High Sierra epitomizes backpacking on a budget with its 75-liter (4,600-cubic-inch) pack, which sells for as low as $120. The company, primarily known for its luggage, created the Appalachian 75 for long trips when you need a budget bag. It costs less than half of some similar models.
Not designed for the minimalist that wants to go ultra light, at 5.8 pounds unloaded, the pack is a little heavy. But the Appalachian 75 isn’t short on features. There’s an internal aluminum frame that can be contoured to your back, a hydration bladder sleeve, and a removable media pocket for an MP3 player, camera, or GPS unit on the shoulder harness.
The top-loading pack has front access that’s great for grabbing gear, a rain cover that’s stowed in a bottom pocket, and plenty of external pockets, compression straps and other organizational amenities.
The Appalachian is currently available in green and gray, and the company plans on adding a red version in the next couple months. www.hssc.com