What is the average weight of a hiking backpack?

What is the average weight of a hiking backpack?

A backpack is among the most important items you’ll need to make your hike a success. There are a lot of things to take into consideration when searching for the perfect backpack, such as the weight. But, many aren’t sure about the typical weight of a backpack it is used for the outdoors.

On average, backpacks for hiking weigh between 1 and 6 pounds, based on the material capacity, size, and design. If you’re carrying a backpack, it should not exceed 20 percent of weight. If you’re going for a hike during the day the weight of your backpack should not exceed 10 percent from your weight.

Here are some points to consider when searching for the average weight of a backpack for hiking. Check out the following article to find out more.

A typical backpack weight for hiking

Weight of the backpack is a major factor in how fast, far and safe you feel during your hike.

This is why experienced hikers constantly stress the importance of choosing the appropriate backpack weight. It should not be too heavy, but one that won’t force you to risk your security because you don’t have enough space for essential items like a first aid kit or other gear which your safety and well-being during an adventure depends on.

To gain a better understanding of this you need to examine full and empty backpacks.

Empty Backpacks

Empty backpacks weigh between one to six pounds. Ultralight backpacks for hiking typically weigh less than 2 pounds whereas heavy-duty backpacks weigh between 3-6 pounds. The majority of lighter backpacks designed for hiking are constructed from either nylon, canvas or polyester material.

Loaded Backpacks

As a standard it is suggested that fully loaded backpacks weigh no over than 20 percent of your body weight, but the lower weight, the more. For instance, if your weight is 150lbs the backpack you use for hiking shouldn’t weigh more than 30 pounds. That’s the max weight experts recommend carrying in our backpacks, in order to minimize the chance of back pain, neck pain shoulder, back, and neck.

Additionally, it minimizes the chance of falling down because you’ve lost your balance, particularly when your backpack is heavy. This could be a major risk when you’re walking.

Based on the nature of the hiker or duration of the hike the average backpack load could range between 12 and up to 30 pounds. Most minimalist hikers carry backpacks that weigh less than 12 pounds, ultralight hikers can carry between 12 and 20 pounds, while lightweight hikers can carry 20-30 pounds, while deluxe hikers carry more than 30 pounds.

Base Weight

The weight of a backpack’s base is related to the weight of its load, without taking into account the consumables that are less as you travel along your route. The most common examples of the base weights are fuel, food as well as water. These are items that should be excluded when calculating the weight of your backpack for hiking because they differ based on the nature of your hike but the other items you carry in your backpack such as your sleeping bag clothing, tent and cooking equipment aren’t significantly different from one journey.

Knowing your base weight can in determining a standard backpack weight can be reduced.

Duration of the Hiking Trip

It’s important to think about the duration of your trip when determining the proper capacity and weight of your backpack for hiking:


    3 days:30 to 50 liters

    3 evenings: 50 to 80 liters

    five nights and moreat minimum 70 liters


The conditions of your hike is a factor in the amount your backpack can weigh. Waterproof, heavy duty and backpacks that are on the higher range of capacity are typically reserved for trekking in cold mountains or other climates, as you’ll need to pack more in order to keep warm and dry. While backpacking in warmer and coastal places allows you to travel with smaller backpacks since you’ll require less weight and lighter clothes.



You’ve got it. Although there’s no universal average weight for backpacks for hiking aside from the advice to limit it to 20 percent from your weight. the aspects mentioned above must all be considered.

Frequently asked questions

How can you lower your the weight of your backpack when walking?

There are numerous tried-and-tested methods to help reduce weight on your backpack while hiking:

Be sure to weigh your belongings: Using a luggage or kitchen scale to weigh your items will allow you to keep on top of your essentials to hiking, as well as their weight. Experienced hikers weigh nearly everything from stoves to under clothes.


If you know what the items weigh, you’ll be able to determine precisely what you’ll need to pack in your backpack , and you’ll get a clear idea of the amount it’ll weigh in addition to the weight of your empty backpack. Some hikers record the information on a spreadsheet to make it easier to track things and planning their trips.

Make a meal plan: Planning your menu in advance is an easy method of avoiding packing your bag with food that you will not be able to eat. An effective method for menu planning is to allocate up to 2,500 calories as well as 4,500 calories per person on the journey. It also varies based on the amount of energy you’ll need to expend on your trek, and your weight and size.

Eliminate things that aren’t needed:Each time you return from a hike remove your belongings and examine them. Sort them into piles: the items you use frequently and sometimes along with the things you don’t use. Be aware that items like a first-aid kit might not be used often, but they should be part of any hike.

Spend money on ultralight hiking gear: Ultralight gear such as a sleeping bag backpack and tent, cooking utensils and a camping stove can help in the weight of your backpack for hiking. A couple of essential pieces are all you require, and it doesn’t need to be the most technological or the lightest model available. Consider the top-most heavy-duty equipment that you carry around often and carry around and determine whether there are any ultralight options available in your price range.

Repackage Items for personal care and food items are two of the things you’ll require on your hike that you can pack in a way that weighs less and take up less space. For instance, you don’t need a large tube of toothpaste to go on a hike of three days So, you can pack the toothpaste in a smaller container. Also, put food items in the same way and you’ll end up saving space and weight – perhaps enough to move the items you need to carry into a smaller backpacks.

How heavy is too much to be an item like a backpack?

Anything that is more than 20 percent in your weight or body mass is considered to be too an oversized backpack to carry. The weight of a backpack carried for extended periods of time could cause pain and injury such as lower back pain neck strain, shoulders that are rounded and a an alteration of natural curve of the spine.

However, small-sized people and children are at a greater risk of injuries because of heavy backpacks, and should choose backpacks that weigh less than 10% or 15% of body weight.

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