Are You Sure You're Asking the Right Question?

Primarily, it is important to ask questions and adapt the backpack selection and its preparation to the envisaged activity.

Ask yourself: - “How much time will I spend hiking?”

  • “What type of terrain will I be crossing? Are there many height differences?”
  • “Do I need to carry the equipment of other hikers (for example, children)?”
  • “Will I be hiking independently or will I be stopping in holiday cottages and making stops?”

    Once you have answered these questions, you can combine your requirements and 4 types of activities and therefore 4 major types of backpack:
  1. Hiking for a few hours with slight height differences
  2. Mountain hiking for the day
  3. Fast hiking   Based upon practice, ensure you have selected the correct backpack with adequate storage and which satisfies your personal organisation.

Subsequently ensure that the bag has all the adjustment features to ensure the bag is suited to your back. For long walks, choose bags with back adjustments, a chest strap, booster straps on shoulders and a back the length of which can be adjusted so it truly adapts to your body. Finally, select a light bag when empty to take off as much pressure on the back as possible.

Tip: Take time to try your backpack loading it with equipment to test how it sits and the comfort. You can also borrow different bags from your friends to test them in genuine conditions, loaded with your equipment. The volume in litres can vary slightly based upon your size but also where you tend to travel very light. Do not forget that an adult can carry about 25% of their weight on their back. Do not exceed this limit otherwise you risk injuring your back.

Discover how to load your bag here.

1. You Like Walking on Lowlands or On Ground with Small Height Differences for a Few Hours

kids going for a mountain hike

When completing this activity, you need lots of space to carry water, food, a windbreaker or light, waterproof jacket in the case of rain and a fleece for sudden temperature variations. With this objective in mind, Quechua developed the Arpenaz and Escape ranges.

20L backpack is perfect for this type of outing. Equipped for hiking, you can easily attach your hiking poles and add a flask or small water pouch.

For unexpected showers, this 20 litre version features a built-in protective cover.

2. You Prefer Setting Off for One Day in the Mountains

gorup of youngsters looking at snow capped mountains

We recommend using a backpack able to hold 20 to 40 litres. If you are hiking with children, select a larger size in order to lighten their loads as much as possible. Children should not carry more than 10-15% of their body weight. This limit is quickly reached with water, snacks and a few items of clothing! Discover what to take out of your children's backpacks in our article here.

Quechua has developed AIR backpacks, which are much lighter with ventilated back for lightly packed hikers setting off hiking for the day.

3. You Like Walking Fast and Covering Long Distances Over a Day or Less Time

small kid in full covered woolens for a hike

For fast hiking enthusiasts, a light and tight-fitting bag is essential. In essence, the objective is to cover the maximum distance in the minimum amount of time, all the equipment must be as light as possible. We recommend a backpack of between 10L and 20L. For taller and bigger built fast hikers, a slightly larger bag is worth considering. Do not select one over 30L as it may slow you down leaving you doing traditional hiking rather than fast hiking.

Quechua offers 10L, 17L and 25L fast hiking bags. At 390 g without the water pouch, the Helium 10L backpack offers maximum lightness for maximum comfort.

And you, do you hike for a few hours, the entire day or are you a fast hiking enthusiast?

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