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Luggage Transfer Correos

Another Backpack recommendation request

2020 Camino Guides

Thomas1962

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2010: Porto - SdC - Finisterra 2011: E4 on Crete 2012: Le Puy - SJPdP 2013: Camino Madrid -> Del Salvador -> Primitivo 2014: European Peace Walk. 2015: Amsterdam - SdC & Barcelona -Burgos. 2016:Norte & hospitalero
At the moment I do have two backpacks OMM 32 and an osprey atmos 50 liter, with both I did 4 weeks of camino. Because I wanted to run part of the camino this year I used the OMM, I really took the minimum stuff, running with it was fine, but I can't really compare it with other small running packs, with the osprey running is not an option.
Without the running, I do prefer the Osprey, even when I also taken only 30 liters of luggage. The osprey is more comfortable, this mainly because of the frame an the mesh backpanel. With that pack at some days I really hardly feel there is 8 kilo's of luggage on my back.
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
After 4 Caminos I continúe to praise my Osprey Atmos 35L. I scrubbed it down after this summer and it looks like new.

As Thomas mentioned the mesh back is wonderful especially for summer peregrinos. It has more than enough space and has an inner pocket for a platypus.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Hopefully leave the states 2nd week of April 2014, Right now i am lost in my existence of living my life and need a cleansing before making my move to Cambodia
If the pack fits right wear it. If you have a good pack now dont just go spend money because of speculation . When you feel that the pack you have now feels good doesnt bother you use it. If it is a little to large so be it cinch it down,if you need a little more room add a small tote. I have an awesome pack [for me] That fits great doesnt turn my back into a sweat shop and at 65l is a bit big but i can cinch it down tight. Use your own grey matter and relax......
 

AnnieY

AnnieY
Camino(s) past & future
September 2014
Good tidings to all - My wife and I are planning to walk the camino in 2010. We are starting to buy our equipment so we can start our training program. I am looking for recommendations on backpacks for both men and women that I can buy here in the States. Thanks!
anyone managed to get there bag though as hand luggage?
 

AnnieY

AnnieY
Camino(s) past & future
September 2014
If the pack fits right wear it. If you have a good pack now dont just go spend money because of speculation . When you feel that the pack you have now feels good doesnt bother you use it. If it is a little to large so be it cinch it down,if you need a little more room add a small tote. I have an awesome pack [for me] That fits great doesnt turn my back into a sweat shop and at 65l is a bit big but i can cinch it down tight. Use your own grey matter and relax......
did you manage to take it as hand luggage on flight?
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
I have never sent my backpack into the hold. Too many people report backpacks going missing and not being found and they then have to start from scratch when they get to Spain :-(
If your pack complies with the dimension regulations you can take it into the cabin. Weight is important - usually about 7kg - but the shape is even more important. It if looks like a beach ball they won't let you take it into the cabin!
 

Say Simba

Live, Love, Laugh.
Camino(s) past & future
2013
Time to weigh in...oops, bad choice of words.

I used a military style 3-day pack ( London Bridge Trading, Co). It has three zippered pouches, making everything easy to pack, un pack and most importantly...get to. If you carry more than you can fit in this pack..it's too much. It's rugged, is relatively light weight and you can hang things off it..such as a Katahdin water purification bottle...never go anywhere with out it.

Most hiking packs are made for relatively long distance treks where you will be off road for a week to ten days...the Camino isn't a walk in the park, but you seldom find a supermercado in a park either. Pack light...don't take something you might need...take what you MUST have...the rest you can get along the Way.

Buen lightweight Camino
Arn
I am glad you chimed in on this one with such a recommendation. Often along the trail I wondered if a tactical 3 day pack, with its standard hydration port and its other standard, common sense features and arrangements wouldn't have been the best choice afterall. I will definitely consider this next time I walk the Camino.

Buen Camino!
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
I am glad you chimed in on this one with such a recommendation. Often along the trail I wondered if a tactical 3 day pack, with its standard hydration port and its other standard, common sense features and arrangements wouldn't have been the best choice afterall. I will definitely consider this next time I walk the Camino.

Buen Camino!
Well speaking as someone that walked the entire Camino Frances using a military style, tactical 3-day type pack I can honestly say I do not recommend it and wouldn't do it again with such a pack. This only because of the lack of a frame and padded hip belt. All the weight rides on your shoulders. Even when I was in the military I would use a pack with frame when I could on a "hump". The one I had was well made and sturdy, but not the best choice for walking for over a month with for several hours a day. I only used it because it was all I could scrounge up while working overseas prior to my walk. Also there was no ventilation on the back and since I was doing the Camino in July and August it was a wee bit warm some days and of course I sweated and the sweat soaked into the back of the ruck. It got to smelling a bit funky and I would have to completely unload from time to time and wash off some of the sweat just so I could stand wearing it (nobody likes a peregrino with BO). My second Camino pack is a 48L REI (with back ventilation ;)).
Work smarter, not harder, right?
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Say Simba

Live, Love, Laugh.
Camino(s) past & future
2013
Well speaking as someone that walked the entire Camino Frances using a military style, tactical 3-day type pack I can honestly say I do not recommend it and wouldn't do it again with such a pack. This only because of the lack of a frame and padded hip belt. All the weight rides on your shoulders. Even when I was in the military I would use a pack with frame when I could on a "hump". The one I had was well made and sturdy, but not the best choice for walking for over a month with for several hours a day. I only used it because it was all I could scrounge up while working overseas prior to my walk. Also there was no ventilation on the back and since I was doing the Camino in July and August it was a wee bit warm some days and of course I sweated and the sweat soaked into the back of the ruck. It got to smelling a bit funky and I would have to completely unload from time to time and wash off some of the sweat just so I could stand wearing it (nobody likes a peregrino with BO). My second Camino pack is a 48L REI (with back ventilation ;)).
Work smarter, not harder, right?
Good points to remember. Perhaps I should be happy with what I had, but just go a little smaller than 45 liters.
 

CaminoKris2013

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2014)
So I have a 28l Deuter that I was weighing (not on the scale, but on my thoughts) on going up and using my niece's 42l Deuter' s here in Germany (Spain, here I come) instead. So I packed that one with what I had in my original, and while I got everything in...it didn't feel good at all. So I culled a little of what I had in, and am going with my original. While I don't have a separate backpack compartment, mine enables me to get into my pack in two ways so I don't have to unpack everything that you inevitably backed on the bottom!

So excited to use it next week!
 

koknesis

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances June/July 2014
Camino Aragones August 2015
Camino Sanabres (Ourense-SdC) August 2015
VdlP 2017
used to hike with salomon raid revo 30, which is really light and i guess might be fine for running as well. for the Camino have chosen an Osprey Stratos 34, mostly because of AirSpeed suspension
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
Seven Caminos, plus numerous international trips with pack, always checked into baggage hold, zero pack losses.

My tuppence worth, an Aarn Featherlite Freedom - a better mousetrap.

ImageUploadedByCamino de Santiago Forum1400751870.474114.jpg
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
Interesting looking pack Kanga, it must feel well balanced with the large pockets in front.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
Interesting looking pack Kanga, it must feel well balanced with the large pockets in front.
Yes, that's the idea - I put my water, camera/phone, wallet - stuff I access all the time, and anything small and heavy, in the front packs. You can still see the ground in front between the two packs. It's weird to put on and take off initially, bit like shrugging into a coat, but I'm used to it now.
The photo shows a fully loaded pack - mine is never that full. Or that clean!
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
Had a look at them on the net, I could only find them in 33L, which is too small for me, or 50L which I think would be too big, I like packs around 40L. Mind you if I buy another pack I will be living in it. :)
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
Had a look at them on the net, I could only find them in 33L, which is too small for me, or 50L which I think would be too big, I like packs around 40L. Mind you if I buy another pack I will be living in it. :)
The Mountain Magic is 38L with 12L in the front pockets. I can't tell you anything about it as I've only tried the Featherlite (50L plus front pockets). It is too big for the Camino but I'm not changing it. Makes packing easy!
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
I can only see this one in 50L in the UK sites, no sign of the 38L
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
Yea, found it too, its actually a 38L + 12L front pockets. Should have read more carefully.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
We're thinking our next Camino might be in December, so the bigger pack might be better for the extra winter stuff. But I'd be interested in knowing if anyone on Camino has tried the Mountain Magic and how it was.
 

bystander

Veteran Member
wayfarer - you will, perhaps, have seen that I have bought a Marathon Magics 33L (as said before I intend to travel very light) but not yet tried it out in anger.

However in finding where I could buy one I contacted Aarn himself (aarndesign@clear.net.nz).

He was very helpful and put me in touch with tim@outdoordesigncoalition.com who had one in stock. Aarn also added that, in case of difficulty, it should be possible to supply from N.Z.

However it is available in France and the French website is:

http://www.aventurenordique.com/sac-dos-randonnee-aarn-marathon-magic-50.html
 

Winchester09

New Member
Seven Caminos, plus numerous international trips with pack, always checked into baggage hold, zero pack losses.

My tuppence worth, an Aarn Featherlite Freedom - a better mousetrap.

View attachment 10140
Nice looking pack. I've been experimenting with a similar set up using my standard 30ltr then adding a front pouch to the waist strap to bolster amount I can take. Lots of options out there from various companies, Raidlight is my favourite. They can all be adapted to fit any bag as well and are super handy for keeping small or valuable items to hand
 

Tia Valeria

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Pt Norte/Pmtvo 2010
C. Inglés 2011
C. Primitivo '12
Norte-C. de la Reina '13
C. do Mar-C. Inglés '15
............
We both have Berghaus Freeflow rucksacs. This looks like the updated model of the one that Terry took on his Camino, is still using and will use again next year. It held all he needed and was a great fit. So long as you are happy with its fit for comfort it should be OK for you. Mine was the smaller 25+5 which suited me best, but Terry carried my sleeping bag, partly to help with weight. You should have plenty of room etc and no need to spend money on another pack. Better maybe to use it to treat yourself to some extra-lightweight hi tec 'ultra silver' undies from Rohan :)

Buen Camino
To update my post a little.
On the Camino we are still using our trusty packs mentioned above. However Terry's is discontinued (now 38+8) and mine has been changed with the new model, but same name(25+5). Both of us have bought new packs for general walking and for training and neither of us would take the new ones on the Camino.
The new style Freeflow system is heavier and we don't like the extra adjustors on the shoulders, they are not helpful to us. The styling of the side zip pockets means that things don't fit in easily. Having said that they make great day/UK holiday packs and are taking the stress off our Camino packs.
My point would be that because some of us recommend a pack it might change style etc, or have done so by the time you buy one. Also always check if trying to replace a pack with the same name model. It might not be quite what you expect. :eek: :(
 

Moonshimmer

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Nov 2014
Hi, I am about to set off for my 3rd pilgrimage next year and have done a few shorter walks in between. My advice is that the pack has to fit your personal frame most of all and be comfortable. If you use a raincape, you can have a non waterproof pack, otherwise a waterproof one or a pack which has a built in waterproof cover is best.
You can get a Lower Alpine 32 litre pack which weighs only around 600 grams, great for women.
It is waterproof. The http://www.backpackinglight.com.au site has some great products. Their Roman Palm sleeping bag is the lightest I have found at 500 grams and sufficient for the Camino in Spain. On the Le Puy route gites have blankets and a sil bag is enough. Backpackinglight has the lightest rain cape I have seen at 140 grams. I personally used a Vaude Civetta 32 backpack, which I liked because of the many separate pockets. It has a waterproof cover and weighs just over 1 kg.
I have got my packing down to a minimum now, which really works for me:
Sleeping bag or sack
Lightweight but warmish fleece
Raincape or lightweight breathable Gortex Parka, which comes to just above knee, so no overtrowsers needed.
Lightweight but sturdy boots or walking shoes, waterproof. Shoes are sufficient in Spain, boots better on Le Puy route.
3 undies, 2 bras, 3 pairs of socks.
Merino first layer t shirt
lightweight wicking t shirt
long sleeved UV repellent shirt
Lightweight shorts
3/4 lenght or zippable pants
Lava Lava, great for going to and from shower/toilet or as a makeshift skirt while you dry your washing
Togs
Boxers to wear at night/but lava lava also good
Sunhat
1 metre of muslin to use as towel, much better absorption than synthetic and dries in seconds.
1 pair light sandals.
Documents and bank cards
Camera and charger and adaptor
Mini notebook
Pen
Spork, a titanium spoon fork combination, useful for salad, yoghurt en route
First aid kit with thread and iodine to treat blisters, plaster, bandage, antiseptic cream in mini tube, panadol, antihistamine
Emergency blanket
whistle
Toothbrush and mini toothpaste
Moisturizer with sunblock
Wondersoao for hair body and clothes
Waterbottle
Leightweight small bag to take around to go shopping for groceries or when you go for a swim or out for the evening and want to take a jacket and cape....
All this should weigh in around 6 kg, which makes for really pleasant walking.
Thank you for taking the time to write this out as it will help me greatly
Julie
 

smj6

Siempre hay que ver el positivo
Camino(s) past & future
Oct/Nov 2016 (Via Podensis/ Frances)
Oct 2018 (Via Francigena stage)
Any comments / insight into top loading back packs Vs front or panel loading ones?
Regards
S :)
 

rucsack

New Member
Good tidings to all - My wife and I are planning to walk the camino in 2010. We are starting to buy our equipment so we can start our training program. I am looking for recommendations on backpacks for both men and women that I can buy here in the States. Thanks!
It depends on your height and what time of year you are doing it. In colder wetter months more kit is needed. All I can tell you is I completed the walk this May/June using an Osprey Talon 22 litre. I was very happy with it although it was a tad small. All my kit fitted in perfectly but when I wanted to carry a shop bought picnic I had no room , having to carry it in a hand held plastic carry bag. For this reason I will go next time with. Osprey Talon 33 litre backpack.
 

CaptBuddy

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Fall 2012, again Fall 2014.
Any comments / insight into top loading back packs Vs front or panel loading ones?
Regards
S :)
Ultimately, I think it is a matter of choice.
As for me, after having use both types, I will never have another pack without front opening panel.
It is just too convenient, without any drawbacks.
 

smj6

Siempre hay que ver el positivo
Camino(s) past & future
Oct/Nov 2016 (Via Podensis/ Frances)
Oct 2018 (Via Francigena stage)
.....
My tuppence worth, an Aarn Featherlite Freedom - a better mousetrap.
Kanga, two questions (a) do I understand that the front bits are detachable, so could be used as a day bag after finishing the day's walk; (b) are the front bags not 'uncomfortable' for women with their chests?
Still hovering between top loading & front loading!!
Suzanne :)
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
LePuy, Frances, Aragones, Ingles, Vezelay, Toulosana, Muxia, Fisterra, Portugues, Sanabres
do I understand that the front bits are detachable, so could be used as a day bag after finishing the day's walk
The front pockets are detachable, but do not work as a day bag. Detaching is more for hanging the pack from a bunk, sliding it under the bed, or fitting it in an airline overhead compartment. The Aarn could be improved with an invention that turns the pockets into daypacks!
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
Kanga, two questions (a) do I understand that the front bits are detachable, so could be used as a day bag after finishing the day's walk; (b) are the front bags not 'uncomfortable' for women with their chests?
Still hovering between top loading & front loading!!
Suzanne :)
Sorry, Suzanne, only just saw your questions. Yes to (a) they can be hooked together and make a day backpack or individually make a shoulder bag or bum bag. Both my husband and I tend to use them as shoulder bags - just grab and go. And (b) the front pockets each have a thin metal rod inside that you bend so that they sit comfortably away from the body - women just bend them a bit more than men. Also allows air to circulate between the front packs and body, preventing heat build up. I saw a complaint once from someone who found the front packs hot but he'd taken out the metal rods - I don't think he knew their purpose.
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
Any comments / insight into top loading back packs Vs front or panel loading ones?
Regards
S :)
I use a Gregory Z40 pack which has both top and front opening. I don't think the smaller sizes have the same system but you could check.
 

Inbar

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances September 2015; Camino Portugues October 2017
I've been learning so much from all of your posts, really I appreciate every experienced peregrino/a here spending their time and thoughts into this. Thank you all! You're simply wonderful.

I've got a backpack question myself.
The 10% rule only leaves me 5 kg to carry with me. And that includes the pack, water and a tupperware of food - I'll be cooking for myself (vegan), so I'll carry with me the leftovers from dinner for lunch the following day. I'd really like not to carry more than 5 kg, I want to enjoy the road.
I've been thinking about using the Murmur Hyperlight. But to make things even more complicated, we don't have them where I live, and I'm planning to find a way to buy all my gear (except for the boots) from the United States because here everything costs three times as much. So I would not be able to "try it on" first.
Is that a serious risk to take? Would you buy a pack without trying it? Any other pack I buy here would add one more kilo at least, and that's 20% of what I can carry!

I'd love to hear your thoughts.
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
The
I've been learning so much from all of your posts, really I appreciate every experienced peregrino/a here spending their time and thoughts into this. Thank you all! You're simply wonderful.

I've got a backpack question myself.
The 10% rule only leaves me 5 kg to carry with me. And that includes the pack, water and a tupperware of food - I'll be cooking for myself (vegan), so I'll carry with me the leftovers from dinner for lunch the following day. I'd really like not to carry more than 5 kg, I want to enjoy the road.
I've been thinking about using the Murmur Hyperlight. But to make things even more complicated, we don't have them where I live, and I'm planning to find a way to buy all my gear (except for the boots) from the United States because here everything costs three times as much. So I would not be able to "try it on" first.
Is that a serious risk to take? Would you buy a pack without trying it? Any other pack I buy here would add one more kilo at least, and that's 20% of what I can carry!

I'd love to hear your thoughts.
The "10% rule" is just a recommendation. I would say a better recommendation is to just travel as light as you can, and it seems that is the way you plan on travelling.
That looks like a pretty good backpack. I'm sure it would serve you well. Since most modern backpacks are adjustable anyway, I'm not sure if trying them on first is a necessity (I'm sure that comment will draw the scorn of gear junkies on here). Recommended? Sure, but absolutely necessary, no. Especially since you will be travelling so light. You can adjust it to your body when you load it and further adjust it as you travel. If you look at the technical specifications of the pack on the website you get an idea of its size, ventilation, padding, straps adjustment, pockets, etc.
For my second Camino I ordered a backpack from REI, sight unseen (except for photos on the net). It was adjustable and worked great for me. I think 99% of the backpacks of its size range would have worked just as well since I kept the load light and really overall the Camino (Frances) is not a technical hike by any means. I just bought the one from REI because it was on sale.
 

Inbar

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances September 2015; Camino Portugues October 2017
Thank you, Mark.
Like you said, it's a guideline. I'm not planning to drill holes in my toothbrush if that's going to make it 5 kg (though I respect those who take the time to do it, I'm just too lazy). But this pack is definitely going to help me keep the weight down. So thanks you for the reassurance!
 

David Baylor

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Madrid/Lanante/Sanabres June/July 2015
I have decided on the Osprey Kestrel 38. Anyone have any experience with it? Issues I should know about?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2013), Primitivo (2015), Muxia/Fisterra (2015), Haervejen (2017)
Have you tried it out? Other than your shoes the most important peice of equipment you will have is your pack. Go to a store where you can load it up and walk around with it. If you were in the US I would say find an REI. In Ireland, I'm not sure where -- but find it!!! Buen Camino
 

nidarosa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Inglés 2009+2017, Francés 2012+2018, Astorga-Santiago repeatedly
Or at least make sure they have a good returns policy...
 

Pilgy

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
C. Francés April 06, C. Fisterre May 06, C. Frances Oct 17, C. Portuguese Oct 18, C. Inglese Nov 18
Good tidings to all - My wife and I are planning to walk the camino in 2010. We are starting to buy our equipment so we can start our training program. I am looking for recommendations on backpacks for both men and women that I can buy here in the States. Thanks!
Good tidings to all - My wife and I are planning to walk the camino in 2010. We are starting to buy our equipment so we can start our training program. I am looking for recommendations on backpacks for both men and women that I can buy here in the States. Thanks!
Interesting when there is so much conversation about weight, how to reduce it, and in the next breath one sees packs deed out with mascots, cockle shells...
No one no talks about how some of us might reduce our load by dropping a few pounds of body weight instead of agonizing over grams in a pack....
 

Miles2go

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Porto-Santiago (July 2015)
Good tidings to all - My wife and I are planning to walk the camino in 2010. We are starting to buy our equipment so we can start our training program. I am looking for recommendations on backpacks for both men and women that I can buy here in the States. Thanks!
I work at REI and fit backpacks for customers every day. The most important factor in achieving a good fit is to make sure you select the correct torso size in the backpack model you are interested in. Backpacks models are usually gender specific to account for differences in men's and women's body dimensions at the shoulders and hips. Most outfitters have a torso measuring device that will determine the correct backpack size for you (extra small, small, medium, large or small/medium or medium/large for some manufacturers). Ask the sales associate to measure your torso and then try on a backpack in the correct torso size loaded with weight (usually pillows and sandbags) to approximate the load you will be carrying on the trail. Most backpacks over about 38 liters have easily adjustable harnesses systems which allows for a custom fit. Very small packs (20-35 liter range) usually are not very adjustable and they either fit or they don't fit. A lot of posts speak to the volume of the backpack but don't forget the importance of getting the correct torso size and fit in whatever backpack model you choose.

Good hiking.
 

thomryng

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (Spring 2013), Francés (Spring 2016), Galician Francés (Oct. 2018), planning Francés 2020
Seven Caminos, plus numerous international trips with pack, always checked into baggage hold, zero pack losses.

My tuppence worth, an Aarn Featherlite Freedom - a better mousetrap.

View attachment 10140
I did my first Camino with an Osprey. A great pack.

BUT, after meeting a fellow from NZ on the Camino with one of these, my curiosity was piqued. He let me try it on, and he talked frankly about the positives and negatives.

I recently took the plunge and purchased an Aarn. It is fantastic, and I think it will be my go-to pack from here on out.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
But it is still my pack of choice. Love, love, love it.
 

thomryng

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (Spring 2013), Francés (Spring 2016), Galician Francés (Oct. 2018), planning Francés 2020
Out of interest, what were his negative comments?
Suzanne :)
@smj6 I can take a guess - (1) it looks totally uncool (2) it takes a while to learn how to put it on and take it off (3) there is some extra weight in the front pockets and (4) it's expensive. .
The major thing was (2). That and it's very tricky to pack it so it balances correctly. It took him a week or so on the Camino to work it out, and I still don't have the hang of it.

The main compartment is rather narrow compared to most packs its size.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
I just stuff everything in, but mine is a bigger pack @thomryng - it's the Featherlite. Most camino walkers would shy away because the body pack is 57 ltrs and the balance pockets another 10. I put the heavy stuff in the balance pockets - not just water. Specifically one of the pockets is my personal kit bag - with soap, sunburn cream, blister kit, scissors, tweezers, toiletries, phone, etc.

On past Caminos we've always had half the back empty. This time with a tent and sleeping mats it will be perfect.
 

David Baylor

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Madrid/Lanante/Sanabres June/July 2015
I might move one of ours up from a 38 to a 48. Being able to shift gear if one of us is hurting sounds tempting and I would like to do some more deep woods trails in the future and could use the extra storage.
 

smj6

Siempre hay que ver el positivo
Camino(s) past & future
Oct/Nov 2016 (Via Podensis/ Frances)
Oct 2018 (Via Francigena stage)
The major thing was (2). That and it's very tricky to pack it so it balances correctly. It took him a week or so on the Camino to work it out, and I still don't have the hang of it.
The main compartment is rather narrow compared to most packs its size.
Whilst noting @Kanga avoids the narrow compartment of the Aarn by buying a bigger size, I wish to get the 33l size; but now I'm concerned about correctly wearing it when I see @thomryng says he's still not mastered it :-(
 

thomryng

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (Spring 2013), Francés (Spring 2016), Galician Francés (Oct. 2018), planning Francés 2020
Whilst noting @Kanga avoids the narrow compartment of the Aarn by buying a bigger size, I wish to get the 33l size; but now I'm concerned about correctly wearing it when I see @thomryng says he's still not mastered it :-(
To be fair, I've only had the pack a couple of weeks now. I'm beginning to think that the pack favours tall, narrow stuff sacks as opposed to the more square-shaped ones I have. I'll update as I figure these things out.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
@thomryng and @smj6 I don't use any stuff sacks - no need as the pack and pockets have waterproof dry liners. They are light, and effective. To compress, stuff your gear inside, roll the top slightly, push down to expel the air, and roll more to secure. We years ago abandoned stuff sacks after finding it was better just to push sleeping bags any-old-how into the bottom of the pack, then fill the sides. The Aarn pack is really not suited to someone who packs like into a suitcase. I have no trouble with the divided liner that way - shoes, and sleeping bags at the bottom under the divide, the rest of my clothes on either side, wet weather gear on top. No extra weight either. My discipline is to always put things in the same order - certain things on the right, others on the left. That way I keep track, roughly, with where they are. Having the separate balance pockets helps this process.

You can also detach the liner from the rim of the pack (it's only Velcro) and fill it outside the pack, then put it back inside.

Going through all the videos on the Aarn website is the best way to learn how to fit the pack. It's boring but vital.
 

thomryng

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (Spring 2013), Francés (Spring 2016), Galician Francés (Oct. 2018), planning Francés 2020
I'll take a look. I guess old habits die hard!
 

Gabe

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances June/July 2015
My wife used an Osprey pack and loved it. Specifically the Osprey Sirrus 36 Pack which we picked up for $150 bucks from REI. It is the perfect size for the Camino de Santiago. Lightweight, comfortable and durable these packs are ideal. Make sure you try the packs on before you buy because you want to make sure they are a good fit for your body type. The great part about the Osprey packs is that they have a great design that keeps your back from sweating during those hot days on the trail. Buen Camino!
 

David Baylor

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Madrid/Lanante/Sanabres June/July 2015
Purchased the Osprey Kestrel 38 for my son and the 48 for myself. Loving the pack so far.
 

Siobhan02

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances May-June 2014
Le Puy Sept 2016
I used a Osprey Aura on my Camino '13. I am 52kgs, and never weighed, practiced packing or put it on except for in the shop until the day before I left Madrid for StJPdP after horse riding for a week in the mountains. I waved goodbye to my suitcase as it was shipped to Ivar in SdC. I found it to be a brilliant pack, it took us a couple of days to become friends, I hadn't backpacked since I was a LOT younger, and never done anything like the Camino. After the first week I didn't even realise I had my pack on most of the time and we will do the Le Puy-Pamplona next year together. Oh, and when people did pick it up for me they estimate it weighed about 8-10 kgs!
 

Cailin O Eire

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Walked Sarria to Santiago Easter 2014
Hope to walk for 5 days from St Jean Pied De Port to wherever my feet bring me to first week of June 2016
I'm wondering if any of you could advise me re not checking in a 33l pack it can be a 40l pack but I don't plan on filling it up. Will Ryanair see it too large and make me check it in. It doesn't look like a very big bag? Any feedback is appreciated.
My other query is any feed back on any users of a Lowe Alpine Airzone Pro 33:40 pack?

Thank ye all
 
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dougfitz

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011 (2019)
I'm wondering if any of you could advise me re not checking in a 33l pack it can be a 40l pack but I don't plan on filling it up. Will Ryanair see it too large and make me check it in. It doesn't look like a very big bag? Any feedback is appreciated.
My other query is any feed back on any users of a Lowe Alpine Airzone Pro 33:40 pack?

Thank ye all
A 33 li pack should not present a problem, a 40 li might, depending on the size of the harness. Have you checked the Ryanair website or contacted them to ask?

I have the Lowe Alpine Airzone 35, but haven't used it all that much. It is a bit big for day walks, which is where I thought it would get most of its use. It is a bit small for me for a camino load, but if you are around 70kg or so, it would probably be a reasonable choice for a summer camino.
 

smj6

Siempre hay que ver el positivo
Camino(s) past & future
Oct/Nov 2016 (Via Podensis/ Frances)
Oct 2018 (Via Francigena stage)
@Kanga (or to any other Aarn backpack owner out there): what type of poncho fits over an Aarn backpack?
Suzanne :)
 
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rlr9200

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Ingles - June 2015
Portugues - sometime soon, I hope
I've said many times that I am a Kelty person and my wife is a Northface pack person...and everyone should pick the pack that fits and feels good. Well, I told my wife, "everyone says Osprey is amazing so let's see what it's all about..."

So after looking and trying on an Osprey, my wife was sold (so was I!). Wow, what a product. She ended up with a Stratos 50, and it is a fantastic pack.

So... Like I said, go with what feels right! And the Osprey fits great!
 

Maz

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Chemin du Pièmont Pyrénéen and The Aragonese Way - July 2015
I used a Osprey Aura on my Camino '13. I am 52kgs, and never weighed, practiced packing or put it on except for in the shop until the day before I left Madrid for StJPdP after horse riding for a week in the mountains. I waved goodbye to my suitcase as it was shipped to Ivar in SdC. I found it to be a brilliant pack, it took us a couple of days to become friends, I hadn't backpacked since I was a LOT younger, and never done anything like the Camino. After the first week I didn't even realise I had my pack on most of the time and we will do the Le Puy-Pamplona next year together. Oh, and when people did pick it up for me they estimate it weighed about 8-10 kgs!
Hi Siobhan02, I just invested in the Qsprey Aura 50 AG, it fits amazingly well and even fully loaded there is no pulling on the shoulders. I'll be carrying camping gear so wanted something women specific that wouldn't punished me. And like you I will be putting it on the day I start walking due to recovery from a sprained ankle. Can't wait to get started!

Here's the link if anyone is interested. https://www.backcountryedge.com/osprey-aura-ag-50-womens-2015.html

Happy trails!!
 

Siobhan02

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances May-June 2014
Le Puy Sept 2016
Hi Siobhan02, I just invested in the Qsprey Aura 50 AG, it fits amazingly well and even fully loaded there is no pulling on the shoulders. I'll be carrying camping gear so wanted something women specific that wouldn't punished me. And like you I will be putting it on the day I start walking due to recovery from a sprained ankle. Can't wait to get started!

Here's the link if anyone is interested. https://www.backcountryedge.com/osprey-aura-ag-50-womens-2015.html

Happy trails!!
Hope the ankle has healed well. Are you carrying a tent/sleeping mat etc? I have just bought an MSR hubba bubba NX to do some more walking now I've got the bug, what are you using?
 

Maz

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Chemin du Pièmont Pyrénéen and The Aragonese Way - July 2015
Hope the ankle has healed well. Are you carrying a tent/sleeping mat etc? I have just bought an MSR hubba bubba NX to do some more walking now I've got the bug, what are you using?
Hi, I'm afraid price dictated my tent type. I bought a Terra Nova, it's a 2 man and weighs 2kg. So, it's not too bad. I had a look at the Hubba as I'd heard good things about it, but a bit too expensive at this time. I have a lightweight inflatable mat, rolls up really small. Also, I bought a sea to summit liner, making do without a sleeping bag. I don't intend to carry any cooking equipment, but do intend to eat well along the way. I like my food!! The ankle is coming along nicely. I leave Narbonne on 30th June (not long now) and will walk the Canal Robine until it meets with the Midi (starting flat walking and ease in gently). From there to Carcasonne, there I will pick up the pilgrim trail to Somport. One day at a time.

And your plans?
 

Siobhan02

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances May-June 2014
Le Puy Sept 2016
Hi, I'm afraid price dictated my tent type. I bought a Terra Nova, it's a 2 man and weighs 2kg. So, it's not too bad. I had a look at the Hubba as I'd heard good things about it, but a bit too expensive at this time. I have a lightweight inflatable mat, rolls up really small. Also, I bought a sea to summit liner, making do without a sleeping bag. I don't intend to carry any cooking equipment, but do intend to eat well along the way. I like my food!! The ankle is coming along nicely. I leave Narbonne on 30th June (not long now) and will walk the Canal Robine until it meets with the Midi (starting flat walking and ease in gently). From there to Carcasonne, there I will pick up the pilgrim trail to Somport. One day at a time.

And your plans?
That sounds AMAZING! You're leaving from Narbonne! It's beautiful there :) I have done the Canal du Midi by boat, but left for the Camino from StJPdP. Have a great time and enjoy the food, you will earn it and be walking it off anyway!
 

Lurch

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
looking at 2018-2019
Depending on your size, a smaller pack may not work well. Unlike the original poster I am approaching the 2 meter mark. I purchased a Bergans 46l pack and my size 15 shoes, which are 14 inches long and 5 wide, take up half the pack. I had planned on bringing a pair of running shoes and hiking sandals in addition to the trail runners I would normally wear but may skip them. Why an extra pair of shoes? Not sure I could find a local 'gordo and alto' store to buy another pair if something happened to mine.

I should mention that the pack fits well and is long enough for me. It has a small pocket on one of the hip straps but that is so far back it is unusable. Packs have definitely changed since I bought an external frame pack in the 70s. Much narrower and a lot fewer pockets. However, with judicious packing I think my Bergans can be taken onboard. I might have to buy a thrift store suitcase for my poles and shoes but better that than checking the whole pack!
 

caminoagogo

http://camino-a-go-go.blogspot.com/
Camino(s) past & future
Francés from Leon(2014)
Frances & Sanabres from Ourense (2018)
Portugués (2020)
For my first Camino I used an Osprey Kestrel 38L. It was a great pack but I did have one small problem with it. I'm a thin guy, so I bought the small size, however I lost a pant size within two weeks and I was now too skinny for the waist bands on my pack to take the load off my shoulders. This time around I'm going with a Berghaus Freeflow 40. It is a great pack AND has plenty of extra strapping to tighten the waist band as I lose weight. If you're a thin guy or gal, keep this in mind when choosing a pack.
 

HikeTall

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Haven't walked the Camino yet. But I've hiked all over this beautiful planet and hope to walk the Camino in the near future.
My Osprey Stratos 50L is actually shorter in height than either my Osprey Talon 44L or Exos 38! Most 50L backpacks are too big(tall) for carry on, but I never have a problem with the Stratos. So volume doesn't always equate to dimensions. I'm a big guy, but I try to keep all my international travel packs 50L and under. Really 40L and under. The Stratos being the exception because of it's short height.
 

rlr9200

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Ingles - June 2015
Portugues - sometime soon, I hope
My Osprey Stratos 50L is actually shorter in height than either my Osprey Talon 44L or Exos 38! Most 50L backpacks are too big(tall) for carry on, but I never have a problem with the Stratos. So volume doesn't always equate to dimensions. I'm a big guy, but I try to keep all my international travel packs 50L and under. Really 40L and under. The Stratos being the exception because of it's short height.
I love my Stratos 50L. And I agree, it is "small" for a 50L, but holds all I ever need. Only once have I ever been told that I had to check it - flying KLM from Amsterdam to Hamburg. The gate agent was in a bad mood and wouldn't take "yes" for an answer no matter how many times I told him, "Yes, it will fit in the overhead." Interestingly, on the return flight, we walked on with no mention of it, and both our Stratos 50's went in the overhead! Imagine. Heck, I've flown in most every size plane down to a CR900 and never had an issue. GREAT backpack! My wife got hers first, and told me I didn't know what I was missing...me being a Kelty loyalist...but I finally tried one one, and made the purchase. Now, my Kelty's are somewhere in a closet and my Stratos is the go-to pack.
 

HikeTall

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Haven't walked the Camino yet. But I've hiked all over this beautiful planet and hope to walk the Camino in the near future.
I'm an Osprey guy, so those are the packs I'll recommend. My advice is to figure out all the gear/clothing you're gonna take with you, and then bring it down to your local REI and load up various packs to see what size and fit you need.

Here are a few of my fav Osprey packs that come in male & female versions:

* Stratos(male) & Sirrus(womens) sizes 34L, 36L or 50L...these are super padded & comfortable packs with a mesh trampoline backpanel that has great airflow for long hot walks. The 36 & 50 are top loaders with a top lid, while the 34 is a panel loader. All three sizes come with zippered bottom sleeping bag compartment as well as a rain cover.

* Talon(male) & Tempest(female) sizes 33L or 44L....these are very light packs with minimal padding. Both top loaders. The 44 has a zippered bottom access to the main compartment while the 33 does not. The 44 also has a wired frame for heavier loads while the 33 doesn't. Neither come with a rain cover.

* Exos(male) & Eja(female) sizes 38L, 48L or 58L...these are Osprey's ultra light packs. Minimal padding top loaders. All of them have removable toplids & don't have a zippered bottom access to save weight. The new models also got rid of the hip belt pockets to save weight. You might miss these to quickly access small items like cell phones or snacks without taking off your pack. They do have a suspended mesh back panel tho that does create a lot of airflow so you dont get a sweaty back. None of them come with a rain cover tho.

**** I'd go with either the Stratos/Sirrus or the Talon/tempest. But i lean towards the Stratos for the extra padding, the more breathable backpanel, and the included rain covers. These are only my recommendations. But try them all on and see what works for you. They all come in diff sizes and are adjustable for your torso length, so load em up and see which fit you best.

Bien Camino!
 

rlr9200

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Ingles - June 2015
Portugues - sometime soon, I hope
< * Stratos(male) & Sirrus(womens) >

The only thing I would add to this is that, depending on height and fit, I don't think the male/female versions are set in stone. When we fitted, since my wife is considered tall (5'9") the REI fitter found the Stratos was the better fit for her. And that really makes the point...get fitted by someone who knows what they are doing.

And, as always, Buen Camino.
 

H Richards

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2017 Francés, Le Puy / Francés (parts), 2018 Norte (Biarritz), Francés, 2019 Portuguese (Lisbon)
My Lowe Alpine trekking backpack weighs 1.7kg too, but I gotta say, I love having its rugged material and loads of handy zips and pockets, plus a nice webbed frame to keep some air-space on your back.

And then I get all depressed when I read peoples packing lists and realise I could *never* get mine as low as theirs with my heavy comfy backpack ;-)

I guess it's all trade-offs.
 

trism286

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF May?june 2016 from SJPP, CF last 200k May2017, CF 2018 from SJPP 18th April
I have an Amos 50 that I love because it fits me well and the bottle holders have 2 openings 1 at 45 degrees which allow me to drink without taking the pack off. the rest of it is just the usual Osprey genius. yes 50 is a little big but I don't use the top bag as a top bag instead I use it as the wash bag and day to day bits bag, it lives on top inside the rest of the pack and allows me to wear a hat without knocking it off.
 

Gabriele Bedani

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte 2016; Camino Primitivo 2018

Sikpupi

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francis '2018'
And was it in regard to comfort on the back???
Any problems on quality???
 

Gabriele Bedani

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte 2016; Camino Primitivo 2018
And was it in regard to comfort on the back???
Any problems on quality???
Comfort was ok, for me, I'm 1.83 tall and about 85/87 Kg, so I am not on the small side... 50 Lt may be too big and that takes you to fill it with useless stuff that loads your back more and more.
No problems at all on quality, I think price/quality ratio is good.
 

HikeTall

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Haven't walked the Camino yet. But I've hiked all over this beautiful planet and hope to walk the Camino in the near future.
Liter size & actual pack size can be deceiving. My 50L Osprey Stratos is shorter
than both my Osprey Talon 44L and Exos 38L! Because of that, i usually grab it as my go to pack when i just want carry on.
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Pack size is determined by the frame's measurement as the proper fit to the length of the wearer's spine. For example, a pack can be labeled as being small, medium, or large. Some manufacturers with adjustable length frame systems will label sizes as a combination ie S/M, M/L, L/XL. These sizes correspond to the individual measurement taken of a buyer's spine from the protruding bulge at the base of the neck, to the top of the iliac crest. A pack which is not fit properly to the length of the wearer's spine can be very uncomfortable to wear.

Pack volume is the manufacturer's stated capacity of the the combined measurement of all of the pack's pockets, including those on shoulder straps and hip belts, as well as the main bag.
 

HikeTall

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Haven't walked the Camino yet. But I've hiked all over this beautiful planet and hope to walk the Camino in the near future.
Pack size is determined by the frame's measurement as the proper fit to the length of the wearer's spine. For example, a pack can be labeled as being small, medium, or large. Some manufacturers with adjustable length frame systems will label sizes as a combination ie S/M, M/L, L/XL. These sizes correspond to the individual measurement taken of a buyer's spine from the protruding bulge at the base of the neck, to the top of the iliac crest. A pack which is not fit properly to the length of the wearer's spine can be very uncomfortable to wear.

Pack volume is the manufacturer's stated capacity of the the combined measurement of all of the pack's pockets, including those on shoulder straps and hip belts, as well as the main bag.
I understand that some big pack companies like Osprey list the liter size in relation to the main body of the pack and not all the outside pockets, while small cottage industry pack companies tend to include all the pack’s outside pockets in the total pack volume.
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
I understand that some big pack companies like Osprey list the liter size in relation to the main body of the pack and not all the outside pockets, while small cottage industry pack companies tend to include all the pack’s outside pockets in the total pack volume.
That has changed for most of the companies over the last few years in an attempt to standardize how packs are measured across the industry. That wasn't the case when I was last hired by Osprey to test one of their pack model lines, but may have changed since then.
 

Sikpupi

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francis '2018'
I am thinking of using my Son's decathlon pack as I am impressed with it. My worry is how it will feel on my back for 6++ hours?? I like it's access facilities as well as its range of pockets. Etc.
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
I am thinking of using my Son's decathlon pack as I am impressed with it. My worry is how it will feel on my back for 6++ hours?? I like it's access facilities as well as its range of pockets. Etc.
First, make sure it will fit you. Look at the pack manufacturers website, or Decathlon's, to see what the recommended sizes are for the length of your spine. If the pack size is either too short or too long, then the shoulder harness and the waist belt will be out of position on your body, and will not work as well as they should. This can cause issues ranging from excess chafing to lower back and shoulders, to joint and muscle discomfort and pain.
 

Susan Pio

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Aug-Oct 2012
Santiago-Finosterre Oct 2012
Primitivo Aug 2015 -incomplete broke ankle
Primitivo May 2017
I am compiling a list of lightweight packs from a scale of 250g up to 1.5kg for an article for our local CSJ newsletter and wondered which Gregory you bought. The Gregory Jade 45, the Gregory Serrac 45 or the Gregory Inyo?
I have a 50L Gregory Jade that I have used several times and I love it. I am considering possibly scaling down to a 38L for the Via Posiensis which I start in May. I won't be carrying a sleeping bag this time.
 

bthomas

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances: May 2019
For those that would like a lighter pack, check out Zpacks. The 55L Arc blast has been perfect for long backpacking trips. I'm going with the smaller 38L Nero for the Frances. Also check out Hyperlite Mountain Gear and Gossemer Gear.
 

Delia90

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Plan - Camino Frances
For those that would like a lighter pack, check out Zpacks. The 55L Arc blast has been perfect for long backpacking trips. I'm going with the smaller 38L Nero for the Frances. Also check out Hyperlite Mountain Gear and Gossemer Gear.
Thanks for the advice, I will definitely check your suggestions!
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
I LOVE my Zpacks Arc Blast. Although it says 55L its only 42L of internal storage. The rest is counting the external pockets (Don’t know why the company measures that way). And you are aboslutley right and making a smart decision on going with the Zpacks Nero. The Arc Blast is too big for the Camino. For my Portugues, Im switching to a Hyperlight Mountain Gear 2400 Windrider.
The manufacturer's do this because serious backpackers will often shop for organization, rather than a singular monolith of a capacious gear garage. They do not want to put all of their gear inside a big bag.

I use external pockets, for example, to stage stuff I want quick access to. . . like my small first aid or blister kit, my poncho when the weather threatens to drool on me, cooking pot with my stove inside, that day's meals, my windshirt, a water filter, etc. Basically, things which I know I might want along the way, but do not want to have to dig into and around the main sack, to access.

It doesn't matter how much the large main bag can carry, only if the overall backpack, with the pockets I want, has the capacity for all of the gear. Given that each pocket adds to the weight of a backpack, a backpack with just a singular, large 40 L main bag will weigh more if it then ALSO has the external pockets I want for organization.

So if I want a total capacity of 40 L in a backpack, and I want the backpack to be as light as possible with pockets, it makes a lot of sense for the way manufacturer's now measure a pack's capacity.

Hope that explanation helps :)
 

Texas Walker

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2017 summer)
Portugues (2015)
Frances (2014)
Hello, all. I am considering a new pack, as my Deuter weighs around 3.5 pounds, and when we were in a town with an REI a few months back I tried on an Osprey. It hurt my arm/shoulder area, apparently the straps are shaped wrong for me? Felt like pinching at the front of the armpit area.

Now I'm soliciting thoughts about packs to try. (The Deuter is comfortable. Can I reduce weight on it without removing functionality?) There is no hiking store in my immediate area, so mail order is likely to be involved.

Thanks for all your observations!
 

HikeTall

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Haven't walked the Camino yet. But I've hiked all over this beautiful planet and hope to walk the Camino in the near future.
Hello, all. I am considering a new pack, as my Deuter weighs around 3.5 pounds, and when we were in a town with an REI a few months back I tried on an Osprey. It hurt my arm/shoulder area, apparently the straps are shaped wrong for me? Felt like pinching at the front of the armpit area.

Now I'm soliciting thoughts about packs to try. (The Deuter is comfortable. Can I reduce weight on it without removing functionality?) There is no hiking store in my immediate area, so mail order is likely to be involved.

Thanks for all your observations!
You didn’t mention which Osprey you tried on. I am curious. Diff style packs from the same company will fit differently. I ask, because I am an Osprey guy. I own the Osprey Talon 22, 33 & 44. Which are my fav packs of theirs. I use the 22 around town or when i am biking. The 33 for quick overnights & the 44 for long term travel. I like them, because they are light & minimal...but comfortable. I am a tall guy(6’4”) and they fit me fine. Very adjustable. In fact, i found when biking with the talon 22 in the hunched over position, the adjustable harness was rubbing against the back of my neck. I simply undid the velcro panel & made it lower...now it fits wonderfully.

I also own the Osprey exos 38 which is lightweight & great for warmer climates because of it’s mesh suspension system. I have beefier osprey packs with more padding like the Stratos 34 & 50L. And lastly for when i am going off grid for awhile in the mountains & need to carry ALOT of camping equipment I have the Atmos 65L.
 
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Texas Walker

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2017 summer)
Portugues (2015)
Frances (2014)
So I have a 28l Deuter that I was weighing (not on the scale, but on my thoughts) on going up and using my niece's 42l Deuter' s here in Germany (Spain, here I come) instead. So I packed that one with what I had in my original, and while I got everything in...it didn't feel good at all. So I culled a little of what I had in, and am going with my original. While I don't have a separate backpack compartment, mine enables me to get into my pack in two ways so I don't have to unpack everything that you inevitably backed on the bottom!

So excited to use it next week!
I had that problem (diving necessities) the first time. (VERY depressing the third time in one morning!) Over the winter I made a mesh bag that hangs from the top of the interior, probably that little sleeve is intended for water tubes but I don't use one. Instead my medicine/bandaids bag hangs right there at the top where I can find it instantly. What an improvement. (Used mesh and installed a zipper, put on a narrow hanging strap which may be too long but the arrangement gets the job done. Holds Ibuprofen, bandaids, paper tape, tweezers, whatever whatever small medical thing might be wanted.)
It's not difficult to sew such a gadget, and if you use the mesh fabric you can see the contents too.
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Hello, all. I am considering a new pack, as my Deuter weighs around 3.5 pounds, and when we were in a town with an REI a few months back I tried on an Osprey. It hurt my arm/shoulder area, apparently the straps are shaped wrong for me? Felt like pinching at the front of the armpit area.

Now I'm soliciting thoughts about packs to try. (The Deuter is comfortable. Can I reduce weight on it without removing functionality?) There is no hiking store in my immediate area, so mail order is likely to be involved.

Thanks for all your observations!
I'd be happy to try and provide some guidance. Send me a private message if I can be of help. I have been hired to gear test backpacks for a large number of both the major manufacturers, like Osprey, Gregory, Granite Gear, Kelty, etc., as well as for a number of cottage industry manufacturers like zPacks, ULA, Gossamer Gear, MLD, HMG, Mystery Ranch and others. My viewpoint differs somewhat from some of those who are posting suggestions to be of help to you.

We can discuss adjustment strategies and strap shapes, etc to rule out specific issues related to your current backpack. We can also focus on specific areas of fit and personal needs to get a better idea of what range of backpacks might work better for you.

There has been a variety of information and opinion in the thread, and some of that may already have been of help. Rather than adding to any debate of things I agree or disagree with as it concerns equipment and backpack issues, I'd rather focus on your specific concerns, so feel free to contact me if you'd like. :)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2018)
I recommend you go in reverse! Pick you pack last, if you will. Get the rest of your packing settled. Get a really good idea of what your 'base weight' is going to be, and how much stuff you'll be bringing. Packs are all designed to carry a different amount of weight comfortably. If you get a pack that is designed for a heavy load (like a mountaineering pack) it will be (a) very heavy when empty, and (b) uncomfortable when loaded lightly. I have a nice Osprey backpack I got for big backpacking adventures and I recently took it on a short overnight so it only had maybe 12lbs of weight in it. I actually found it really uncomfortable, and it was sort of 'lifting' up my back as I walked because it was so under-loaded.

Conversely, if you go the other way, and you get something simple and frame-less but then you end up packing along more stuff than that pack is designed for, it will also be uncomfortable.

My base weight was ~3.9kg (8.6lb) and I used a lightweight, frameless pack. The pack itself still weighs nearly a pound! That means it is nearly 12% of my total weight just for the thing I use to carry stuff! Anyway. My point is, pack first, then pick your pack. If you go to a reputable store, the first thing they should ask you is 'what kind of weight will you be carrying' - so have that answer ready!

Details about my pack that I brought here. Also my whole packing list, and what every item weighed (I went full lightweight nerd on the list, spreadsheets and all!).
 
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I am using a Vaude Brenta 35 for our Camino Ingles. Its light, has adjustable back airflow, hip belt, vertically adjustable chest strap (partic great for larger busted ladies, body length adjustments. Its easy to get into - there is an outer zip so you can easily access stuff at the bottom, as well as the traditional top fill flapover thing. It also has generous and deep outer elasticated pockets for big water bottles. It fits like a dream and has been very comfortable (fully packed) during trial walks.

However, my best advice is to visit a good outdoor shop and try them on. I went to an independent outdoor shop and had a proper fitting done - the guy who owns the shop did all the strap adjustments for me to ensure it fitted correctly. For something that is going to be on your back for several days, possibly weeks, don't buy blind online.

I made the initial mistake of buying an Osprey Fairview online and didn't try it out until after the returns period had passed. I could just about clip the waist belt together! I'm not a skinnyminny but have never had this issue before, so Osprey clearly only cater for women of a certain size. I'm also tall at 5ft 10" and it was too short on the body. Unless I could lose a couple of inches off my waist within 3 weeks, this pack was clearly never going to make it with me on the Camino.

The Vaude has an ample waist belt, no issues there at all for me. I'm going to donate the Osprey to my daughter.
 

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