By Michael Lanza
Wonder why I’m smiling in the above photo? Well, sure, two friends and I were hiking the incredibly scenic Besseggen Ridge in Norway’s Jotunheimen National Park; that had something to do with it. But the other big factor was that I was comfortable—and how well my pack carried had a lot to do with that. And how I loaded it greatly affected how well it carried on my back. In this four-minute video, I’ll show you how to properly load a backpack to make your trail miles much more enjoyable.
There are two basic goals when loading a backpack:
1. Organize it so that the items you want to get to quickly while on the trail are readily accessible;
2. Balance and distribute the weight in the pack to maximize your comfort.
Watch the video below to see me demonstrate how to properly load a backpack.
Don’t miss the comments section below, where I have a good exchange of questions and answers with some readers, and please type in your own questions or suggestions.
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See “The 10 Best Backpacking Packs,” and all reviews of backpacks and backpacking gear at The Big Outside, plus “5 Tips For Buying the Right Backpack,” which includes instructions on how to measure your torso and properly fit a backpack, and “The Best Backpacking Gear” of the year.
And find all gear reviews organized by categories and expert tips on buying gear at the Gear Reviews page at The Big Outside.