What is a backpacking lid?

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Backpacking lids, better known as top lids, are already attached to the backpack. Their purpose is to cover the opening of the top of the backpack, preventing the elements from reaching the inner contents of the backpack.

Let’s discuss everything you need to know about the backpacking lid and how it’s different from a floating lid. We will also cover the value, what it’s used for, and overall how necessary it is for you specifically.


Is it the Same as a Floating Lid?

The backpack’s backpacking lid or top lid serves nearly the same purpose as a floating lid. However, it’s the floating lid that allows you to overpack in a sense. Unlike the backpacking lid or the top lid, the floating lid acts as an extra attachment to your pack.

After you’ve packed any supplies in your pack and sealed the backpacking lid/top lid, you can then attach and extend the floating lid over the top of the pack. Once secured, you can then place any items you need for quick access under or inside the floating lid.


What Do You Need It For?

The backpacking lid/top lid protects the inner contents of the pack, securing them from any elements you might encounter as well as keeping them from falling out. The floating lid, however, serves as a storage expander.

Ideally, you will utilize the floating lid for items that need quick and easy access or for items you need that won’t fit in the pack. It’s up to you to decide if it’s something you may want to invest in or not. Everyone’s packing style is different, after all.


Is it Essential for Camping Equipment?

While the floating lid may seem necessary to carry everything you need, it’s not a must-have unless you plan on doing some serious backpacking in extreme terrain or weather. This extra accessory/attachment is no more than a luxury item.

If you are not looking to invest in a floating lid or a pack with a top lid, there are always other options. One of these would be a rolltop backpack, where you roll the top of the pack up and secure it when ready.


How Much Does it Cost?

While the price for these can vary greatly depending on the brand’s quality, these will typically range anywhere around $100 and up. If this item is necessary for you, it’s best to invest in a floating lid of pristine quality.

If you are in search of a pack that already has an attached top lid, you will obviously be paying more for the entire pack. Be prepared to make an investment of a lifetime with both of these items that will support any backpacking hobby anywhere.


Can You Use it for Every Backpack?

Ideally, floating lids are likely to be compatible with any pack. However, it’s always important to check the specs of the lid to see if it specifies that your current pack has any handling requirements needed to attach the floating lid to your pack.

Search for a floating lid distributed by the same company as your current pack for the best compatibility. Better yet, consult with a professional at your local outdoor shopping outlet.


Final Thoughts on Backpacking Lids & Floating Lids

The backpacking lid/top lid serves the same purpose as the floating lid. The only difference is that the floating lid will offer you more storage for items that will not fit in your pack.

For some, this could be essential. For most, it’s considered to be a luxury. But, again, it depends on your pack style.

Usually, a floating lid will cost around $100 and up. However, you will pay more for an entire pack with the top lid. Depending on the brand’s quality and popularity, these packs will typically range around $200 and up.

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