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Men using womens backpack?

Posted by mthawkins on 30/3/2014 at 19:40

So I noticed many female backpacks cater more to what I want. They typically range around the 40-55L, while the men equivalent is much larger.. and for travel, that's unfortunately too large.
I'm curious if men can purchase a females backpack that has "adjustable/removable" harness to switch out for the mens harness.

Example: The Osprey Aether and it's female equiv. the Ariel both have removable shoulder harness. Why not use a mens shoulder harness with the females bag?


(not sure what my hip measurements are, but I usually wear a 30 in pants.)

#1 mthawkins has been a member since 18/3/2014. Posts: 7

Posted by Geer1 on 30/3/2014 at 19:48

Just try a womens pack and see if it fits. I doubt you would even have to switch out harnesses unless you are super picky.

Not sure where you are but there are lots of 40-55L backpacks for men.

#2 Geer1 has been a member since 14/9/2012. Posts: 540
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Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 30/3/2014 at 20:22

Had no idea they had gender based backpacks.

#3 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by busylizzy on 30/3/2014 at 21:54

Unless you are using it to hike for several days, I would suggest that it doesn't matter. In reality, you will probably not be carrying your pack that often and only for short distances at a time.

Just get one that feels comfortable and has the features that you are looking for.

#4 busylizzy has been a member since 31/12/2007. Location: New Zealand. Posts: 2,155
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Posted by MADMAC on 31/3/2014 at 02:11

US Army duffel - that's what real men carry.

#5 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957

Posted by antoniamitchell on 31/3/2014 at 15:15

As far as I'm aware, the main differences between female packs and male is that females tend to have shorter back lengths, and wider hip belts, so the height is most likely to be your problem. Can you remove the entire frame, to adjust the max and min height, or just the shoulder harness bit? But curiosity aside, I think the previous posters are right. Your best bet is likely to go to a couple of sporting good shops and try on every bag in the size you want, until you find the one that fits you the best, as I doubt any shop would let you buy the body of one pack and the harness of another - and Ospreys are far too expensive to buy two (or even one, in my mind). Good luck!

#6 antoniamitchell has been a member since 13/5/2012. Location: Singapore. Posts: 491
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Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 31/3/2014 at 19:47

Ive seen some women walk around with some awfully big packs and they look so uncomfortable. They must have packed their entire wardrobe.

#7 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by MADMAC on 31/3/2014 at 23:17

"Ive seen some women walk around with some awfully big packs and they look so uncomfortable. They must have packed their entire wardrobe."

I'd say my wife might have been one of those women, except that I am the designated pack mule.

#8 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957

Posted by bringit on 12/12/2014 at 07:02

a handbag? lol

#9 bringit has been a member since 12/12/2014. Posts: 3

Posted by Pescados on 29/3/2015 at 13:04

Use whatever's comfortable on those feminine hips. Just kidding, but seriously, comfort is probably the most important thing.

#10 Pescados has been a member since 29/3/2015. Posts: 3


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