If you’re a nature enthusiast, you aren’t afraid to grab a hiking backpack and head out into the great outdoors. You are ready to conquer any trail before you. A steep hill, camping supplies, and a sleeping bag are items you keep near at all times. The only question is – do you have the right backpack for your upcoming adventure?
Purchasing a backpack is a lot like buying a new pair of hiking shoes. You must determine if they are functional, but at the same time you want them to complement your hiking style. We can help with a wide range of backpacks that differ in size, shape, frame, and capacity. Before your next trip, check out our online Technical Pack Finder or stop by your closest Sport Chalet location and tell us about your packing needs.
Internal vs. External Frame Hiking Backpacks
When purchasing a hiking backpack or technical pack, you first have to consider your body including your height, weight, structure and strength. Depending on whom you ask, there are plenty of advantages and disadvantages for both the internal and external frames. The internal frame provides a comfortable fit against your back, but can often cause a rise in temperature since air cannot freely flow between you and the pack.
Stability is another factor to consider when choosing between an internal and external backpack. Internal backpacks keep the weight closer to your body providing you with adequate stability whereas external frames can leave you somewhat unstable with the weight shifting around your backside. On the plus side, external frames give you the freedom to add tents or sleeping bags by strapping them into place along the lightweight bars.
The JanSport Carson 80L is a great example of the external frame pack, with several options to attach added gear. Some hikers argue that internal frames help to condense all your supplies into one convenient space and other boast the “hauling” capacity of external frames since the possibilities are endless.
There’s no doubt that the right backpack will make the difference between an enjoyable trip and a difficult one, so choose carefully. Whether you are a seasoned backpacker or ready to take your first trip along a rocky trail, we can help you every step of the journey. Remember the backpack you choose is extremely important and so are the supplies you fill it with. Happy trails!