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Backpack fitting guide

  • THE RIGHT FRAME SIZE. Your correct frame size is found by measuring your torso from the seventh vertebra (the big bump where the shoulder slope meets the neck) down the spine to the point in the small of your back, which is horizontally level with the top of your hipbone (iliac crest). To find the iliac crest, use your fingers to trace the hipbone upwards until you can feel the point where the top edge of your hipbone curves inward, on the side of your hip, creating something of a shelf. Holding your finger on the seventh vertebra, measure down your back to the point in the small of your back level with your iliac crest (see figure 1). This measurement is your torso length, and using it, you can now select the correct frame size.


            File written by Adobe Photoshop® 4.0

 Note: Some sizes have overlapping torso lengths. This is due to the custom fitting features offered with certain packs. You will have to use your judgment to decide which size to choose if your torso length falls into more than one size. To help you decide, you should consider how you want your waistbelt to ride. If you like your waistbelt to ride high, choose the smaller size. If you like it to ride low, choose the larger size.

  • THE RIGHT WAISTBELT SIZE. Although not all manufacturers offer multiple waistbelts for each pack, this will help you fit those that do. Simply take a measurement of your waist one inch above the top of your hipbone (iliac crest). With a full pack on, the top edge of the waistbelt should ride one inch above the top of the hip bone (iliac crest) and then wrap around the front of your abdomen towards your belly button making sure the pad covers the front of your hip bones.

Courtesy of Gregory


For more information, you should consult the individual manufacturer’s websites. Some of these can be found on our links page.



Gregory Frame

·      X-Small – (14”-15.5”)

·      Small – (16”-17.5”)

·      Medium – (18”-19.5”)

·      Large – (20” and up)


Gregory Waistbelt

·      X-Small – (16“-22”)

·      Small – (22”-28”)

·      Medium – (28”-34”)

·      Large – (34” and up)

Osprey Frame

·      Small – (16”-20”)

·      Medium – (18”-22”)

·      Large – (20” and up)


Osprey Waistbelt

·      Small – (less than 30”)

·      Medium – (30”-34”)

·      Large – (34” and up)


Jansport Frame

Varies by model. See individual pack measurements.


Kelty Frame

·      Small

·      Medium

·      Large


Eureka Frame

·      I – (13”-19”)

·      II – (15”21”)

·      III – (18”-24”)

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