Hello! I am a newbie to backpacking. Planning to section hike the AT, starting with a few overnight trips this year to test gear, and then hopefully longer section hikes in 2020. I am female, 5'0" and 110 pounds.

I recently went to REI to be fitted for backpacks. I loved the Osprey Eja 58 and the Osprey Aura 50 ag. I ended up with the Aura because I didn't want to have to worry too much about having to spend extra money on my other gear to ensure lightweight (minimal budget to start out). However, I also read that there is a recommended weight limit of 20% of body weight per hiker. Since I am small and the Eja is a 2lb pack vs a 4 lb Aura pack, should I just have gone with that one? Being that I shouldn't be carrying more than 22 lbs anyway and in theory the Eja would allow me 20 lbs of gear, food and water...whereas the Aura would only allow 18 lbs of gear, food and water.

If it matters, I will be hiking with my 15 year old son who is also on the smaller side and he is definitely happy with his new Aura. So we will be splitting some gear between us (tent/small cook stove) at least.

I hope that makes sense, but in all my research before going to REI, I never thought about the whole % of body weight rule.

Thanks for any help!


Edited by Jen77 (11/26/18 07:25 PM)