Leather Backpacks are Not For Camping

July 2, 2012 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ Leather Backpack

If you are considering purchasing a backpack for the sole purpose of camping, hiking or hunting, most experts would recommend a nylon backpack, or any other waterproofed material.  But what most would definitely stay away from is leather backpacks.  While they are attractive, stylish, and very soft, leather backpacks are not exactly the kind of gear you want to keep your camping gear dry in a torrential downpour when you are walking around in the middle of nowhere with nothing but the wet clothes on your back.  In that situation, you want to know for sure that whatever you have packed into your backpack is dry and safe.  Leather backpacks are not the best bet for keeping things dry and safe when you are camping.

Most modern backpack manufacturers have really stopped making leather backpacks for use when camping, hunting, and hiking and other long term outdoors adventures.  Apparently, these companies have resorted to using high grade synthetic materials that are easily waterproofed.  This makes it much easier to produce, and creates a much more reliable product for the avid outdoorsman.

Most leather backpacks are now made as trendy and expensive alternatives to the standard school yard book bag as opposed to the heavy duty use camping pack.  It is true that some manufacturers still used reinforced leather bottoms for their packs, but the days of completely leather backpacks seem to be over.  While the reinforced leather bottom on a pack may be a good idea, making an entire pack out of the same reinforced leather would probably make a pack that was way too heavy to carry and way to expensive to produce and purchase.

Most of the leather backpacks that you can find in stores now are geared towards the student or workaholic on the go.  These packs come with specialized pockets not for hydration equipment, maps and compasses, but for things like MP3 players, hand held organizers, and laptop computers.  The shoulder straps are often not padded correctly with a durable material, but rather are made of a foam material that will break down before you reach the first mile of an off trail hike.  As mentioned above, the main pockets and the body of leather backpacks nowadays are made of non-reinforced leather which means that they would probably rip open the first time you tossed it to the ground after a long trek.

The basic point is that even though leather backpacks are very pretty and very useful for urban events like going to the library or the coffee shop, or even walking around the mall, if you are dedicated hiker and camper, you will want to look into more durable packs that are designed for campers’ needs.