Smart tips for packing a backpack

By Stef Zisovska
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Nothing is more annoying than a messy backpack on a trail, especially if there are clanking pots and pans hanging on the sides. Your hiking fellows will appreciate it if you have all your things packed so that you don’t turn the campsite into chaos whenever you need to find your toothbrush. To help you become better at packing your backpack read these useful tips and enjoy your next adventure. Let’s get started!

Think about the weight of your backpack

Backpack

The weight and the balance are the two important things that you need to have in mind when packing. For example, heavy items like camp stoves and campsite food should be packed close to your back or towards the middle of the backpack. By having them close to your body, you will gain more balance and carry the pack with less effort. Make sure that there are not edgy items where your backpack is lacking padding. Light items such as your rain jacket or hat should be stored on the top of your backpack, while things like stove fuel and a sleeping bag that you won’t need until you reach the campsite should be at the bottom. Other soft items like sweaters should be at the bottom as well to provide you with a safe landing in case you fall.

Use soft items to fill in spaces between hard stuff

If you’re honest with yourself, then you’ll admit you hate the sound of camping cookware moving inside your backpack. To avoid the possibility of having a peaceful hike ruined by a continuous rattle and clanging you can place soft items like sweaters or camping pillows between the pots and pans. Wrap the noisy items in your soft jacket and allow yourself and your hiking companions to walk in peace with the sound of the birds singing.

Check the forecast

Packing your backpack for extreme weather

If you’re about to face extreme cold weather, pack the water bottles close to your body to make sure it stays liquid. Do the same with any batteries because they lose power when exposed to cold weather.

Pack your things in waterproof sacks

Just in case you fall during a river crossing, make sure that your belongings are safe and dry. Cameras, phones, batteries, GPS devices and other electronic items that shouldn’t get wet should be sealed in a waterproof bag while you’re hiking. Walking in amazingly beautiful surroundings and worrying about your iPad is not going to enhance your experience of the wilderness. Therefore, protect all your valuables from getting wet and pack them well.

Pack your liquid fuel carefully

Make sure the lids on the fuel bottles are all sealed and store the liquid fuel below your food, never on top of it. After a long day on the trail, the last thing you want for dinner is fuel-smelling lasagna or beef jerky. So, be extremely careful on this one.

Pack things you’ll need on the trail within easy reach

Pack smart

Storing items like a headlamp, sunscreen, and your first-aid kit in a handy place will make them easy to use whenever you need them while on the trail. The outside pockets of your backpack are perfect for storing these items and means they’re always within easy reach. Any trail snacks should also be packed in an outside pocket of the pack to avoid you having to dig through all the packed things.

Organize your gear before you leave

The most important thing before heading into the wilderness is to organize all your gear and know where your emergency items are at any time. Nature is unpredictable and the weather in the mountains is never stable, so it would be of great benefit for you to know where all your most important items are. Good luck!

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