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May 16, 2021
There’s a world of difference between going for a nice long walk and scaling a mountain, but the need to carry plenty of stuff, and be comfortable, will forever link the two activities. With more of us than every heading - forced or otherwise - for the great outdoors this summer, a quality walking/hiking backpack is an essential item as it really will make the miles pass easier, no matter what the terrain. Choosing the right size is key to comfort. Get it right and the pack will be comfortable, supportive and stable, choose badly and expect shoulder, hip and back pain after a few hours. Most of the backpacks tested come in small/large sizes or with adjustable back panels to make fitting easier, but it’s worth seeking out brand guidelines on their websites to help accurately measure your torso. As for volume, it greatly depends on what you’re planning on doing, and whether you naturally pack light, or love to be over prepared. For a full day out we suggest something between 20 and 35litres as it will have enough space for spare clothes, food and water. The larger 35litres designs, depending on how lightweight your gear, may have enough capacity for overnight camping trips, although typically you’d need 40-50litres for multi-day trips. What are the best hiking backpacks to buy? The Osprey Talon Pro 30 is our favourite walking backpack, for its versatility, adjustability and outright comfort, that said, the Klattermusen and Montane also ran it close for the same reasons. The best value hiking backpack available in 2021 is the Berghaus Arrow 30. It’s not dirt cheap, but good things rarely are, and for the money you get a hugely dependable bag that should last years. The best walking rucksack for people who treat mountains like a gym session is the Salomon XA 35 thanks to its no-bounce compression fit, generous capacity and hydration bottles. WIRED Recommends is your definitive guide to the best technology. Every product featured has been properly tested by WIRED reviewers. Read our list of the best gadgets for our favourite pieces of tech in every category. Osprey Talon Pro 30 WIRED Recommends: A backpack so versatile it has something to offer all types of walker, from casual towpath treks to Himalayan expeditions Size: 30litre | Waterproofing: PFC-free DWR coating | Weight: 1.1kg The Talon range from Osprey has been phenomenally popular for years, and with the new Pro range, featuring a new fabric and upgraded back panel with frame it is more comfortable than ever. Available in 20 or 30litres, the smaller option is ideal for day trips in all conditions, while the 30litre Talon Pro 30 (£175) design we tested, has just enough space for demanding overnight trips, piles of layers, or a mountain of snacks to keep the kids entertained. But this rucksack isn’t just for walking. It has space for two ice axes (or walking poles) if you like to get technical and there’s a neat plastic clip on the front designed to hold your cycling helmet. There’s also plenty in the way of stretchy mesh stash pockets, zipped compartments, and compression straps to keep your kit organised and secure. The secret to the Talon Pro’s comfort comes from its injection moulded frame, channeled padding that helps air circulate, and wrap-around padding on the waist straps. The frame isn’t as rigid as the aluminium on the Klattermusen, but is still very stable, curving slightly to fit your back, with just enough flex. It sits close to your back and makes all the difference when walking for more than a few hours. While not as light as some, the Osprey is so well balanced you’ll barely notice the extra grams, and the Robic 100 per cent post-industrial recycled high tenacity nylon, while extremely thin is tough, surviving gorse during a misguided shortcut, with ease. Add in the fact you can adjust the torso sizing just by peeling apart some velcro, the hip strap pockets can fit your phone in with ease, and you can easily add a hydration pack, and Osprey has managed to tick every practical box going. Pros: Available in men’s and women’s fit; comfortable; rain cover and helmet holder included; supportive frame Cons: Seams not sealed; technical rather than fashionable Size: 30litre | Waterproofing: rain cover | Weight: 745g Head to Decathlon if you’re looking for cheaper, funkier looking backpacks , but with the Arrow 30 , you get a lot of backpack for just £60. It isn’t the most exciting design - think Duke of Edinburgh Award Chic rather than hipster cool - but it works well, is made from tough polyester, has generous pockets, and should appeal to any age group or ability. The large zipped top pocket has a handy key hook, each side pocket has space for a large water bottle, and you can fit a hydration pack inside. Walking poles can be safely stowed too and there’s even a couple of carabiner-ready loops for attaching other bits and pieces. With 30litres of space we easily fitted enough supplies for a two day solo trip (without camping kit) and loads of room for a day trip with the family. Without a firm back panel there’s not as much support as on the more expensive designs, but there’s enough back padding to ensure you don’t feel any lumps and bumps. The shoulder straps are generously padded too, but we were disappointed by the waist strap, which is quite thin and lacks padding. Having a separate rain cover is a nice touch, but do use it if the heavens open as the seams on the main bag aren’t sealed, so it won’t take that long to get saturated. Pros: Well balanced; generous pockets; rain cover included Cons: A bit bland; no back frame support Size: 28litre | Waterproofing: PFC-free DWR layer | Weight: 797g Altivia is a new family of more technical backpacks for Patagonia all made from 100% recycled nylon ripstop. There are four sizes available; 14, 22, 28, and 36litres. We tested the 28litre which shares a similar design to the largest bag, and offers the most versatility. The Altiva Pack 28 (£130) is a substantial design, but at under 800g it feels light - especially as the ripstop fabric is so thick. It’s a well made piece with hefty stitching and quality components that should last for years. There’s also a waterproof rain cover stashed in a velcro pocket at the base, which is a welcome touch. Our S/M sized sample was just the right size for this 180cm/32” waist reviewer, but anyone taller or larger should try the L/XL. The rippled back panel helps air circulate and is also nice and soft. There’s nothing substantial in the way of support - this isn’t a pack for carrying heavy loads for days - but even when stuffed full for an overnight trip the weight was shared between back, shoulders and hips. The hip straps did an excellent job distributing the weight, but the two zipped pockets are far too small to fit anything meaningful in. And if you do stuff them, don’t expect to be able to get the zips open without undoing the main clasp. What isn’t noticeable from the image above is the huge main opening the pack has. Unclip the fastening and it opens up like a cagoule, with a large amount of fabric (like a hood) joining the top flap to the main body. As a result it keeps out the wet like a rolltop, but is much easier to access. When you’re packed, you pull the cord and the material cinches in, sealing everything from the elements. With two elasticated side pockets - great for water bottles - and a large front stash pocket you can easily shed a layer or store a waterproof, without having to mess about with clips. Pros: Rain cover included; recycled material; hard wearing; easy to pack Cons: Hip-pockets too small to be useful Size: 35litre | Waterproofing: DWR | Weight: 603g With key features borrowed from Salomon’s hugely popular trail running packs and vests, the XA 35 (£180) is a highly technical backpack designed for those people who travel fast and light. In fact, the only thing stopping it from being an out-and-out trail running tool is its 35litre capacity, and good luck to anyone running an ultramarathon with that much kit. But, if you like to move fast over varying terrain - there’s enough capacity here for overnight bivvy adventures and hostel hikes - this bag won’t bounce or jiggle and has a plethora of stash pockets and storage options, plus it comes with two 500ml soft bodied water bottles that sit in their own chest pocket. The shoulder straps and harness stretch around your torso, secured in place with a clever lacing system that spreads pressure evenly over your chest. If you’ve never worn a trail running pack before, prepare to feel rather trussed up, but once your corset - sorry, backpack - is secured, it is wonderfully comfortable and almost infinitely adjustable. The honeycomb padding on the back shoulder and waist straps isn’t the most cushioned, but weight is so well distributed you’ll not notice, and the open air mesh design means air can circulate. It won’t eliminate a sweaty back entirely, but makes working hard all the more comfortable. Even with a running style harness, unless you can secure the contents, everything will bounce around. Salomon has sorted this too, with two more lacing systems, one for the roll-top opening, and one for the front and sides, that, when pulled tight, straps everything down securely. With so many fastenings however it isn’t a bag you want to be taking on and off regularly, but there are zipped pockets, and stash zones a-plenty, and a compartment for an even bigger hydration pack if you need, meaning you have no excuses not to keep moving. Pros: Water bottles included; secure fit; lightweight; versatile Cons: Feel rather trussed up Size: 24litre | Waterproofing: 10,000mm | Weight: 865g Despite having similar dimensions to the larger volume Patagonia, Salomon and Berghaus backpacks, the Brimer 24 (£174) , from Swedish mountaineering brand Klattermunsen, only manages 24litres of space. It sounds stingy, but once you’ve spent some time with the pack you’ll realise that rated volume isn’t everything. The two huge side pockets are easily big enough for a backpacking tent and sleeping bag, and, thanks to the whale mouth style main opening you can stuff a huge amount inside, and, importantly, find it again. Add to this the compression strap system that cling onto any spare layers, generous hip strap pockets and dozens of reinforced cord loops and you can clip and strap all manner of kit to it. Klattermunsen also offers a range of clip-on accessories - everything from spare pockets and pouches to water bottle holders and lumbar packs (bum bags - making this the most versatile design around. And if that’s still not enough, they also do it in a 32litre design. Made from Retina, a tough, supremely waterproof fabric made from pre-and post consumer recycled Polyamid, it’s eco credentials, and hardiness, are assured, and they’ve even swapped out plastic buckles for lightweight aluminium clasps. They’re fiddly to use, but should last decades. At 865g it’s impressively light. Achieved by using a minimalist aluminium frame and reducing the amount of padding to just the areas you really need - around the hips and lumbar region and the shoulders - it’s a fantastic bag to wear for long periods, with minimal touch points to keep you cool when working hard. The back panel can also be adjusted. Principally designed for those people with titanium mugs, sporks, a love for freeze-dried dinners and bivvy bags; it is technical, versatile, surprisingly stylish and very comfortable. Pros: Lightweight aluminium frame; very waterproof; versatile; sustainable fabrics; unisex fit Cons: Some fiddly clips; not great for daily use Size: 18litre | Waterproofing: N/a | Weight: 527g If you’re fed up with always being the Sherpa on family day’s out, this excellent kid-specific daypack makes it easier for the kids to carry their own kit. Stylish, technical and extremely well designed, the Quechua MH500 (£25) is a world apart from most children’s bags. So instead of cartoon characters and glitter they’ve included hydration pack compartments, extra thick shoulder and back padding with chest and waist straps. The back panel is also easily adjustable as your child grows, up to around 150cm. It’s a proper hiking backpack for small people and, just as with adult designs, helps support the weight of the bag away from their shoulders, which should mean longer walks before the nagging starts. Available in two shades of blue, it’s gender neutral, stylish and our only fault is the lack of waterproofing. Pros: Padded; comfortable; good value Cons: No waterproofing Size: 24litre | Waterproofing: DWR | Weight: 790g The Montane Azote 24 (£90) is a simple, well thought out backpack with everything you need for a day out exploring, that’s comfortable thanks to the adjustable velcro back panel that allows you to fine-tune the length of the bag to your back. Available in either women’s specific 24litre or larger 25litre alternative, its compact dimensions bely a generous amount of space. There’s a large main cavity, zipped top pocket for valuables, waist band zipped pockets, two large water bottle-sized side pockets and a handy mesh stash pocket on the front, ideally sized to fit a layer or two when you start to heat up. There’s also an external hydration bladder sleeve, which is always a welcome touch. Made, as we’ve come to expect these days, using a healthy amount of recycled nylon, the 100 denier fabric is thick and durable, and will happily survive a heavy shower, although persistent rain will saturate eventually as there’s no rain cover included. For a relatively small backpack we’re impressed by the design and fit of the waist strap that offers great protection and support. The large women's specific hip fins take the weight brilliantly. It might lack the hipster aesthetic of the Mont-Bell but we found it to be a bag with a thousand uses - in town, on a bike and out walking - that’s comfortable, easy to pack and hardwearing. Pros: External hydration pack access; adjustable comfort; superb waist strap; good value Cons: No rain cover Size: 20litre | Waterproofing: DWR | Weight: 760g With its achingly cool Gorpcore aesthetic, WIRED imagines there will be more sightings of this super light, Japanese made, minimalist pack in Soho House than the Swiss Alps, but nevertheless, it is a fantastically designed day pack that marries form and function. With thick, well-padded shoulder straps, supportive waist-strap and plenty of padding for your upper bag you’ll be comfortable for hours with the Antiplano Pack 20 (£165) . There’s a firm board underneath the padding to help keep everything balanced and supportive - and stop the contents of the bag pushing in your back - and while it lacks the structure of the Osprey, or Klattermusen, it does the job. Having just one main roll-top opening maintains the minimalist aesthetic, and while they haven’t included a main zipped front pocket, there are four generous zippered pouches (two on the waist, two in the shoulder straps that will even take a water bottle) and two discrete super stretchy mesh side pockets. There’s also a latch for walking poles and an internal hydration pack hook. Despite feeling gossamer thin, the Antilano is actually double lined and the use of 30-denier rip-stop nylon (100-denier on the base) protects it from tears, and, combined with the roll-top closure also makes it very waterproof. The internal waterproof liner is velcroed into place, and easily removable, great if you want to shave grams of weight on a dry day, or for taking dry kit into the tent while leaving a soaking bag out to dry. Pros: Stylish; waterproof; practical double-layer; great compression; lightweight Cons: Warmer than some
Klattermusen Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Where is Klattermusen's headquarters?
Klattermusen's headquarters is located at Årevägen 55, Are.
What is Klattermusen's latest funding round?
Klattermusen's latest funding round is Private Equity.
How much did Klattermusen raise?
Klattermusen raised a total of $4.71M.
Who are the investors of Klattermusen?
Investors of Klattermusen include Scope Capital Advisory.
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