Though there are so many backpacks on the market, no all suit guys who are 6 feet or thereabout. A majority of them either have the wrong torso length or waist size.
Others just have a smaller capacity or do not demonstrate any element of being waterproof and tear-resistant.
But, how do you find the right backpack as a tall guy? That will be our focus, and I will provide a buying guide that’ll answer the question.
I’ll also review a few best backpacks that I consider the best for adventurous campers, hikers, backpackers, and bikers.
But before anything, let’s dissect the outdoor backpack’s anatomy to help you understand what you are buying.
In a hurry? Then check out my most recommended long torso backpacks below:
6 Best Backpacks for Tall Guys
Venture Pal 40L Daypack: Best Daypack for Tall Guys
Teton Sports Explorer 4000: Best Hiking Backpack for Tall Guys
Osprey Rook 65 Backpack: Best Backpacking Backpack for Tall Guys
WITZMAN Shoulder Rucksack: Best Rucksack for Tall Guys
REEBOW Gear Tactical Backpack: Best Military Tactical Backpack
Teton Sports Oasis 1100: Best Hydration Backpack for Tall Guys
Anatomy of the Outdoor Backpack
The outdoor backpack is a little different from regular school backpacks. It features extra straps and pockets to promote different functionalities.
Plus, it looks different on its back and front, as I explain below.
a) Key Back Features
Generally, these are the key features you find on the back of an outdoor backpack:
- Shoulder straps – Shoulder straps are the thickly padded straps that rest on your shoulders. They provide you with the necessary support and extra cushioning to carry the bag comfortably.
- Hip belt – The hip belt is the strap around your waist. It’s generally essential that your hip belt fits well to offer you ample support when carrying a hefty load.
- Load lifters – These are adjustment straps that join the shoulder straps to the backpack frame. Overall, the straps ease the load on your shoulder by preventing it from pulling away and becoming unbearable.
- Chest strap (sternum strap) – The chest strap rests on your chest as the name suggests and is usually attached to the backpack’s shoulder straps.
b) Key Front Features
Here are the key features on the front part of the outdoor backpack.
- Lid – The lid is the top front part that often incorporates an accessory pocket for extra storage. In some backpacks, the lid is removable to save on weight or reduce the bag’s size.
- Hip belt pockets – The hip belt features some quick access pockets for stashing snacks, your wallet, phone, and other small items.
- Stretch side pockets and front stash pockets – Stretch side pockets hold your water bottles given that they are stretchy, while the front stash pockets are for your books, jacket, camera, and any other gear.
- Compression straps – Compression straps allow you to reduce the size of the backpack. That’s particularly important when your bag is not complete and you want it to be more stable.
- Sleeping bag compartment – This compartment primarily stores your sleeping bag. But still, it may feature an internal divider that you can use to create an extra storage section.
Buying Considerations for Backpacks for Tall Guys
Below are essential considerations when shopping for a good backpack:
- Backpack Fit
You want a backpack that fits you. That largely depends on two aspects; torso length and hip/waist size.
While regular backpacks have an 18-20 inch torso length, you should consider a 20-inch plus torso length when tall.
As for the waist size, ensure the backpack comes with an adjustable or expandable hip belt to fit you comfortably.
- Backpack Capacity
Backpacks come with varying capacities to fulfill different needs. Overall, it depends on how long your trip or adventure will last.
If it’s a 1-3 days adventure, a backpack with a 30-50L capacity will suffice. But if the exploit will take up to a week, then a 50-80l bag should be enough.
- Frame Type
Backpacks come frameless (without a frame) or framed. Since frameless options don’t have a frame, they are generally lightweight, making them best for climbing.
Sadly, frameless options cannot stand upright on their own. Framed backpacks, in contrast, can stand upright, making them appropriate for carrying heavy loads.
There are several aspects of the backpack that improves their comfort. First, we’ve padded shoulder straps, which also have to be adjustable to offer you more comfort.
Second, the back area should also be padded and well-contoured to match your body shape.
Lastly, the hip belt should also be padded to allow you to carry heavy loads more comfortably.
- Backpack Durability
You expect your backpack to come in a heavy-duty construction to help you carry heavy loads. So, you have to consider its fabric carefully.
Some of the best heavy-duty fabrics worth considering include leather, canvas, polyester, and nylon. They all promise durability.
And when it comes to the shoulder straps, preferably go for double-stitched options.
- Content Protection
You need your tall backpack to protect the content that you carry. Externally, the bag should feature a water-resistant fabric to keep your belongings dry.
Internally, there should be a padded sleeve for holding your laptop and other electronics. The sleeve should also be fasten-able for the best protection.
- Backpack Organization
A good backpack should allow you to keep your stuff organized for easy access and economize on space. That’s possible with multiple compartments on the inside, side pockets, and front pockets.
Remember, it’s not just about the backpack featuring pockets but having as many as possible. The more they are, the likelier you are to carry more stuff and stay organized.
In general, consider side pockets, hip belt pockets, front pockets, and inside pockets.
- Lockable Zippers
You want your backpack to secure your belongings and keep thieves away. So, its zipper should be lockable.
That’s more important when traveling, hiking, or camping with people you don’t completely trust.
Preferably, consider TSA-friendly locks as they are easy to operate.
Since the backpack will rest on your back, your back area will likely sweat. But to avoid feeling uncomfortable, consider an option with a mesh back, what we call pack panels.
The more breathable the backpack is, the more comfortable it’s likely to become.
Types of Backpacks for Tall Guys
Here are six common backpack categories for tall guys.
1. Daypack for Tall Guys
Daypacks are the smallest and lightest backpacks, best for travels and hiking. But despite their small capacities, these backpacks for tall guys offer you enough storage for a 1-day trip.
They come in rip-resistant and waterproof fabrics, making them the best for all weather.
They don’t feature a lot of pockets and enjoy a simple design.
One perfect example is the Venture Pal 40L Packable Travel Daypack.
About the Venture Pal 40L Packable Travel Daypack
The Venture Pal 40L Packable Travel Daypack comes with a 40L capacity despite only weighing 0.75 pounds. So, it’s lightweight and travel-friendly.
Its heavy-duty zipper closure allows you to secure your belongings, while its waterproof pockets on the main compartment protect your valuables from wetness.
Remarkably, there’s a zipper on its back that leads to the watertight compartment to allow you to stash your wet clothes.
Venture Pal 40L comes in a nylon fabric that resists both tear and water. The backpack offers you multiple pockets on the front and side.
- 40L capacity
- 7lbs backpack weight
- Heavy-duty metal zipper
- Waterproof inner pocket
- Rip-proof nylon
- Multiple storage pockets
2. Hiking Backpack for Tall Man
Hiking backpackers are designed for hiking, but they are generally a good camping choice. These backpacks for tall guys are pretty spacious to allow you to carry all your hiking gear.
They have breathable back panels to keep your back dry under the heat. Their shoulder straps are also adequately padded to allow you to carry huge loads comfortably.
One such backpack is the Teton Sports Explorer 4000 Backpack.
About Teton Sports Explorer 4000
The Teton Sports Explorer 4000 stands on its own, thanks to its internal frame.
This backpack is perfect for both genders and comes in a lightweight design, given that it only weighs 5 pounds. Impressively, it has a 65L capacity, which is enough for all your hiking gears.
Teton Sports Explorer enjoys a multi-position torso length to suit people with varying body sizes and features a breathable lumbar pad for extra back comfort.
What’s more, it features a sleeping bag compartment, multiple outer pockets, and compression straps.
- 65L capacity
- Internal frame
- Adjustable torso length
- Breathable back pad
- Slipping bag compartment
- Compression straps
3. Backpacking Backpack for Tall Person
Backpacking backpacks are generally best for backpacking and all travels.
These bags are heavy carriers. You can stash virtually everything you need for your outdoor adventure. Since they come in large capacities, they are the best for multiday trips.
Despite their vast capacity, however, these backpacks are ergonomic in design for convenient carrying.
They also feature multiple compartments to ease your organization, and some feature a detachable daypack.
One fantastic example is the Osprey Rook 65 Men’s Backpacking Backpack.
About Osprey Rook 65 Men’s Backpacking Backpack
The Osprey Rook 65 Men’s Backpacking Backpack comes with a 30-40-pound load capacity, making it perfect for multiday backpacking adventures.
It has a sleeve capable of holding a 3L hydration bladder. Thanks to its Airspeed back panel technology, this backpack has a breathable back area to stay dry under the sun.
Its shoulder harness is adjustable to match your torso length, and it features a detachable rain cover and zippered sleeping bag compartment.
On its side are mesh pockets, and on the hip belt are zipper pockets for stashing small stuff.
- 30-40lbs load capacity
- Sleeve for the hydration reservoir
- Detachable rain cover
- Airspeed back panel
- Adjustable shoulder harness
- Zippered sleeping bag compartment
4. Rucksack for Tall Guys
Rucksacks are unique in design, thus recognizable from a distance. Instead of featuring the traditional zipper closure like most backpacks, rucksacks have a buckle or flap closure design.
While their closure is not the most secure, it allows you to stash more items and expand the backpack holding capacity.
Rucksacks are best for tall guys living an active lifestyle.
One perfect example is the WITZMAN Canvas Vintage Travel Shoulder Rucksack.
About WITZMAN Canvas Vintage Travel Shoulder Rucksack
The WITZMAN Canvas Vintage Travel Shoulder Rucksack comes in high-quality canvas fabric with polyester lining.
The bag predictably features durable parachute buckles that open quickly to allow you to stash your items.
It has a 53-inch adjustable and thickly padded strap and allows you to carry it not just as a backpack but also as a shoulder bag or tote bag.
This backpack has multiple front pockets, pen pockets, slip pockets, a side pocket, and a 16-inch laptop compartment. There is also a zippered pocket on the backside that gets concealed by the shoulder strap.
WITZMAN Shoulder Rucksack is generally lightweight, given that it weighs 3.01 pounds, making it the best for travels.
- Canvas fabric with polyester lining
- Parachute buckle closure
- 53-inch adjustable and padded shoulder strap
- Coverts into a tote/shoulder bag
- Laptop compartment
- Multiple storage pockets
5. Military Tactical Backpack for Tall Man
Do you fancy the army backpacks? Tactical military backpacks look like the real thing.
The backpacks come in heavy-duty construction, featuring double-stitched fabric. You can thus count on them to resist tear.
These army backpacks for tall guys also feature multiple outer pockets to allow you to stash a lot of stuff.
One perfect example is the REEBOW Gear Military Tactical Backpack.
About the REEBOW Gear Military Tactical Backpack
The REEBOW Gear Military Tactical Backpack is a combination of style and practicality. It’s great for hiking, hunting, backpacking, and daily use.
This backpack comes in an original army backpack design to also suit the military. With its Molle system, you can attach tactical gears just like how the military does it.
Its 600X600D double-stitched fabric makes it tear-resistant and waterproof. Plus, it enjoys a heavy-duty zipper to secure your belongings.
This assault tactical bag has a 40L capacity and enjoys a compression system to allow you to tighten it and reduce its size.
Furthermore, the bag is compatible with a hydration bladder, meaning you can attach your hydration backpack.
- Army design
- Hydration bladder-compatible
- Compression straps
- 40L capacity
- Double-stitched fabric
- Heavy-duty zipper closure
6. Hydration Pack for Tall Guys
Hydration backpacks come with a hydration bladder for carrying your cool drinking water. The hydration bladder typically has a 2-10 liters capacity, while the main compartment is more spacious to keep your gears and clothes.
These long torso backpacks for tall guys suit hikers/trekkers, cyclists, climbers, and runners more.
One perfect example is Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack.
About the Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack
The Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack is a decent choice for backpacking, hiking, cycling, and mountain climbing.
It comes with a 2L hydration bladder to quench your thirst. The backpack is adjustable to match your frame and features a mesh covering for all-day comfort.
This backpack also enjoys an 18L main compartment for carrying your gears. Plus, it features a bungee cord system to use with your cycling helmet.
Its waist belt is expandable to about 60 inches to suit big-bodied users. Plus, it comes with compression straps for reducing your load size and a sewn-in rain cover to protect your gears from the rain.
- 2L hydration bladder
- 18L main compartment
- Compression straps
- Expandable waist bad
- Sewn-in rain cover
- Mesh covering
1. How High Should I Wear A Backpack?
In general, the backpack shouldn’t extend beyond your hips by more than 2 inches. It should preferably end at the waist.
2. What’s The Best Backpack Size For A Day Hike?
Ordinarily, a backpack with a 20-35L capacity should be enough for a day hike. You can stash a few gears and clothes in such a bag.
But if you want to carry more gears and supplies, you’ll probably need a backpack with a 40-50L capacity.
3. What’s The Biggest Backpack Size?
Backpacks come in different sizes depending on the type. We’ve bags with a 65-70L capacity and others with more.
But if you bring a backpack on a plane, most airlines will not allow backpacks that are bigger than 22 X 14 X 9 inches (L X W X H).
4. Is It Bad To Carry A Backpack On One Shoulder?
Depending on what you are carrying, a backpack can be too heavy to take with just one shoulder. You may develop shoulder pain or even suffer backache or neck pain from carrying heavy loads.
So, if you have to carry a backpack with one shoulder, ensure you don’t take heavy stuff.
5. How Do I Know If My Backpack Is The Correct Size?
You can tell the right backpack size in two ways. For one, if there’s a big gap between the shoulder straps and the backpack, the backpack’s size is wrong. But if the gap is only small, then it’s the correct size.
Additionally, if the shoulder strap anchor points are too high or too low (despite the hip belt being in its position), the size is wrong.
6. What Backpack Size Do I Need For a 3-Day Hike?
Every hiker has his/her own packing needs. Some require more hiking gear than others.
Nonetheless, a backpack with a 35-50L capacity should be enough for one person for a 3-day hike. But if you are carrying gears for more than one person, you’ll need to go for a larger backpack capacity.
There’s no doubt that there is a lot to consider in backpacks for tall guys. You want a bag that matches your torso length, waist size, and packing needs, and that’s what you get from my recommendations.
Now, it’s about time you get your ultimate long torso backpack, tall guy!