The Best Hiking Backpacks for Tall Guys – A Mom’s Honest Review and Buyer’s Guide

My heart sank every time I saw my son, Peter, grimacing under the weight of an ill-fitting backpack.

The shoulder straps dug painfully into his shoulders as he lumbered up the trail behind me.

He’d try to stretch and adjust the pack endlessly, but couldn’t get comfortable with the short torso length. I knew his hiking passion was fading fast. 

We must have gone through twenty backpacks over the years desperately seeking the best hiking backpacks for tall guys that will fit his 6’3” frame (I guess that’s tall right?). The standard sizes just didn’t work.

The shoulder straps were always too short, the hip belts sagged under his slender waist, and the torso length pulled painfully on his shoulders. Hiking together was becoming less fun and more misery.

I was tired of seeing the defeat on his face every time we hit the trail. Peter deserved to experience the bliss of wandering for miles with his pack feeling like an extension of his body, not a medieval torture device!

So I became determined to help him finally find comfortable, properly-fitting backpacks designed for tall men.

We tested every long-torso, adjustable pack out there until discovering the perfect fits to cradle his tall frame. Now he strides powerfully up the trail again with a pack that moves fluidly with his body.

Let me share what we’ve learned to help your tall hikers find packs that allow them to enjoy the trails again!

Here’s my detailed guide to the best hiking backpacks for tall guys.


Best Hiking Backpacks for Tall Guys

Drum rolls……


1. Osprey Atmos AG 65

Osprey Atmos AG 65 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys
Osprey Atmos AG 65 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys


With its adjustable torso design, the Osprey Atmos AG 65 is by far the best hiking backpack I’ve found for my Peter. It delivers a fully customized, comfortable carry.


Comfort: Peter hikes in complete comfort with a fully customized torso fit and the weight borne by his hips rather than shoulders. The contoured shoulder straps prevent chafing.

Suspension: The Anti-Gravity system efficiently transfers weight off his back and onto the structured hip belt to spare his shoulders.

Features: With a removable top lid, zippered hip pockets, stretch side bottle pockets, and sleeping bag access, this pack is loaded with features.

Build: Highly durable with weather-resistant fabrics yet it still weighs just 4 pounds 5 ounces. The aluminum frame and stiff foam provide stability.

Fit: The adjustable torso dialed into his 22” torso length allows a personalized fit. The hip belt is more comfortable backwards for his slender build.

Key Features

  • Adjustable torso length: The torso adjusts from 18” to 22” so it perfectly fits his long back.
  • Anti-Gravity suspension: The mesh back panel and hip belt with seamless lumbar pad provide excellent weight distribution on his frame.
  • Removable top lid: He can remove the “brain” for a streamlined pack on shorter trips.
  • Stretch mesh pockets: He can easily stash water bottles and layers in these side stretch pockets.


Helpful Benefits

  • Full torso fit: With the adjustable torso, the pack sits right in his lumbar sweet spot for comfort and stability.
  • Weight distribution: The Anti-Gravity system bears the load onto his hips so his neck and shoulders are strain-free.
  • Ventilation: The mesh back panel and harness provide airflow to keep his back from getting too sweaty.
  • Accessibility: He can easily access gear from the front panel, sleeping bag compartment, and zippered hip belt pockets.



  • Adjustable torso from 18” to 22” for tall guys
  • Anti-Gravity suspension distributes weight to hips
  • Removable top lid converts it to a streamlined pack
  • Front panel access to main compartment gear
  • Sleeping bag compartment and zippered pockets
  • Mesh back panel and harness for ventilation
  • Stretch mesh side pockets for water bottles



  • Top lid weighs an extra 1.5 pounds
  • Hip belt can squeeze his lean waist
  • Doesn’t stand upright well for loading


Also Read: 5+ Best Hiking Shoes for the Grand Canyon: A Mom’s Honest Review and Detailed Buyer’s Guide


2. Gregory Baltoro 75

Gregory Baltoro 75 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys
Gregory Baltoro 75 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys


Gregory’s Baltoro 75 is a feature-packed extended torso hiking backpack perfect for tall guys who need more volume for longer trips.


Comfort: Adjusting the torso to his 19.5″ length and loading the weight onto the padded hip belt allows a strain-free carry.

Suspension: With an HD hip belt, load-lifter straps and open-cell foam, the Response A3 system expertly balances heavy gear on his tall frame.

Volume: 75 liters is massive but that space comes in handy for weeklong treks. The daypack adds even more versatility.

Build: With ripstop fabric, a rain cover, dual aluminum stays and structure panels, it’s built to withstand rough conditions and protect gear.

Fit: From the adjustable torso to the molded hip belt and harness, it’s easy to get a dialed-in, stable fit on his tall frame.


Key Features

  • Adjustable torso: He dials in the perfect torso fit with the 16” to 19.5” adjustable range.
  • Response A3 suspension: Load-lifter straps, an HD hip belt, and open-cell foam minimize shoulder strain.
  • Sidekick daypack: He can detach this built-in daypack for summit climbs and side trips.
  • WeatherShield rain cover: This water-resistant cover deploys quickly in storms to keep gear dry inside.


Helpful Benefits

  • Dialed-in fit: With 4.5 inches of torso adjustment, it’s easy to get the ideal torso length and load transfer.
  • All-day comfort: The plush Response A3 system expertly balances and distributes weight to spare his shoulders.
  • Protection: Both the ripstop nylon fabric and rain cover shield gear from the elements during rough, wet treks.
  • Versatility: The Sidekick daypack allows him to shed bulk on day hikes then reattach it easily.



  • Adjustable torso from 16” to 19.5”
  • Response A3 suspension for comfort with heavy loads
  • Integrated Sidekick daypack
  • Hydration sleeve and ports
  • Rain cover, water bottle pockets and hip belt pockets
  • Dual aluminum frame stays for support
  • Ripstop fabrics resist abrasion and moisture



  • Heavy at over 5 pounds empty
  • Bulky pack even when stripped down
  • Overkill for quick day hikes


3. Deuter Aircontact Lite 65+10

Deuter Aircontact Lite 65+10 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys
Deuter Aircontact Lite 65+10 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys


With an extra-long adjustable torso, the Deuter Aircontact Lite was designed with tall hikers in mind. The lightweight design makes it ideal for speed hiking.


Comfort: Adjusting the 23″ torso to his exact back length allows a comfortable, chafe-free carry mile after mile.

Suspension: The flat Aircontact panel maintains a 1.5 inch air gap for ventilation. The Vari Flex hip wings move naturally.

Design: At under 4 pounds, the sleek lightweight design suits him for fast hiking and thru-hikes. The minimalist look appeals to him too.

Access: With a hydration sleeve, hip belt and exterior pockets, he can easily access gear and water on the move.

Fit: The adjustable torso, slim profile and flexible hip belt adapt well to his tall slender frame. The close fit doesn’t bounce around.


Key Features

  • Adjustable torso to 23”: He gets the perfect torso length for his long back with the generous adjustment range.
  • Vari Flex hip wings: These articulated fins move with his body for chafe-free comfort mile after mile.
  • Aircontact back system: The mesh frame and channel create airflow to keep his back cool and dry.
  • Compression straps: He can cinch down the load to keep it stable with the Slide Lite straps.


Helpful Benefits

  • Extended torso fit: The torso adjustment gives him his ideal pack length whether he’s 6’5″ or 6’10” tall.
  • Ventilation: The Aircontact mesh back panel keeps his sweaty back separated from the pack material.
  • Transfer: The well-padded hip belt and anatomical shape bear the pack’s weight into his hips.
  • Stability: Compression and stabilizer straps prevent the pack from shifting and bouncing during dynamic hiking.



  • Adjustable torso up to 23” suits tall guys
  • Lightweight just 3 lbs 14 oz but durable
  • Vari Flex hip wings prevent skin chafing
  • Aircontact system ventilates sweaty backs
  • Stabilizer straps keep load from shifting
  • Pockets for hydration bladder and trekking poles
  • Can add a zip-on 10L daypack



  • Not as cushy as an adjustable suspension model
  • Waist belt runs small
  • Limited organizational pockets


Also Read: 5+ Best Hiking Shoes for Costa Rica Adventures: Hiking Mom’s Honest Review + Buyer’s Guide


4. Teton Sports Scout 3400

Teton Sports Scout 3400 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys
Teton Sports Scout 3400 _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys


This adjustable torso internal frame pack combines a budget price with well-designed features ideal for tall beginner hikers and teens.


Comfort: Adjusting the torso length and position allows him to dial in a comfortable carry as he grows taller.

Suspension: With an internal frame, lumbar pad and chest strap, it transfers weight effectively onto the hips.

Space: The 55 liter capacity and multiple compartments provide ample space for essential gear and clothing.

Weather resistance: The water-resistant fabric shields the pack itself, while the rain fly adds protection in storms.

Fit: The torso adjusts up to 19.5 inches, ideal for growing teen boys who will reach tall heights.


Key Features

  • Adjustable torso: He can change the torso length from 15″ to 19.5″ as he grows taller.
  • Multi-position torso adjustment: The backpack “rides” higher or lower for the optimal position on his back.
  • Open cell foam lumbar pad: This ventilated pad bears weight onto the lumbar spine to spare his shoulders.
  • Integrated rain fly: Deploying this rain cover quickly shields the pack from downpours.
  • Mesh backing: The air channels ventilate his sweaty back to prevent the soggy back effect.


Helpful Benefits

  • Growing room: The torso adjusts as he grows taller through his teen years into adulthood.
  • Comfortable carry: Shifting pack load onto his hips via the lumbar pad reduces shoulder strain.
  • Breathability: The mesh backing prevents the clammy back feeling even when sweating.
  • Weather protection: The built-in rain fly shields the pack when storms roll in unexpectedly.



  • Adjustable torso length from 15” to 19.5”
  • Multi-position torso adjustment system
  • Open cell foam lumbar support pad
  • Large main compartment and bungee storage
  • Mesh backing ventilates sweaty backs
  • Integrated rain fly for weather protection
  • Budget-friendly price point



  • Quality not as high as premium packs
  • Limited small pockets for organization
  • Rain fly can tear easily


Also Read: The 7 Best Dogs for Running and Hiking: Your Guide to Finding your Hiking Perfect Companion


5. Mountainsmith Parallax

Mountainsmith Parallax _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys
Mountainsmith Parallax _ Best hiking backpacks for tall guys


Designed specifically for long torsos, the Mountainsmith Parallax provides an excellent shoulder-friendly fit for tall hikers needing a traditional top-loading pack.


Comfort: Adjusting the torso and hip belt allows him to dial in an ideal back length and waist fit for comfort.

Suspension: The mesh back panel, gravity load lifters and padded hip belt work together to take weight off his shoulders.

Volume: With 60 liters capacity and a removable top lid, it’s versatile for short or long trips. Side straps compress loads.

Access: The sleeping bag access, J-zip front panel and large top lid make it easy to access contents quickly.

Fit: With up to a 23″ torso, even guys well over 6’6″ can finally get a properly fitting, non-sagging pack.


Key Features

  • Adjustable torso to 23”: He gets a custom torso length with the 12″ size adjustment range.
  • LidConvert top lid: He can sandwich the lid inside the main compartment when he doesn’t need the brain.
  • Pro Load Suspension: Breathable mesh, adjustable straps and a padded waist belt distribute weight.
  • Lumbar bridge and stabilizer: These minimize sway and keep the pack centered on his back.


Helpful Benefits

  • Extra-long torso fit: The torso adjusts long enough even for very tall men exceeding 6’8″.
  • Shoulder relief: Gravity-load lifters transfer weight from his shoulders to his hips.
  • Streamlined: Removing the top lid saves weight and bulk when he doesn’t need the capacity.
  • Security: The stabilizer straps and adjustable sternum straps prevent load shifting during ascents.



  • Adjustable torso up to 23” for tall men
  • LidConvert design removes top lid when unneeded
  • Pro Load Suspension transfers weight to hips
  • Lumbar Bridge stabilizes loads
  • Front panel access to main compartment
  • Sleeping bag compartment
  • Mesh back panel ventilates sweaty backs



  • Lid reattachment is tricky alone
  • Large even when top lid removed
  • Minimal small pockets


Also Read: The 5 Best Hiking Boots for Flat Feet: A Buyer’s Guide


Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Hiking Backpacks for Tall Guys

Finding a properly fitting hiking backpack is crucial for comfort and efficient carrying over miles of trail. Here are the key factors tall guys should consider when choosing backpacks:

1. Adjustable Torso Length

The most critical feature for tall men is an adjustable torso range that accommodates longer back lengths. Seek 18-23 inch torso ranges.

2. Hip Belt Fit

An anatomical hip belt that hugs the hips without sagging is vital for transferring pack weight to the legs/hips. Seek tall sizes.

3. Suspension Design

Look for robust suspension systems with responsive shoulder straps, stabilizer straps and hip belts to distribute heavy loads.

4. Adjustable Harness

The best packs for tall men have shoulder straps that adjust both vertically and horizontally to dial in the perfect shoulder fit.

5. Back Panel Design

Mesh, channeled and ventilated back panels allow air flow to keep sweaty backs cool and dry during miles of hiking.

6. Weight Distribution

Top-loading packs with gravity load lifter straps effectively transfer weight off shoulders and onto hips for a shoulder-friendly carry.

7. Volume

Tall men with long torsos often need more volume and pocket space. Seek 60+ liter packs for extended trips.


FAQs on the Best Hiking Backpacks for Tall Men


What torso length do I need in a tall hiking backpack?

Look for adjustable torso lengths in the 18″-23″ range to accommodate taller hikers. Measure from your C7 vertebrae to your iliac crest for your ideal pack length.

What size hip belt do I need if I’m tall and slender?

Seeking tall-specific hip belt sizes of about 32″-36″ prevents sagging. Slimmer straps or reverse wrapping can customize the fit for narrow waists.

Are ultralight backpacks good for tall guys?

Ultralight packs for thru-hiking often have fixed torsos unaccommodating for tall men. Prioritize adjustable torso fit over saving ounces.

What capacity backpack should tall men get?

Look for 60+ liter packs to allow room for extra gear and tent space tall guys often require. Removable lids allow reducing volume when possible.

Can I add a waist belt extender if the hip belt is too small?

Yes, many packs include Velcro waist belt extenders to add inches, customizing the hip belt fit for long torsos.

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