40 Liter Backpack; Who In Their Right Mind Would Go Hiking?

40 liter backpack
Hikers Are Walkers Who Enjoy Nature

A 40 liter backpack can carry just about anything you would need on a day hike or or possibly over night. Hiking packs are sold by total liter capacity, usually ranging from 17 liters to 100 liters. The range from highest to lowest capacity is dictated by how long of a hike you are taking. The amount of gear required for longer hikes would require you to have a larger backpack. But who in the world wants to carry stuff on their back and walk and climb with it? Avid hikers, that’s who! Here’s how to break down hiking backpack sizes for particular types of hikes and duration. This information will help you know what size you would need for your hike.

Short Backpacking Day Trips

40 l backpack
40L Backpack Is A Great Size For A Day Backpacking Trip

Hiking is trending as a favorite past time and sport for many nature enthusiasts. A hiking pack in the range of 20-35 liters is perfect for a day hike because you need to carry enough water and food. You can take it slow by doing a 1/2 day of hiking with an outdoor backpack in the 17-20 liter range. This is because you’d require less gear and necessities for a shorter time. Typically, when hiking for the entire day, your hiking backpack would need room for adequate drinking water. It is vital that you stay properly hydrated throughout your hike. You can obviously carry less if there are fresh water sources along your hiking path.

Hiking For A Full Day And Staying Overnight

Your 40 liter backpack will provide enough space for carrying your essentials. If you enjoy the outdoors and camping, there’s no reason not to fall in love with hiking. If you find yourself confused about what size backpack is right for you, it’s similar to an overnight bag or a full size suitcase when travelling. Suitcases are measured in size and hiking packs by liter capacity. You judge the size you need by how long you’ll be away and what you need to bring. For example, extra time means you’ll need more clothing in a suitcase. Your hiking backpack needs more liter space when you hike longer for food, water,clothing and gear.

Multi-Day Backpack Hiking Excursions

40 l backpack
Extended Hiking Trips Require Larger Backpacks

A 40 liter backpack will not be spacious enough to carry the food, water and essentials you’ll need for an extended trip. Several days or weeks of hiking will require a larger backpack of 45 liters or more, because you will take more items. But do hikers really want to be out in the wilderness for days on end? The short answer is, absolutely!

If loving the outdoors comes naturally to you, you already know that there is exhilaration and challenges during a hike. It’s not recommended that your early hikes be more than a day or two. But when you become experienced at preparedness and your physical capabilities, you will love how hiking makes you feel. Who wouldn’t want to experience adventure at every turn and exploration on every trail? You’ll find that you can easily amaze yourself with every accomplishment you conquer.

Hikers Love Camping During Their Extended Hikes

Camping Under The Stars Is Incredible

Once you gain the experience of hiking with overnights, you will know you are ready to go it on your own. But, until you are acclimated to being in the wild and all it entails, I would recommend camping in designated campsites, for example in a National Park. If you romanticize the perfect hiking trip, you may be setting yourself up for disappointments. Educate yourself before you take on an extended multi-day hike. Take a buddy or mate with you to help each other acclimate to the nitty gritty of wild animal noises, toileting outside in the open and sleeping through a thunderstorm.

Why would anyone put themselves through excessive bugs, bears and three days of straight rain? Nature enthusiasts look beyond those perils and realize the precautions and nuisances are worth the breathtaking scenery and incredible peace they feel during many moments of a hike. If you have a “take the bad with the good” mentality, you’ll endure the pitfalls and relish in the grandeur of reaching that summit.

A 40 liter backpack trip is the best way to start out when you take those initial backpack hikes. If you work your way up slowly to staying longer on the trail, I think you’ll find that every experience is a learning tool for the times ahead. Thru-hikers who take month like hikes carrying 45 lbs. on their backs didn’t start out that way. They gave their bodies a chance to catch up to their goals and prepared themselves for lengthy hikes.

Do You Remember Your First Backpack Hike?

40 L backpack
Day Hikes Prepare Us For Greatness

Nature Trail Backpacks knows a thing or two about backpacks and hiking. Our customers and readers appreciate information shared because it helps them learn and grow from that first few hikes to a week long camping excursion. Please feel free to comment below with tips, suggestions or even mistakes that you made in your early hiking days. As always, we wish everyone happy hiking!


We love the great outdoors, backpack hiking, fishing, camping and experiencing nature's beauty.

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