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Backpacks, backpacks, backpacks.

Travel Forums Travel Gear Backpacks, backpacks, backpacks.

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1. Posted by Lissimore12 (Budding Member 16 posts) 4y

I'm leaving for Africa in two months and still have yet to get a backpack.

I have searched high and low for a good FRONT LOADING backpack and have turned up nothing. I really like the Altai 60+15 travel rucksack, but I can't find anywhere online that still sells it or has it in stock. Anyone else know of any other good front loading backpacks?

Don't even bother suggesting top loading ones. I would end up clawing my own eyes out having to deal with that.

If its of any consolation I am 5'2", female and will be traveling anywhere between 3 months- 1 year.

2. Posted by talesbackpack (Full Member 117 posts) 4y

I have the Tallaroo 75, but for your height, I'd go with the smaller 65. Very impressed with the quality of this bag. It has seen me through 50+ countries over the last 12 years and still in great condition.

There's a divider in the main pack, so you can have two compartments or one huge one. Very durable and easy to pack. The detachable daypack is quality as well.

You can buy it online in Canada from Cabelas or Army and Navy

[ Edit: Edited on 10-Dec-2012, at 12:23 by talesbackpack ]

3. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru 2488 posts) 4y

Farpoint 40 litre or (my favourite) the Porter 46 litre would both work fine.

Anything over 50 litres is in my opinion waaaaaaay too big, especially for someone your size.


4. Posted by Lissimore12 (Budding Member 16 posts) 4y

Thank you guys! All three are very close to what I'm looking for.

Although I managed to find the Tallaroo 75 for sale, I couldn't find much else on it, which leaves me a little weary to buy it because I usually watch videos on them so I can see every aspect of the pack. Also, 75 is definitely a little big for me.

I am not a light packer though, so I worry that 40-46 might not be big enough. I really like the design of the Porter 46, it just looks a little small. Do they have bigger versions?

5. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru 2488 posts) 4y

You really should re-consider your packing practises, especially in a place like Africa where you want to keep your backpack with you at all times instead of checking it under the bus, etc.

Travelling indefinitely via hotels/hostels through warmish climates you can easily get by with a 40 litre carry-on size backpack with LOTS of room left over.

That's including a set of nice clothes to crash an Embassy party or high-end club, normal day-to-day casual wear, beach clothes, personal hygiene products and everything else you need to be safe/comfortable plus a netbook, digital still/video package and all the peripherals - and I'm a big guy, three times the size of you.


6. Posted by Lissimore12 (Budding Member 16 posts) 4y

Thanks for your input, Terry. I will keep that in mind when making a final decision. I have been looking at the Osprey Farpoint 55. Its only 40 liters with a 15 liter day pack. I think that sounds very reasonable.

Has anyone here used the Osprey Farpoint 55 before? Ive read some really good reviews on it and it looks pretty close to exactly what I'm looking for.

7. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4958 posts) 4y

Don't trust too much in reviews when selecting a backpack, please! One of the most important aspects is how it fits on your back, which no one can say anything about. So go and try it out in a real world store, weighted down with the weights such a store should have available for this purpose, and walk a couple of rounds through the store.

8. Posted by Lissimore12 (Budding Member 16 posts) 4y

Unfortunately thats not an option. I am currently in Japan, and have no clue how to go about finding it here, and I wouldn't have the time to even if I did find it as it's my last week here and I am completely booked up. Then I fly home to my small miserable town, which only has one sports store which only carries two varieties of packs- both top loading. I have to order the pack and try it out, then send it back and get another if I don't like it. Hence why I decided to start looking now as opposed to waiting till I got home. I want to make sure Ill have time to send for another if I don't like it.

9. Posted by CheersT (Travel Guru 2488 posts) 4y

"... Its only 40 liters with a 15 liter day pack. I think that sounds very reasonable..."


If you pack a full 55 litres you'll be re-thinking your "reasonable" description very quickly, especially when you have to check the main backpack while you're still loaded down carrying a full daypack. No issue if you're on the usual Gringo Trail I guess, but if you want to get off the beaten path slightly and travel independently it'll be a hassle.

Good luck and have fun.


10. Posted by Lissimore12 (Budding Member 16 posts) 4y

I don't plant on packing the full 55. I plan on packing an almost full 40, and empty 15 when I leave, then only putting valuables and things I need throughout the day in the 15 and bringing it with me when i go out during the day without the main bag.