10 Greatest Ultralight Frameless Backpacks of 2024


As ultralight backpacking gear has gotten lighter weight, so have ultralight backpacks. A lot so, that many thru-hikers, section-hikers, and long-distance backpackers are turning to frameless ultralight backpacks for his or her adventures. Designed for a great deal of 20-25 kilos or much less (together with meals, water, and gas), these backpacks and their producers have confirmed to be wildly modern of their use of cutting-edge supplies, colours, and options.  Whereas backpacking this gentle isn’t for everybody, the elevated availability of ultralight backpacking gear and entry to know-how via social media has made it extra achievable than ever.

In case your purpose is to scale back the burden of your backpack to shut to a pound or much less, listed below are some methods of reaching that aim.

  1. Use a frameless backpack, because you don’t want the added help or weight of a body or perhaps a hip belt for hundreds below 20-25 kilos.
  2. Scale back the amount of your pack to 40L or much less. which forces you to make use of lighter-weight and extra compact gear.
  3. Decide backpacks made with ultralight materials like Dyneema DCF, Extremely, or EcoPak that are waterproof and extremely sturdy.

Listed here are the ten frameless ultralight backpacks that we suggest that embody these qualities.

Make sure to learn our Frameless Ultralight Backpack Choice Information under which explains these tradeoffs in higher element.

Notice: If you need an ultralight backpack that has a body or body stays, a fully-featured hip belt, can comfortably carry 25-40+ kilos, however nonetheless weighs between 2 – 3 lbs, see our article, The ten Greatest Ultralight Backpacks (with frames).

1. Zpacks Nero Extremely (38L)

Zpacks Nero Ultra 38L
The Zpacks Nero Extremely 38L is an frameless rolltop pack that weighs 10.3 oz. It’s made with a sturdy waterproof materials (referred to as Extremely 100) and seam taped making the pack extremely water resistant. The pack has two aspect pockets and a big stretchy mesh middle pocket for fast entry gadgets. There’s a prime strap so you may lash gear on prime of the pack, aspect compression straps, diasy chains on the shoulder straps to connect pockets, a detachable hip belt that may be adjusted for 3 torso lengths, and a sit pad that gives again padding. Learn the SectionHiker Nero 38 Assessment

Store at Zpacks

2. Gossamer Gear Kumo (36L)

Gossamer Gear Kumo Backpack
The Gossamer Gear Kumo is a frameless backpack made with Robic Nylon that weighs 20 oz. It has 28L of closed storage and 8L of open storage in its aspect and entrance mesh pocket. As well as, there’s an exterior pad pocket behind the shoulder straps that holds a foam sit pad (included) and a map-sized zipper pocket within the fold-over lid. The hip belt has pockets and can also be detachable. Gossamer Gear additionally makes a vest-style model of the Kumo referred to as the Quick Kumo for fastpacking, however I desire the common Kumo. Learn the SectionHiker Kumo Assessment.

 

3. Nashville Packs Cutaway (42L)

nashville Packs cutaway

The Nashville Packs Cutaway is without doubt one of the most modern frameless ultralight backpacks we’ve encountered in a very long time. It’s a 42L (whole quantity) roll-top with aspect and entrance pockets, in addition to a backside sleeve for trash or hats, buffs, and snacks, and is designed in order that the entire exterior pockets will be accessed on the transfer whereas carrying the pack. Whereas it’s accessible in a wide range of ultralight materials, the factor that units this pack aside is the non-obligatory vest-style shoulder strap system which is hands-down probably the most snug, best-fitting, and useful vest-style shoulder strap system we’ve ever used. It is because Nashville has a singular method of measuring your dimension for one of the best match. It’s also possible to get the Cutaway with common shoulder straps as a result of the pack is modular and you may swap between them. Learn the SectionHiker overview.

Store at Nashville Packs

4. Pa’lante Packs V2 (31-37L)

Palante Packs V2
Pa’lante Packs is without doubt one of the unique movers amongst second-generation frameless backpack producers and lots of different of their improvements have been copied now by others. Their V2 backpack contains the unique backside pocket for stowing snacks, layers, and trash, shoulder strap pockets, a stashable hipbelt, adjustable aspect pockets, and a chosen stake pocket. The V2 is out there off-the-shelf in two torso lengths: 16″ and 19″ and two colours: sand and black.

Store at Storage Grown

5. Osprey Talon Velocity (30L)

Osprey Talon Velocity 30
The Osprey Talon Velocity 30 is a frameless backpack with a operating vest-style suspension that’s nice for fastpacking. Whereas it’s on the heavy aspect for an ultralight fastpack (38 oz), it has an adjustable size torso which is uncommon amongst vest-style packs and enormously enhances the match. Quite a few pockets constructed into the vest-style harness and hipbelt allow you to simply entry squeeze bottles, snacks, your smartphone, or sun shades whilst you’re on the transfer with out having to cease. Quantity-wise, the pack has 34-35L of whole storage together with its open pockets. Learn the SectionHiker Talon Velocity Assessment. A girls’s model, the Tempest Velocity 30 can also be accessible.

6. Superior Wilderness Designs Ultralight Superior (40L)

Ultralight Superior Frameless SWD
The Superior Wilderness Designs Ultralight Superior is an 18.2 ozframeless ultralight backpack with 45 liters of capability: 35 liters in the primary compartment and 10 liters on the outside. The pack made is with Extremely, which is a brand new ultralight waterproof materials that’s extra abrasion resistant than Dyneema DCF and XPac. The Ultralight Superior comes with a lycra pad sleeve on the again panel, a foam sit pad that can be utilized as a seat whereas taking breaks, and a 1″ webbing belt. The pack is designed for hundreds as much as 20 lbs. A number of low-priced customizations are additionally accessible.

Store at S.W.D.

7. Mountain Laurel Designs Burn (38L)

Mountain Laurel Designs Burn 38L Backpack
The Mountain Laurel Designs Burn is a 38 liter frameless rolltop backpack that weighs 16.5 oz. Made with 210D Dyneema Gridstop Nylon, it has a padded hipbelt, S-shaped shoulder straps, deep aspect pockets, and a stable stretch entrance pocket for improved sturdiness (not proven right here). With a beneficial load vary of 18-25 kilos, the factor that units the Burn other than different ultralight backpacks is the standard of its building and bomber sturdiness. The pack has over 50 heavy-duty stitching bartacks and may stand up to a number of thru-hikes. Minor customizations are additionally accessible.

Store at MLD

8. Gossamer Gear G4-20 (42L)

G4-20 2024
The Gossamer Gear G4-20 is a 42L frameless ultralight backpack that weighs 25 ozand may carry as much as 25 lbs comfortably. The G4-20 has a entrance stretch mesh pocket, two aspect pockets together with one which’s giant sufficient to hold a shelter, an exterior map pocket, and a roll-top closure. Its inside storage capability is 30L with 12L in its mesh and aspect pockets. The well-padded hip belt, which incorporates pockets, just isn’t detachable, however you may ditch the molded foam sit pad protecting the pack’s again panel and scale back the pack weight to 21.7 oz. Learn the SectionHiker G4-20 Assessment. 

Store at Gossamer Gear

9. Mountainsmith Zerk (40L)

Mountainsmith Zerk 40 - 2024
The Mountainsmith Zerk 40 is impressed by Extremely-running backpacks. It has a roll-top closure, detachable, hip belt strap, and a operating vest-style shoulder strap system. Quite a few open mesh pockets make it simple to retailer incessantly accessed gear and meals on the outside of the pack so that you don’t should open it in the course of the day. The pack comes with bear can straps so you may lash a canister on prime and contains quite a few exterior gear loops so you may connect further gear to its exterior. Whereas there’s a foam pad in a pad pocket behind the Zerk’s shoulder straps, its main objective is to guard your again from being poked by the pack’s contents. Learn the SectionHiker Assessment. Up to date in 2024, the newest model contains added daisy chain attachment factors, twin ice axe loops, twin aspect compression straps, and embroidered design.

Store at Storage Grown

10. ULA Gear – CDT (54L)

ULA CDT

The ULA CDT is a 54-liter frameless rolltop backpack with an inside pad pocket. Weighing 27.1 oz, the CDT is a streamlined backpack with 36 liters of closed storage in the primary pack bag and extension collar, with the rest distributed throughout its aspect pockets, entrance mesh pocket, and hip belt pockets. Whereas the CDT just isn’t the lightest frameless backpack accessible at present, it is without doubt one of the largest when it comes to general quantity, it’s accessible with J-shaped or female-friendly S-shaped shoulder straps, and is available in a really wide selection of torso sizes and hip belt lengths. ULA additionally gives numerous customization choices on the CDT together with colours, materials, and hip belt parts. Learn the SectionHiker CDT Assessment.

Store at ULA

Frameless Ultralight Backpack Choice Information

Early model of the Gossamer Gear Frameless G4 Backpack - 2011
Early mannequin of the Gossamer Gear Frameless G4 Backpack – Frameless packs have come a good distance since 2011.

Customized vs. Off-the-Shelf Backpacks

Many frameless ultralight backpacks are made by hand by cottage producers and will be personalized when it comes to colours, cloth, or options. A number of the extra established backpack producers or retailers listed above solely supply “inventory” backpacks with a hard and fast set of options. The benefit of buying a inventory backpack is that it’s often accessible instantly with no lengthy wait time. In the event you determined to go the customized route, be sure you contact the producer if in case you have any questions earlier than you order. Most customized backpacks are non-returnable.

Frameless Ultralight Backpack Quantity

How a lot quantity do you want in an ultralight backpack, if you’re making an attempt to get your TOTAL pack weight under 20 kilos? It’s arduous to make a blanket suggestion as a result of it in the end comes right down to the local weather you propose to hike in and what your clothes, sleep insulation, shelter, diet, and water wants might be. For common three-season circumstances, most UL backpackers discover {that a} 40L pack supplies greater than sufficient quantity for a 3-5 day journey, together with gear, meals, gas, and water. It will get far more troublesome to suit all the pieces you want right into a 30L backpack, nonetheless, except you may resupply extra incessantly, you go stoveless, otherwise you don’t want to hold a lot water. Nevertheless, given the listing of packs above, there’s not an enormous weight penalty for carrying the next quantity pack than you want, since they’re all so light-weight and you may compress them utilizing a roll-top closure or aspect compression.

Huge Exterior Storage

Frameless ultralight backpacks are inclined to have plenty of exterior storage which is accessible whilst you’re nonetheless carrying the backpack. That is as a lot a mantra as a design philosophy with the underlying aim of climbing as many miles as doable (like all day) with out ever having to cease and take your backpack off. Many frameless ultralight packs include pockets sewn onto their shoulder straps, backside stretch pockets so you may attain beneath a pack when worn to tug out snacks or deposit used wrappers, and accessible aspect pockets.

Ultralight Backpack Materials

Most ultralight backpacks are made with Dyneema Composite Materials (DCF), XPac, Nylon (Robic, Cordura, Dyneema X, and so on.) By way of sturdiness, Extremely is often probably the most sturdy when it comes to abrasion resistance, then EcoPak, XPac and LiteSkin, then DCF, and eventually Nylon, though it will depend on the denier or weight of the fabric used. DCF and XPac revolutionized UL backpack manufacturing as a result of they’re so light-weight, however are being rapidly overtaken by newer waterproof materials like EcoPak and Extremely that are much more strong and ecologically sustainable merchandise.

The most important areas of wear and tear and tear on a backpack is the bottom, the place you place it down on the bottom, and the aspect pockets, particularly in the event that they’re made with mesh. Most UL pack makers have switched to extra sturdy mesh, use extra sturdy stretch mesh that has finer holes and is much less susceptible to snagging, or have switched to creating exterior pockets with stable materials for higher sturdiness.

DCF, XPac, ECOPAK, Extremely, and LiteSkin are all waterproof supplies in order that they received’t take in water when it rains. DCF has the benefit that it may be seam-taped which enormously will increase the waterproofing of a backpack. Whereas XPac, ECOPAK, and Liteskin will be seam-sealed, most individuals don’t trouble and line their packs with trash compactor luggage or use waterproof stuff sacks. Little or no water will get in anyway. It’s a lot the identical with Robic Nylon and different high-tenacity nylons though they are going to soak through, could make your gear moist, and take some time to dry out. See the next FAQs for extra recommendation and reader dialogue:

Hip Belts on Frameless Backpacks

The hip belts discovered on frameless backpacks should not load-bearing as a result of there’s no body to switch to load to the hips. This explains why many ultralight packs don’t have them, they’re detachable, or stowable, and solely made with webbing in the event that they’re included in any respect. Their solely actual objective is to offer an anchorage for hip belt pockets or to forestall the pack from bouncing in opposition to your torso if you happen to stroll quick.

For the reason that hip belts should not load-bearing, all the burden will relaxation in your shoulders. When selecting packs, it’s best to contemplate how a lot shoulder strap padding you like and the strap width that you just discover most snug.

Shoulder Straps

An rising variety of frameless pack makers are together with S-shaped backpack straps on their packs, that are extra snug for ladies as a result of they accommodate breasts extra comfortably.  Many males additionally discover them extra snug than the J-shaped shoulder straps that had been used beforehand.

There’s additionally an rising use of vest-style shoulder straps on many backpacks which might take some getting used to if you happen to had been born and bred on extra typical shoulder straps. The added width and pocket storage on vest-style packs makes them a horny function and may also help distribute the load throughout your shoulders, particularly in case your pack lacks a hip belt.

Torso Size

Shorter torso lengths are additionally more and more accessible to accommodate girls, who on common, aren’t as tall as males. Nevertheless, matching your actual torso size is much less crucial on a frameless backpack as a result of the hip belt just isn’t load-bearing. The becoming course of is definitely extra much like becoming a daypack (with no hip belt) than an everyday framed backpack, though matching your torso size remains to be a very good benchmark to purpose for.

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