A good backpack should be like those tough Western ranch hands who don't quit until the job is done. You don't want any trouble on the trail. You just want something you can rely on to do the job, and do it well. Cabela's makes backpacks like this. The Diamond Peak Series rounds up strength, ample storage space and convenience into packs built for the trails ahead.
Diamond Peak packs are constructed of heavy-duty 420-denier velocity nylon and 420-denier shadow ripstop polyester with durable, abrasion-resistant 600-denier poly bottoms. It feels as if you could toss one of them off the side of a mountain, only to retrieve it, shake it off and still have a fully functional pack. However, that is one test I am willing to forego.
For three to four day trips into the backcountry, the Ridgeline's 5,500 cubic inches of storage space has proven to be more than adequate for my needs. If you want more, you can step up to the 6,000-cubic-inch Shasta or the 6,500 cu. in. of the Sierra. Women should opt for the Columbine, a backpack specifically designed for a woman's frame.
Keep in mind: The more gear you carry the heavier the pack will be. Try to find the middle ground between packing too much and not enough.
Bulky items can either go into the main storage compartment or can be lashed on the outside of the pack using the Hypalon® patches. The floor of the main compartment can be unzipped, converting the entire interior of the pack into one large main compartment. This would be convenient if you were carrying anything that is otherwise too long to fit. I keep mine zipped and use the bottom compartment to store my sleeping bag, pad and pillow. The hood is a good place to store rain gear or heavier clothing layers. The top of the main compartment has two adjustable drawcords to secure contents safely inside.
The side storage pockets are great for things you will need to easily access during the hike like food, a knife and a camera, among other things. A convenient thing to know about the side pockets is the fact that they have an extra zipper that allows access to the inside of the main compartment. An excellent idea if you don't want to go through the hassle of opening the top. The water bottle pockets on the sides work well for the intended purpose, or they can provide a secure base to hold a fishing rod tube that is held firmly in place by the multiple adjustable side straps.
Breathable foam shoulder straps, back panels and waistbelt make these packs more comfortable to carry on a hot day. PE reinforcement acts like a spine through the middle of the pack to keep heavy loads properly supported. The key to carrying a pack comfortably is to properly distribute a majority of the load on your hips, thereby relieving excess tension in your shoulders. The adjustable waist and shoulder straps fine-tune the carrying comfort to almost anyone's stature. A sturdy carry handle on the front of the pack makes for easy carry when it's not on your back.
Having the hydration bladder is a quick remedy for thirst. Each of the models in the Diamond Peak Series includes a reservoir. The tube runs out through a specially designed opening on the top of the pack and the end clips to the shoulder straps for easy access.
Every trail has its ups and downs. The key is to be prepared. An investment in high-performance gear, like the Diamond Peak Series of backpacks, is a good way to ensure every journey goes a whole lot smoother.
Click this link to purchase: Diamond Peak Series Internal Frame Packs