Best Backpacks For Women

Is there such a thing as backpacks for women, specific only? If the answer is yes, the next one will be -Why? As a woman, I quite enjoy exploring the outdoors and seeing the beautiful things mother nature provides us. The most beautiful scenery, as you know, is off the beaten path, and most of the time, you have to backpack to witness these natural wonders.

If you are going to go backpacking and have some time with mother nature, you are going to need a backpack. So why not, backpacks for women?

We have found the best options from backpacks for women and also included some criteria to help you not only find the one that fits your needs but also to assist you in thinking about some features you may want in your pack to get you where you’re going securely and comfortably.

Standout Picks

Osprey Aura AG 65 Backpacks for Women
Osprey’s Aura AG 65 is our first choice among the backpacks for women offers several specific features that women love, which makes it one of the most popular backpacks on the market today. This backpack is designed to be very light, flexible, and also comes with a lot of storage space. Plus, it offers a lot of pockets that help keep items easily organized. Plus, it comes with Anti-Gravity features and an excellent suspension system.
The North Face Terra 55 Backpacks for Women
The North Face has long been recognized as a great manufacturer of fantastic outdoor gear products. Their Terra 55 Backpack is very affordable, and still offers a lot of versatility as well as a great design. It offers many great features and is designed for durability as well.
Thule Versant 60
Thule’s Versant 60 is designed to be a versatile backpack that will work well for any woman. It features waterproof material and is also designed to be very long-lasting. You get a very comfortable backpack with this one, and it has nice padding to make it more comfortable.
Mountain Hardwear Ozonic 60 OutDry Backpacks for women
Mountain Hardwear is a brand that is well-known for making high-quality gear, and the Mountain Hardwear Ozonic Outdry 60 is no different. This backpack is great for any season and designed to be waterproof with a lot of durabilities. It’s also very comfortable and adjustable.
The North Face Banchee 65 Backpacks for women
The North Face’s Banchee Backpack is made to be comfortable and also offers a lightweight backpack that is easy to carry. There is a lovely, large external pocket on it that you can use to fit just about anything. Plus, there are also several other great pockets throughout the backpack. You’ll love how great this backpack feels no matter how long your backpacking trip might be.
Deuter ACT Lite SL Backpacks for women
The Deuter ACT Lite is a unique item among the backpacks for women, that was made to fit a woman’s body with a lot of comforts. It’s an affordable backpack, but it still offers many of the same bonuses that some of the more expensive bags carry. The shoulder straps feature a lot of padding and comfort, and the overall design of the backpack makes it simple. It’s also lightweight and offers a lot of durabilities.
Gregory Deva 60 Backpacks for Women
Gregory Deva’s backpack is designed to comfortably carry large weights while providing an excess amount of comfort and a lot of support. This backpack is made for all seasons and offers a lot of durability in its design. You also get comfortable shoulder straps that come with a lot of cushioning and a backpack that is designed to fit a woman’s body. Plus, this backpack also has an excellent ventilation system, and a friendly hip stabilizing system as well.
Osprey Ariel AG 65
The Osprey Ariel is an excellent backpack that comes with a lot of features and also has a lot of room for adjustment. It runs a bit on the heavy side, but it comes with a lot of cushioning and padding that makes it comfortable to carry. It also offers an excellent suspension system and a lot of durabilities. You’ll love how comfortable it feels each time you use it.
Arc'teryx Bora AR 61 Backpacks for Women
Arcteryx is a great outdoor gear manufacturer that is well-known for its quality products. Their Bora AR 61 is an excellent backpack that is designed to be lightweight, and also features a superb hip belt that won’t chafe and is very comfortable. This backpack does run on the expensive in, but it offers so much comfort and durability, it is worth the price.
Lowe Alpine Manaslu
Lowe’s Alpine Manaslu Women’s Backpack offers a beautiful backpack that is very adjustable and can get you both the fit and comfort you need. It comes with excellent carrying capacity and has several straps and pockets for easy organization and carrying. Plus, this backpack feels very comfortable no matter what type of load you decide to carry with it.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Comfort

Comfort is probably one of the most critical factors you’ll want to take a look at before purchasing your backpack. You need to consider the support of the pack when it is empty and when it is loaded, and its comfort level can also vary depending on how much you pack.

Some backpacks have pressure points on them that can cause bruising and rubbing, so you also want to make sure you check out your backpack for those issues.

When it comes to comfort, you might wind up having to trade off some comfort features if you prefer a more lightweight backpack. Backpacks for women designed to be lightweight typically don’t come with as much padding, so that makes them lighter, but far less comfortable.

Also, backpacks that are designed to be lightweight are made to carry lighter loads. If you know you need to bring a more massive load, then you will probably want to opt for a more comfortable backpack that is made to handle heavier loads.

So, make sure you also think about the overall amount of items you’ll be carrying. Plus, if you are planning on carrying heavier loads, you more than likely are going to need that extra cushioning and support.

Also, how much cushioning and support you get with your backpack will depend a lot on the overall cushioning on the hip belt and shoulder straps. Typically, the more padding you find there, the less chaffing and pressure points you will feel while you are on the go.

Another part of the backpack that dictates how much comfort you will get is the back panel, which adds to the suspension system on the pack. Some of these backpacks for women are designed with rear panels that feature a lot of cushioning, so you always feel comfortable.

Others are made to provide more stability and support for your back if you need it. Also, many of the backpacks on our list feature mesh panels for breathability on the back panel, so that you get the ventilation you need and don’t have to feel like you are overheating or getting covered in your sweat. Having the ventilation can make you feel a lot more comfortable while you are on the move.

Weight

The weight of the pack can also determine a lot about the backpack itself. If you are opting for more lightweight backpacks for women, you are likely to get less cushioning, padding, and other features designed into your backpack. However, that choice is really up to you, and you need to decide if you want something more comfortable or more lightweight.

If you want a lightweight backpack, we offered three very lightweight ones on our review. Those three include The North Face Banchee 65, The North Face Terra 55, and Mountain Hardwear’s Ozonic 60. All three of these backpacks weigh about four pounds or less, so they are built to feel light when you wear them on your back.

Ease of Use

How comfortable your backpack is to you also becomes an important evaluation point. We took a look at the adjustability and simplicity of each bag on our list.

Some backpacks for women are far more comfortable to use than others, and some are more difficult. What we discovered is that the more adjustability features that come with a backpack, typically, the more difficult the pack is to use. However, with that extra adjustability comes an excellent fit as well, so once you get used to adjusting those types of backpacks, you’ll be able to settle on an excellent fit. So, there are positives and negatives to having this type of extra adjustability.

Also, some backpacks for women make it easier for you to access your items in your pockets as well as your main compartments when compared to others. So, while you are on the go in the great outdoors, if you want to access your pack with ease, you’ll need to take a look at how easy it is to get your items out of your backpack without having to remove the entire bag.

Features

Features include many things when we take a look at these backpacks. Features include pockets, buckets, straps, and a few other concepts. If you want a lot of organization built into your pack, then you’ll need to look for something that has several pockets. However, just having a lot of pockets typically isn’t enough.

The location of the pockets also becomes essential. If you want to access your items easily while you are on the go, you need to make sure the pockets are designed with a proper placement that allows you to do this. So, that is certainly something you want to consider if you're going to be able to organize your items quickly.

Capacity

The capacity of a backpack is another crucial feature that shouldn't be overlooked. Knowing how to plan to explore with the backpack ahead of time will help you to decide which capacity will work best for you.

As a general guideline, for a day trip, a bag of about 20L to 35L will be sufficient. In this bag, you could fit, a change of clothes, an adequate quantity of water, snacks, a first aid kit, and a few other random necessities.

If you plan to take a longer trek, perhaps for a few nights, a 40L or 50L backpack will be better for you. In this bag, you will also be able to fit camping and sleeping gear. It should also be mentioned that if you are a winter trekker, a larger backpack will be necessary to carry thermoses and bulkier clothing.

Additionally, if you are one of those people who brings all of the "just in case" items, you may want to opt for a larger capacity.

Top 10 Picks

1. Osprey Aura AG 65

Where to buy
Osprey Aura AG 65 Backpacks for Women
Amazon Link

Osprey’s Aura AG 65 is our first choice among the backpacks for women offers several specific features that women love, which makes it one of the most popular backpacks on the market today. This backpack is designed to be very light, flexible, and also comes with a lot of storage space. Plus, it offers a lot of pockets that help keep items easily organized. Plus, it comes with Anti-Gravity features and an excellent suspension system.

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Comfort

Designed with shoulder straps made with women in mind, you also get an excellent suspension system with this backpack. Plus, there is a mesh system running throughout the backpack that gives it superior breathability. The material in the bag also feels very soft, and there is plenty of comforts featured in this backpack’s design.

Weight

This particular backpack is made to be lightweight so that it is easy for women to carry. It weighs a little over four pounds, meaning it is designed to be very light and easy to carry. There aren’t many other backpacks on the market made to be as lightweight as this one.

Ease of Use

The backpack is designed with a lot of versatility in mind and comes with a lot of adjustable features. It might take a little while to understand all of the straps and adjustments, but once you’ve mastered it, it is quite simple. Also, it features so many pockets that it makes it very easy for you to organize your items.

Features

This backpack comes with a bevy of organizational features that makes both carrying and finding items easy. It features a main compartment that is easy to access when you are on the go, and a bottom compartment designed to hold a sleeping bag. You also get a mesh pocket and two zippered pockets.

Capacity

The particular model that we are discussing in this review is 65L. However, you will notice that this backpack is available in an XS, S, or M. This isn't usually an option for backpacks for women, and in this case, the capacity changes slightly to better fit your frame. The extra small holds 60L, the small holds 62L, and the medium holds 65L.

2. The North Face Terra 55

The North Face Terra 55 Backpacks for Women
Amazon Link

The North Face has long been recognized as a great manufacturer of fantastic outdoor gear products. Their Terra 55 Backpack is very affordable, and still offers a lot of versatility as well as a great design. It offers many great features and is designed for durability as well.

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Comfort

The North Face’s Terra backpack has narrow shoulder straps, which may seem small to some but provide a nice boost of comfort, especially if you don’t have much experience backpacking. There is also a beautiful mesh panel in the back of this pack, which helps keep the ventilation going. Also, there is plenty of excellent foam padding where you need it, making this a comfortable backpack choice.

Weight

The Terra weighs in at a little over four pounds, which makes it a lightweight backpack. You won’t feel weighed down when you use it. It features an ideal weight range and is designed to carry loads very well. You’ll love its durability and simplicity.

Ease of Use

This backpack gives you an excellent, simple design that makes it very easy to use. It’s not complicated at all, and it provides the user with a lot of stability and comfort. It is adjustable, but may not feel entirely as flexible as some other backpacks in our review. It does feature a lot of access points to the main compartment as well.

Features

The Terra offers a lot of simplicity, but it also provides all of the features you’d ever want to have in a backpack. You get water bottle holders on both sides of the pack as well as a hydration lid. There are also plenty of pockets for easy organization.

Capacity

As you may have gathered by the name of this backpack, it's capacity is 55L. This makes it a large pack that would be great for a multi-day hiking trip, or even for a short vacation. However, because it is a lightweight style, it doesn't offer as many comforts as some of the heavier styles.

3. Thule Versant 60

Where to buy
Thule Versant 60
Amazon Link

Thule’s Versant 60 is designed to be a versatile backpack that will work well for any woman. It features waterproof material and is also designed to be very long-lasting. You get a very comfortable backpack with this one, and it has nice padding to make it more comfortable.

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Comfort

This backpack comes with small but well-padded shoulder straps. Plus, the straps feature a mesh material, and that makes the bag more breathable. It also is straightforward to adjust so that you can get a great fit with this backpack.

Weight

The Versant is manufactured to be very light and weighs in at a little over four pounds. For how lightweight it is, it still offers a lot of room to carry along your essential items. It’s also straightforward to compress this backpack down when you need to.

Ease of Use

This backpack is easy to use, but it could have a more natural waist belt adjustment system. Some of the adjustments might take some getting used to on this backpack. However, once you get it adjusted, it can easily stay put. Other than that, this backpack has an excellent design.

Features

The primary compartment of this backpack has two access points and the pack' design, so it is effortless for you to access your items. You get a large lid with two oversized zipper pockets on the inside that you can get to quickly. You also get a beautiful, detachable cover.

Capacity

In this review, we are explicitly talking about the 60L Versant; however, this backpack is available in 50L, 60L, or 70L. We think it is a great backpack and are happy to see it offered in versatile sizes. Depending on your motives and what type of packer you are, one of these three sizes will be perfect for you.

4. Mountain Hardwear Ozonic 60 OutDry

Where to buy
Mountain Hardwear Ozonic 60 OutDry Backpacks for women
Amazon Link

Mountain Hardwear is a brand that is well-known for making high-quality gear, and the Mountain Hardwear Ozonic Outdry 60 is no different. This backpack is great for any season and designed to be waterproof with a lot of durabilities. It’s also very comfortable and adjustable.

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Comfort

This backpack is designed with a lot of features that help make it a comfortable choice. It features excellent padding on both the hip belt and shoulder straps. Also, since this backpack is designed for women, it won’t rub or chafe. It also has a decent ventilation system and a rigid back panel.

Weight

This backpack is extremely light and weighs in at 3.81 pounds. It is designed to be durable and features waterproof fabric that makes it seem like it should weigh more, but it doesn’t. It works well for mid to heavier packing.

Ease of Use

The Ozonic Outdry backpack comes with a lot of adjustment features that make it easy to use. It also has a reversible lid, and superb shoulder straps that are easy to adjust. This backpack is designed to make access easy while you are on-the-go.

Features

The Ozonic backpack comes with a lot of pockets that make it very easy for any woman to organize her items. It features a total of six compartments that help keep everything organized and safe. Also, the backpack is designed to give you access to things you’d need while you are on the move.

Capacity

This is another backpack that is so conveniently available in multiple capacities. You can enjoy this backpack in 50L, 60L, or 70L. In this review, we discussed the 60L, but you can imagine the same components slightly smaller and slightly larger.

5. The North Face Banchee 65

Where to buy
The North Face Banchee 65 Backpacks for women
Amazon Link

The North Face’s Banchee Backpack is made to be comfortable and also offers a lightweight backpack that is easy to carry. There is a lovely, large external pocket on it that you can use to fit just about anything. Plus, there are also several other great pockets throughout the backpack. You’ll love how great this backpack feels no matter how long your backpacking trip might be.

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Comfort

The Banchee was made with comfort in mind and comes with a nice aluminum frame that is made to fit a woman’s body. The backpack also has a mesh panel, so you get excellent breathability and ventilation with this backpack for even better comfort. Plus, the Banchee also offers a design that is comfortable for your back, which is a nice extra as well.

Weight

The Banchee is an incredibly lightweight backpack, so if you want something that weighs next to nothing, this might be the backpack for you. Even though it is lightweight, it also provides a lot of back support, which is very lovely. Plus, even though this backpack is thin, it still offers some great storage features that will help keep you organized.

Ease of Use

You’ll love how much organization you get with the Banchee since you get a total of eight pockets. Not only do you get many pockets, but the pockets are also designed well so that they are easy to reach. So, you get tons of easy access as well with this backpack and plenty of room for organization.

Features

The Banchee gives you a lot of excellent features. The first, which we already discussed, is the bevy of pockets you get, and how easy they are to access. You’ll also get some excellent water bottle holders and a removable lid. We also really like the back panel that is designed with a breathable mesh material which helps to add to the breathability and comfort of the backpack.

Capacity

We decided the review the largest of the trio, the Banchee 65. However, this backpack is also offered in 50L or 35L. The 35L is a small but mighty version of this same backpack, better for day trips. Be careful not to overpack this bag as it hasn't proven to be as durable as some of our other options.

6. Deuter ACT Lite SL

Deuter ACT Lite SL Backpacks for women
Amazon Link

The Deuter ACT Lite is a unique item among the backpacks for women, that was made to fit a woman’s body with a lot of comforts. It’s an affordable backpack, but it still offers many of the same bonuses that some of the more expensive bags carry. The shoulder straps feature a lot of padding and comfort, and the overall design of the backpack makes it simple. It’s also lightweight and offers a lot of durabilities.

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Comfort

The ACT Lite backpack is made to be simple, and the backpack is also very adjustable, so you get the perfect fit plus a lot of comforts. There is also plenty of cushioning in the back area as well as the straps of this backpack, which gives it a very comfortable design. It’s a backpack that is also designed to fit the style of a woman’s body so that she’ll get a lot of comforts whenever she wears it.

Weight

This backpack is designed to be decently light and weighs about 4.31 pounds. So, it’s not the lightest backpack out there, but it is one of the lighter ones. It also offers an excellent, simple design, and the backpack comes with ample back support for those who need it.

Ease of Use

The ACT Lite is made to be easy to use, and the overall simplicity of the backpack makes it an excellent choice. You get a bag that can adjust, but it’s effortless to figure out how to make the fit work. Also, you get some pockets with this design, which helps to add to the organization. If you sometimes struggle with figuring out how to adjust your backpack, the ACT Lite will make it very easy for you to figure this out.

Features

Because of its simple design, the ACT Lite doesn’t come with as much pocket space and organizational concepts as some of the other backpacks in this review. However, it does offer three enclosed compartments, which is a nice feature to have in the design of this backpack. So, while you don’t get a lot of pockets, you do get enough to find enough space for organization.

Capacity

This backpack is 60L, with an additional 10L added if you choose to use the top as storage. The top has dual closures to allow you extra space. Additionally, this pack is available is 28L (no additional 10), 50L, and 65L.

7. Gregory Deva 60

Where to buy
Gregory Deva 60 Backpacks for Women
Amazon Link

Gregory Deva’s backpack is designed to comfortably carry large weights while providing an excess amount of comfort and a lot of support. This backpack is made for all seasons and offers a lot of durability in its design. You also get comfortable shoulder straps that come with a lot of cushioning and a backpack that is designed to fit a woman’s body. Plus, this backpack also has an excellent ventilation system, and a friendly hip stabilizing system as well.

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Comfort

The Deva offers a lot of comforts and is designed to fit a woman’s body shape. You get a pre-curved harness that also comes with a beautiful hip belt. Also, the backpack offers a lot of cushioning, stability, and support in the back area to make it easy to carry. Also, the shoulder straps come with a lot of padding to help take the weight off the pressure points.

Weight

The Deva runs on the more massive end of the spectrum when compared to some of the other backpacks in our review. While it is designed for comfort, the extra padding and cushioning make it weigh a bit more. With backpacks for women, there is always a trade-off with extra padding, adding to the weight of the backpack, but it all depends on if you want more cushioning or not.

Ease of Use

This backpack does have a bit of a learning curve with ease of use, mostly because it has a lot of straps that make it extra-adjustable. However, the straps do require some time to learn and figure out. However, once you get the hang of the straps and get them to adjust correctly, you should be good to go. You’ll enjoy this nice, large backpack design once you get the fit down.

Features

You get several excellent features with this backpack and a lot of pockets that give you some excellent organizational potential. This backpack offers you the main compartment, two medium-sized pockets, and two smaller pockets. You also get a rainfly with this backpack. Plus, the backpack is large enough to provide you with plenty of room to store everything you need.

Capacity

This particular review is for the 60L backpack. 60L offers you plenty of room for a winter day trek or a multi-day hike in the spring. It is also provided in 70L, with each size also featuring an XS, S, or M option as well, changing the capacity by about 2L each size.

8. Osprey Ariel AG 65

Osprey Ariel AG 65
Amazon Link

The Osprey Ariel is an excellent backpack that comes with a lot of features and also has a lot of room for adjustment. It runs a bit on the heavy side, but it comes with a lot of cushioning and padding that makes it comfortable to carry. It also offers an excellent suspension system and a lot of durabilities. You’ll love how comfortable it feels each time you use it.

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Comfort

This backpack was designed to be comfortable, and you get great padding on both the hip belt as well as the shoulder straps. You also get a lot of ventilation built into this pack to add to the comfort level. It’s one of the most breathable backpacks you’ll find on our list. Also, this backpack is designed with curves that are meant to conform to a woman’s shape.

Weight

This backpack is designed with a great cushioning system, but like many other well-padded backpacks, it runs on the heavy side of the spectrum. The Ariel weighs about 5.31 pounds, which does mean it is a bit heavy. However, the padding and the zippers, as well as the overall durability of the backpack, all add to its weight, so you get a few trade-offs here.

Ease of Use

This backpack is designed to be easy to use, but it does feature some complicated features that require a bit of a learning curve to get used to. One thing that will take some getting used to is the adjustment features since there are tons of them with this pack. With so many adjustable features, you will need to learn how to get your adjustments right. However, once you get the backpack adjusted so that it fits you correctly, you will get a great gift and a lot of comfort with this backpack.

Features

This backpack comes with several great features. One of the things we like about this backpack is its use of four enclosed pockets plus three mesh pockets. So, you get plenty of room and space to organize your items, which makes this a nice backpack if you have a lot of things to carry. Also, you get a removable lid with this backpack.

Capacity

This backpack is available in three different sizes, 55L, 65L, and 75L. This specific review is written for the middle size, 65L. This backpack also features additionally sizing of XS, S, and M to create a better fit for your frame.

9. Arc'teryx Bora AR 61

Arc'teryx Bora AR 61 Backpacks for Women
Amazon Link

Arcteryx is a great outdoor gear manufacturer that is well-known for its quality products. Their Bora AR 61 is an excellent backpack that is designed to be lightweight, and also features a superb hip belt that won’t chafe and is very comfortable. This backpack does run on the expensive in, but it offers so much comfort and durability, it is worth the price.

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Comfort

The Bora backpack is designed with a significant emphasis on comfort. It features a lot of foam padding on the waist belt as well as the shoulder straps. The straps might feel bulky to some, but if you want a lot of cushioning on your backpack, then this one has that.

Weight

This backpack weighs in at just under five pounds, which means it isn’t the lightest backpack in our review, but it is designed for durability. Plus, with the extra cushioning added to the pack, it is straightforward to carry this pack along with you. It also doesn’t feel too heavy when you put it on.

Ease of Use

Arcteryx’s Bora backpack comes designed to be very easy to use. It is very adjustable and also built to provide maximum comfort. You get a lot of adjustability in the shoulder straps. The waist belt also comes adjustable. You get three easy to use compartments with this backpack, which offers plenty of organization.

Features

The Bora backpack comes with several great features and gives you plenty of pockets to help you stay organized. It also gives you a lot of space, and it is effortless to access the inside of the backpack even while you are on the move. You also get plenty of room for storage and organization.

Capacity

The capacities of this backpack are entirely random. This review is written for the 61L, but there is also a 49L available. It offers you great pockets and adjustability in both sizes.

10. Lowe Alpine Manaslu

Where to buy
Lowe Alpine Manaslu
Amazon Link

Lowe’s Alpine Manaslu Women’s Backpack offers a beautiful backpack that is very adjustable and can get you both the fit and comfort you need. It comes with excellent carrying capacity and has several straps and pockets for easy organization and carrying. Plus, this backpack feels very comfortable no matter what type of load you decide to carry with it.

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Comfort

The Manaslu is designed with an emphasis on comfort. It features thick straps on the waist and on the shoulders that include a lot of cushioning to help out these pressure points. Also, it comes with a breathable back panel that provides for a mesh ventilation system for extra comfort. You won’t feel any rubbing or chaffing with this pack.

Weight

The Manaslu is manufactured with comfort in mind, but it does run more on the heavy side, mostly because of all the strap and cushioning features that come with this backpack. This backpack weighs about four pounds thirteen ounces, and it can feel a bit bulky at times. While it would be helpful for this backpack to be more lightweight, you do get plenty of comfort out of the design.

Ease of Use

The Manaslu has a bit of a learning curve with some of the adjustment features it offers you. It can feel a bit complicated because of the extra straps and buckles, but once you get used to it and adjust it, you should experience a lot of comforts and a great fit. The adjustments can be hard to get correct the first few times, but once you get it right, you should be off with this backpack.

Features

This backpack does weigh a bit more, mostly because of its extra straps and cushioning features. It does come with many pockets, and it is easy to access the main compartment of this backpack. Also, you get a hydration sleeve and rain fly built into this backpack.

Capacity

This review is based on 55: a 70L backpack. The first capacity is for the bag itself, and the second capacity is with the option to expand the lid and use it for extra storage. This backpack is additionally offered in 60:75L, 65:80L, and 50:65L.

Sources

  1. Jane Jackson, The Best Women's Backpacking Packs of 2017 , Informational Camping Website
  2. Drew Zieff and Melanie Ott, The Best Hiking Backpacks, Informational Camping Website
  3. Julie Marks, The Best Hiking Backpacks for Women 2017, Informational Camping Website
  4. VICKI GARSIDE, THE BEST TRAVEL BACKPACK FOR WOMEN 2019, Female Travel Blog