Backpacking starts with understanding your pack. The base of your backpack is the frame. Two types of frames exist, both having their own advantages and disadvantages. The first is an external frame backpack and the second is an internal frame backpack.
In order to be safe and comfortable as possible while backpacking, you must have a properly fitting backpack. Not only will it help prevent injury, but also it allows you to be better balanced.
Backpacking And The External Frame Backpack
This backpack is usually distinguished by the metal frame that is visible to the eye. The external frame backpack is intended to carry a large load for long distances on a well established trail. This pack, when correctly fitted, makes you walk more rigid and upright. Many will find that they like this upright/rigid stance. However, some backpackers say this backpack makes their shoulders and hips feel locked.
External packs display many characteristics in the versatility department when backpacking. For example, they have many external pockets which allow easy access to your backpacking gear. Also, the bag and frame of many external bags is detachable.
If your backpacking trip is for hunting, you can haul game in the bag. One can also attach firewood to the frame. External frame backpacks are still progressing in technology along with the modern internal frame, so make sure to try one on.
Backpacking With The Internal Frame Backpack
On an internal frame backpack you cannot see the frame. When you feel the back of the backpack, you will find two rigid stays that support the pack. This modern backpack sits closer to your body. One internal frame devotee said “it just plain carries nicer” when backpacking.
This pack forces backpackers to be more disciplined about how they pack their gear because of the smaller frame. Although the smaller frame makes the internal pack better for lightweight backpacking.
This backpack also has features such as compression straps. The compression straps help to compress and tighten the load when you are backpacking, which in turn brings the load closer to your back, thereby improving your balance. They can also be used like accessory straps to carry your Crazy Creek, Crocs, Nalgene water bottle, and other backpacking gear.
Another versatile backpacking component of an internal frame is the top compartment which can be removed to carry like a shoulder pack or around your waist for short hikes. This compartment also allows you to carry important or fragile backpacking supplies for easy access like that of a first aid kit, sunscreen, or medicines.
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