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Los Angeles Hiking Group Message Board › Hiking Gear

Hiking Gear

A former member
Post #: 1
I used to hike a lot back in the '70's. But back then you would use an over the shoulder satchel. After then I was in the "Military" and carried around 100 lbs on my back. So my question to any of you, what am I looking at for a Back Pack?? I searched REI and found a "REI Lookout 40 Pack". The price is right, but do I need a back back like that???

A former member
Post #: 1
It depends on a lot factors like how long your torso is, how much weight you'll be carrying, etc. You actually are supposed to get yourself fitted for a pack, otherwise you'll hurt your back. Go to an REI store, the camping specialist will answer all your questions and fit you properly.
A former member
Post #: 2
I fully understand you about getting "Fitted" for the Back Pack.......In the Military they just gave you a back pack, and it was up to you to to get it fitted to your liking. I don't know if you know of the back pack that I'm talking about. It's a Great Pack, but I think it maybe too large. But when I look at some of your pics, it seems that everyone either has a Very small pack, or the size that I'm looking at......Thank you for the info...
A former member
Post #: 2
Do you mean it might be too large in terms of liters? Or too large for your body, meaning dimensions? The only way to know if a pack will fit you correctly is to get measured. At REI they measure your spine length, arm length, and waist circumference, then they put the pack on you and stuff it with weighted sacks and pillows to mimic a full pack. Then they'll adjust the straps accordingly. But still, not all packs hug the body the same way. I tried 6 backpacks because certain components just weren't compatible. For example, the shoulder straps were too thin and dug into my shoulders or the back cushions dug into my hips. Maybe in the pictures, those people have small backpacks because they're doing dayhikes or just an overnight. I have a 65L pack for ong trips and that's a pretty sizeable backpack. A lot of stuff can be stuffed in there.
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 7

The number one factor is comfort. There are many packs to choose from with similar features but each is constructed differently and a pack thats comfy on your back may not be on a person thats built like you. As Samantha pointed out REI will measure you & suggest packs that fit your torso. Spend a couple of hours at the store comparing packs, make sure each has near maximum weight packed, and cinch the straps. The REI assistant can help with that all that. Walk around, do some small jumps, bend down...basically simulate hike movements to get a feel for each pack. Your back & shoulders will tell you which pack is most comfy.

Regarding the REI Lookout 40, it's a fairly large and heavy day pack. The pack has several compartments and plenty of room for winter day hikes. If you plan on doing long hikes with lots of gear and you don't mind a 3lb day pack it may be a good pack for you. If you plan to do mostly casual hikes during summer/spring you likely don't need 40 liters/2240 inches of capacity. There are other bags with plenty of room for a day hike and that are lighter.

All the best!
Takeo M.
user 23293351
Northridge, CA
Post #: 1
To me, 40 liter backpack is too large for the general Meet-Up hikers. I have 25 liter one but I don't want to use it for the day trip. I use a "Day Pack" which is very small and cheap for my daytime hikes. Yet it carries a 2-ltr hydration, snacks and one jacket. In case you do deep-mountain climbing and camping, you may need much larger one with external frame.
A former member
Post #: 3
Thank yo all very much for ALL your input. Yes, the "40" looks to be rather "Large" But I believe any pack will fit me since I'm 6'2. I'm now thinking the "30". It seems it dose everything the 40 dose, but doesn't except the "Room" factor. But even the 30 looks a little large. Remember, I was hiking ALL the time back in the 70's, and 11 years in the service. But all that was a Very long time ago. The back packs of today are GREAT, in the way it fits and made......Look at it this way, the hiking that I have been doing so far to break me back in. Are 2-3 hours from start to Finnish. I forget the Name, but it's off Laural Cyn where George Clooney has a place out here. So I just carry one large bottle Gatorade or something very similar. So that's where I'm at now....
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