How Big Is a 50L Hiking Backpack

If you are new to backpacking, you might be confused about how the sizes are determined and what size is ideal to purchase. For instance, a backpack of 50 L is equal to 3,051.19 cubic inches, the perfect capacity to carry everything you need for your next camping trip. 

The different sizes and requirements can be overwhelming to navigate, especially if you are a beginner. But don’t worry; this guide is your one-stop solution to buying a hiking backpack for your next camping trip. 

We’ve compiled all the information you may need, including how the size and measurement systems work and the best way to determine which size suits you best. Additionally, we will address the issue of 50L capacity backpacks and whether they are the right fit for you.

Woman is standing on the hill

How does the measurement system work?

Hiking bags come in various sizes, and finding the one best suited to you involves factors like your size, weight, and storage requirements. Backpacks are measured in two broad terms: the actual dimensions of the bag and its overall volume or the total capacity it has. 

Neither method is 100 percent accurate; instead, they calculate the approximate sizing and volume, which is close enough for you to make an educated decision. By measuring the dimensions of your hiking backpack, you can get a rough estimate as to the overall capacity of your bag and what to fit in which compartment. 

You can use a tape measure to measure the bag’s exterior, that is, its height, length, and width. To take a step further, you can also measure the internal dimensions of the bag to help gain a closer estimate of its capacity.

Measuring the volume is a little different. Backpack manufacturers take into account the overall usable area of a backpack. These measurements usually exclude the smaller outer pockets and the mesh water bottle compartment for a water bottle. Usually, the dimensions are multiplied to obtain the volume in cubic inches, which is then converted into liters for users to interpret more easily. There is no fixed method to measure the volume of hiking backpacks, and it varies from one manufacturer to another.

What to look for in a hiking backpack?

Before you can purchase a hiking backpack for your next camping trip, you need to consider several factors that will help determine your luggage requirements. The more time you spend figuring out precisely what you need, the better place you’ll be to find a bag that’s the perfect fit.

Traveling method

If you are traveling by air at any point throughout your journey, check-in with your airline to see what bag sizes they permit. Most airlines require that you check-in bags over 40L. For travelers who prefer keeping their luggage on them at all times, this may pose a problem. Of course, if you are traveling by road, you are less restricted in your sizing choice.

Your luggage

If you are a light packer, choosing a smaller backpack might be the right pick for you. However, if you are embarking on a longer trip and require many supplies, you might be better suited with a backpack of a capacity of 50L or more.

Items to pack

Take into consideration the number and dimensions of items you will be packing and what size would best accommodate them.

The length of your torso

When you’re picking out a hiking backpack, you have to consider your physical fitness and attributes. Choose a bag that you will be able to carry easily while keeping your balance. Bear in mind the total weight you can carry and travel with.

Nature of use

The nature of your trip will play a huge role in determining your perfect pack. Different dimensions of backpacks are used for varied purposes. For instance, a 25L backpack is ideal for a day hike, whereas overnight packs range between 30 to 50 liters. A weekend backpack can be anywhere between 30 to 70 liters. For longer trips spanning several days or weeks, you might consider a 50 to 110-liter backpack for your travels.

How big is a 50L hiking backpack, and is it enough?

Whether or not a particular size is for you depends entirely on how you will be using it. Correct sizing is vital because you will have to carry it on your back and travel long distances.

The dimensions of a 50L backpack are roughly 29.5″ x 13″ x 10″, which may vary depending on the brand that manufactures it. For long trips where the hiker has to carry a wide variety of equipment and luggage, a 50-liter bag is ideal. With a sufficient capacity to accommodate all items, you will have to carry them.

However, while this size might be an overall good pick, it might not necessarily be the best pick for you. The ideal sizing varies between male and female hikers and for different weight and height groups. Furthermore, a new hiker might not be able to carry a large size such as the 50 liters one on their very first hike and might struggle to manage the weight and keep their balance.

Final Note

The best size for a hiking backpack is the one that suits you best. Your needs and requirements are what dictate the size of bag you should buy. Whether you are an experienced hiker or a novice, your demands may vary.

Bear in mind all the different requirements your backpack should fulfill, including capacity, travel-related requirements, and your own ability to carry a certain amount of weight.

However, a 50L backpack is a generally good option for the different categories of hikers. It is not too big and yet large and spacious enough to carry everything you need for your trip. It is best to make a list of all the items you will be taking on your hiking trip and buy your backpack according to the amount of storage space you will require.

Here are two 50L backpacks you cannot go wrong with:

N NEVO RHINO Hiking Backpack 50L

Large Capacity: 26 x 12.6 x 9.06 inch,lightweight 2.9 lbs,50L. Fits women and men in 5′-6’5″ (90lb-250lbs) for 2-4-day adventures. The mesh pockets on both sides can hold water bottles. 4 adjustable shoulder straps,1 adjustable chest strap and 1 adjustable waist belt. Breathable mesh shoulder straps with plentiful sponge padding help relieve the stress from your shoulder. Widened and thickened S-type shoulder straps and high elastic breathable back support for best ventilation and easing burden.

Osprey Aura AG 50 Women's Backpack

Anti-Gravity suspension – feels like you are carrying less weight than is in your pack. Adjustable harness and Fit-on-the-Fly hipbelt to dial in perfect fit.
Front stretch mesh pocket for quick storage of rain gear or extra layers. Removable floating top lid with dual zippered pockets and web attachment points.
Internal hydration reservoir sleeve accommodates up to a 3L reservoir (sold separately). Recommended load range: 25-40 lbs. – Pack weight 4.1 lbs. for a size Small at 30.31 X 14.17 X 14.17 in.

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