Rugged and very comfortable travel backpack recommendations?

Started Mar 31, 2013 | Questions thread
jhorse Senior Member • Posts: 2,600
Re: Rugged and very comfortable travel backpack recommendations?


I hike a reasonable amount (Alps, etc) and I have not found a suitable photo backpack. I carry a body (D300s), three lenses, accessories and a tripod.

In my view none of the photo backpacks puts the weight in the right position (all place it near the bottom) and few are comfortable over challenging terrain.  Furthermore, the need to carry non-photo gear is just as important as is the means to carry it comfortably.  I bought 30 and 60 litre packs for day and longer treks. From your request, I assume you will be doing day hikes and don’t need supplies for several days.  In a 30L day sack I place the lenses in individual cases (Lowepro) and near the top for better centre of gravity and carrying comfort, accessories in pockets and have room for waterproofs, jersey, food, water and binos. I place the tripod snugly on the side strapped into the mesh normally used for a water bottle and secured to the side of the sack. It is more stable that way and less disruptive on centre of gravity (a tripod slung underneath means it swings and at the back of the sack it puts the centre of gravity too far back).  Water can be carried on the other side for balance or inside the sack in one of the flexible water carriers with a tube. I carry the body in a zoom case where I can get at it without taking the pack off. I have found this set up to be comfortable over challenging terrain, carries photographic and other gear conveniently and I have access to the camera quickly to photograph vistas.

Hope that helps.

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