A store for goods intended to a journey on foot:

A store for goods intended to a journey on foot: the choice of a backpack

A good touring backpack is a key to success of any wandering, so its choice should be approached very seriously. An inconvenient backpack weights down hard, it chafes against the skin of your shoulders and back, while a convenient one allows distributing the load regularly along your back. If you are going to trip for 1-2 days, the requirements to the backpack will be lowered, than to that intended to long journeys on foot. How for you to choose your touring backpack properly?

A store for goods intended to a journey on foot: the kinds of backpacks and their capacity

There exist only three kinds of backpacks. A mounted backpack is based on the hard metal framework, and suspenders along with the backpack are fixed to it. For example, an old backpack sample was called “Yermak”. A half-mounted backpack is an anatomical one, it has vertical insert elements made of metal or plastic stripes on its backside, and that is the most modern and convenient backpack. A soft backpack is that without stripes or framework, for example, a schoolboy's backpack or old trip backpacks of “kolobok” type.

The main advantage of mounted backpacks is in regularly spreading the weight of the load, and a person is walking with his back stretched. But, there is also a disadvantage: the enlarged backpack's weight and not-pleasant, even pain feels arose from the hard framework leaning against your back. Half-mounted backpacks are not recommended to wear for novice tourists.

A soft backpack is a simple cloth bag with suspenders and pockets. Such backpacks are cheapest and light, their advantage is compactness (the specification of high usefulness for water touring). When such a backpack id empty, it is easy to fold. The disadvantage is the fact that it is difficult to lay things properly into the soft backpack, and it is inconvenient to go on a long hike with it, as its weight presses onto your shoulders hard, and they are sure to pain. It is forbidden to take a soft backpack when you are going to long journeys on foot.

A half-mounted or anatomical backpack will be most suitable for a journey on foot or mountain journey. It has similar advantages that those of a mounted backpack, while it is by far more convenient. The disadvantages are the fact that while it borders on your back closely, the backpack makes airing difficult and sometime after quick walking your back becomes wet. There exist backpacks with a higher price with thick netting on the backside, and there is a distance between the netting and the backside, and it is only netting that borders on a tourist's back, so the back doesn't perspire.

Now, you should make a decision on the capacity of your backpack. For journeys on foot that last 5 or more days, women should have a backpack with the capacity of 60-80 l, while for men this value may be of 80-120 l. The more serious and independent your trip the more capacity of your backpack should be. You should inquire if there are depots on your route (it gives the opportunity not to wear all food and equipment on you), is there the need of special or dimensional equipment (winter clothes and equipment for raising in mountains take lots of space) — that all influence your choosing the capacity of the backpack. For weekend journeys, a backpack with the capacity of 40-60 l will be suitable both for women and men.

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