• Top 10 Best Daypacks for Hiking in 2021 (Patagonia, Osprey, and More) 1
  • Top 10 Best Daypacks for Hiking in 2021 (Patagonia, Osprey, and More) 2
  • Top 10 Best Daypacks for Hiking in 2021 (Patagonia, Osprey, and More) 3
  • Top 10 Best Daypacks for Hiking in 2021 (Patagonia, Osprey, and More) 4
  • Top 10 Best Daypacks for Hiking in 2021 (Patagonia, Osprey, and More) 5

Top 10 Best Daypacks for Hiking in 2021 (Patagonia, Osprey, and More)

Hiking is a difficult activity on its own, so you want to make sure your load is as light as possible. Daypacks are lightweight and perfectly sized to carry just the essentials with you. They are usually equipped with hydration pouches and hiking-specific features to make your journey more enjoyable.


We searched the internet for 10 of the best daypacks for hiking, and we've ranked the Black Hole 25L Travel Pack from Patagonia at number one. It's colorful, versatile, and durable while having the tools to help you carry things outside of your pack, like a yoga mat or trekking sticks. There are daypacks in all styles and structures, so if this one doesn't quite fit your fancy, check out the rest of our list!

Experts featured in this article

Alec Sills-Trausch
  • Last updated: 06-14-2021
Table of Contents

Top 10 Best Daypacks for Hiking

Everybody's priorities and non-negotiables vary when it comes to daypacks. What works best for some doesn't work for everyone, so make sure to check out all of our options and our buying guide to make sure you find the right bag for you.

1

PatagoniaBlack Hole 25L Travel Pack

$129.00

Dimensions22 x 10.5 x 5.5 in.
WaterproofWater-repellent
MaterialsPostconsumer recycled ripstop polyester
Volume25L
2

OspreyStratos 24 Pack - Men's

$140.00

Dimensions22 x 12 x 12 in.
WaterproofYes (raincover included)
MaterialsNylon
Volume24L
3

WaterflyCrossbody Sling Backpack

$17.99

Dimensions7 x 3.5 x 15 in.
WaterproofWater resistant
Materials100% nylon, polyester lining
VolumeNot provided
4

FjallravenBergtagen 30L Backpack

$199.95

Dimensions21.6 x 10.2 x 8.7 in.
WaterproofYes
Materials69% nylon, 31% recycled nylon
Volume30L
5

Sea to SummitUltra-Sil Travel Day Pack

$39.95

DimensionsNot provided
WaterproofNo
MaterialsSiliconized Cordura nylon
Volume20L
6

REI Co-op Flash 22 Print Pack

$54.95

Dimensions18 x 10 x 8 in.
WaterproofWater resistant
MaterialsNylon
Volume22L
7

Teton SportsOasis 1100 Hydration Pack

$37.60

Dimensions19.5 x 12 x 2 in.
WaterproofYes
MaterialsNot provided
Volume18L
8

Eddie BauerStowaway Packable 20L Daypack

$15.00

Dimensions18 x 10 x 9 in.
WaterproofWater-resistant
Materials200-denier ripstop polyester
Volume20L
9

CotopaxiLuzon Daypack

$55.00

Dimensions20 x 11.25 x 5.1 in.
WaterproofNo
MaterialsNylon
Capacity18L
10

Black DiamondTrail Zip 18L Backpack

$69.95

DimensionsNot provided
WaterproofNo
MaterialsNylon
Volume18L

Compare the Best Daypacks for Hiking

Image
1
Patagonia Black Hole 25L Travel Pack 1

Patagonia

2
Osprey Stratos 24 Pack - Men's 1

Osprey

3
Waterfly Crossbody Sling Backpack 1

Waterfly

4
Fjallraven Bergtagen 30L Backpack 1

Fjallraven

5
Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Travel Day Pack 1

Sea to Summit

6
REI Co-op  Flash 22 Print Pack 1

REI Co-op

7
Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack 1

Teton Sports

8
Eddie Bauer Stowaway Packable 20L Daypack 1

Eddie Bauer

9
Cotopaxi Luzon Daypack 1

Cotopaxi

10
Black Diamond Trail Zip 18L Backpack 1

Black Diamond

Name

Black Hole 25L Travel Pack

Stratos 24 Pack - Men's

Crossbody Sling Backpack

Bergtagen 30L Backpack

Ultra-Sil Travel Day Pack

Flash 22 Print Pack

Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack

Stowaway Packable 20L Daypack

Luzon Daypack

Trail Zip 18L Backpack

Features

Weather-Resistant and Stylish

An Abundance of Pockets for the Organized Hiker

Sling Bag Style for More Comfortable Use

Minimalistic Waterproof Daypack

A Daypack for the Frequent Flyer

Sustainable and Breathable With a Built-In Sit Pad

A Daypack That's Adjustable for All Sizes

Packable, Colorful, and Weather-Resistant

Simply Structured and Uniquely Designed

Extra Features for Extra Safety

Price$129.00$140.00$17.99$199.95$39.95$54.95$37.60$15.00$55.00$69.95
Dimensions22 x 10.5 x 5.5 in.22 x 12 x 12 in.7 x 3.5 x 15 in.21.6 x 10.2 x 8.7 in.Not provided18 x 10 x 8 in.19.5 x 12 x 2 in.18 x 10 x 9 in.20 x 11.25 x 5.1 in.Not provided
WaterproofWater-repellentYes (raincover included)Water resistantYesNoWater resistantYesWater-resistantNoNo
MaterialsPostconsumer recycled ripstop polyesterNylon100% nylon, polyester lining69% nylon, 31% recycled nylonSiliconized Cordura nylonNylonNot provided200-denier ripstop polyesterNylonNylon
Volume25L24LNot provided30L20L22L18L20L18L18L
Link

How to Choose a Daypack for Hiking - Buying Guide

It's easy to get lost in all the technical terms, but stay focused on your non-negotiables and you'll find the right daypack for you. In this buying guide, we'll help you break down the important features to help you find your perfect match.

Know the Difference Between a Daypack and a Backpack

Know the Difference Between a Daypack and a Backpack

To know the best daypack to get, it might be helpful to first know the difference between a daypack and a backpack. A daypack falls under the category of backpack. Daypacks are smaller, more lightweight, and more suited for outdoor excursions.


While daypacks are usually just big enough to pack some essentials to get you through a day hike (hence “day” pack), backpacks are more generally versatile. Daypacks can also include external tools, such as tool clips and yoga mat holders, while backpacks are structured to keep everything inside!

Make Sure Your Pack is a Comfortable Size for You

Make Sure Your Pack is a Comfortable Size for You

The general rule of thumb when it comes to fit is that the pack should sit comfortably on your shoulders. A good test of fit is to position the hip belt about one finger width above your hip, then see how your shoulder straps land from there.


If there is a gap, the pack is likely too long for your torso. On the other hand, according to REI, “if the straps wrap more than a few inches down your back before they connect to the pack, the pack might be too short.”


For online shoppers, the product descriptions include the torso length measurement. If you can’t make it out to a store, use the numbers to help you determine the right size for you. You can also find daypacks in smaller sizes for people with smaller frames, like women and children.

Decide How Long Your Hikes Will Be on Average

Decide How Long Your Hikes Will Be on Average

Daypacks can range from small, medium, and large. A good size for a day hike is about 18-35 liters. This is just enough for snacks, water, and light clothing. If you find that you are more regularly doing longer and/or overnight hikes, 36-50 liters may be better for you because you will need more room to pack food and clothes.


If you want a bag that is slightly larger than what you need on average, there are bags with compression straps to minimize your pack size when you are not using it up to the brim. These compression straps can also hold things such as trekking poles, so this is an option to consider for those who like to be extra prepared.

Look for the Durability of Materials

Look for the Durability of Materials

There are several different types of materials typically used when it comes to daypacks. The best material for daypacks is nylon. Nylon is often coated with polyurethane or silicone to add water-resistance.


The most durable form of nylon for daypacks is ribstop nylon. The ribstop thread pattern is tear-resistant, which is especially important for hiking because of all the possible points of abrasion. Whether you are prone to tripping or on a thorny path, the ribstop will have your back.

Check for Important Extra Features

There are many features to look out for to make your hike as smooth as possible. These are some of the most common ones we found.

Hip Belts and Sternum Straps Provide Stability

Hip Belts and Sternum Straps Provide Stability

Hip belts and sternum straps are imperative to get additional stability during your hikes, especially on uneven terrain. These features also distribute your weight more evenly to relieve pressure from your shoulders and back. If you have any issues with pain, these features are extra important for you to look out for.

Stay Hydrated With Hydration Sleeves and Water Bottle Sleeves

Stay Hydrated With Hydration Sleeves and Water Bottle Sleeves

A hydration sleeve is a designated space to carry hydration reservoirs with a port for a hydration hose. There are also usually mesh pockets for water bottles. These features ensure you don’t suffer from dehydration on your hike. If you find yourself going on longer or more strenuous hikes, it's definitely worth investing in more hydration room.

Waterproof Bags or Raincovers for Ultimate Weather Protection

Waterproof Bags or Raincovers for Ultimate Weather Protection

If you find yourself hiking in wet climates, consider a waterproof daypack. While most daypacks will be water-resistant at the least, waterproofness definitely adds a layer of definite protection. Some daypacks come with raincovers, which, true to their name, can protect your stuff against any rain that may come your way.

Ventilated Back Panels for Extreme Heat and Sweat-Prone People

Ventilated Back Panels for Extreme Heat and Sweat-Prone People

Ventilated back panels allow the bag to lie a few inches from your back and are also made with mesh. They allow a steady airflow and prevent you from having too sweaty of a back during your hike. More importantly, they can help prevent heat exhaustion, helping you stay comfortable and at your best during your hikes.

Notice the Different Types of Closures and Pockets

Notice the Different Types of Closures and Pockets

These features are all about accessibility and efficiency. The most common types of closures are zippers and drawstring closures. Zippers can come in two-way or single zippers, but drawstring closures don't have as much variety.


While a zipper closure may be more secure, a drawstring closure is much more efficient! In the same way, interior pockets may be more secure from weather-related issues, but external pockets can be quicker and more convenient to reach.

In Search of More Hiking Necessities?

In Search of More Hiking Necessities?

If you are looking to hike more frequently, it's important to be mindful of your health and wellness. Prepare for your next hike by checking out some of our favorite activity-friendly products.

Summary

Choosing the right daypack for you can seem overwhelming because of all of the different technical features and various structures. Finding the right daypack for you and your needs can improve your hike by allowing you to focus on your hike rather than the discomforts of having the wrong bag. Happy hiking!


Author: Karis Kim


Make Your Trek Easier With the Right Trekking Poles

If you're about to embark on a particularly strenuous or long hike, consider trekking poles! Backpacker and photographer Alec Sills-Trausch loves using these to get around.

Expert's
pick

Black DiamondDistance Z Trekking Poles

$92.53

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