An efficiently packed travel backpack can hold quite a lot of things. But, if you take everything that you can, somewhere and sometime come in handy in any situation, then even the volume and 120 liter backpack will really not be enough for you. According to research, an ordinary person is not able to carry for a long time a load that exceeds 20–25% of his own weight, of course, this does not mean people in poor physical shape, obese, for the military this threshold is about 33%, but the military is trained accordingly such loads.
Therefore, you need to find a compromise between the necessary and the possible, otherwise you, your back, shoulders, neck, legs — instead of enjoying the trip, you will greatly regret and curse everything in the world. Carefully choose the things that you take with you, pay attention not only to their quality and usefulness, but most importantly to their weight.
Choosing the right size travel backpack and properly packing things into it
The first and most important rule is the rule of Necessity
You need to take with you on a hiking trip, only those things without which you absolutely cannot do without! And you should not take those things that you might just need!
Now that you have finally decided on the list of contents and have an idea of the required amount of things that you will take with you on a hike, you can confidently choose the right backpack for the volume. This graphic guide will help you to finally decide what size backpack you need.
What volume should I choose a tourist backpack for hiking
How to properly pack, pack, distribute things in a backpack
When you have decided on the list of contents of the backpack, you need to divide all things into groups according to weight, importance, necessity, speed of availability.
There is no single right way to pack things in a travel backpack for all occasions. There are general guidelines to help you understand the basic principle of gear placement, and with experience you will find the way that works best for you. With a well-packed backpack, you will feel balanced, the backpack will not shift and sway as you move. To make it easier to fill the backpack, simply lay out things in front of you.
Packing of the backpack can be divided into three zones plus external storage.
Main zone (red)
The center of gravity of the backpack should be at shoulder height and as close to the body as possible. In this position, the backpack will not pull you back and you will not have to lean forward to compensate. Therefore, place heavy equipment close to the back, approximately at shoulder height between the shoulder blades along the spine.
Main zone (green)
Bulky, but light things are located here, mostly these are changeable or additional clothes.
- padded jacket
- fleece jacket and trousers
- raincoat, poncho
- first aid kit
- water filter or purifier
Upper zone (blue)
Part of the backpack that includes the top valve and the entire volume on top of heavy things. It is good to place small essential equipment here. Small but frequently used items are packed in top flap pockets, such as:
Lower zone (green)
Here they place things that you will only need in the camp during an overnight stay, such as:
External fastening equipment
This includes all external pockets, straps, loops, slings on the backpack. Do not hang too much equipment on the outside of the backpack and try to fill the side pockets evenly. Those. to fix the outside of the backpack, if possible, only the equipment that is only attached to the outside, somehow:
Placement of things in a backpack depending on the terrain
Also, the placement of things in a backpack and, accordingly, the location of its center of gravity, depends on the terrain on which you will move.
Not properly! Stowing heavy items at the very bottom of the backpack will cause the backpack to pull you hard backwards, trying to tip you over, because the center of gravity will be far from the center of gravity of your body. If you carry a heavy load in this way, your hike will easily turn into torture. Your body will constantly struggle with the weight of the backpack, and the load on your shoulders will become simply unbearable. If the backpack is not packed properly, then your trip in difficult terrain can become not only exhausting, but even dangerous.
On uncomplicated terrain
Hiking hiking trails on flat terrain, the center of gravity of the backpack should be higher, somewhere at the level of your shoulders.
On heavy terrain
During mountain routes, climbing, the center of gravity of the backpack should be slightly below the shoulders and thus closer to the center of gravity of your body. This packing pattern forces you to lean forward slightly, but it will make it easier for you to keep your balance.