Best Day Hiking Backpacks in 2019 | Top 5 Daypack Reviews

Best Day Hiking Backpacks

Last Updated: September 19th, 2019

It's never been more important to step away from our electronics and dive into nature.

Osprey Packs Talon 22

With the onset of smart devices and the demand for round-the-clock online contact, it can be hard to find significant time away from the internet.

Personal health retreats and mindfulness seminars are becoming more and more popular.

Quite frankly, we think there is nothing that gets the blood flowing and invigorated in nature like a nice day hike.

That's what makes day trekking so beneficial. We can fill our lungs with fresh air and still be home in time to finish projects or be back home for the big game at night.

Want to know what the best day hiking backpack is?  

We’ve got you covered, just check out the below chart or the in-depth product reviews of our favorite 5 below.

Day Backpack Reviews Comparison Chart

What To Look For In A Daypack

Since we are only hiking for a day, our day hiking backpack reviews are focused on being comfortable, lightweight, and high quality.

Quite frankly, we wanted a pack that can easily be taken on an airplane, but still have the storage and versatility to handle an intense day hike.

Thus, we put a premium on packs with great ventilation, handy pockets, and an overall comfortable feel. We certainly don’t want a pack that is a hindrance in its design or holds you down in any way.

Looking for more than just a daypack?  We put together a new guide of the best multi-day and weeklong journey packs in this in depth Post.​

Top 5 Hiking Daypacks

Osprey made the top of my list of best backpack brands.

Particularly, we love Osprey because of their excellent reputation and world renown lifetime warranty. They will repair or replace (if needed) any backpack purchased!

Still not convinced?  

Take a look at the 5 minute video on the Osprey backpack production process and see how much time and effort is put into each and every pack.

Below, we’ll look at the five best day hiking backpacks for each one’s budgets and needs. If you are going to take hiking serious, it’s time to take your hiking backpack serious.

1. Osprey Packs Talon 22 Backpack

The Osprey Talon is a technical backpack that is a sure favorite for many day backpackers and we believe it is the best Osprey daypack.

Osprey Packs Talon 22

Lightweight with breathable webbing, this pack is all about comfort. As a day backpack, it is simple but has some keen features should you need them like a trekking pole attachment and an ice tool attachment.

This mid-sized backpack is great for brisk walks or even adventure runs. If you're into more challenging excursions this pack provides plenty of space for all your gear.

Looking for a daypack with a hip belt?  

Well, this one has you covered so you can easily distribute more weight to your legs and less weight to your shoulders. The hip belt has a nice cushiony padding to prevent soreness at the hips.

Beyond that, the webbing,straps and hip belt are adjustable which means you can fit this nifty pack to your own needs, and be right on your way.

2. Osprey Daylite Backpack

Yet, another on the top of our hiking daypack reviews list is the Osprey Daylight backpack.

Osprey Packs Daylite Daypack

This is the second Osprey backpack we recommend and is perfect for those short adventures in you.

This pack is all about simplicity. It is light and does not overwhelm with a plethora of pockets and loops. They seemed to think through every feature and possible need you might havein a day hike.

The Daylite is a well-constructed backpack with room for a hydration bladder, large zippers that are easy to use while on the move and a handy key clip.

The side pockets are a little on the large side, so it's recommended you accessorize your bottles to the bag so as not to lose them on a trek.

Overall, this is a top in class backpack and well worth a place on this list.

Deuter Speed Lit 20 Backpack

With over one hundred years of pack-making experience, Deuter is a heavy hitter in outdoor gear and its backpack easily makes our list of the best backpacks for day hikes.

The Deuter Speed Lite is no exception to the company's well-deserved reputation.

As the name suggests, this is a light pack intended for speed on the ground for its wearer.

With a breathable, nicely shaped back it should be comfortable no matter what climate you're hiking in.

With a chest and hip belt, it's got double the lateral support of many daypacks, giving it more stability for faster hikes or wilderness races.

4. CamelBak Cloud Walker 18 Hydration Pack

The CamelBak day hiking backpacks are fantastic.

Camelbak Cloud Walker 18 Hydration Pack

They are the name brand for their legendary hydration pack systems, but we have also found them to make excellent ultra-lightweight hiking packs.

Incredibly versatile, this pack is as at home on the daily commute as it is in unforgiving terrain. Featuring a superb water reservoir makes drinking water easy to do and fun to use.

I remember when I got my first Camelback, it was like discovering a new and better way to hike.

I wondered why I ever wasted the time lugging around water bottles when I could just drink it from the smooth effortless camelback suction cup.

I enjoyed using it so much that I even considered using it in my workplace.

But then I thought otherwise when I thought of all the weird looks I would get (I would only have to go to the water cooler once a day...).

As mentioned, this Camelback is extremely lightweight and very comfortable. If you have some weighty items inside, it featuresa nice cushiony straps. The chest strap provides security when scaling rocky slopes or navigating overgrown forest floors.

It is light and sturdy and has enough room for towels, snacks, and other essentials with its organizer pockets and side compressions.

Beyond all that, Camelback offers a lifetime warranty on all their packs in case anything ever goes wrong. It’s a can’t lose offer!

We think you will find this pack perfect for your next day hike.  Check out the pricing on the men and women's versions below by clicking on the image.

TETON Sports Oasis 1100

Due to its excellent price point, this bag easily wins the best value award.

Loaded with cool features, this pack is like the Camelback mentioned above and has an excellent hydration pack system for sipping water throughout your hike.

It’s small and lightweight with multiple pockets to make it very useful for carrying things during your day hike. It's suitable for a day at school or the office, but still tough enough for the weekend warrior in you.

Just like the brands we have listed in all our day hiking pack reviews, they offer an excellent limited lifetime warranty and superb customer service.

We have found that if you have a problem, they will for sure take care of it. They know their reputation is at stake and they deliver on their promises.

If you are looking to save some money and still get a great daypack, we believe this TETON Sports offering may just be your best bet!

It’s important to note that like Deuter, TETON Sports seeks to provide backpacks that are made for both men and women and thus their backpacks offer a nice unisex feel to them.

Both links below will take you to the same backpack.

Conclusion: What’s The Best Daypack?

What was your favorite backpack on the list?

Are you looking for comfort and a lightweight build, or versatility and durability?

We hope we gave you a nice list to choose from to fit your particular needs. Whichever backpack you choose, make sure it matches your personal needs and is stylish enough for you to take with you on your next hike.

Ultimately, we believe the best packs are not only useful and comfortable, but are long-lasting over time. For that reason, we only recommended high-quality packs with an outstanding reputation in the hiking marketplace.

Hiking daypack reviews

That’s why we like the Osprey daypacks the most as they have the best reputation and some of the top backpacks in the hiking industry. We recommend you go with either the Osprey Talon 22 or Osprey Daypack.

But the choice is yours. You must be the judge in what you are looking for be it price point or overall quality as that will determine how successful your purchase is.

There’s a mountain of research on the variety of backpacks available and my hope is our list has clarified your options and brought you one step closer to your next wilderness adventure.

Looking for a little more than just a hiking daypack?  We put together an excellent in depth review that breaks down the absolute Best Hiking Backpacks for those weekend adventures and week long excursions in this POST. 

About the author

Nate Alger

Nate is avid CrossFitter who loves pushing his body to the max in his attempt to look stronger. He loves toppling outrageous hiking adventures. Some of his most recent excursions include the Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu and the Half Dome hike in Yosemite National Park.

Best Hiking Backpacks in 2019 | In-Depth Review Guide - October 23, 2019

[…] we noted the top 5 packs for those day hikers out there. As always, we made clear the absolute best day packs for hiking and gave a few options at the end that serve the affordable consumer […]

Karthik S - November 18, 2019

Hi Nate Alger,

I was looking for some information to create an infographic on Backpacking and came across your site. Very informative and thanks for taking the effort. After completing the infographics., I would like to share it.

    Nate Alger - May 29, 2020

    Thanks Karthik!

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