoulder straps, a waistbelt, and sternum straps to keep the bag secure at all times and avoid a fall into the water. The Frogg Toggs PVC Tarpauline Waterproof Backpack is the perfect choice for this purpose; it has all the essential features as well as removable insulated cooler.
This type of pack allows you the convenience of taking it along as an extra source of storage inside another pack, particularly if you are taking a long-distance trip. These packs are a great option to use as daypacks, for short hikes or just to have along on any type of outing. They are lightweight, compress easily and have little to no padding as they are not intended for carrying heavy loads. These packs usually have buckles for securing items and several pockets for convenient storage of a variety of things you may need on your adventure.
If your outdoor exploration will require airline or train travel, then you should strongly consider a backpack designed specifically to take rough treatment. Options might include a zippered back panel to keep straps from getting caught up in the baggage carousel at the airport. And if you have to carry your pack a long distance in adverse weather, a stowable rainfly provides essential protection from the elements. These packs are typically manufactured with highly durable materials and appropriate ventilation to keep you comfortable as you move.
Specialized Pack – Just for Cameras
If your idea of adventure in the wilderness is more focused on capturing the beauty of nature than more physical activities, you need a pack that will effectively fit all your equipment so that you can access it easily on the trail. These packs offer all the essential comfort you want in any backpack, as well as several unique storage areas customized for your equipment needs. You will also find plenty of room for hydration, food and other supplies necessary for any day hike.
Although work may not always be an exciting adventure, some jobs may require travel and a pack that has sufficient space for several items can make your workday much more pleasant. You can use a daypack that has extra space or purchase a pack with a specially designed laptop sleeve and room for other small devices. These packs will protect all of your valuables and provide enough extra space to store a water bottle or anything else you might need during your workday.
After reading through this list you can see the wide range of backpacks available for all your exciting outdoor adventures. If you want a pack that is extremely customized for a specific activity it will be fairly easy to find, so you can feel free to go out and explore nature in whatever way suits you best.
Some packs are pricier than others, so that is something to keep in mind as you shop. If price is a major consideration, look for a pack with complementary features that will serve dual purposes for your outdoor explorations. But if you don’t mind spending a little more for your favorite pastime, then you will be able to easily find a backpack that has all of the precise features that you are looking for. Regardless of what pack or set up packs you decide on, always remember that the enjoyment of the outdoor experience is what it is all about.