If you are a hiker, then you understand the importance of having the best daypacks for hiking to accompany you on your trips. A daypack is considered an essential piece of gear, so when you purchase one there are several considerations you should make including what the specific use for the pack will be and what will you need to accommodate with the daypack?
For hiking, it is recommended that you find a daypack that can hold everything you are going to need for that day including your water, snacks, first aid kit, and other essentials. You will also want to ensure that the daypack is lightweight and comfortable to wear since you will be hiking and do not want to have a lot of extra weight to be carrying around with you.
Best Daypacks for Hiking
Features of a Good Daypack
Capacity: If you want a daypack that is not going to become too heavy or bulky and is more suited to a single day hiking trip, then a pack with a twenty to thirty-liter capacity is all you need. You will be able to fit all your essentials without putting too much strain and pressure on your back due to the increased weight.
Ventilated Back Panels: Since you will be hiking out in the sun and the warm weather, the last thing you want is for something to feel like it is hot and sweaty and weighing you down. A daypack with a ventilated back can help produce steady air flow and breathability. However, the daypacks that utilize this feature tend to be of smaller capacities because for the air flow the pack will be slightly pushed away from the body which can become cumbersome with a lot of added weight. The following are the top daypacks for your next hiking trip:
Osprey Packs Daylite Daypack
The Osprey Packs Daylite Daypack for hiking features a large panel for easier access to the main compartment and has dual mesh side stretch pockets that provide the hiker with additional storage options. There is also a front zippered pocket with a mesh organizer and a key clip. The interior sleeve of this daypack can also be used for a water reservoir or a tablet.
||9 x 9 x 18 inches
- Mesh covered die cut foam back panel for comfort and ventilation
- Built-in external hydration reservoir pocket
- Internal laptop pocket
- Can attach to other larger Osprey packs
- Easy access to the main compartment
- Color may vary from what is pictured
- Zippers can get stuck; have to pull on them firmly
Deuter Speed Lite 20-Hiking Daypack
The Deuter Speed Lite Hiking Daypack is a pack that was engineered with innovation in mind. It is an extremely versatile daypack with advanced ergonomics that help to deliver optimal comfort and performance.
This daypack features padded air mesh shoulder straps, a height-adjustable chest strap, and removable hip belt that allows you to gain control over the fit. It also has a flexible and tensioned Delrin U-shaped frame that helps to provide stability without weighing you down with any additional and cumbersome weight.
||7.1 x 19 x 10 inches
- Minimalistic, high functioning, and lightweight daypack
- Flexible ergonomic frame with removable pivoting hip belts
- Keeps the pack close to the body to preserve flexibility
- Body hugging to offer a more precise fit
- 3-liter hydration system
- 3M reflectors for visibility
- Reinforced pull loops on zippers
- SOS-label with life-saving tips
- A little more expensive than other daypack options
- No internal zippered section
Gregory Miwok 24 Daypack
The Gregory Miwok 24 Daypack is laser cut with a laminated low-profile attachment system to include a safety light. It also features dual quick-access hip belt pockets on each side and an adjustable upper and lower trekking pole system. It is a lightweight and comfortable daypack that is suitable for a long day’s hike without becoming too heavy; it offers a balanced hiking load. This daypack has a total of eight exterior pockets for all your storage needs including an expanding helmet compatible stash pocket.
||2.76 x 12.2 x 21.65 inches
- Constructed of 100D mini rip material
- Several pockets for additional storage and convenience
- Lightweight and stays closer to the body
- Separate compartment on the outside of the main compartment for water bladder
- Better suited for a man’s frame
- Extendable front pocket isn’t as secure as other smaller pockets
- Higher price point
Osprey Packs Exos 48 Daypack
The Osprey Daypack is made of nylon material and has an internal sewn-in back panel sleeve with a clip attachment that can accommodate up to three liters of water for adequate hydration for any hiker. The peripheral frame is constructed of an aluminum alloy with an internal suspended cross strut that will help provide the user with added stability and additional carrying support.
||6 x 14 x 22 inches
- Multi cord tie off points for faster attachment of additional gear
- Removable floating top pocket and internal key clip
- Under-lid zippered mesh pocket for storage and organization
- Sewn-in hip belt with seamless and layered mesh foam for comfort
- Higher price point
- Weighs more than other daypacks
- Will not stand up on its own when packed with supplies
MISSION PEAK GEAR Fast 2100 30L Foldable Packable Hiking Backpack
The Mission Peak Gear daypack features an exclusive RAMS System to provide maximum airflow to help reduce perspiration. It is made from a high-quality rip-stop nylon fabric that is extremely durable, weather-resistant, and strong. This daypack also features a high-density soft nylon webbing and includes a waterproof rain cover. There is ample storage space available so you can carry all of your essentials and it offers an easy and convenient way to reach what you need.
||22 x 14 x 9 inches
- S-curved shoulder straps with a breathable 3D grid mesh fabric
- Fits a hydration bladder of up to 2 liters
- Two main compartments and eight additional pockets for storage
- Top-mounted and reinforced handle
- Waterproof rain cover
- Foam padded hip belt for comfort
Smaller capacity than as advertised
- Doesn’t include a hydration pack clip on the bag
When deciding on which daypack would be the best fit for your next hiking trip, keep in mind the initial weight of the pack and take into consideration the weight, it will be when it is filled with your supplies.
You also want to be sure that you get the right fit for your body type and frame so that it is comfortable and easy to carry on your hiking trip. I hope you like out thoughts about the best daypacks for hiking.
Need some ideas for backpacking snacks? Read about some of them here.
Water filters are important to bring for backpacking trips. Learn about our favorite ones here.