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HIKING BACKPACKS: WHAT'S SPECIAL?

"Walking means seeing more" - this is often said among hikers. And on foot you experience a kilometre of trail with a different intensity than a car driver or train traveller. That's why you will eventually choose a hiking backpack for heavier loads, regular excursions and longer tours on foot.

Hiking backpacks, often also called trekking backpacks or hiking backpacks, are the all-rounders when you are on the road for a long time and have a lot of luggage with you. You always have your hands free and thanks to comfortable carrying systems you can comfortably complete your daily stages on foot and cover several kilometres including luggage. Your backpack should be optimally packed, with the weight close to your body. The backpack should not be too full, and the chest and lap straps should always be closed and fit properly when walking.

Hiking backpacks are larger than daypacks, and usually have to be included in board luggage when travelling by air. There are no uniform baggage regulations for on-board luggage; depending on the airline and fare, up to 23 kg of luggage with a maximum size of about 158 cm can be checked in here. If these regulations are not adhered to, or if the backpack is not packed compactly enough, the airline may charge a surcharge for bulky baggage.

HIKING BACKPACKS - THESE MODELS ARE AVAILABLE

There are different types of hiking backpacks, some backpacks are better suited for long walks than others.

  • Hiking backpacks: large backpacks, lots of storage space, comfortable carrying systems.
  • Daypacks (touring backpacks): small to medium backpacks for day trips
  • Travel backpacks: large backpacks, lots of storage space, extra pockets, some with detachable daypacks
  • Running backpacks: ultra-light, small backpacks for trail running (day tour), often with hydration bladder and tube
  • Ski backpack: backpacks for ski and snow tours, often with airbags for avalanche protection

HIKING BACKPACKS AND CARRYING SYSTEMS

The maximum load per person for a hiking backpack is about 20% of the person's own body weight (manufacturer's information: deuter.com). Well-trained and experienced hikers can also expect to carry up to 25% of their body weight. Of course, the load must always be considered in relation to the daily stages, the season, the metres in altitude and the overall demands of the tour. Women should also carry somewhat less weight than men.

Example:

  • One adult, body weight: 80 kg
  • Maximum weight of hiking rucksack: 80 kg x 0.2 = 16 kg

The hiking rucksack should therefore weigh a maximum of 16 kg when fully packed. With an average weight of 10-15 kg for a hiking backpack, the carrying system plays a decisive role. The backpack should rest perfectly on your back and be well ventilated. Mesh backpacking systems (such as the Deuter Aircomfort System) leave some space between your back and the backpack so that there is no direct contact surface. Hiking backpacks without a mesh back, which lie close to the body, are recommended for longer hiking tours. If you are carrying heavy, hard luggage, a backpack with a contact back is more recommended, as stability and weight control are paramount here. Many models have adjustable straps that allow you to adjust the backpack's height and proximity to your body.

Other elements of a high-quality carrying system:

  • Shoulder strap with padding
  • Chest strap with adjustable fastener
  • Hip belt with adjustable closure
  • Adjustable luggage control straps
  • Back zone with contact surface or mesh insert

The more often and for longer periods you wear the hiking backpack on your back, the more important carrying comfort is for you. Ergonomically shaped shoulder straps, ideally with padding, prevent pressure points, chafing or rubbing injuries on the skin.

HIKING BACKPACKS: USEFUL FEATURES

  • Ergonomic carrying system
  • External pockets, nets or side compartments
  • Waterproof, reinforced outer shell, separate rucksack cover if necessary
  • Efficient compartment division, access through side opening possible
  • Inner lid compartment or "hidden" storage compartments for money, travel documents, etc.
  • Concealed zips or fasteners with "anti-theft" device
  • Additional eyelets or loops on the outside (for clothes, tools, cookware, extras)

PACK YOUR BACKPACK PROPERLY

Especially with hiking backpacks, the weight and distribution of the load play a decisive role for your further progress. So only take absolutely essential items with you. It makes sense to put spare clothing, shoes or sleeping bag in an extra waterproof bag - especially if bad weather is forecast.

Pack your equipment in the hiking rucksack as follows:

  • Backpack bottom compartment: sleeping bag, shoes, cooking utensils.
  • Backpack middle compartment: food, (spare) clothing, liquids, tent
  • Backpack lid compartment: snacks, small items, wallet, first aid kit
  • Backpack outer pockets: Drinks, daily rations, tools, rain gear

In general, all heavy items should be carried at about shoulder height and close to the body. Things that you will need again and again should not be stored in the middle or bottom compartment, but rather in the outer pockets - so that you have quick access. Valuables should be packed in such a way that no one outside can access them unnoticed.

HIKING BACKPACKS: DIFFERENCES FOR MEN AND WOMEN

At Keller Sports you will find hiking backpacks for men and women. Since the anatomy and physique of men and women can differ greatly, there are often gender differences in trekking and hiking backpacks: Men's or women's models can vary in carrying systems, size and capacity. If, on the other hand, the backpack is not worn often and for long periods on the back, gender does not matter. The important thing is that the backpack fits, sits well, is carried correctly and that you do not overload your back. You can also "mark" your backpack with a patch, a colourful cloth or a key ring to make it recognizable. Of course, this has no influence on the carrying comfort.

HIKING BACKPACKS AT KELLER SPORTS

At Keller Sports you will find a high-quality selection of hiking backpacks and trekking backpacks with comfortable carrying systems for the back. If you don't walk long distances, we also have alternatives for you among our travel backpacks and outdoor bags. In the outdoor outlet section of Keller Sports we have also put together the latest offers on reduced hiking backpacks and bags - it pays to be quick!

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