Disclosure: I mention some products that I’m an affiliate for is this post. If you buy via my link, then I get a commission — thank you!
If you are in a hurry and just want to find out what the best hiking backpack for big guys is, then we recommend the Osprey ATMOS 50AG as our number one pick.
Shopping when you are a big guy can be nothing short of a headache. Shoes never fit, pants are too short, shirts are too tight, and the list goes on. The struggle even continues beyond the wardrobe and buying a backpack can be the biggest headache of all.
Hiking backpacks need to be rugged and built to last. But which other factors need to be considered when making this big investment? Comfort is obviously key and your bag needs to evenly distribute the weight over your shoulders.
As a tall individual, you also need to consider the fit and bag the bag will contour to your body. An ill-fitting bag will make your hike even more unpleasant than a pebble in your size 12 Solomons.
If you’re also having issues trying to find a backpack for day to day use check out our best backpack for big guys recommendations.
Another deciding factor is the adjustability of the bag. Can you comfortably elongate straps without the straps holding on for dear life? It is not only the vertically gifted thing that you need to watch out for either. Bulkier men need to consider the sternum straps and hip belts that might take some extra strain. Hip extenders are always an option but there are plenty of bags on the market that will accommodate you as you are.
Don’t worry big guy, we have you covered. Here is a concise list of all the factors you should consider when buying your new backpack.
At a Glance: Our Top Recommendations
- Best Hiking Backpack based on Torso Length
- Best Hiking Backpack for Larger and Heavier Guys
- Best Bang for Buck Hiking Backpack for Big Guys
- Best Hiking Backpack for Functionality
- Most Durable Hiking Backpack for Big Guys
- Best Ventilated Hiking Backpack for Big Guys
How to Choose the Best Hiking Backpack for Big Guys
Your torso length is ultimately the deciding factor when buying a hiking backpack. If your bag is the wrong length your shoulders will carry all of the weight or you will be thrown off balance. To measure your torso height simply take a measuring tape from your iliac crest to your C7 vertebrae.
Once you have determined that, you will be able to find a bag that can adjust enough at the shoulders and the hips to accommodate your build. The Paragon 58L Backpack by Gregory does a splendid job at this. The bag can adjust as far as a 22-inch torso to ensure maximum comfort and even weight distribution. Once you have the right fit for your torso, you can start considering other bells and whistles.
Size and Weight:
Packing clothes for larger people might also prove to be a struggle. Rugged cargo shorts take up significantly more space than the dainty yoga pants of your significant other. Don’t forego a lightweight bag just because you need space either. Look for a bag that gives you ample volume and less poundage.
Elemental Horizons has created the Aquilo Pack with just this in mind. This rugged waterproof bag can hold between 75 and a whopping 83 liters! It can carry over 40 pounds of weight which is incredible considering the bag itself only weighs 2lb13oz. What makes this bag even better is the fact that you can modify your torso length and waist size when ordering to create a truly custom bag.
It’s all good and well to find a bag that fits but we can’t all spend $400 on a bag that will only see the outdoors once in a blue moon. Loowoko is a budget-friendly brand that has a bag that will fit your back and your pocket perfectly.
Their 50L hiking backpack comes with a rain cover and straps to fit people up to 6’’5 and the best part is it only costs $51! If you will only take your bag out for a couple of weekends a year, this is a great option.
The bag is light and has 8 adjustable straps. It is the perfect carry-on size and is even made of rip-stop material for added durability.
The backpack game has become significantly more competitive over the last decade. These days, bags should open and close from every angle and come with all the trimming you can think of. Osprey’s ATMOS 50AG is the swiss army knife of backpacks and the list of features is outstanding.
Not only does the anti-gravity suspension system ensure optimal comfort but the bag also features an internal hydration sleeve reservoir to quench your thirst. It also has a tracking pole attachment and upper and lower compression straps on the side to keep your bag streamline. The top lid is removable and the side pockets give dual access for ease of use. As if that wasn’t enough, the hip belt has zipped pockets, the sleeping pad straps are removable, and there is a sleeping bag compartment in the bottom.
Mystery Ranch creates gear for military and hunting purposes but you don’t have to be off to war to get your hands on one of their ultra-durable products. Their Terraframe 3-Zip 50 backpack is made from rugged polyurethane coated nylon that makes it water-resistant and flexible.
The zippers are also coated for extra water protection and durability. The frame is lightweight and made of carbon fiber to keep its flexibility while guaranteeing strength. Another fantastic feature of this back is the overload shelf which allows you to unclip the main compartment from the frame to add an excess load in between the frame and the bag.
What is the one thing we all have in common when it comes to hiking? Sweat. We all hate it, we all have it. Osprey is top of the game when it comes to producing ventilated backpacks and their Exos 48 is superior in this field.
The backpack does not directly sit on your back but is rather suspended over a mesh airspeed suspension system. This ensures the ventilation of cool air across your back from the sides to keep you from overheating.
The bag is also ultra-lightweight which ups the comfort factor dramatically. The hip belt and shoulder straps have layer ExoForm mesh for extra padded comfort and superior ventilation.