It’s time to hit the trail and your ready to buy a pack. How do you know what to buy? First thing is first, your not going to a fashion show so you want to buy what’s going to work and not what’s going to look good on your back! Lets get one thing straight the perfect pack for everything does not exist. If you are serious about getting into backpacking chances are you will end up with a couple packs, each targeting a specific activity and trip duration. This does not mean you have to go out and buy 3 different packs you just need to figure out where to start. We have a good amount of info to cover so lets get started.

Backpack Capacity - The space inside the pack or the pack’s capacity is the volume of space available inside the pack. Without getting too technical a backpack is measured in liters, which can often be found in the pack’s name like the Osprey Ariel 65. 65 liters is much easier to remember than breaking it down in cubic inches. So now we know what those numbers mean we can start to think about how those numbers help you pick the right backpack!

Properly Sizing a Backpack - Backpacking is a fun and exciting activity that will reward participants with serenity and beautiful views but these trips can also be difficult especially with an ill fitting backpack. Those prepared with a properly fitted backpack will have much more comfort and will be much safer while backpacking.

There are a few key things to measure and be mindful of when purchasing a new backpack. Here we will cover backpack frame size, hip size and torso size. Also we will cover how to determine hip size and torso size as well as general adjustments that you will want to make once you get your backpack.

Correctly Find Your Torso Length - This is the first step to selecting the proper size backpack. Backpacks don’t care how tall you are, they simply care about the length of your torso. There are some simple steps to determine your torso size but you will need to enlist the help of another.

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