Backpacks

The backpack remains the preserve of the independent traveler. Larger models will hold everything a traveler needs for extended periods on the road — including a tent, for example, as well as additional footwear and even cooking equipment.

Backpacks photo
Photo by Idhren

The market for backpacks is wide, and the first thing you need to think about is size. Try to imagine how you’d fit everything you want to take into the bags on offer. If you’re ever in doubt, buy a backpack that seems too big — or you might run out of space for that comfy sleeping mat you picked up. Once you’ve selected the right size, check that the bag’s straps are firmly attached and that there are straps that go around your hips to take some of the weight of the bag. This significantly reduces the strain on your shoulders and back.

Different compartments can be used for organization or to separate wet and dirty clothes from the rest of your equipment. Some backpacks have special fabrics to help keep your back cool and fresh, and some even have a built-in water tank with a drinking nozzle.

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