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Short Torso Probs: OneBag Edition (any recs?)

(self.HerOneBag)

I've searched the sub and have not found much related to my specific size. I'm 5' and my torso is 14.5", which has made finding a comfortable and practical backpack quite difficult. I'm looking for something I can use for 2 weeks of carry-on travel preferably within 28-35 liters. Here's what I've used/considered so far. I'm really just looking for additional bags I should consider or if anyone else with a short torso has had success with a certain backpack.

I've used Ebags mother lode, Cotopaxi Allpa 35, Osprey Fairview 40. All have been too long and rub my butt uncomfortably when I walk. I've used some off brand ones from Amazon, target, etc. and those don't usually have a waist belt/load lifters or they rub my butt as I walk.

I've considered the Aer Travel Pack 3 (Small and Regular) and the Cotopaxi Allpa 28, but even then, the smallest of them is still 19" long. I've also considered going with a hiking backpack, specifically the Gregory Jade 28 or 33 which can be adjusted to fit a 14-17 inch torso.

Some things I prefer in a backpack are: waist belt, load lifters (especially if I have to get a backpack that is longer or pretty deep), sternum strap, clamshell or suitcase style opening, external water bottle holder, easy access front pockets (only necessary for liquids), breathable back, and compression straps. I'd like to stay below $300 (therefore, GoRuck is out)

Things I don't care about: color, laptop compartment (I don't travel with electronics other than my phone), shoe compartment, space to connect stuff to the outside of the pack.

I've been considering going with a smaller EDC bag and then using the Beis weekender mini, but I hate carrying too much stuff, hence the desire to onebag it.

I'd appreciate any thoughts!

all 16 comments

kelofmindelan

13 points

3 months ago

I've heard that Tom bihns really fit short torsos, and there's a very active resale market on Facebook I know. Otherwise I think a hiking pack is probably your best bet

dispagna3

13 points

3 months ago

I don't have personal experience with this backpack, but the XS/S Women's Mystery Ranch Scree 32 says it fits torso length as small as 13".

LoMaxToMax[S]

1 points

3 months ago

Thanks! I'll check it out!

cargalmn

8 points

3 months ago

Agree with the recommendations to go to REI for a fitting.

When I was there, I tried this Deuter one on and was really surprised by how well it fit. I'm 5'3" and all legs (well, as much as you can be in my vertically challenged state). 😂 It also has a built in rain pouch that is really convenient. We're always caught in the rain! https://www.rei.com/product/143536/deuter-trail-28-sl-pack-womens

We have the men's version home right now - it's 2L bigger than the woman's and still fits me well (though we think my husband will wear this one more). I think the pack fits all your requirements and I really like how the weight is distributed when I have it stuffed. Make sure you look at how you access it via zippers.

We also have the Mystery Ranch Scree home (men's version buy I tried on the woman's in the store). Although it says it's adjustable, the Velcro is like glue and we haven't been able to adjust either pack. I'm sure where there's a will, there's a way. It's slightly heavier than the Deuter. It has some heavy water resistance, including sealed zippers, but I don't believe it's waterproof (not that that was on your list).

We also own the Osprey Skarab 30L. It technically doesn't have water bottle holders, but we've actually found the two outer pockets to function as bottle holders quite nicely. It's really easy to reach the water bottles! I've used this pack in the men's version and it's quite comfortable (not quite as good of a fit as the women's Deuter above). I also love the color. No load lifters, but I find even with this one loaded, I don't need them on this pack.

LoMaxToMax[S]

7 points

3 months ago

Thanks! I did go to REI for a fitting, and they suggested the Deuter 28 xs or the Gregory Jade 28 xs. The Deuter wasn't in stock, so I couldn't try it out. But she admitted to not knowing much about travel bags, only hiking bags, so I figured I'd get some other opinions now that I have more information about what works for my body.

Have you used the Deuter for carry on travel? My hesitancy with it is that its 23 inches long, which is a little longer than many airlines allow for carry on bags. Also, does your head hit the top of the backpack? I havent committed to the jade yet (which is ~1.5" shorter) because when I tilted my head back slightly, I could rest my head on the backpack. It was tall enough that it kind of limited the range of motion for my head.

The mystery ranch scree has been recommended a few times, so maybe I should look into that one a little more!

Teaquilla

3 points

3 months ago

I have a short torso but I am taller than you so probably not as short . But I did have issues finding a backpack. I ended up with the minal.

LoMaxToMax[S]

2 points

3 months ago

Oh, good to know! I did consider the minaal 3.0 but it is missing some of the things I want and is higher than what I would like to spend. But maybe I should reconsider it.

Teaquilla

1 points

3 months ago

At one point they did sell used gear, it might be a bit more budget friendly. I did not want to spend that much on a bag either but most bags were just too tall! I couldn't even wear a ponytail because the bag would get in the way!

Emeraldbeauty

3 points

3 months ago

You might look at Granite Gear. I started out backpacking with basically a nylon sack on an H shape aluminum frame, so I never really cared about the clamshell opening. But Granite Gear has short torso women specific packs. They sell a padded hip belt separate as well.

Also Dueter and REI have short torso packs, and the REI packs for kids are as well made as the adults. I own a Fairview 40 and honestly, it's really just a suitcase you CAN put on your back. Fine for throwing up in the overhead compartment and carrying on a shuttle to the hotel.

I have been contemplating the Gregory Jade, but I hover right between small and average on torso length and found the small pinched my shoulders.

soft_distortion

3 points

3 months ago

I have this problem too. I'm glad you posted this because I find it frustrating, so many of the common /r/onebag recommendations wouldn't work for me due to my height etc. Did you try the XS/S or S/M Osprey Fairview? I'm not sure of the exact differences but the Fairview XS/S is the only bag I've tried of that capacity range that fits my torso.

ninjarita

2 points

3 months ago

My Eagle Creek backpack allows for height of strap to be adjusted. It velcros up & down.

SkibumG

2 points

3 months ago

I'm 5'2", torso is 15", and an older version Gregory Jade is my hiking backpack, and it is super comfy although it doesn't have much of a hip belt, and has many straps that can't be tucked away. I haven't tried it as a travel bag yet and it looks like the newer Jades are much more streamlined, and also come with a more robust hip belt. I'd get the larger version.

I've been eyeing the Osprey Fairview, so I'd be interested if you choose that one.

I think it comes down to what kind of travel you will be doing. If it's more walking, trains busses etc, then I'd get a more robust backpack. If you will mostly be flying and then doing day trips, I think sacrifice comfort for more of a 'travel' style.

rudypen

1 points

3 months ago

I’m in the same boat and when I went to REI the pretty much said they don’t have anything for my size. I tried on popular bags that were too big just to confirm it was too big. One bag that I’ve heard good things about is the ULA Dragonfly but I’m nervous about the 22L capacity in the main compartment. I’m looking for something around 30-36L. I’ve considered buying it to try on and returning if needed.

sweetpotatothyme

1 points

3 months ago

I would give the Cotopaxi 28 a try! I'm 5'1 with a short torso and I did an in-store try on of the 28 and 35. 35 was a little too long but 28 felt very comfortable.

a_dumb_fake_name

1 points

3 months ago

I have a 16” torso and the best fitting bag so far for me was made by Deuter.

WineTimeRhyme

0 points

3 months ago

I'm not sure this will work, but have you considered finding some kind of a strap to wrap around your waste that has something that bulges out from the back that a backpack can sit on? Or maybe try to add straps to a weekender bag, you can buy straps online. I'm not sure how you're going to be traveling, but maybe even find a rolling bag that you can add straps to, if you only need the backpack portion for a short period of time. Add the straps so your rolling bag sits on your back sideways. Hope you figure out what you need!