Researching and Evaluating the Best Backpacking Gear Online: Tips & Tricks

A man with a backpack standing on top of a cliff overlooking a canyon, equipped with the best backpacking gear.

If you haven’t gone backpacking yet, you’re missing out!

Backpacking is quickly becoming one of America’s favorite outdoor activities. This pastime, which often gets conflated with hiking, has gained much popularity in recent years. There are over 10 million backpackers in the US now, according to the 2022 Outdoor Participation Trends Report. Backpacking differs from hiking due to one key factor, the duration. While hiking typically involves hours of navigating one trail, backpacking often spans multiple days and locations.

The duration of backpacking trips makes using the right backpacking gear necessary. Without properly researching the gear you use, you could face challenges during your journey. So, use the following tips and tricks to find the best backpacking gear online.

Determine Your Requirements

Every backpacker plans their trip differently, which means they have different backpacking gear requirements. So, take a moment to evaluate your backpacking needs before looking for backpacking gear online.

Consider the climate, terrain, duration of your trips, and the type of activities you plan to undertake. This assessment will help you narrow down your options and focus on gear that is specifically designed for your requirements. The weather will play a big role since backpacking apparel for the winter requires special insulation features. You’ll also require navigational equipment like a handheld GPS device or an avalanche beacon. The distance and duration of your trip will help determine which sleeping bag, Amazon camping tent, and backpack you need to buy.

By defining your needs, you can avoid purchasing unnecessary items and invest in gear that will enhance your backpacking experience.

a camping tent next to a hammock

Read Reviews and Rankings

Thanks to the surge in backpacking popularity, there are now many online platforms that provide backpacking information. You can take advantage of this valuable information and learn about the quality, durability, and performance of the gear you are considering. Look for reputable websites and platforms that provide genuine and unbiased reviews from experienced backpackers. Remember, your personal requirements might be unique, so look for features that are important to you.

Look for Reputable Brands

Like every other industry, the backpacking industry has key players dominating the market. Many brands offering backpacking and hiking gear have garnered good reputations over the years. Those are the top brands that you should be looking out for. You can visit resource sites like Back Country Gear to see which brands are trusted among backpackers.

Search for brands known for their durability, functionality, and commitment to customer satisfaction. Browse through their websites to explore their range of products and read about their manufacturing processes. Your focus should be on the long-lasting qualities of their products.

Do Price Comparisons

The same type of backpacking boots or jackets can have drastically different prices, depending on the brand. For instance, the Western Mountaineering MegaLite and the REI Co-op Trailbreak 30 have similar features but different price points. As a customer, doing your own research so you can get good value for your money is essential.

You can use free comparison tools on the internet to compare prices between two branded products. While cheaper backpacking gear may not always be the best choice, it’s still good to know what your options are. Consider the value for money by assessing the features, quality, and durability of the gear. Compare similar products from different brands to determine which one offers the best combination of affordability and performance.

a backpacker standing near snow-capped mountains

Explore Features and Add-Ons

You might come across backpacking gear online that has additional features and add-on options. For example, the Tough Camping Cot by the Tough Outdoors store on Amazon lets campers store their gear underneath the cot for added storage. Such features add value to a product, giving you additional benefits for less money.

Explore value-added features and add-ons to see if one brand is offering more value for money than the other. You will also be able to uncover potential discounts, special offers, and promotions for the backpacking gear you’re interested in. many brands run clearance sales on their products, so look for those sales to avoid breaking the bank when shopping for backpacking gear online.

See What the Experts Say

Experienced backpackers have a deeper insight into the world of backpacking than anyone else. This makes their guidance reliable. So, take time to look for expert backpacking reviews and rankings online. You can look for backpacking blogs or forums run by seasoned backpackers across the US. Even if the people you connect with online aren’t in your locality, they could still guide you toward high-quality and reliable backpacking gear options.

Engaging with online backpacking communities can also provide valuable insights and recommendations for the top outdoor gear brands. You’re likely to get honest and genuine reviews from one-on-one interactions with backpackers. Sometimes, backpacker communities online also exchange or sell gear below retail prices. If you’re lucky, you might be able to borrow or rent backpacking gear from online community members on a short-term basis. This will help you save money and time!

In conclusion, conducting a thorough research about backpacking gear online can be extremely rewarding. It’ll enable you to find suitable backpacking sleeping bags, tents, boots, etc., and invest in premium quality gear. Happy shopping and backpacking!

a backpack with hiking gear and trekking poles attached to it

Learn More About Outdoor Gear Online!

Are you new to the world of outdoor activities? Let Back Country Gear be your guide!

The Back Country Gear blog features many informative guides for beginners. Whether you’re looking for the best trekking poles on amazon or the best camping tents for backpackers, our Backpacking Reviews will help you discover top-rated products. Explore our list of top brands to discover the gear experienced outdoor adventurers use. Start reading our blog today!

A person hiking with a backpack in the mountains.
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