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  1. #1
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    Default Backpack Volume Help

    Iím getting rid of my Osprey 85 liter Backpack. I want a smaller one. Iím debating on a 65 liter or should I go to a 50 liter. Most of my hikes are sections 3 to 5 days. Will I have enough room in a 50.

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    A lot of that depends on your gear. If you have ultralight gear, odds are that it will. However, if you have an 85 liter pack now, unless you are leaving it half empty on most trips, it probably won't fit.

    You may be better off with the 65 liter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by soumodeler View Post
    A lot of that depends on your gear. If you have ultralight gear, odds are that it will. However, if you have an 85 liter pack now, unless you are leaving it half empty on most trips, it probably won't fit.

    You may be better off with the 65 liter.

    And, that depends on whom is defining UL.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    And, that depends on whom is defining UL.
    Are you trying to tell me there is more than one definition for UL? I don't believe you...


  5. #5
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    A 65 Liter is more versatile as long as you have the restraint to not fill it with things you donít need. Pack is half empty when I do short trips in the summer, but Iím glad for the space when Iím doing something that requires warmer gear or a longer food carry.

    If youíre really tempted to get a 50L pack then bring all your gear to an outfitter and see how it fits inside one. That will be a better indicator than any advice online.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  6. #6
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    It depends a lot on who is defining the 65 and 50 liters. Not all pack companies tell the truth.
    Load your current pack for your typical trip. Take it to the pack store. Find a smaller pack that holds your stuff.
    No idea what is available where you live. I was in Academy Sports recently and was surprised to find decent looking 50 & 70 liter packs reasonably priced. I imagine that Dicksís might have similar inventory.
    Good luck!
    Wayne

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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    It depends a lot on who is defining the 65 and 50 liters. Not all pack companies tell the truth...Good luck!
    Wayne
    Not only that but there can be a big difference in where those liters are. My former Osprey Aether 60 was much bigger than my ULA Ohm 2.0 which specs out at 63L.

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    And I find my 48 L bag to big for most of my 3-season trips less than 7 days. I could use a 55 L for 5+ day winter trips, but I get by with my 48 since it is lighter than my 65 and 48 is plenty for me after I eat a day or two of food.

    55 to 65L are the most popular on PCT and AT.

    What are you using for sleeping insulation and shelter? Are they small enough to allow you to use a 50L pack?
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  9. #9
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    Default Backpack Volume Help

    A pack with a removable top lid will give you more flexibility. I almost never use the top lid on my Atmos, but it's nice to have if I need some extra close or a little more food.
    You can walk in another person's shoes, but only with your feet

  10. #10
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    If you can put all of your gear into a typical household garbage bag (13 gallon size), it should fit in a 50 liter pack....

    But it depends on the make of the pack. And how you pack it. It's pretty common for manufacturers to include the volume of various pockets (as well as the lid) as part of the overall volume of the pack. That can really throw people off.
    fortis fortuna adjuvat

  11. #11
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    How much are you willing to lash an item or two to the outside? I've been frustrated with a full/overstuffed pack, then attached something like my pad or tent to the bottom or side, and had plenty of room after that.

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    I really appreciate the information. I think the best thing to do is to pack my stuff up and go to The outfitter. My guess is that I would be fighting the 50 because I don’t like items hanging outside the pack. But seeing the difference would be good to know. I carry a BA Copper Spur 2 and inflatable BA pad.

  13. #13

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    Buy the bigger pack with a roll down top design and it will be useful for a wider variety of hikes.

  14. #14
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    I think a 50 L is big enough for a 5 day hike in warm weather. My Pack is a 40 L and while it was tight, I have taken it on 5 day hikes and I am not a UL guy. If you are planning a winter hike, go with a 65 L. I did a overnight hike in January and had to strap my sleeping bag on top of my pack.
    There are so many miles and so many mountains between here and there that it is hardly worth thinking about

  15. #15
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    A well designed pack can be compressed to fit the load.
    A pack thatís too small will always be too small.
    There are many good packs between 50 and 65 liters. You arenít limited to just two sizes.
    Good luck!
    Wayne

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    Quote Originally Posted by REB View Post
    I really appreciate the information. I think the best thing to do is to pack my stuff up and go to The outfitter. My guess is that I would be fighting the 50 because I donít like items hanging outside the pack. But seeing the difference would be good to know. I carry a BA Copper Spur 2 and inflatable BA pad.
    There can be a big difference between different packs. For mainstream manufacturers following guidelines external pockets are not included in the pack size. NEither are extension collars. Well for cottage manufacturers they tend to include all the external pockets, extension colors, Etc.

    I would suggest mail ordering them and trying the ones you're interested in out at home and then returning them. It's a lot easier to take your time at home and try packing things different ways than it is to haul all your crap to a store. The downside is it can take some time to accomplish. But the end result will be you'll find the pack you like better.

    I'm also not a fan of having anything hanging off a pack. But lots of people pack that way especially when they start with several days food. I also don't believe in having to have other people hand you things like water Etc because you can't get it yourself.
    Last edited by MuddyWaters; 03-23-2018 at 03:56.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MuddyWaters View Post
    . . . I'm also not a fan of having anything hanging off a pack. . .
    +1 again on this one.

    That being said, doing so can work fine as long as it is strapped on firmly and not flopping around. I frequently have a CCF pad and snowshoes or skis strapped to the outside of my pack in the winter cuz they don't fit inside so well regardless of pack size. It's okay, it's just an extra step of lashing stuff on when packing up and then I have to work around them when I getting something from inside of my pack. That, and crap on the outside is more likely to snag when off trail or on a narrower trail with bush and overhanging limbs etc.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by nsherry61 View Post
    +1 again on this one.

    That being said, doing so can work fine as long as it is strapped on firmly and not flopping around. I frequently have a CCF pad and snowshoes or skis strapped to the outside of my pack in the winter cuz they don't fit inside so well regardless of pack size. It's okay, it's just an extra step of lashing stuff on when packing up and then I have to work around them when I getting something from inside of my pack. That, and crap on the outside is more likely to snag when off trail or on a narrower trail with bush and overhanging limbs etc.
    Same here. If you've got a bunch of items strapped/clipped to the outside you need a bigger pack. Snowshoes and CCF supplemental pad excepted, of course. Another reason UL packs don't have daisy chains.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by REB View Post
    I’m getting rid of my Osprey 85 liter Backpack. I want a smaller one. I’m debating on a 65 liter or should I go to a 50 liter. Most of my hikes are sections 3 to 5 days. Will I have enough room in a 50.
    I've made the switch from my old Lowe 80+ltr to a new 60ltr pack: https://www.lightwave.uk.com/product...sacks/wildtrek.
    Suits me perfectly, is almost waterproof, slim-fit on the back and very comfortable to carry.
    For 2-3day trips its a bit big, for 4-5-6 days ist perfect, did trips up to 9 days without problems.
    I'm using the old Lowe for flight travelling only now, with the new Lightwave (and an additional daypack and extra stuff) stuck inside.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Singto View Post
    Buy the bigger pack with a roll down top design and it will be useful for a wider variety of hikes.
    I'll second the roll top; I have an arczip that I LOVE.
    Roll it down as your load gets smaller and it keeps items nice and secure; or as space opens up in the pack don't squish your sleeping bag as much so it will take up the space and it'll extended the roll top as far as possible and help keep you shaded.

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