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We can't all have extravagant vacations can we?
Hiking can be an excellent way to spend leisure time without breaking the bank. With the right gear, you can hike all day and camp under the stars for far less than a hotel stay will cost you.
If you know what to look for, finding the right backpack doesn't have to be a dealbreaker. You can go on that hiking adventure after all.
How We Uncover The Best For You
We know that finding the perfect backpack is essential to any successful hike. We also know that if you are on a budget it can be a daunting task to find one.
We have done the research and calling on our experience, we have chosen a selection for you that won't break the bank. You’re sure to find the perfect backpack for your next outdoor adventure. Check out our selection of budget hiking backpacks and soon you will on your way!
Best For Half Day Trips
Osprey Hikelite Hiking Backpack
A Cracking Choice For A Half-Day Hike
We Chose This Because
- Rain Cover
- Storage Options
- Easy to Carry
Things We Love
If you're looking for a great hiking backpack, the Osprey Hikelite is a great choice. It's designed incredibly well, with features like breathable side vents and a chest strap that help make it comfortable to carry. It's also lightweight and easy to carry, making it a great option for shorter hiking assignments. Plus, the convenient rain cover helps keep your contents and backpack dry in case of bad weather.
Things To Know
The Osprey hiking backpack is a great option for those looking for a durable and well-made pack. It features 18L of storage, a 3-liter hydration pack facility, and mesh side pockets for additional water bottles or snacks.
Additionally, the pack has a scratch-resistant pocket for more valuable items like phones. The nylon construction is very tough and can withstand a lot of wear and tear. This makes it an ideal choice for hiking or any other outdoor activity.
Best For Day Trips
Kelty Redwing Backpack
A Cracking Choice For All Day Hikes
We Chose This Because
- Sturdy Frame
- Ergonomic Design
- Back Ventilation
Things We Love
The Kelty Redwing Backpack is a great choice for day trips hiking and fishing, or for any other outdoor adventure. With a capacity of 36L and a weight of 2lb 9oz, it's perfect for carrying all the essentials without being too bulky or heavy.
The backpack features a perimeter frame for stability, side compression straps to help balance the load, and padded waist and chest straps for a comfortable fit. Whether you're hiking up a mountain trail or just exploring your local park, the Kelty Redwing Backpack will help ensure that you have a great time.
Things To Know
The Kelty Redwing backpack is a great choice for hiking and other outdoor activities. The backpack features a well-designed back ventilation panel that helps to keep you cool and comfortable while hiking.
The backpack also has a zippered top-loading or front-loading storage area, which is perfect for storing hiking gear. The backpack also features 2 zippered wing pockets, which are perfect for storing snacks and other small items.
Overall, the Kelty Redwing backpack is a great choice for day hikes and other outdoor activities.
Best For Comfort
Kelty Coyote Backpack
A Cracking Choice For A Comfortable Carry
We Chose This Because
- Stable Weight Distribution
- Ultra lightweight
- Adjustable for Comfort
Things We Love
The Kelty Coyote Backpack is a great option for hikers looking for a comfortable and stable pack. When hiking, it's important to have a backpack that is comfortable and can properly distribute the weight. The Kelty Coyote Backpack is perfect for this with its perimeter-supporting frame design. The frame and straps help to keep the backpack in place while properly supporting the back.
Furthermore, the pack is adjustable to any torso, making it a very comfortable fit with good weight distribution options. There are also lots of adjustments for a comfortable fit. Overall, the Kelty Coyote Backpack is a great option for hiking because of its comfort and ability to distribute weight evenly.
Things To Know
Made of durable polyester material, this backpack is a great choice for hiking. At 4lb 10oz, it's ultra-lightweight, making it easy to carry on long hikes. In addition to a sleeping bag compartment, this bag has 4 zippered pockets on the front and side for convenient storage.
The pockets are convenient to access, and make it easy to grab whatever you need while on the go. Whether you're planning a weekend in the woods or a week-long hike, the backpack is up to the task. So if you're looking for a pack that can handle all your hiking needs, the Kelty Coyote is a great option.
Best For Versatility
Gregory Mountain Products Stout Backpack
A Cracking Choice For A Versatile Backpack
We Chose This Because
- Versatile Storage Options
- Adjustable for Comfort
Things We Love
If you're looking for a hiking backpack that can handle all your gear, the Gregory Mountain Products Stout backpack is a great option. With a 60L capacity, it's perfect for longer hikes or overnight trips.
The pack is top-loading, so you can easily access everything you need, and it also has mesh side pockets and zippable hip pockets for additional storage.
Plus, the rain cover will keep your bag dry in case of bad weather. Best of all, the Gregory Mountain Products Stout backpack comes with a lifetime warranty, so you can be confident in its quality.
Things To Know
The Gregory Mountain Products Stout Backpack is a great backpack for hiking. It is lightweight, at only 3lb 9oz, and has an easily adjustable suspension system that ensures a comfortable and perfect fit for your adventure.
The ventilated back panel is also built for comfort, ensuring a great fit whilst hiking. Plus, the added bonus of an adjustable padded hip belt and an adjustable chest strap makes this backpack even more comfortable and functional. So, if you're looking for a great backpack for hiking, the Gregory Mountain Products Stout Backpack is definitely worth checking out!
Best For Beginners
Osprey Rook Hiking Backpack
A Cracking Choice For Newby Hikers
We Chose This Because
- Innovative Storage Features
Things We Love
Hiking is a great way to get some exercise and enjoy the outdoors. The Osprey Rook Hiking Backpack is a great option for those just starting out. It has a capacity of 65L and weighs just 3lb 8oz, making it lightweight and easy to carry.
The well-made pack is made of 600 denier material, making it sturdy and durable. It also comes with a rain cover for wet weather, so your belongings will stay dry.
The adjustable padded shoulder straps and grab handle make the backpack comfortable to wear, and there are no chafing or tender spots. The back panel is well-designed and provides great ventilation. So if you're looking for a great value hiking backpack, the Osprey Rook is a great option.
Things To Know
The Osprey Rook hiking backpack is designed to transfer weight to your thighs and waist, making it easier to carry heavy loads. It features a wide and supportive hip belt with zippered pockets on each side, mesh side pockets for storing water bottles or other items, and a storage pocket in the top flap.
These hiking backpacks also have a convenient facility to hold a 3-liter hydration pack, as well as a floating floor divider for additional storage. Whether you're an experienced hiker or just starting out, the Osprey Rook hiking backpack is an excellent choice for your next adventure.
Best Budget Hiking Backpack For You?
A Buyers Guide: Gearing up for a hike with limited funds means it's important to make the right decisions, finding value for your money products, but being careful not to sacrifice quality along the way.
What Type Of Backpack Is Best For Hiking?
Backpacks are an essential piece of gear for anyone who loves hiking. But with so many different types and features on the market, it can be tough to know what to look for in a hiking backpack. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
How often do you plan to use the backpack? If you plan on using it frequently, you'll want something that is comfortable and durable.
Consider how the backpack will fit your torso. A good hiking backpack should have adjustable torso length, suspension for great carrying comfort, back panel breathability, ergonomic shoulder straps, and padding and strap support.
What type of terrain will you be hiking on? If you will be hiking on rough terrain, you'll want a backpack with thicker padding and stronger straps.
If you're planning on hiking in rough terrain, you'll need a backpack with a heavier and bigger frame. But if you're going to be hiking on trails, look for a frameless and lightweight backpack.
And of course, it should be easily foldable into its own sack so you can take it with you wherever you go.
What size do you need? You'll want to find a backpack that is the right size for your body and for the amount of gear, you plan to pack.
Generous storage and expandable volume are also key features to look for in a hiking backpack. What is worth remembering is a sleeping bag compartment, rain cover or other forms of waterproofing, external storage options, hip belt and water bottle pockets.
How much does the backpack weigh? Heavier backpacks can be more difficult to carry, but they often have more features and can carry more gear.
Pay attention to the durability of the fabric and the quality of the zippers. You want a backpack that will last for years, so make sure to choose one made from high-quality materials. Ventilation functionality is also important, as are water resistance ratings.
What is your budget? You can find good quality hiking backpacks at a variety of price points.
The Best Budget Hiking Backpacks - Your Questions Answered
Have you got a trip in mind yet? I hope that you have an idea of which pack will be best, but just in case you have more questions, we have included the answers to some of the questions other hikers ask. Lots of useful tips in there too.
Your Answers Are Just A Short Distance Away, Keep Reading!
What Is The Difference Between A Daypack And A Backpack?
A daypack is a small backpack that is designed for short trips or days out. It is usually smaller in size and has fewer compartments than a regular backpack. A daypack is perfect for hiking or walking, as it allows you to carry enough belongings for your hike that day, without having to lug around a large backpack.
A backpack is larger and more versatile than a daypack. It can be used for longer trips and overnight treks. It typically has more compartments for storing belongings as well as extra straps and a hip belt to help with weight distribution. A backpack is perfect for carrying camping gear or traveling with multiple items.
How Do You Know What Size Backpack To Get?
When hiking, the weight of your backpack is very important. You don't want to carry too much weight, but you also don't want to leave anything behind that you might need. Here are a few tips for finding the right backpack size:
Decide what gear you need and what you can leave behind. For example, if you're only going on a short hike, you may not need as many supplies as someone who is going on a longer hike.
Once you have a clearer idea of the gear you are planning to carry, you will be able to work within your space limitations better
Look at the weight limit of the pack. Make sure your pack can handle the weight of all your gear plus some extra padding in case of bumps or falls.
Choose a pack with comfortable straps. You don't want your backpack to rub against your skin or be too tight, as this can cause discomfort or even injury.
Are the straps adjustable enough so you can get a good fit?
Get accustomed to your backpack before leaving for your hike to see how to adjust the straps to fit you best. Pay attention to how the pack feels when it's loaded with gear. Does it sit comfortably on your back?
Think about how long your hike will be and what type of terrain you'll be on. If you're only going on a short hike, you may not need as large or heavy-duty of a pack.
But if you're planning on being out for a while, you'll want a pack that can carry everything you need.
Consider the weather conditions you'll be hiking in. If you're expecting rain, snow, or cold temperatures, you'll need a pack that can protect your gear from the elements.
Now that you know how to choose the right backpack size, it's time to start packing for your hike!
What Is The Best Size Backpack For A Day Hike?
When it comes to backpacks, size matters. If you're planning a short hike of four hours or less, you won't need more than 20 liters of space. For a full-day hike, you'll want a backpack with a capacity of 20-40 liters.
For longer hikes lasting 1-3 nights, you'll need a pack with a capacity of 40-50 liters. And for multi-day hikes lasting 3-5 nights or more, you'll want a pack that can hold 50-70 liters (or more). So before you hit the trail, be sure to choose the right size backpack for your needs.
When you've worked out the size of the backpack you have in mind, remember to find lightweight gear.
When choosing a backpack, it's important to consider the weight of the pack itself as well as the amount of weight you'll be carrying inside. Heavier packs can cause fatigue and shoulder pain, so it's important to find one that's lightweight but still sturdy enough to carry your gear.
What Do You Pack In A Hiking Backpack?
The best place to start with planning your backpacking adventure is to work out exactly what gear you will be carrying. Once you have a clear idea of the size and weight of your gear, you can organize your pack.
When you are hiking out in the wild, safety is paramount. There are some essentials you should never leave behind:
hiking apparel to keep you warm and dry
Then there are things that could make your life easier:
hiking poles especially for descents
If you plan to sleep out overnight when you are on the trail you will need to prepare gear for camping:
sleeping pad or camp cot
a compact flashlight
compact shovel if you are wild camping
portable camping shower
We have found the right products for your backpacking adventure and you can read about some of the products mentioned above, in our review articles.
In short, when choosing backpacking gear, the focus should be on size, weight and functionality.
Always take into account the weight of what you're carrying - don't overload your pack. Always try to find a compact lightweight version of the equipment you want to bring along. Everything you bring along needs to earn its place, so finding multifunctional gear is a bonus.
Be prepared for changes in the weather and include water-resistant and moisture-wicking gear on your list, as well as gear to help protect you from UV rays.
How Heavy Should My Backpack Be?
The weight of your backpack is an important consideration when hiking. You want to choose a backpack that's robust enough to carry the items you need, but not so heavy that it becomes a burden.
Hiking with a backpack that is too heavy can be dangerous and can lead to injuries. The weight of your backpack should be based on the length of your trip, the weight of your gear, and your own body weight. A general rule of thumb is to keep the total weight of your backpack and gear at no more than 20% of your body weight.
If you are going on an overnight backpacking trip, then your pack should weigh no more than 35 pounds (including food and water). Any pack over 35 pounds is too heavy regardless of your body size.
If you're hiking with a backpack that's too heavy, you'll probably notice it pretty quickly! Your backpack should be comfortable to put on and take off, and wearing it shouldn't cause pain or tingling in your limbs. If you start to feel any strap marks forming or notice changes in your posture, it's likely that your backpack is too heavy.
If you're carrying a lot of weight, try to distribute it evenly between the different compartments of your backpack.
Your backpack should be heaviest at the base and get gradually lighter as you move up towards the top. This will help to distribute the weight evenly across your back and prevent any one spot from becoming too burdensome.
When packing your backpack, remember to pack the heaviest items closest to your back and make sure everything is securely fastened. You can attach your camping kettle quite easily to hang behind you on your backpack.
And make sure to take regular breaks to rest your arms and shoulders. With a little bit of effort, you can avoid letting your backpack slow you down on the trail.
How Should A Hiking Backpack Fit?
Hiking backpacks should fit snugly and evenly on your hips, with the straps pulled tight. The straps should not be so tight that they dig into your skin, but they should be snug enough that the pack doesn't shift around while you're walking. The back panel of the pack should sit close to your back, and the hips belt should wrap around your hips snugly. If you own a camelbak or similar type of hydration system, make sure that it fits snugly against your back as well.
When adjusting the straps on hiking backpacks, always start by loosening them completely before putting the pack on. Once the pack is in place, adjust the shoulder straps first, followed by the sternum strap and the hip belt. Take care to keep things in symmetry with your body shape. A pack that sits askew can become very annoying. When you're finished adjusting the straps, take a few minutes to walk around and make sure that the pack feels comfortable and secure.
What Clothes Should I Wear For Hiking?
Two of the most important considerations when buying clothes for your hike are sun protection and staying dry. Even in the heat of summer moist clothes can be a problem when you are hiking. So where possible look for gear that takes that into account.
Hiking Shirts: Ranging from Tank Tops to Long-sleeved hiking shirts, you can find a hiking shirt to suit your requirements. The best hiking shirts wick away sweat and are fast drying. This helps with the cooling process of evaporation and helps prevent chafing and getting chilled at the end of the day when temperatures drop.
Hiking Pants: In the heat of summer hikers like to wear hiking shorts to stay cool. It's personal preference how short those should go. Remember though if you choose to wear short hiking shorts to protect your legs from scratches, insect bites and the harmful rays of the sun. Some hikers prefer longer hiking pants even in hot weather for this reason. Whether long or short, hiking pants are great as they are made of lightweight, moisture-wicking fabric and do not impede movement. In colder weather layer up with a base layer that wicks away moisture from the skin.
Hiking boots: it's always better to wear hiking boots rather than running shoes or sandals. They provide better ankle support and if you are hiking where there may be snakes it offers better protection from bites.
Hiking Jackets or Fleeces: Even when it is cold, hiking can make you quite warm because of exertion. When you are climbing up you will need less to keep warm than when you are climbing down where you may start feeling chilled. The trick to temperature regulation on a hike is layering. It's better to have layers so you have flexibility, but strangely enough, 2 thinner layers can often be warmer than one thick garment
Hat: Whether it's to protect your head from the cold or the sun, a hat is an important consideration.
Hiking Belt: A hiking belt can be useful out on the trail at often it means you can attach extra gear like hiking flashlights and camping knives to the belt. Perfect for hiking where you need your hands free for important things.
Hiking Backpacks: Whether its a daypack or a larger backpack, it's great to have your gear stored rather than having to carry it in your hands.
Hiking Underwear and Socks: Try to find underwear that will work with your other clothing to keep you warm and dry. Whether it's a hiking bra with additional support or underpants of breathable fabric, it's worth the investment. Woollen socks are fantastic even in the heat and are far better than cotton socks.
How Do You Start Hiking For Beginners?
Hiking is such a fantastic way to get some time outdoors. It's a great way to stay fit, but even better than that, it gives you the opportunity to spend time in contemplation, time with friends and family, and of course time with your pet.
If you think of hiking as a type of workout, you know there is specialist gear that will help you have a comfortable and enjoyable hike. Wearing clothing that breathes for instance. I have spoken about moisture-wicking fabric a lot, whether it's your bra or hiking shirt, hiking pants or hiking shorts, it's super important to try and keep dry when you are hiking. Clothing that does not impede movement is also a priority. Clothing that is too tight can be dangerous if you are hiking in challenging terrain. Take into account the season you are in when you are planning what gear to carry with you.
Remember safety first. Carry a simple first aid kit, suncream, a hat, hiking boots to protect your ankles from snake bites, and mosquito repellent to keep the mosquitoes at bay. Remember your map and a battery pack to charge your phone if you are relying on that.
Hiking is a wonderful way to spend time with friends and family and it's far safer to hike in a group. But if you do choose to hike alone, be sure to tell someone where you will be hiking. Think about the colors you choose to wear, so that if you get lost or injured it's easier to spot you. In addition, there are reflective blankets and other reflective kits (like tarps and reflector strips on clothing) that can help you signal for help when needed.
If you know you have a long day of hiking ahead of you think about hydration. A gallon water bottle is a great idea. Also if it's your first hike, you may take longer to get back to camp than expected. If you do get caught in the dark, a hiking flashlight is a great idea to avoid tripping and falling.
Hiking binoculars are fun to have with you if you enjoy wildlife spotting and choosing a compact lightweight option means you could bring them along on your hike.
Dogs love hiking and even cats can join you if you hate leaving them behind when you go on your adventures. Check out my article on cat backpacks and dog harnesses for hiking with dogs if you want to see how best to prepare for a hike with your furry companion.
I'm so excited for you. May your first hike be a huge success. All you need is to do a bit of planning.
Hiking is a great way to get out and explore the great outdoors, but it's important to have the right gear if you want to make the most of your hike. Whether you’re looking for a small daypack or something larger that can carry all your gear, we have found some cracking budget option hiking backpacks for you.
Our Choice For Half Day Hikes
Our Choice For All Day Hikes
Our Choice For Comfort
Our Choice For Versatility
Our Choice For Beginners
Nearly there. Soon you will be packing in your gear into your shiny new backpack. I hope by us doing the research and writing this article, things are a bit clearer. You now can choose the perfect hiking backpacks for your next hiking adventure.
Keep Asking Questions And We Will Keep Finding Answers For You.