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What is the best hiking backpack for women?
How to choose the best backpack for your needs?
What are the most important things you should be paying attention to in a women’s camping backpack? While one thing is clear, you want your backpack to look good, but it isn’t only about the looks. You also want your backpack to feel good on you. You want this bag to improve your hiking experience. To get all of that, at least a very basic and short research is necessary. A research into different styles, different materials, different features.
To help you with that, we’ve created this list of high quality backpacks.
Check it out to find the backpack of your dreams.
Best Hiking Backpack For Women
What are the options? And which one to choose?
Which one is the best best hiking backpack for women right now?
A well-made women’s hiking backpack with a removable lid.
Overall the best hiking backpack for women, our favorite.
Osprey Aura is one of the most popular women’s backpacks, and for a reason. It features a solid back support, double frame system and an Anti-Gravity system. Aura AG Ventilation system is great. The bag has a 3D cavity back panel, which creates a small space between the bag and your back. As the result you sweat less. As the ventilation system covers the entire frame, including the Fit-on-the-Fly™ hipbelt.
This pack is weather-resistant. The 100D x 630D Nylon Dobby material this backpack is made of assures to keep the bag dry in fairly wet weather conditions. All of it makes it a top womens backpack for hiking.
It really is a very good backpack, but think twice about the size. Because 65 liter is really a lot. But then again – you can remove the lid, when you don’t need it.
Available also in 50 liter size.
DIMENSIONS: 33.5″ x 15.7″ x 15″ (85 x 40 x 38 cm)
SIZE: 65 liter
WEIGHT: 4.56 lbs (2.1 kg)
A lightweight womens hiking backpack for shorter trips.
Featuring a women’s specific fit, the Osprey Tempest 40 is comfortable to carry even when fully loaded. The wide padded hip-belt distributes the weight evenly, and you don’t feel pain in your shoulders. Thanks to its injection-moulded Airscape back panel and continuous-wrap harness and hip belt, the bag feels very comfortable on your back.
There’s a sleeve for your hydration system, exterior zippered scratch-free sunglasses and electronics pocket, under lid zipped mesh pocket, stretch pocket on harness, zippered hip belt pockets, stretch mesh side pockets with InsideOut™ compression and a stretch front pocket. And that’s not all — the bag also features attachment for trekking poles and an ice axe.
Constructed of high-quality Bluesign recycled high-tenacity nylon, this lightweight women’s backpack is really durable. Thanks to the material choice and PFC-free DWR coating, it’s sure to last for years.
Comes in several sizes: 6 liter, 9 liter, 20 liter, 30 liter, 40 liter.
DIMENSIONS: 25.6″ x 13″ x 10.3″ (65 x 33 x 26 cm)
SIZE: 40 liter
WEIGHT: 2.9 lbs (1.3 kg)
A very roomy womens hiking pack with multiple pockets.
One of the very best women’s hiking backpack for organization.
First of all, this backpack is all about pockets and compartments. There is a large top loading access to the main compartment with a sleeve for a water reservoir (sold separately) and a sleeping bag compartment. Also there are large zippered side pockets, side water bottle pockets, hip belt pockets, organizational pocket on the front and a shove-it pocket. All of that makes organization of your gear simple and effortless.
The Kelty Coyote features the new Fit Pro technology, which provides a quick and customized torso fit for all shapes and sizes, while the Amp Flow ventilated back panel keeps you cool and dry every day. And if we talk about the features, you can’t skip the advanced perimeter internal frame — it’s there to offer you supreme stability on the trail.
Kelty Coyote 60 is one of the very best women’s hiking backpacks for organization.
Another thing we love about this backpack, is its removable lid. You can easily turn it into a small sling pack (it has a built-in crossbody shoulder strap).
The bag features a hex mesh back panel and a sturdy bottom with lash points (for even more gear).
DIMENSIONS: 30″ x 17″ x 12″ (76.2 x 43.2 x 30.5 cm)
SIZE: 60 liter
WEIGHT: 4lb 6oz (2 kg)
A multipurpose, front loading 50l womens backpack.
The Kelty Redwing is one of the best backpacks for females for years.
One of the top reasons being the pack’s PerfectFit suspension system that lets you customise your fit, and the mesh back with elevating foam which offers amazing ventilation. The backpack’s main compartment has a U zip, making it a front loading backpack. But it’s possible to use it also as a top loader – just don’t unzip it all the way down. Also you can access your gear from the side of the pack, as it has a two way zipper.
The bag has several compartments to help keep your stuff organized:
- Front compartment with several interior organization pockets;
- Top quick access pocket for small items;
- Stash pocket at the front for extra layers of clothing;
- Two zippered side pockets;
- Two mesh side pockets for water bottles;
- Main compartment with a laptop / hydration pack sleeve.
The backpack features loops for trekking poles and hide-away handle / daisy chain at the front of the backpack.
Not only it’s a great womens hiking bag, but you can also use it for travel.
DIMENSIONS: 26″ x 16″ x 12″ (66 x 40.6 x 30.5 cm)
SIZE: 50 liter
WEIGHT: 3 lbs 11 oz (1.7 kg)
A sleek and lightweight hiking backpack for women.
Being sleek and lightweight, yet quite spacious, the Deuter Aircontact Lite 35+10 SL is one of the best hiking backpacks for women on the market.
There’s a roomy main compartment with a separate sleeping bag compartment at the bottom (with a zippered divider) and a front stretch shove-it pocket. There are dual zippered pockets on the hip belt and side water pockets. The top lid is removable. The bag is hydration system compatible. It also features a helmet holder attachment, as well as ice tool and hiking pole attachment loops.
This women’s specific backpack features a shorter adjustable back length, narrower shoulder harness and conical shaped hip belt. Its breathable padding and ergonomic internal X-frame will keep you cool and comfortable. Made of dual density foam, the ergonomic hip belt delivers a custom fit for load stability. The adjustable back easily adjusts to different torso lengths, and the S-shaped shoulder harness has a soft edge and moisture wicking 3D mesh lining.
The backpack features an extendable 10L pack collar for additional volume.
Available in several sizes.
DIMENSIONS: 28.3″ x 10.2″ x 8″ (72 x 26 x 20 cm)
SIZE: 35+10 liter
WEIGHT: 3 lbs 8 oz to kg (1.6 kg)
A roomy internal frame hiking backpack for beginner hikers.
It’s a beginners hiking backpack suitable both for men and women
Even though, this backpack is significantly cheaper than some other backpacks on the list, it still features an internal frame. The padding of the backpack is reasonable, and there’s a decent hip belt, a feature you’ll love on long hikes.
The TETON Sports Scout 3400 is made of 600D diamond ripstop and 600D Oxford canvas shell. It’s not waterproof, but it comes with a rain cover, that can be hidden in a dedicated pocket. The backpack features a large sleeping bag compartment, one big main compartment and several smaller ones. It’s a rather heavy backpack – 4.5 lbs (2 kg).
However, if you are an avid hiker and go on long hikes often, it’s not the best backpack for you. The padding is too cushy, as well as there is no advanced ventilation system.
The bag is available in several colors.
DIMENSIONS: 30″ x 17″ x 12″ (76.2 x 43.2 x 30.5 cm)
SIZE: 55 liter
WEIGHT: 4.5 lbs (2 kg)
A versatile women’s trekking backpack with an adjustable torso length.
Featuring an adjustable torso length, breathable shoulder straps, comfortable hip belt and back panel padding, the Thule AllTrail is one of the best women’s backpack for hiking and traveling.
What we like the most about this pack, is that its hip belt can be customised with any of the interchangeable Thule Versa Click accessories (sold separately). The included Thule Versa Click Pole Holder allows you to conveniently store trekking poles on your hip belt without taking off your pack. The backpack features a dedicated hydration sleeve (hydration reservoir sold separately) with drink tube exit port and two side water bottle pockets.
There is a dedicated sleeping bag compartment, and you can easily access your gear in the main compartment through the side zipper.
On the front of the bag there’s a quick access shove-it pocket.
The Thule AllTrail comes with a high-visibility, removable rain cover.
Available in several sizes: 15 – 45 liter.
DIMENSIONS: 24.4″ x 12.6″ x 11.8″ (62 x 32 x 30 cm)
SIZE: 45 liter
WEIGHT: 3.15 lbs (1.4 kg)
Best Small Hiking Backpack
A compact and lightweight daypack for short hikes.
Overall the best women’s daypack for hiking, our favorite.
The Osprey Tempest 20 is a panel-loading backpack for short hikes, biking and day trips. Featuring a women’s specific fit, the Osprey Tempest 20 is comfortable to carry even when fully loaded. The wide padded hip-belt distributes the weight evenly, and you don’t feel pain in your shoulders. Its injection moulded Airscape HDPE backpanel with EVA foam padding makes the bag feel comfortable on your back.
The backpack features attachment for trekking poles, an ice axe and a bike helmet. There’s an external sleeve for your hydration system, an exterior zippered pocket, interior mesh pocket and an exterior elastic pocket for a wet rain jacket or rain poncho.
The drawback for some will be the price — the backpack is pricey.
However, if you are hiking very often, we strongly suggest you to invest in quality gear. Your body will thank you for that later.
DIMENSIONS: 18.1″ x 10.6″ x 9″ (46 x 27 x 23 cm)
SIZE: 20 liters
WEIGHT: 2 lbs (0.9 kg)
A Full Size Backpack or Daypack?
The main difference is the size.
Hiking daypacks are small backpacks meant for short hiking trips or day trips. Full size hiking backpacks, however, are much larger, thus they are suitable for longer and more serious hiking trips. Largest hiking backpacks are suitable for long self supported backpacking trips when you have to carry a tent and food.
As a rule, hiking backpacks are packed with features and boast better suspension and ventilation systems. Their back support is better, and the harness as well.
Women’s Specific Backpacks, Are They Worth It?
A women’s backpack is made with female travelers in mind.
Mostly these backpacks feature a more a comfortable hip belt with extra padding. The shoulder straps are also usually designed with women’s curves in mind, so that they won’t hurt woman’s breasts. Also, as women’s shoulders are narrower than men’s, so the shoulder straps aren’t set wide apart. All of that adds to the comfort.
And they are designed to sit properly on shorter torsos, which is especially useful if you are short or of medium height. If you are tall, you may as well try and go for a unisex backpack.
How to Choose the Perfect Backpacking Backpack?
As daunting as it may seem, mostly it’s not that hard to choose a backpack.
Generally speaking mostly it’s about these 4 simple things.
1. What Will You Be Using It For?
Short hikes or long hikes.
Carrying a lot of gear or only the essentials.
Only on dry and sunny days, or on all kind of weather.
This will determine, how big and how durable your bag needs to be.
If you go on hikes only once in a while, you don’t need a very professional pack. Check out cheaper options! There are plenty of cheap (and good) hiking backpacks available on the market.
Here are some of the most popular features.
Look for ones that matter to you.
Internal frame. Most of the top women’s backpacks have an internal frame. Internal frame keeps the backpack upright and eliminates sagging. An internal frame distributes the weight of your pack and reduces pressure on your shoulders. Unlike internal frame backpacks, frameless backpacks are not rigid. You can easily fold them or compress them.
If there is no frame, all of the weight is on your shoulders.
Back ventilation systems. Thanks to cushions and ridges, air circulates between you and the backpack. The backpack isn’t completely flat against your body.
As a result, you sweat less and feel more comfortable during the hike.
Suspension system. It lets your customise your fit and distribute the weight more evenly.
Dedicated sleeve for a hydration system. Most likely with drink tube exit port. It helps you stay hydrated during the hike.
You don’t have to take off your backpack just to take a sip of water.
Lash attachment points. For helmet, hiking poles, ice axe, etc.
Easy access to the main compartment. If there’s a U-zipper or a side zipper, you can easily access your gear in the main compartment through it. Don’t forget about packing cubes, to take organization of your stuff to the next level.
No more digging through all your stuff!
Removable top lid that can be used as a day pack.
3. Comfort Level
All of the best backpacks have well-cushioned back panels and shoulder straps.
Trekking and backpacking packs also feature an adjustable harness system that offers better load control and ensures comfort. This kind of bags also have a spine channel that provides ventilation. It creates a small space between the backpack and the back, as the result of what you sweat less.
When in doubts, go to a shop and try out at least a few different backpacks.
The drawback for some will be the price — backpack can be pricey.
However, if you are hiking very often, or if you travel a lot (and are looking for a travel backpack) we strongly suggest you to invest in quality gear. Your body will thank you for that later.
It just feels so much better to have quality gear.
Especially when it comes to gear you use a lot.
What is your experience with women’s specific hiking backpacks? What’s the best hiking backpack for women you have tried?
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