Hittin' the Trails
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: , Alberta, Canada.
In contrast to what many say, your first consideration should be the amount of gear - in volume and weight- you will carry. So your pack should be your last purchase.
But to decide this,you need to first answer this question: are you a hiker focussed on maximum km each day or a camper focused on creature comforts and willing to carry a heavy pack only 8 or 10 km per day?
Generally, a pack weight over 10 kg wil require a frame of some sort. The heavier the load, the more suspension you will need. And if you buy an 80 l pack, you will definitely fill it on occasion.
On mountaineering expeditions, I've never needed more than 60 l. Now that I hike, I'm quite happy with a 40 l pack on 150 km six day trips. And I always have more space in my pack,even on long trips.