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Backpack for Travelling


TRIBE Member
I'm planning on backpacking through Europe this summer and am not really sure what to look for in a bag. Anyone who has done this, do you have any suggestions about where to get one, or what to look for?

Alex D. from TRIBE on Utility Room
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TRIBE Member
Canadian Tire. They're well-made and inexpensive.
But if money isn't an issue than yeah MEC has some impressive creations.


TRIBE Member
just doesn't get better.


First of all forget about colour! The most important thing in a backpack is the fit. Your best of going to an outfitter store and getting sized properly before you buy any bag.

For trecking your going to want an internal frame and I would go so far as to say do not by a backpack that does not incorperate the *crossbow* system. (crossbow systems are installed in higher end low alpine bags)

I wouldn't by a bad without a nice camel pack located on the upper middle back because when you sweet it cools your drinking water which is really nice.

Look for a front loading pack you'll never regret it! Aswell as a built in easy on / easy off day pack is really nice too.

If you wear a wide brimmed had it'd be good to find a pack with a noggen notch built in.

Look for foreward facing front pockets and a lifetine warenty on the bag.

A breathable back system is also highly advised and a large high quality hip belt is a must!


TRIBE Member
Spend the money and get a good pack that will last you a lifetime. I've had mine for 16 years. Got me through Europe and a few other places.

Make sure it fits well as you will basically be carrying your life with you so you will want to be comfortable. And you don't want to have to dig through all your stuff if you are looking for one article.

:: salathe ::

TRIBE Member
Eagle Creek is the cadillac of travel packs if u wanna go top-notch. Mostly b/c of their lifetime guarantee. i've heard of them sending out a brand new pack for stuff like a worn zipper.

arcteryx makes the bora which is a nice pack that comes in a variety of sizes (volume specified in gallons H2O).
Plus they're a good canadian company from Burnaby.

haven't heard much about lowealpine, although the guy who started the company should know a good pack. i hear he's pretty good with an icepick too.

definitely try on the pack and get it fit for your torso/frame.


TRIBE Member
try several models out, and make sure to have shop personel help you adjust them properly. most importantly, load the bag with at least 50% of the weight you think you will be carrying around, just to see how it sits on you and feels on your body.

do no get anything bigger than 80 litres. light is right.

fact - most people bring 3 times as much clothes and 1/3 as much money as they need for a trip.

i personally recommend anything ArcTeryx makes, espcially the Bora series. among the very best, most comofrtable packs out there.

think of your pack as an investment. if you go cheap, don't be shocked and don'T complain when your pack falls apart prematurely or if it doesn't fit you properly, and even worse, if it injures you on a consistent basis.

make an informed decision, and be willing to spend in the neighbourhood of $250-$400 for a quality pack.


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TRIBE Member
When you try on the pack, ask them to load it up with gear as it will feel a lot different fully loaded. An empty pack feels like nothing. Get some boots or clothes in there and see how it feels.


TRIBE Member
I've been curious about Gregory packs for a while now but they are a fortune!

Right now I have two main packs:

Lowe Alpine Liberty 95 + 20

Lowe Alpine Snowpeak 50 + 25

my friends got an 80L Low Alpine Crossbow which I love too

yeah so I'm biased at this point ;)


TRIBE Member
LL Bean
If anything EVER happens to them, you send them back and they send you a new one. Theyre comfortable, hardy, and come with just about anything you could ask for.
Well worth the price.
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jus me

TRIBE Member
You could also get a used one. There's a bunch of people out there who have bought a travel backpack, used them once and want to get rid of it.

It's an idea if you're on a budget.

Make sure it's not extremely used though! You wouldn't want problems with it while you're on your adventure, eh?


TRIBE Member
my trip is for 9 weeks, so what size bag will I be looking for?
I was thinking of between 65 - 70 L. Will that be enough?


TRIBE Member
well, it's recomended that if your male you should be carying about 1/3 your body weight and for females it's 1/4.

What are you going to be doing on your vacation? Are you heading out on trails or taking in the sites through various cities?

First of all you have to figure out about how much gear you are figuring on packing. Then go through that list and decide what you need to take in order to survive and forget about the rest of the junk. Then get a big pile together and have a look at it and from thier you can should be able to decide how big you need to go.

word to the wise though. . you're far better of having a bag that is to big then being stuck with one that is too small! Think about future use as well. . It's probably safe to say that most people would not need a bag bigger then 80L as Ethnik said but are you most people?

Spend the money and buy a quaility pack and you can expect it to last a lifetime and then some.

Booty Bits

TRIBE Member
i would suggest that you get a bag with the opening on the front, and not on the top. the bag i took to asia this summer has a zipper that runs along the two sides and the top of the bag, so when its laid out open on the floor, i can basically have access to everything in the bag at once.
my travelmate had a top loader and it was a major pain in the ass!
also, get something with a removable day pack. comes in sooo handy when you're backpacking.

most importantly, bigger is NOT better. get something that fits your body type and doesnt have a billion bells and whistles like some of the hiking bags do. unless you're going to be hiking and camping out of your pack, you dont need a hiking bag. i have a small frame, and i even found that my smaller bag was friggin heavy as sin as my trip went on (you acquire stuff as the trip progresses). my bag was considerably smaller than alot of the other backpackers i saw and i was definitely happy about my decision.

it was basically an even simpler version of this bag:


Well-Known TRIBEr
personalize the item you are buying as much as you can.
so look for whatever you feel comfortable with, since you are going to be carrying it with you all the time.
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TRIBE Member
Originally posted by :: salathe ::
haven't heard much about lowealpine, although the guy who started the company should know a good pack. i hear he's pretty good with an icepick too.

Make that past tense. Alex Lowe passed a year or 2 ago doing what he loved. One of the best mixed climbers ever to grace this earth.