While it does not have the same popularity than other outdoor activities, thru-hiking remains to this day as one of the most fun tasks to do.
First, we’re going to need the proper equipment and the best backpack for thru-hiking comes into play.
Naturally, getting to know and experience our surroundings takes time, effort and preparation. The backpacks for thru-hiking allow us to carry everything we’ll need for any outdoor activities. In this regard, we’ll be reviewing the best options currently available in the market.
Our Best Backpack for Thru-Hiking Reviews:
The following products are our top picks for the most optimum backpacks every thru-hiker should consider buying.
They include a variety of incredible features to keep up with us during our adventures, ensuring we have the best time possible while we are out there.
- Osprey Packs Exos 58 Backpacking Pack
- Gregory Optic 48 Hiking Backpack
- Granite Gear Crown VC 60 Backpack
- Mountainsmith Apex 60 Backpack
Osprey Packs Exos 58 Backpacking Pack:
Osprey Packs continues to produce backpacks for every adventure lover. Their products are a combination of different benefits like comfort under rough conditions, ventilation to keep your equipment cool and lightweight qualities to ensure your body doesn’t suffer from stress.
It is a valuable option to consider if you’re looking for the best hiking backpack. Regardless of our packing necessities, the Osprey Pack 58 adapts to our style quickly. Going for a weekend trip or a more extended journey, this backpack allows us to carry our items organized and secured.
The AirSpeed suspension makes sure that the weight from your equipment is off your back for a comfortable experience with enough ventilation. This suspension system combines well with the Lightwire alloy frame. It works together great for better carrying ability.
We also get dual access for the side pockets. These pockets let us store water bottles and many other gears efficiently. The InsideOut compression straps keep everything in their place to avoid spills and unpleasant incidents.
For more safety, the integrated FlapJacket secures the equipment in the backpack. This FlapJacket is highly effective when we’re removing the top lid. It helps to avoid re-organizing everything back once again. Overall, the design, high-quality material, and the packing size make this the best backpack for thru-hiking.
- The FlapJacket protects the equipment when we remove the top lid
- Dual access side pockets for water bottle
- Suitable pocket for rain gear
- Ice ax compartment for higher versatility
- Effective AirSpeed Suspension
- Elevated price
Gregory Optic 48 Hiking Backpack:
After testing the Gregory Optic 48, we can assure you that it is the best ultralight backpack for thru-hiking that you can find in the market. It includes an internal frame made of aluminum. This is an incredible acquisition for people who seek a lightweight backpack for a comfortable experience.
It features dual density foam components as well. They are very comfortable for every user. These components provide ventilation and extra supportive features like the FocusForm harness for our shoulder as well as the hip belts that cover specific comfort zones.
The seven exterior pockets are other main benefits we get from this backpack. They offer an outstanding storage capacity that not many other backpacks can provide. Having these pockets, packing everything we’re going to need for our activities is not an issue.
However, all those features prove it’s worth efficient. Even at a quick pace or sudden movements, the ventilation delivered by the backpack’s AeroSpan suspension can avoid unpleasant moments or unwanted incidents.
In general, Gregory Optic 48 is highly effective and covers plenty of outdoor activities. The materials for its construction have good quality and amazingly lightweight. We can use it for different applications too, not only thru-hiking.
- Effective AeroSpan suspension
- Quality FocusForm harness for our shoulders
- A high amount of exterior pockets
- Compatible with a hydration bladder
- The material used for the side and front pockets lacks quality, and it can tear during intense activities
Granite Gear Crown VC 60 Backpack:
What we liked the most about the Crown VC60 is its simplicity. After checking out many other options, it is nice discovering a backpack that gets the job done without a complicated design.
This product improves its weight feature where the Vapor Trail slightly failed. If we remove the frame, it turns the weight to 1 lb from 2lbs, which weighs less than the previous models from the brand.
It is highly customizable because we can take out the removable frame at any time. This benefit comes handy when we want more space for our gear or to remove a certain amount of weight making it even more lightweight for our comfort.
However, it does include past technologies that have proven their value. For example, the V.C Suspension technology is present in this backpack. It ensures that we have complete accessibility and comfort regardless of the weight we put in.
It is a top loader that offers a secure roll-top closure for easy access at all times. This improvement enhances our thru-hiking performance by saving our time struggling to get certain items or equipment out of the pack. Without this product, our article of the best backpack for thru-hiking would be incomplete.
- Effective Vapor Current suspension system
- Removable internal frame for more space or less weight
- Hydration ports and an internal sleeve for hydration supplies
- Dual-density padding belt and shoulder straps
- Durability issues
Mountainsmith Apex 60 Backpack:
A great backpack is one that can offer high versatility for different applications, not one in specific. We’re reviewing the best backpacks for thru-hiking. Our last spot is for a product that not only covers thru-hiking but also backpacking, traveling and a variety of outdoor activities.
The best thing about this backpack is that it comes at an affordable price. It offers amazing quality without making a big investment, which is often what many adventurers want to have, especially the new hikers. It works for professionals as well.
The pack features the classic but effective lid on the front with dual buckles. We can remove this lid rather easily allowing us to have quick access to the insides even at the toughest moments during our activities.
There is a spindrift collar and a compression strap inside. These two elements manage to stabilize our equipment. We can use it to organize extra gear that we need to store below the lid.
The adjustable harness has Velcro tabs for easier and quicker adjustment operations. This harness can adapt to different bodies making it suitable for different users with a variety of sizes and shapes.
It also takes advantage of its X-Shaped aluminum setting to provide a solid suspension system which allows us to carry loads up to 60 lb.
- Waist belt compatible with cellphones
- U-Shaped zipper gives us proper access to the main compartment
- A proper pocket for our water bottle
- Top compression equipment strap
- A little bit heavier than other backpacks available
- Small size
Features To Consider Before You Buy:
Apart from the storage capacity, there are other elements we should look for in a backpack. The next list shows what we consider as the most important characteristics to keep in mind before buying.
- A Proper Suspension System
It might not seem like it, but thru-hiking requires a lot of effort and earlier preparation. The last thing we want to have is a backpack without a proper suspension system.
If it does not distribute the weight in a comfortable way, we can expect nothing but an unpleasant experience during our activities.
Fortunately, all of the products listed above feature a useful system to keep the weight distributed very effectively.
If you decide to pick one that we did not review, make sure it takes care of your item’s weight. Reducing the heavy weight anxiety improves the quality of our hiking by allowing us to enjoy our time.
- Hydration Compatibility
Like any other outdoor activities, thru-hiking gets tiring and exhaustive at times. Having a functional hydration sleeve or a port attached to our supplements is an advantage we should look for in a backpack.
Keeping ourselves hydrated is healthy, refreshing and it allows us to think clearly. It is a must-have advantage that the best day hiking backpack should provide to every adventurer.
- Padded Belts and Shoulder Straps
Unexpected events can happen at any time during our adventures. We better be prepared for them. While most backpacks take care of our items, there are not many that can provide comfort for our bodies.
To avoid unpleasant stress and damage to our shoulders, it is always better to look for a padded harness. Even if you think that your activity won’t take long and you’ll be back home quickly, there is always the possibility that it takes longer than we’d want.
A padded shoulder harness and waist belts are very useful under these circumstances.
Thru-hiking is an exciting activity to perform by ourselves or with company. Once we buy the best backpack for thru-hiking, we will be ready to go out on the open and have an incredible adventure.