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Best Hiking Backpacks for Women (2019 review)

Finding the perfect women’s hiking backpack for yourself requires you to do some research and compare several products. But in the end, it’s worth the time you invest in it. Especially if hiking is a big part of your daily life – or if you want it to be.

Otherwise, not only will you not be as comfortable as you could be, but ultimately you can end up damaging your back. And your goal is the complete opposite: to make your body healthier and stronger!

So keep reading to find out what you should look for when buying a hiking backpack, as well as 6 suggestions of backpacks that will help you enjoy your hikes to the fullest.

Related: Best Hiking Boots for Women

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Deuter ACT Trail 22 SL Hiking Backpack

The Deuter ACT Trail is a 19-inch, 22-liter backpack. It has an internal frame, which helps you keep your gravity center as close to its usual position as possible, making your hike easier to endure. It is available in two colors: black and mint.

Perfect for: overnight hikes.

Pros: It has plenty of outer pockets and holders for you to stay organized during the entire hike. It has a rain cover and a lot of padding in the back.

Cons: There’s only one water bottle compartment. The hip belt is not padded.

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Kelty Women’s Redwing 40 Backpack

The Kelty Redwing 40 comes in one torso size, weighs 1.2 kg and carries 40 liters. Like the last one, it has an internal back frame and it comes in two colors: black and blue.

Perfect for: short-term trails.

Pros: It has a top pocket that turns into a sling pack and multiple water bottle compartments. It is waterproof and hydration compatible, and it has back ventilation.

Cons: The shoulder straps are quite narrow, so it might not be comfortable for women with broader shoulders. There are no bottom or hip belt compartments.

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Osprey Packs Tempest 20 Women’s Hiking Backpack

The Osprey Tempest 20 has a 20-liter capacity and it weighs a little over 730 grams. It comes in two sizes: XS/S for 13 to 17 inch-long torsos and S/M for 16 to 20 inch-long ones. It is available in four colors: black, dark green, dark blue and magenta.

Perfect for: light hikes and daily activities in urban areas.

Pros: It has a 3-liter hydration sleeve and it is quite a lightweight backpack. It has 7 different outer pockets for organization, despite being a small bag.

Cons: Despite having two sizes, it’s not very versatile in terms of fitting, as it seems to be made for smaller women.

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Gregory Mountain Products Deva 60 Liter Women’s Backpack

The Gregory Deva 60 was specially designed to ensure comfort even with a heavier load. It weighs 2.5 kg and carries up to 50 liters. You can choose between three colors: gray, dark blue or red.

Perfect for: those who go on week-long hikes regularly.

Pros: It includes a rain cover and a removable top lid. It’s available in three different sizes: XS, S, and M. It’s one of the best bags in terms of weight distribution and it has plenty of padding for comfort.

Cons: It can cost up to $300. The waist pocket is quite heavy.

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Venture Pal 35L Lightweight Packable Hiking Backpack

The Venture Pal 35L is another lightweight backpack (under half a kilo), that is water and tear-resistant and carries 35 liters. It comes in 13 different colors and patterns, so you’ll definitely find one that matches your style.

Perfect for: those who are on a tight budget.

Pros: It’s very affordable. It has a shoe compartment, so you don’t have to keep your dirty shoes with clean clothes, and an internal wet pocket, for items like wet towels or sweaty clothes.

Cons: This bag is not advisable for destinations with very extreme weather, as although durable, the fabric is still quite thin.

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Osprey Packs Women’s Ariel AG 55 Backpack

Osprey makes a second appearance in our list with this final backpack, the Ariel AG 55. This bag weighs a bit over 2 kg and carries up to 55 liters. It has an internal frame and an adjustable torso. It comes in three colors: gray, red and blue.

Perfect for: Hikes in extreme weather and for long periods of time.

Pros: The padding is made of dual-density foam. It’s easy to adapt to different body types and it’s made of materials that can endure harsh conditions.

Cons: It’s a bit pricey and heavy when compared to other options.


What to Consider When Looking for a Hiking Backpack?

Women come in all shapes and forms, which means that what’s a comfortable backpack for you might not be as good for your best friend, sister or mother. Plus, different women move in different ways and have specific hygienic needs, which always influence what they need to pack.

Those are three of the most important factors to consider when looking for a backpack and three reasons why you shouldn’t buy one that’s tailored to men.

Remember that you pay what you get for. Even if it costs you a few more dollars than expected, it’s crucial that you find something that’s comfortable, with the right frame and high-quality materials that guarantee durability. And if it looks cool, even better!

What Features Do the Best Hiking Backpacks Have?

As you know by now, there’s no one size fits all when it comes to hiking backpacks for women. However, the best ones you could buy have a few qualities in common. If you find one that checks all the boxes, great! You found yourself a hiking backpack that’s worth investing in.

Here are 5 features you should always look for in a backpack:

  • An adaptable suspension system;
  • A strong back frame;
  • Effective pockets and compartments (hip belt pocket, bottom compartment, water bottle pockets, and large front pocket);
  • Waterproof fabrics or a rain cover;
  • An internal hydration system.

How Big of a Hiking Backpack Do I Need?

There is no right answer to this question, as it depends on how long you’ll be hiking for and how much you need to carry with you.

We should mention, however, that the fewer items you carry, the more comfortable you’ll be. Having a large backpack can sometimes lead you to pack more than you actually need. And as small as it might be, trust when we say that every single item counts when it comes to how much weight you’ll be walking around with, especially if you’ll be hiking for several days.

Having said that, these are the recommended backpack capacities for different hike lengths:

  • Overnight: 20 to 30 liters;
  • Two to four days: 30 to 50 liters;
  • Five to six days: 50 to 70 liters;
  • Over six days: at least 70 liters.

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