You might have heard about two types of packs: frameless and framed backpacks. But what’s the big deal, and how do you choose the right one?
In this post, we’re going to break it down and help you figure out whether a framed backpack or a frameless one is the best fit for your ultralight adventures.
Frameless backpacks offer unique advantages, especially for hikers and backpackers looking to minimize weight and stay nimble on the trails:
Frameless Backpacks – Pros:
But, it’s not all smooth sailing; it’s crucial to think about their downsides too:
Frameless Backpacks – Cons:
Remember, frameless packs are best suited for ultralight backpacking scenarios. They may not be the ideal choice if you plan to carry a lot of gear or tackle rugged terrain.
Framed backpacks come with their own set of advantages that cater to different backpacking scenarios:
Framed Backpacks – Pros:
However, it’s crucial to be aware of their potential drawbacks as well:
Framed Backpacks – Cons:
So, which option should you choose?
You should choose a frameless backpack if…
You should choose a framed backpack if…
For ultralight backpackers seeking to cut weight and move swiftly, frameless packs offer simplicity, flexibility, and potential carry-on compatibility, especially suited for lighter loads and straightforward hikes.
In contrast, framed backpacks provide superior support and larger capacities, making them ideal for comfortable extended journeys, though they tend to be bulkier and heavier due to their maintained shape for efficient packing.
As enthusiastic advocates of ultralight backpacking, we always opt for the frameless option, given the excellent choices available in the market. To make your decision easier, consider popular brands like Zpacks, Durston, and Hyperlite Mountain Gear.
Whatever you choose, embrace your new backpack’s capabilities, setting the stage for a memorable hiking or backpacking adventure.
Interested in a frameless ultralight backpack? Check out our TOP 5 guides that cover the lightest backpacks on the planet.
Frameless backpacks can be a good choice if you want a lightweight and versatile backpacking experience. They are simple and flexible, making them great for ultralight hikers and those who like to keep things simple. However, if you prefer more support and carrying larger loads, framed backpacks might be a better option for you. So, whether frameless backpacks are worth it depends on your hiking style and needs.
You should consider switching to a framed backpack when your gear weight exceeds around 20-25 pounds (9-11 kilograms). Framed backpacks offer better support and weight distribution for heavier loads, enhancing your hiking or backpacking comfort and experience.