The word backpack was coined in the United States in the 1910s. Moneybag and packsack were used prior, and now occur mainly as regionalisms.
The word rucksack is a German loanword mainly used in the UK, US and in other Western military forces. In Middle High German ruck(e) means “back” (dorsum), which led to the Upper German word ruggsack. In modern German the word “der Rucksack” is commonly used.The name rucksack is cognate with the Danish rygsæk, Norwegian ryggsekk, Dutch rugzak, Afrikaans rugsak, Swedish ryggsäck, and Russian рюкзак (rjukzak).
The word knapsack was the usual name for a rucksack or backpack up until the middle of the 20th century. This is commonly used in Canada.
Alternative names include haversack from the German Hafersack meaning “oat sack”(which more properly describes a small cloth bag on a strap worn over one shoulder and originally referred to the bag of oats carried as horse fodder), Kraxe (a German rucksack with a rigid framework), and bergen (a large load-carrying rucksack, from a design issued by the British Army during the Second World War).In fact, Britons used to call Alpine-style backpacks “Bergen rucksacks”, maybe from the name of their creator, Norwegian Ole F. Bergan, combined with the name of the Norwegian city of Bergen.
Backpacks can often simply be referred to as “packs”, especially in outdoors contexts; though sometimes ambiguous compared to other bags such as saddlebags and duffel bags, context is generally sufficient for identification. They are also used in recreational activities, and have long since been used to carry sports equipment and other materials.
Long before its various terminologies began appearing in print, evidence of early backpacks was scarce. A contender for the earliest was found within the mummified remains of Ötzi in 3300BC
A back frame with shelf used to carry loads in the Allgäu, where it is known as a Reff
Two examples of external frame backpack designs dating to the 1860s
Backpack with non flexible composite straps
Backpacks in general fall into one of four categories: frameless, external frame, internal frame, and bodypack. A pack frame, when present, serves to support the pack and distribute the weight of its contents across the body more appropriately, by transferring much of the weight to the hips and legs. Most of the weight is therefore taken off the shoulders, reducing the chance of injury from shoulder strap pressure (many backpacks equipped solely with shoulder straps can affect the posture of a person carrying more than 14 kg (30 lbs)), as well as being less restrictive of the upper body range of motion. Most backpacks are capable of being closed with either a buckle mechanism, a zipper, or a dry-bag type closure, though a few models use a drawstring fitted with a cord lock for the main compartment.
A bodypack is a backpack fitted with one or more pockets that are suspended on the wearer’s chest and loaded in such a way that the load in the front and the load in the back are close to equal. The majority of the load in a bodypack is carried by the hips. The ideal load carrying system should not disturb the wearer’s natural posture, balance and maneuverability. The load must be dispersed onto the skeletal structure in an even manner, and should not produce unbalanced forces on the body.
Bushcraft is the use and practice of skills, thereby acquiring and developing knowledge and understanding, in order to survive and thrive in a natural environment.
Bushcraft skills provide for the basic physiological necessities for human life: food (through foraging, tracking, hunting, trapping, fishing), water sourcing and purification, shelter-building, and firecraft. These may be supplemented with expertise in twine-making, knots and lashings, wood-carving, campcraft, medicine/health, natural navigation, and tool and weapon making.
Bushcraft includes the knowledge to handle certain tools such as bushcraft knives and axes. A bushcrafter can use these tools to create many different types of constructions, from dugout canoes to a-frame shelters.
The term bushcraft was popularized in the Southern Hemisphere by Les Hiddins (the Bush Tucker Man) as well as in the Northern Hemisphere by Mors Kochanski and more recently gained considerable currency in the United Kingdom due to the popularity of Ray Mears and his bushcraft and survival television programs.The origin of the phrase “bushcraft” comes from skills used in the Australian bush. Often the phrases “wilderness skills” or “woodcraft” are used as they describe skills used all over the world.[citation needed
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