Rucking packs

Phil12

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
I started with a random old backpack that I was hoping would fall apart so I could buy a fancy rucksack. And it never did, held up fine with 30lbs of sandbags. IMO, no harm in starting with something like this to see if you like it.
 
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Steve Freides

Forum Administrator
Staff member
Senior Certified Instructor
@Steve W., I think I was worried that 20-30 lbs. without a hip strap would bother my back and shoulders - it doesn't.

-S-
 

Steve W.

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
@Steve W., I think I was worried that 20-30 lbs. without a hip strap would bother my back and shoulders - it doesn't.

-S-
Well, my point was that if the hip strap isn't properly designed for load-bearing (and if it can be accurately described as a "strap," i.e. a piece of webbing, then it probably isn't), it won't have any effect on your back and shoulders--which seem consistent with your experience.
 

offwidth

More than 5000 posts
Yes. A properly designed hip belt system is usually padded, form fitting, and integral to the overall suspension of the pack. It's purpose is to transfer some of the load to the hip structure and away from the shoulders.
A simple webbing waist strap as found on many inexpensive packs serves practically no purpose other than to keep the pack in place somewhat.
 

Oscar

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
I´ve had a similar experience as @Steve W. and @offwidth describe. The first time I went to the mountains I was carrying about 50 lbs, and by the 2nd hour my shoulders were killing me. My cousin that was more experienced took a look at the backpack, adjusted the hip strap, loosened the shoulder straps and voila! most the weight was on the hips and I managed to continue without issues.
 

DavThew

More than 500 posts
Would an added hip belt be of much use (assuming it was well padded)? I have a 5.11 tactical 48 rush backpack which goes everywhere with me, including up and down mountains, but can be a bit of a pain when camping due to the added weight of a tent strapped onto it.

If adding a hip belt would help, does anyone have stand-alone hip belt recommendations?
 

offwidth

More than 5000 posts
Would an added hip belt be of much use (assuming it was well padded)? I have a 5.11 tactical 48 rush backpack which goes everywhere with me, including up and down mountains, but can be a bit of a pain when camping due to the added weight of a tent strapped onto it.

If adding a hip belt would help, does anyone have stand-alone hip belt recommendations?
None that I am aware of. To be effective they really need to be an integral part of the pack
 

Al Ciampa

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
Certified Instructor
Except for offwidth, y'all are mixing up a kidney pad with a hip belt. Not all packs have KPs. Most packs with KPs have belts; in fact, most packs have belts, period.

You don't need the belt fastened unless you often run, climb, or otherwise navigate sharp elevations in terrain. However, the KP will shift some of the load to your trunk which will make heavier loads easier to carry even if you're just mall walking. External frames perform this function best.
 
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