Lightweight backpacks. Are they worth the money?

Backpacks -

Lightweight backpacks. Are they worth the money?

Lightweight backpacks. Are they worth the money?

When it comes to backpacking, the weight of the backpack itself can make a huge difference to the overall weight that you're carrying. It's kinda obvious. However is that weight loss good value for money?

This article is broken down into weight, price and should you I buy a lightweight backpack first, or should I buy lightweight equipment first?

We'll be looking at some popular models of backpacks, their weight and of course their price.

Naturally, I would always add the caveat that comfort of each pack is a very subjective opinion. For example, the Osprey AG (Anti-Gravity) range is highly regarded amongst long distance walkers, even though it is not the lightest or indeed, not the cheapest.

Lightweight Backpacks. Are They Worth The Money?

The basis of comparison.

I have deliberately chosen smaller lightweight bags as those who would be considering these would normally have already moved onto smaller and lighter equipment, and therefore would need a bag of a smaller capacity. Future blogs will feature similar comparisons with regards to shelter (tents), stoves and sleeping systems.


There's a huge 1.5kg (approx) difference between the lightest and the heaviest. Though the heavier backpacks are more suitable for carrying heavier loads due to their structure. I personally currently use an Osprey Exos 48 for an overnight trip. It's great up to about 15kg. I am aware that I could get away with a smaller, lighter bag. But that would mean purchasing a smaller lighter hammock and tarp, and to be honest I like the cover that my larger tarp gives me.

A larger, (heavier) backpack would be better if you are lugging around heavier (larger) tents and equipment.

Weight Of Lightweight Backpacks


We're all on a budget. Some are looking for an investment piece that will last us years. Some are looking for a one-off event, and therefore may not want to spend a great deal on a backpack. However, I will come back to something I said earlier. Comfort. Any fool can spend a lot of money on a 'decent" backpack, however, without it being comfortable the trip is going to be painful.

It would be pointless spending a lot of money on a lightweight or even an ultra lightweight backpack when you have no money left to invest in lighter weight other equipment.

Cost of Lightweight Backpacks

So which comes first. A lightweight backpack or lightweight equipment?

It would make more sense to purchase the equipment before the backpack. By doing it this way round you will know the total weight of all that equipment, and how much space you're likely to need to pack it all into a backpack. There's no point in having 60 litres worth of equipment and then buying a lightweight 50 litre bag to try and get it all into. Added to this, you'll benefit immeditely from having lightweight equipment, even if it is in your old heavier backpack.

I'm not going to sign off by making a product recommendation, as each backpack has its own merits, and will be suited to different purposes.

Please feel free to add any comments if you have anything to add or would like to ask a question.


Other articles that may be of interest.

Backpacking Stoves. Which is best?

Best sleeping system for camping?

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