|BlackHawk Products Group||Mountainsmith, Stansport, SwissGear|
|Browning, Mountainsmith, Uncle Mikes|
Whether you prefer hiking, mountaineering, skiing, or snowboarding we have a backpack specially created for your needs. Different outdoor sports require different types of camping gear, and Top Gear Camping has all of the camping equipment to fit your needs.
To pick the proper backpack for your outdoor activities, you will need to consider what kinds of equipment you will carry with you on your trip. The following are four categories of pack types which can be used for the different kinds of outings which you may take.
- Extended Trips: These types of backpacks are designed for trips which are 5 days or longer. On this type of trip, you will need a pack that has substantial support and space. These backpacks hold more than 70 liters of gear. These extended trip backpacks also work well for shorter trips during the spring or fall months when extra layers of clothing are needed.
- Multiday: These types of backpacks are made for camping trips which are two to four days long. This is the most popular category of packs and it includes bags ranging from 40 to 70 liters in size.
- Technical daypacks: This category of backpacks is designed for trail use rather than overnight gear bags. Technical daypacks can be designed to organize and hold climbing or snowsports gear. Often these types of smaller backpacks will have either a sleeve for a hydration bladder or special water bottle pockets.
- Hydration Packs: These packs are used to provide hands free drinking especially when hiking or biking. They often contain a reservoir which is two or three leaders in size. In addition, hydration packs have some room for gear as well.
The most important feature to consider when buying a backpack regardless of the activity you will be doing is the fit of the pack. A good fitting backpack will be more comfortable so you can enjoy the outdoors while you hike. One important measurement when choosing a backpack is the length of your torso. This is measured from your shoulders to the top of your hips. Each backpack will state a range of torso lengths which the pack will fit best. Waist size can also affect the fit of a backpack. However, most backpack waist straps are adjustable to fit a variety of waists.
Some packs have a built in suspension, which will allow you to adjust the torso length to your comfort level. This option will however make the backpack a bit heavier than a fixed suspension pack which will be lighter.
Backpacks are also made in women-specific models. Women’s backpacks have narrower shoulders, shorter torsos, and differently shaped hip-straps.
An important part of larger backpacks which are intended for longer hiking and camping trips is the support system. Stays are a rod or bar that is used to transfer the weight of a backpack to the hips, which allows you to carry more weight. Some other supports are made from stiff-plastic high-density polyethylene framesheets. These internal framesheets prevent items in the pack from poking you as you hike.
Some other optional add-ons for backpacks include:
- Rain covers to keep backpacks dry
- Accessory pockets, often padded, to protect cameras or GPS units
- Stuff sacks and mesh bags to organize gear within the backpack
- Trekking poles to help you maintain balance, especially when carrying heavy packs or hiking up rugged terrain.
In addition to backpacking gear, we also sell child carriers. These are useful when hiking with small children. Child carriers allow you to keep your child securely on your back so they can enjoy longer hikes with the rest of the family. Child carriers also keep your child safely with you because they prevent a child from wandering off the trail.