Equipment: Preparing The Backpack For Hiking / Hunting

The most important thing to remember when preparing your backpack for a hike in nature is that nothing should be worn. You need to choose the right equipment very carefully so that you do not overload. As a rule, it is considered that a person should not carry a load weighing more than 20-25% of his own weight for longer transitions. In the German Armed Forces, this figure is 33%, but it is a standard for physically well-prepared people.

Depending on how you distribute the equipment in the backpack, it will also depend on where the center of gravity of the backpack will fall. The center of gravity of the backpack should be close to the body and ideally should be approximately at shoulder height. This way, it will be above the center of gravity of the body and your backpack will not pull you back. Here are some tips on how to properly distribute your equipment in a large backpack (from 30 liters up):

1. Put the sleeping bag and other lighter but bulky items in the bottom of the backpack. Put the slightly heavier piece of equipment over them, such as extra clothing. The heaviest things, such as a thick jacket, food, tent, should be placed from shoulder height up, as close to the back as possible.

2. Place smaller and commonly used items in the small outer pockets of your backpack that you will have easy access to. To maximize moisture protection and reduce the surface of contact in high winds, try to pack as tightly as possible all items in the trekking backpack and leave as little of the strap attached to the outside of the rucksack as possible.

3. Try to maintain an even weight distribution, especially with respect to the side pockets. It's a good idea to use compression bags to reduce the total volume of your gear, which will also help to better distribute your belongings in your backpack. It is advisable to use waterproof packaging for particularly moisture sensitive items such as the sleeping bag.


Important! If your backpack is pulling too hard, it means that its center of gravity is very far from the center of gravity of the body. This will become a real torment during the hike, especially if your luggage is heavier. The shoulders are subjected to a lot of tension and the load on the whole body is uneven. This can be especially dangerous when crossing a more complicated route. If you encounter such a problem, redistribute your gear in the backpack to adjust its center of gravity.

Weight distribution by terrain:

For lighter hikes (such as hilly terrain, forest paths) the center of gravity of the backpack should be higher.

For heavier crossings (such as alpine type of routes), the center of gravity of the backpack should be slightly lower and closer to the center of gravity of the body. This arrangement of the backpack gives a slight inclination forward and overall greater stability and balance for this type of terrain.