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Pack Recommendations

Lizzo

New Member
I know this is a big topic but I am looking for backpack recommendations. How big of a pack do you need? We will be going from Leon to Santiago. Hoping to find a comfortable women's pack. One more thing: typically how many pounds does one carry if you include a lightweight sleeping bag? Thanks!
 
Oh man oh man oh man. :) As a general rule, your pack should weigh (with water & food) no more than 10% of your body weight & in any case no more than 20 pounds. As for "the" pack, there isn't one, as each person is different. The best advice I can offer you is for you to find an outdoor store like REI or Whole Earth (where they know what they're talking about) & spend time getting the right pack for your body. BTW, packs come in Small, Medium, & Large (on top of how much volume they have). Before I bought a pack, I did not know that.

I've used an Aarn Freedom Featherlite on 2 caminos & this time around will be going with an Osprey. I've seen all kinds of bags on the Camino; Deuter is one of the more popular ones as well.

:) Buen Camino
Kelly
 

Jacobus

Pilgrim since 2008
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés(2008,09 14)
Del Norte (2011)
Portuguese(2015,2017)
Inglés 2015
Fisterre (2015 17)
I use the Osprey but the pack is probably less important than what you put in it. My last Camino saw me bring several items that I carried but seldom or never used. My advice would be to pack and re-pack often and make sure you carry your bag during training sessions. Comfort will result when you become familiar with your back pack and where your "stuff" lies within it.

Jim
 

skilsaw

Veteran Member
The pack I use is made by Arcteryx and is 30 litres in size. I had room for a sleeping bag.

Packs can be the same brand and volume (size) but be small, medium and large.
The difference between small medium and large packs is the length of the back of the pack.
Smaller (shorter) packs are for people with shorter torsos.

I think the difference between men's and women's packs is the length of the back.

Good outdoor equipment stores will let you pack the pack full of stuff then adjust the straps and walk around in the store while wearing the pack. This is the best way to know if it is the right size.

Good luck.
David, Victoria, Canada.
 

bbz180

New Member
I'm planning a late September camino that will run through October. Do you think I'll need a jacket for the walk? I have no clue what the weather is like in Spain during these two months. I'm thinking I'll just take a windbreaker...or a zip up fleece...
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
I can only give you my own experience. Three years ago I walked the same time you are walking, from Sept through Oct/Nov. I took a compressible but warm polyfill jacket and only wore it twice.

What I did end up purchasing in Burgos was two cotton longsleeved women's undershirts for cold nights and mornings.

This time, for cold/rainy weather I'm taking two pair of cuddle duds long underwear, a silk/cashmere lightweight pullover to layer over that, a fleece shirt to go over THAT, and a lightweight goretex rainjacket/windjacket. This way, I can take things off as I warm up.

The only place it was really cold for me was in Galicia and when it was raining and the wind was blowing, so I also am taking lightweight rain pants. I took a poncho last time and dumped it and purchased a rainsuit along the way. I got sick after getting chilled and being exposed to the flu in a crowded refugio, so this time I'm going prepared to stay warm.

Also, regarding the pack, I have an Arcteryx 30 and I love it. Just the right size. It weighs 14 pounds loaded and I'll dump some things along the way. Better to take less than more in my opinion. The FREE BOXES in the refugios are full of stuff people brought and decided they did not need. You can raid those boxes or buy what you need in Spain.

Buen Camino!
 

evanlow

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances06
Primitivo07
Plata08
Norte12
Levante(14-15)
Vasco16
Mozarabe(16-17)
Madrid17
Portuguese18
Mornings may be cold, but your body warms up pretty fast.

I just brave the cold as it takes only 10-15 mins for my body to start perspiring in the early morning, rather than wear a jacket and having to take it off after walking a kilometer or two. Reserve the jacket/pullover for the evening.
 
D

Deleted member 43780

Guest
35 L Osprey. Used it on my first Camino.
Then dummy me went and got a 50L Osprey for my next Camino. Big mistake!

Went back to using my 35L Osprey.

Not only did the larger pack add weight, but it is so true bigger the pack the more junk you will find to put in it.

Go light. Osprey packs rock! Never had a problem with either one.

Walked three Caminos and biked one. Learned much from each one.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I used a Marmot Graviton 36 (women's model) for my first two Caminos, and it was great. Good size and very lightweight, at just over 2 pounds. But the Camino has turned me into a gear junkie, and I have recently purchased a North Face Aleia 32 which is less than 2 pounds, and has an adjustable back length.
The key is to make sure that the backpack fits you well, and not to over pack. There are lots of stores in Spain where you can buy anything you need.
Don't pack your fears or things for "just in case".
 

JAL

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2014
Le Puy-St. Jean 2015
Via Francigena 2016
Norte/Primitivo 2016
Via de la Plata 2017
I know this is a big topic but I am looking for backpack recommendations. How big of a pack do you need? We will be going from Leon to Santiago. Hoping to find a comfortable women's pack. One more thing: typically how many pounds does one carry if you include a lightweight sleeping bag? Thanks!
I love my Gregory Z30 pack. It has served me well for something like 2500 miles of loaded walking. 30 Liters.
 

Eugenia MinskLund

The only way to do it is to do it.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances from SJPDP (14 July - 17 August 2018)
I used a Marmot Graviton 36 (women's model) for my first two Caminos, and it was great. Good size and very lightweight, at just over 2 pounds. But the Camino has turned me into a gear junkie, and I have recently purchased a North Face Aleia 32 which is less than 2 pounds, and has an adjustable back length.
The key is to make sure that the backpack fits you well, and not to over pack. There are lots of stores in Spain where you can buy anything you need.
Don't pack your fears or things for "just in case".
Could you please tell me how tall are you or what is your back length? I am considering Graviton, but so far has managed to try only a 38l version (which is not female specific). I am only 156cm tall. Graviton is better than any other 17 backpacks I gave tried so far, but I am not sure I am ready to order a 36l female option from another country without trying it on first...
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I'm 5'8", and I think that my torso length is 18". I tried on the non woman specific Graviton 34, and didn't like how the shoulder straps felt.
 

Eugenia MinskLund

The only way to do it is to do it.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances from SJPDP (14 July - 17 August 2018)
I'm 5'8", and I think that my torso length is 18". I tried on the non woman specific Graviton 34, and didn't like how the shoulder straps felt.
Great! Thanks! Very Useful!
1 more question. One of the reviews online said that the big zipper is a week point and if it breaks nothing will help you (you will need a different pack). Did you use this zipper a lot? Has it felt being a strong one? And how strong us the material? Someone sait it developed holes after 3 months!
 

Sakami

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés (April - May 2015), Camino Primitivo (May 2018), Finesterre (June 2018)
I'm a big fan of my Osprey Kestrel pack. As previously mentioned, total weight is probably the most important factor. By the time I got to Estella it had become clear to me that I really didn't need to be carrying a laptop computer and power supply. I sent it ahead for Ivar to hold for me in SdC. This spring I'm walking the Primitivo and I'm really going to focus on going light-weight. It's amazing how little you really need to have with you while walking.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Great! Thanks! Very Useful!
1 more question. One of the reviews online said that the big zipper is a week point and if it breaks nothing will help you (you will need a different pack). Did you use this zipper a lot? Has it felt being a strong one? And how strong us the material? Someone sait it developed holes after 3 months!
I used the zipper all the time, and had no problems with it. And also no problems with the fabric.
 

Eugenia MinskLund

The only way to do it is to do it.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances from SJPDP (14 July - 17 August 2018)
UPD. Had to send the female version of Marmot Graviton back to the store as my back did not like it at all. Straps are great (female cut), but overall performancecwas not good for me. Meanwhile havevtried North Face Aleia 32 and it was not for me either (as other 25/backpacks I’ve tried). For now the decision is to settle with Osprey Sirrus 36 even though it’s heavier.
 

Suzanne S.

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2015) Camino Frances/Muxia/Fisterre (2017) Caminho Portuguese/Fisterre
(2019) Camino del Norte
I've used the same Osprey Kyte 36L on both of my Camino's and expect to use it again next year. It has an adjustable back length, within limits. I love it! And as you now know, until you try one, you never know if it will work...
 

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