When searching for a good hiking backpack, there are a number of factors one must consider. There are all sorts of good backpacks on the market, and different ones will work better for different people. This can change based on a numerous amount of factors, such as where the hike is going to be taking place, how far one will be hiking, how often, and if one is going to be camping as well. With internal frame hiking backpacks, there are many advantages in all these scenarios over other types of backpacks.
One of the biggest benefits of an internal frame backpack is that it is not as bulky and will not get caught on things as one is hiking through the woods. In the dense forest, there is not always a lot of space on the trails. Even in a more sparse area, there will be points in which trees and branches and rocks will all be pressing close. An external frame backpack can easily catch on these protrusions, hanging the hiker up until they get themselves free again. This can lead to a lot of headache and frustration, but it can be worse as well. A hiker could get hooked while near a river and fall in. Items hooked to the external frame could be pulled off and lost along the trail. With an internal frame, the hiker does not need to worry about becoming caught, as the entire unit is contained. They can hike through thick areas, pushing the branches back and sliding through, and the backpack will come sliding right along with no problems at all.
Another benefit is that the cloth of the backpack protects the frame. For hikers who want their equipment in top-notch condition aesthetically, this will help to keep the frame from becoming scratched and dented; the cloth will act as a padding to keep the frame itself in good condition. For all hikers, this can help the frame from being broken. It will not be hitting things quite as hard or twisting as branches wrap around the bars; this can happen all to easily with an external frame. The backpack will again act as padding, this time not against scratches, but against damage to the integrity of the pack. Many backpacks are very expensive, and one does not want to run the risk of having to replace them.
There is also the benefit of comfort. To some hikers, this may seem unimportant. It may seem like comfort should be an afterthought to other aspects. However, one must remember that a hiker will be wearing a backpack for extremely long stretches of time, all with the pack bouncing up and down and pressing against their body. If the frame is within the pack, this is padded by the material of the pack and by anything that the hiker has put into it. If the frame is on the outside, the hard edges of it are very much exposed, right out in the open where they can dig into a hiker’s back and ribs. After a long time, the hiker will not want to carry the backpack anymore.
Finally, an internal frame will not rust, as precipitation will be held out by the backpack. With an external metal frame, rust could occur if the paint scratches off and so is not protecting the metal. The plastic parts of the frame will never rust, but metal can and does very quickly. This rust not only means that the frame is weaker and less reliable, it also means that the brown-orange powder can come off of the frame and get into a hiker’s hair and clothes. An internal frame will never experience these conditions, and will be twice as protected from the elements.
All in all, a good backpack is a must for a hiker, and an internal frame backpack is a serious upgrade over the external frame competition. The hiker will find that there are no downsides to having an internal frame, but only upsides. The backpacks are of a high quality to begin with, and they are so well-designed that they will retain that high quality even after many different hikes and quite a lot of use.