Your day hiking pack is clearly an essential part of your hiking kit, but an uncomfortable pack can easily negatively affect your entire hiking experience. While it can be tempting to use any old bag when you are starting, those designed for the purpose have the advantages of;
- Being robust in construction materials, zips and fastenings.
- The hiking Day pack is designed to carry the load with comfort. (there is nothing like a sore back to put you off as fast as sore feet!)
- A good hiking Day Pack will have a proper padded harness that spreads the load and assists with your stability.
- Hiking Day packs are always useful away from hiking!
What I look for when buying a Day pack
- A capacity of 30-40 litres (This doesn’t mean you will fill it completely)
- Alloy Internal frame (which carries the weight away from your back)
- Mesh ventilation panel between pack and your back
- Drink bladder sleeve and hose port
- Full shoulder harness, sternum strap and padded hip belt
- Top load pack with small outer zipped pockets on top or sides ( better for balance)
- A rain cover incorporated in the pack (usually in a zipped compartment under base)
- Fits your Torso length, and waist(there are often men’s and women’s versions)
A Day pack is not something you should buy online with out first trying for for fit and is comfort with a load. (take your normal gear list along to the shop and give it a test.)
These days you also can’t assume that outdoors shop staff know about hiking or the gear they sell.
It is a better idea to do a little research your self, sufficient that you can test their basic knowledge with a few “innocent dumb questions.” I would suggest if you find they are bluffing in answers – go elsewhere for your purchase.