Best Cooler Brands| Top 3 Ice Chest Manufacturers

Best Cooler Brands

Buying the right cooler can be quite the hassle.

Most all of us have some sort of cooler horror stories.  You probably at some point in your life have went with a cheap cooler that doesn’t last long and starts leaking.

Yeti Coolers

I feel like that was the case when I was growing up where there just weren’t that nice of coolers out there on the market and all the Walmart big box coolers were a piece of junk.

Unfortunately, in my family, we often went the cheap and easy over high quality and long lasting.

Thankfully, in recent years there has been a greater emphasis on quality over price and some new upstart brands have spoken to the consumer need for high-end coolers.

We are here to lay out the best cooler brands to pick from on the market.

We tried to lay out the top three companies in a factual, but fun way, while sprinkling in some videos showing the toughness of the coolers.

Check out our three favorites below...

Top Cooler Brands

Yeti

Looking for the gold standard in the ice chest industry?

After lots of testing and meta-data analysis we have found that the best cooler brand is none other than Yeti.

Founded by a couple of brothers in 2006, they saw a serious pain point for people who needed a high quality cooler. They got sick of the cheap big box brands out there that continually broke down.

Yeti Roadie 20 Quart Cooler

So they set out to create a high-end premium brand cooler with only the best materials. Their goal was to create a cooler that they would use every day

And that is exactly what they did.

Some might bark at the price of their coolers, but to be honest if you are always buying new ice chests every few years or are having problems with the ones you have, it’s worth the money over time when you value the hassle free guarantee Yeti gives.

Yeti Tundra

In recent years, Yeti has blitzed the market and taken a lot of the premium market share from other competitors (listed below). Yeti has built up an excellent reputation with superb product and an outstanding brand focused on two things quality and service.

They don’t sell cheap coolers (just check their prices), but what you will consistently find is people that are more than satisfied for the overall quality and longevity of their products.

Yeti Soft Cooler

Lots of times you get what you pay for.  And in this case, you truly get a great cooler with Yeti.

Something to keep in mind is that although they are an American company, creating jobs in America, they also do import some of their coolers from Vietnam.

For those looking for a strictly American brand, check out Pelican Products below.

Overall, Yeti has done it with superb, unique products, and excellent customer service. I know you will be just as satisfied in their coolers and products as I and thousands of others have been.

They don’t compromise on quality under any circumstances.

Cooler Type

Model

Image

Check Price

Top Heavy Duty Cooler

YETI TUNDRA 65

Yeti Tundra

Top Soft Sided Cooler

YETI HOPPER 40

Yeti Hopper Cooler

Top Personal Cooler

YETI HOPPER FLIP 12

Yeti Hopper Flip 12

Still doubt the toughness of a Yeti?

Checkout how it stacks up against everything Yeti could throw at it:

Pelican

Pelican Coolers is another excellent brand that, like Yeti, serves the high-end quality customer.

In fact, they even have our favorite wheeled cooler, the Pelican ProGear Elite Wheeled Cooler.​

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler

It has been around for over 40 years and is based in the beautiful SoCal city of Torrance. They continue to deliver a great quality product year in and year out.

Customers rave about the quality of their products and many have a hard time deciding between Pelican and Yeti. To be honest, it was tough for us and honestly we love both brands.

Their top cooler, the Pelican Elite Cooler, is outstanding and is known to keep ice insulated for up to 10 days. That’s a whole fishing trip and then some.

Pelican offers a lifetime warranty to show that they 100% backup the quality on all of their coolers.

With that focus on quality, it’s no wonder they are one of the best ice chests brands on the market today.

Pelican ProGear 20QT 20 Quart Elite Cooler

As mentioned earlier, many people take offense to Yeti.

Although Yeti is an American brand, some of their coolers come from overseas. It is for that reason why many buyers have gone with other top ice chest brands, like Pelican.

Before you skip down to Grizzly Coolers, keep in mind that Pelican makes sure their coolers are 100% bear resistant.

It’s clear they value thick, durable, materials that don’t break down under ANY circumstance.

Cooler Type

Model

Image

Price

Top Heavy Duty Cooler

Pelican ProGear Elite

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler, 65 quart

Top Wheeled Cooler

Pelican ProGear Elite Wheeled

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Wheeled Cooler

Top Personal Cooler

Pelican ProGear 20QT

Pelican ProGear 20QT 20 Quart Elite Cooler

Grizzly Coolers

These guys deliver some rock star coolers at a high-end price.

Grizzly Coolers 60-Quart Cooler

The toughness and durability of their coolers is truly represented in their name: Grizzly Coolers.

They actually test all their coolers with IGBC bear resistant testing to make sure you're safe in the wild with one of their products. Clearly it’s not just a name! Next time you are in mother nature with bears don’t be scared.

These guys go the extra mile to make sure they don’t sell you a product with defects. They have an incredible 90-degree climate controlled test process where they monitor the ice levels on all their coolers. 

Grizzly 15 quart

Talk about some serious quality control. Oh, and by the way, they truly do stay cool for days.

They seal well with excellent latches with think rotomolded walls to provide a strong layered exterior.

You think I am kidding about that dense exterior? Check this out below...

Cooler Type

Model

Image

Price

Top Heavy Duty Cooler

Grizzly 60 Quart

Grizzly 60 quart

Top Personal Cooler

Grizzly 15 Quart

Grizzly 15 quart

Igloo

**Best Affordable Cooler Brand**

We thought about not including Igloo as, to be honest, their coolers don’t really stack up to the best 3 cooler brands listed above.

Igloo Yukon Cold Locker Cooler

If we put them to the bear test or the mack truck test, I am most certain they fail.

But they are not as heavily invested in their materials as they want to reach a more mass market.

If you liked the above videos, and the quality above, but can’t afford to pay top dollar, then maybe Igloo is what you need.

We realize that not everyone wants to drop $200+ on a cooler. So we wanted to provide an alternative to the high-end, expensive cooler brands on the market.

Created in 1947 in a modest metalworking shop. Now, they have expanded into a 1.8 million square foot building in Katy, Texas a suburban town outside of Houston.

Igloo Daytripper Collection

Over the years, they have innovated and expanded into many different markets and product lines.  But as whole, they are known for their many styles and types of coolers ranging from tough heavy duty coolers that work great for boating and fishing trips all the way to portable electric coolers.  

Igloo serves a great market and does a great job with their coolers while providing a bigtime appeal for discount retailers like Walmart and Costco. For the most part, their coolers hold up and they provide a good variety of types and styles to choose from.

Again, if you are looking for affordable and simple, these coolers are you go tos.

Cooler Type

Model

Image

Price

Top Heavy Duty Cooler

Igloo Cold Locker

Yukon Cold Locker

Top Soft Sided Cooler

Igloo Marine Ultra

Igloo Marine Ultra

Top Personal Cooler

​Igloo Daytripper

Igloo Daytripper Collection

What’s the Best Cooler Brand For You?

We hope you liked our in depth analysis and study of the best cooler brands on the market today.

From old timers like Pelican and Igloo, to newer upstarts like Grizzly and Yeti, you should have no problem picking out a style that you like.

But are you still having a hard time deciding?

Let me hit you with a quick breakdown of the facts above and help you come to a better conclusion.

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Wheeled Cooler

If you want a tough American manufactured cooler that is guaranteed to last go with Pelican. The Pelican ProGear Elite cooler is fantastic and they even have a wheeled option which is fantastic.

Grizzly has the coolest name and has an IGBC bear resistant, extreme temperature quality tested process that guarantees a perfect cooler to every buyer. So if you don’t like bears eating your food and you like the design, go with Grizzly.

Don’t want to shell out $200+ for a new cooler and want a great low cost cooler, than go with the Igloo models outlined above. They don’t have the same guarantees to quality, but as a whole they do a good job serving the mass market audience.

Finally, if you want to go with our favorite, and also a local American company, go with Yeti. They manufacturer top of the line coolers and truly work extremely hard with their suppliers to ensure serious quality control.

Yeti Tundra Cooler

However, watch out for all the Yeti copycats out there.

The Yeti Tundra is a beast to say the least and can withstand any task.

Still don’t believe me? Still don’t think Yeti is tough enough to withstand anything that comes its way?

I have one more video for you as a 500-pound man takes on a Yeti Tundra. Haha enjoy! 🙂

Thanks for bearing with me with all the destructive videos.  I hope you weren’t too put off by all the tough cooler tests...

Still looking for more information before deciding?  We put together an In Depth Review Guide on the best coolers on the market today in this comprehensive article.

Best Electric Coolers | Top 5 Electric Ice Chests On The Market

Best Electric Coolers

Having fresh food and cool drinks is a must for any long distance traveler.

Knox 48 Quart Electric Cooler-Warmer

Though there are plenty of excellent ice chests available, sometimes you just want the reliability of an electric cooler. You don't have to worry about melting ice or leaks with a plugged in cooler after all.

In this article, I'm going to break down the five best electric coolers offered online.

There are plenty of options for those who want to be plugged in.

I consider design, spaciousness, noise level, and all the important features to better help you make the right decision when it comes to electric coolers.

Looking for a heavy duty ice chest to go along with your electric?  We put together top of the line reviews with extensive meta-data research on all the best coolers right here.  

​Electric Ice Chests Review List

1. Knox 48 Quart Electric Cooler/Warmer

My top electric cooler pick is the Knox 48 Quart Electric Cooler/Warmer.

Knox 48 Quart Electric Cooler-Warmer

As you can guess from the name, this is a versatile piece of gear with options for cooling or heating food when on the road.

The built-in AC home plug and DC car plug also means you have plenty of options for charging this spacious cooler.

At a mid-range price, this chest is an excellent deal for the 48-quart size. Keep in mind the fan is rather noisy, so sleeping with it running could prove difficult.

The wheels make it an easy companion to carry around with you, while the five and half foot DC cable is a convenient length for plopping it on the backseat.

2. Wagan (EL6224) 12V Cooler/Warmer

One of the best 12v coolers on the market is the Wagan 12V at a price that is a steal of a deal.

Wagan (EL6224) 12V Cooler-Warmer

The Wagan 12V Cooler/Warmer may be small, but its great design means it has a surprisingly spacious interior. Its petite size allows it to sit comfortably behind the passenger seat which of course makes the Wagan very portable.

The fan is not too loud, though you will notice it somewhat in a totally quiet room.

The seven and half foot DC cable is long enough to sit it on the backseat of larger cars, so any younger campers behind you can help themselves to chilled snacks on the way.

3. Excelvan 12V Thermoelectric Cooler/Warmer

My most affordable option on my best electric coolers list is the Excelvan travel refrigerator.

Excelvan BT16 6L 12V Portable Car Thermoelectric Cooler-Warmer

This is a convenient little cooler with a few nice attributes for its cheaper price.

The top cover offers easy access to the chamber, while the shoulder strap means you can carry this cooler from home to car and car to site without any trouble.

The slim body design lets this chest sit easily on the floor of the backseat, and the non-slip footpads are a nice safety feature.

The cooler does have a strong plastic smell straight out of the box, so it's advisable to wrap food well or air the machine before use.

However, if you are looking to save money and want a great electric cooler for your next adventure, we think the Excelvn portable cooler/warmer might be just what you were looking for.

4. Igloo Iceless 40-Quart with 110-volt Converter

It will be no surprise to outdoor enthusiasts that an Igloo model has made it onto my list of electric cooler reviews.

Igloo 40375 Iceless 40-Quart

This is a top brand that comes with a high price tag.

However, as often is the case, the high price point means better quality. The Igloo 40-Quart is plenty large enough to carry a good amount of food and drinks for your next car ride.

The aesthetic exterior is sleek and modern, and the body is well-constructed and durable.

Dual orientation means that this electric chest is top-loaded when horizontal, or front loaded with a door when it's vertical.

The power cord can be a little fragile, so take care when plugging the cooler in and removing the plug after use.

If you are looking for a nice sized popular name brand cooler, look no further than this Igloo model. Check the price below.

5. Coleman 40-Quart PowerChill Thermoelectric Cooler

Last on my list is the Coleman 40 Quart PowerChill Thermoelectric Cooler.

Coleman 40 Quart Thermoelectric Cooler

This car cooler is a sound buy, and can be used in the home as well with its 110v outlet, but you will definitely need an adaptor.

Also, dual oriented, this is a well-thought out product with tray shelves for organizing your items.

This means you can easily fit in more essentials than less well-outfitted coolers. The motor is quiet, so if you are using this in sleeping areas such as an SUV or a dorm room, then you shouldn't lose any sleep.

Pre-chilling items before putting them in will make the best use of this solid cooler.

Conclusion: Which Cooler Is Right For You?

I've looked at some of the best electric coolers available online.

Knox 48 Quart Electric Cooler-Warmer

Personally, we really liked the Knox 48 Quart Cooler/Warmer due to its large size, versatility, and durability.

But other brands like the Igloo 40-Quart PowerChill offer a great alternative if you are looking for something different.

Igloo 40375 Iceless 40-Quart

While powerless ice-chests are a more independent, rugged option, electric coolers have plenty of benefits, and can serve multiple purposes such as an extra refrigerator in the kitchen, a dorm or in the garage.

If you are going on long road trips this saves the hassle of having to constantly be buying more ice and draining out the water on a regular cooler.

When considering your options, it's best to think about where you'll be using the cooler. If it's in sleeping quarters, you'll want something with a quiet fan.

However, if it's for long car journeys the fan noise won't create as much of a problem.

Cord length, the cooler's interior, and durability are also factors that must be considered before you make that all-important purchase.

Not satisfied with the electric cooler options and want a real heavy duty cooler? We put together a list of the top heavy duty coolers on the market. Check out our in depth analysis and review of the best coolers on the market here.

Best Soft Sided Coolers For Any Occasion

Best Soft Coolers

Planning a short excursion but don't fancy the idea of limp lettuce, soggy sandwiches, and warm beer?

Yeti Soft Cooler

Then a good soft cooler is probably something you want to invest in. Hard sided ice chests are useful, but can be cumbersome and difficult to transport, especially if your destination has a long walk involved like an outing to the beach.

Some of the best soft sided coolers, like the Yeti shown in the right image,  keep your perishables safe and cold, without adding the extra bulk.

There is a broad range of coolers available, from value buys to more luxury choices, and our top 5 soft cooler reviews are going to walk you through the best of the best.

So let's take a look in the detailed list below.

Soft Sided Coolers Review List

1. Yeti Field Hopper Cooler

Kicking off my list is the YETI Hopper Portable Cooler.

Yeti 40 Field Hopper

At a hefty price tag, this cooler is a high-end choice not suitable for the value shopper, but for those wanting the best, this is it.

Its great construction makes it a durable outdoor companion that will stand the test of time. The DryHide shell is puncture resistant and the straps are almost indestructible.

One issue with the YETI Hopper is access to the pack through the zipper opening. While the Hydrolok zippers, a design borrowed from Hazmat suits, are fantastic at preventing leaks, the placement is awkward.

Yeti Hopper Cooler

If you can live with the sometimes difficult zipper opening, you won’t find a more durable high quality soft cooler than this one. We have found that ice stays cool and doesn’t melt for days on end.

It even has a cool bottle opener attached to it, perfect for your next camping trip.​

Overall, the YETI Hopper is a flexible, well-made piece of gear making it the best soft ice chest on my list.

2. Polar Bear Coolers 24 Pack Soft Cooler

Want to explore your real wild side while still having the option of a cool beverage at the end of your trek?

Polar Bear Coolers 24 Pack Soft Cooler

If so, the Polar Bear 24 Pack Soft Cooler might be the choice for you. With its camouflaged aesthetic and sturdy build, this cooler has great ice-retention and durability.

At a price point considerably lower than the Yeti Hopper listed above, we think you will like this excellent mid-range offering from Polar Bear.

Soft Sided Cooler Reviews

Something to be aware of is the capacity of the cooler. With ice inside you might struggle to fit in the advertised 24 pack load.

The tough nylon does make the Polar Bear a sound investment.

If you plan on frequent adventures and are a consumer looking for a good mid-level price, look no further than the Polar Bear 24 Pack.

3. RTIC 30 Soft Pack

Our favorite mid-range cooler on the list is the RTIC 30 Soft Pack.

RTIC 30 Soft Pack

Boasting ice retention of up to five days, a no-leak zipper, and a roomy inner, this is easily one of the best soft ice chests available online.

This cooler is a tank and well worth the higher price tag (still, much cheaper than the Yeti model).

Puncture resistant with a tough vinyl shell, the RTIC 30 Soft Pack is strong against even the smallest attacks, as it has an antimicrobial liner that prevents mildew.

Rtic Soft Cooler

Thankfully, it is UV and tear resistant as well.

The zipper can be a little tricky, but other charming design features such as the outer pocket for dry items, more than make up for it.

Yet another great soft cooler option, we think the everyday shopper will like this latest offering from RTIC.

4. IceMule Pro Coolers

At a slightly lower price, the IceMule Pro Cooler is another great mid-range choice.

IceMule Coolers Pro Coolers

In handy backpack form, it's also the most portable option on my list.

Why didn’t someone think of a cooler backpack before???

This is a great cooler for adventurers who want to stay light on their feet; a perfect fit for kayakers, concert-goers, and hikers.

Ice Mule Coolers

You won't find a badly sewn stitch on this bag as they clearly focus on quality. The patented molded design makes this lower cost cooler surprisingly well insulated.

Durable and with 24 hours ice-retention, this is a fantastic offering for people who want to stay mobile and still have ice-cold food and drinks at the end of the day.

For those looking for a nice mobile, backpacking cooler, check out the IceMule Pro Cooler by clicking the button below.

5. AO Coolers Canvas Soft Cooler

The budget option on my list is the Canvas Soft Cooler by AO Coolers. With a removable shoulder strap, this is also a great portable option.

AO Coolers Canvas Soft Cooler

With the lowest price of the five listed, there is a slight compromise on materials and construction.

The AO Cooler might not be the most durable ice chest on my list, but it's great for shorter, less frequent outings such as parties or trips to the beach.

This canvas cooler has a roomy main section and a side pocket for dry items. It also has a leak proof liner, which for the price, easily places it as one of the best soft sided coolers around.

It’s no wonder the AO Coolers Canvas received our “Best Value” pick in 2017.

Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler

**Honorable Mention**

Before we conclude its worth having a quick look at the Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler.

Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler

Smaller than the other ice chests listed, this is a nifty little cooler that is great for half-day trips. It’s easy to clean, flexible and sports some nice side pockets for extra snacks.

At a very affordable price, this is a good starter cooler, or an extra pack for some snacks on route to your destination.

Check it out only if you are very limited on your budget and want to get the most affordable soft cooler on the market.

What’s The Best Soft Cooler Bag?

There are a lot of great products out there on the market but hopefully these soft cooler reviews have given you some pointers.

The abundance of choice works in your favor as you can select the best cooler for your type of trip.

Yeti (YHOP40T) 40 Field Hopper

High-end, thoughtfully designed, and well-constructed coolers like the YETI Hopper are going to set you back in the wallet, but will be durable and deliver on keeping your items cold for days.

Cheaper alternatives like the Polar Bear 24 pack have less ice-retention and may need to be replaced in time, but work perfectly if they are for lighter use and quick day trips.

Whichever soft ice chest you settle on, I'm sure a cool drink at the end of a long, hot day will be well worth the purchase.

Want to look beyond soft sided coolers?  We put together a legit, full post with the absolute best coolers available here.​

Best Wheeled Coolers | Top 5 Rolling Ice Chests

BEST WHEELED COOLERS

Getting away from it all can be hard enough.

Best Coolers with Wheels

"the boat show" flickr photo by egarc2 https://flickr.com/photos/egarc2/473893888 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

Add on all those extra provisions and somewhere to store them, a peaceful trip away can soon become an arduous task.

One of the best ways to ease your burden is to invest in a wheeled cooler.

That way you can save your back muscles but can still enjoy a cold beer or a fresh sandwich at your getaway destination.

Want to see our top choice?  Click here to check the price on our favorite wheeled cooler, the high-end Pelican ProGear Elite.​

I'm going to look at some of the best wheeled coolers online, all the while considering the cost, design, and other crucial quality features.

There's no reason a heavy ice chest should keep you from a cool beverage when you in the great outdoors.

After all, where there's a wheel there's a way.

Top 5 ​Rolling Coolers On The Market

1. Pelican 
Products 
ProGear Elite

First on my list is the Pelican Products ProGear Elite Wheeled Cooler.

Pelican is one of the most reputable cooler manufacturers in the world and one of our top 2 coolers brands and has over forty years of experience. 

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Wheeled Cooler

The ProGear Elite does not buck their trend of rolling out yet another great ice chest.

Tough and UV resistant, this cooler will definitely be a great outdoor companion for a long time.

The chunky press and pull latches are excellent for use with gloves, while the non-skid feet will make sure the cooler doesn't go anywhere you don't want it to.

Want your food and drinks to stay cool for days without buying more ice? This cooler boast ten days of ice retention.

Pelican Wheels

Lastly, the heavy duty wheels round out a great design.  At a premium price, the ProGear Elite is on the expensive side.

But with Pelican offering a guarantee for life, this is a sound investment and a winner of our “Top Choice” in the search for the best cooler with wheels.

Still not sure Pelican can withstand whatever you throw at it?  Check out there quick 30 second video below...​

2. Dometic White
 Avalanche Ultimate Cooler

The Dometic Avalanche Ultimate Wheeled Cooler is an absolute beast of a cooler and yet still has enough design finesse to be placed second on our wheeled coolers review list.

Dometic AVAL65LW White Avalanche

All-weather “T” latches, heavy duty all-terrain wheels, and a rugged construction makes this one of the best rolling coolers when it comes to durability.

The retractable handle is a nice touch, as you can easily tow your chilled-goods behind you, while the mold-in side handles are convenient for lifting.

The drain is well placed and very easy to clean, and you don't need to worry about losing the cap out in the wilderness because it's on a chain.

If you are looking for a nice mid-range rolling cooler, we recommend you check out this Dometic Avalanche.

3. Igloo Glide PRO Cooler 

The next best wheeled cooler on my list at a modest price is the Igloo Glide PRO Cooler.

Igloo Glide PRO Cooler (110-Quart)

Built with a tough frame, the Igloo Glide is constructed from polyethylene, and has virtually indestructible zinc-plated metal hinges.

This ice chest has a sleeker design than some of the others, but don't let that fool you: it's still as rugged as the terrain you'll be towing it to.

And with the over-sized sport rally wheels, rough ground won't be a problem.

This is a well-sealed, decent piece of kit, with ice retention of up to five days.  The handle is also conveniently placed for pulling.

4. Rubbermaid 60-Quart Ice Chest/Cooler

At a very affordable price, the Rubbermaid Ice Chest 60-quart is the first of my budget options.

Rubbermaid 60-Quart Ice Chest/Cooler

This cooler comes in a nice range of sizes from 10 quarts to 60 quarts, with a fresh blue or hard-to-misplace red outer.

The easy to clean liner is also stain and odor resistant, while the thermal retention is good enough to keep food and drink chilled for a short trip.

The walls are thinner than some of the other models I've looked at, which is great for towing and moving, but not so great for longer trips.

So consider your needs when making this budget purchase.

5. Igloo 45069 Island Breeze Cooler

The most affordable of them all is the Igloo Island Breeze Cooler.

Igloo 45069 Island Breeze Cooler

As the second Igloo on my list it is priced substantially lower than the rest of the pack.

For some trips, a larger ice chest will be more trouble than it's worth, so it's good to have a smaller cooler with some of the same impressive attributes as the ones listed above.

This little weekender has a telescoping handle, soft ride sport rally wheels and side scoop handles for ease of moving it around off the ground.

Decent ice-retention and plenty of room for provisions for a shorter trip, make this is a great small size choice.

We certainly wouldn’t recommend it for those looking for a long lasting durable option, but for those that are on a budget and don’t require a high quality cooler than we believe this Island Breeze might do the trick.

Conclusion

I've looked a range of wheeled coolers from large to small, suitable for short trips and long excursions.

It's important to think carefully about how long you plan to store your perishables for and what sort of terrain or outings you'll be using your ice chest on.

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Wheeled Cooler

The usual size of your party will also be reflected in your needs, with solo travellers opting for a smaller, lighter cooler.

There are a lot of coolers to choose from, and this list is a fraction of the products available online.

From my top choice of the Pelican to the cheaper Igloo model, there's something out there for everyone.

Ready to up the anty and want to see what the best cooler of all-time is?  

We put together a list of the top 5 coolers on the market with this EPIC GUIDE.

Best Marine Coolers | Top 5 Ice Chests For Fishing

Best Marine Coolers

As any sailor will tell you, the caprices of the open water are not to be taken lightly.

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler

The saltwater and driving winds can wreak havoc on equipment and goods. As well as that, a bracing sea fishing trip can be ruined by a spoiled catch.

The last thing you want is a boat cooler that doesn’t hold up and keep your catch fresh throughout the trip.

It’s essential to get a marine cooler that keeps ice cold consistently over time and is durable enough to withstand many journeys.

I'm going to give you the rundown of our top five best marine coolers on the market today.

I'll be looking at a range of sizes, attributes, and prices so that you don't have to go overboard when researching your next marine ice chest.

Marine Cooler Reviews| Comparison Chart

Top 5 Marine Coolers On The Market

1. Yeti Tundra Cooler 65

It's no surprise that YETI has gained first slot on my list of best fishing coolers.

Yeti Tundra Cooler

The company is a stalwart of the ice chest manufacturing world and is constantly being praised as a brand for its excellent quality products and durability.

Yeti is a very trustable name brand in the cooler space.  It was started by two brothers that liked to fish and were tired of the flimsy options on the market.

The YETI Tundra therefore is a reliable investment if you're looking for a durable and well-designed cooler, though the great quality comes at a price.

Though the most expensive of the coolers on our list, if you are a frequent fisher, then consider this a smart investment for the long run.

Yeti handle

A good thing to remember is if you are buying a new cooler every year or two you end up losing money buying the cheaper model. It’s probably worth it to go quality and durability over price in this case.

Roto-molded in one piece, with T-Rex latches and a NeverFail hinge system, this marine ice cooler is a great catch.

Check it out and you will be sure to be blown away by the quality and attention to detail that Yeti puts in all their high-end marine coolers.

2. Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler

Next up is the Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler in 65-quart size.

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler

Pelican sits together with YETI in the big league of ice chest manufacturers. Their products have 40 years of experience in them and are guaranteed for life.

The ProGear Elite cooler won't disappoint with it's ten days’ ice-retention and freezer grade gasket. That sure it a lot of mileage on a single pack of ice.

As the ice does start to melt you won’t need to worry about spillage as this cooler is extremely watertight.

Polyethylene plastic and robust handles also mean this ice chest is going to be with you for a long time. A great cooler and well worth the higher price.

3. Grizzly Coolers 60-Quart Cooler

The Grizzly 60-Quart cooler is just as mean and tough as the company's name suggests.

Grizzly Coolers 60-Quart Cooler

At a high price point like the two previous listings, it’s also selling in the premium quality market.

Again, we only want to recommend the best of the best and the Grizzly 60-Quart easily makes that list with their top of the line materials.

A great feature that many Yeti loyalists often overlook, is that Grizzly coolers are manufactured in the good ole US of A (Yeti has some of its manufacturing, not all, overseas).

It has feel-good built into the purchase, and that lifetime warranty isn't too bad either.

The ice-retention is great–up to ten days, while the seals are well made and will store your precious catch without causing a stink. A smooth surface coupled with an oversized drain also means this cooler is a dream to clean.

The Grizzly has been run over by an 11,000lb tractor in product testing and even has a bear proof certification, making this the rough and tough choice for fishing enthusiasts.

4. Coleman 120 Quart Xtreme 5 Marine Cooler

My budget choice is the Coleman 120 Quart Coastal Xtreme Series Marine Cooler.

Coleman 120 Quart Coastal Xtreme Series Marine Cooler

Priced considerably lower than the above models mentioned, this ice chest still has some great features, and so I can unashamedly support it as one of our best fishing coolers reviewed.

The Coastal Xtreme has a UV guard that will help protect your cooler and give it a longer lifespan than the price would initially suggest. It has an ice-retention of up to six days, and is rust resistant.

With the lower cost comes some downgrades in a few of the materials and production compared to the high-grade coolers. The lid will leak a little if left at an angle, so be sure to keep this ice chest on flat surfaces for prolonged periods of time.

Overall however, for the price, it'll be hard to find a better cooler. So if you are looking for a cheaper marine cooler model, look no further than our “Best Value” choice.

5. Outdoor Recreational Company of America Cooler

Finishing off my list of best boat coolers is the Outdoor Recreational Company of America Cooler, or ORCA brand.

Outdoor Recreational Company of America Cooler

Also made in the USA, this ice chest is durable and thoughtfully designed and effective.

However, it comes at the highest price point of all the coolers on my list when you include the shipping cost.

It is an excellent product and is sure to not disappoint, but we didn’t see any considerable strengths of this cooler over the others reviewed above when factoring in the price.

The ORCA cooler is roto-molded making it tough, but also sleek and easy to clean.

The company measures the cooler's internal dimensions, which means that you tend to get more room for your buck with their sizes.

The lid gasket ensures you have a tough seal, so you need not worry about finding your catch spoiled on the drive home.  They believe in their product and thus offer a lifetime warranty to go along with your purchase.

Summing It Up: What Is The Best Cooler for Fishing?

Best Fishing Coolers

Overall, we hope you have liked our marine coolers reviews and have come away with a better grasp of the best boating cooler for your particular budget.

I've looked at how proper seals, good ice-retention and value for your money can affect your choices when looking for the best coolers for boating and fishing.

Personally, we loved both the Yeti Tundra and Pelican Elite Model as they both deliver an excellent product that has the durability to last many outings.

For us, Yeti has slight edge with the detail that they put in manufacturing and eliminating all possible defects.

Yeti Tundra Cooler

It's absolutely vital that you consider the type of investment you want to make here, because some of the coolers run to upwards of $300 to $400.

However, if your trips are frequent and you feel your ice chest will be tested by the elements then this can be a very wise investment.

The worst case scenario is compromising on your purchase and coming home, opening your ice chest, only to find you've gotten fresh caught, but spoiled fish!

Looking to purchase the best cooler on the market?   We put together an In-Depth Guide with the best coolers you can buy and went more into detail on the decision process.

Best Beach Coolers | 5 Options For You Beach Goer!

Best Beach Coolers

Is there a more pleasant way to celebrate a little rest and relaxation than a trip out to the beach with some friends?

YETI Hopper Flip 12

I don't think so.

What adds to such a great time spent by the ocean are some cool drinks, snacks, and maybe even a barbecue.  But you can't have any of those without the right cooler.

I'm going to walk you through my picks for the best beach coolers, so that you can hit the sand with the least effort involved.

My options range from high-end well-known brands to cheaper alternatives for those on a budget.

With all that sun and surf calling, let's get started.

​Top 5 Beach Coolers

1. YETI Hopper Flip 12

The YETI brand dominates the top of the list for the best coolers for the beach and it’s for good reason.

YETI Hopper Flip 12

This Texas-based manufacturer rolls out great designs with long-lasting construction.

Yeti has built a name in recent year by offering premium coolers for those that are tired of the ordinary breakable, leaky models that are sold at large department stores.

They take quality seriously and it clearly shows in their products.

The Hopper Flip 12 is no exception to that rule, and at the high price point you will pay for the expertise and top-end materials. But keep in mind this isn’t just your usual beach cooler.

A good friend of mine actually uses his when he is going to the gym and wants to keep his after workout snacks and lunch cool all day.  The cubed body and broad fabric handles make this cooler an easy haul, while the squat silhouette means it can stand up to some of those strong sea breezes.

The dry-hide shell can withstand the elements and keep your goods protected.  I've used this cooler time and time again and have seen no sign of wear and tear.

Finally, the hydro-lock zipper and broad opening also offer easy access to your beachside essentials.    Check out all the details in this rad 2 minute video.

If you need a top notch beach cooler, look no further than our #1 recommendation, the Yeti Hopper Flip 12.

Looking for a cooler with a softer, more bendable frame?  We recommend the ​traditional Yeti Hopper portable cooler due to it's excellent versatility.

2. RTIC 30 Soft Pack

The RTIC Soft Pack is the next best beach cooler in my book.

RTIC 30 Soft Pack

At a more mid-range price point compared to the Yeti Hopper model above, this is a nice premium cooler boasting impressive durability.

With ice-retention of up to five days, the RTIC 30 Soft Pack can more than hold its own under the sun, and the no-leak zipper will prevent any spillage when the ice does start to melt.

The foam insulation and a cube shaped body add to this cooler's rugged appearance and use, while the shoulder strap adds comfort and convenience to make hauling it to the sand easy peasy.

Rtic Soft Cooler

The zipper can be a little tricky which is frustrating with wet hands, or in glaring light. That was about the only negative feedback we found in a few users.

Otherwise, this is a fantastic mid-level choice.

Looking for a more affordable model than the Yeti, we know this one will more than surpass your needs on your next day at the beach.

3. Malibu Beach Tote Bag with Insulated Picnic Cooler

Next up is a superb budget option for the beach.

Aruba Mesh Beach Tote Bag

The Malibu Mesh Beach Tote Bag is a steal of a deal at an affordable price. This lightweight, small tote bag has an insulated cooler section at the bottom to keep your drinks and snacks chilled for a short day at the beach.

The liner is flexible and easy to clean, while the overall construction of the bag is sturdy.

We loved the fact that you can use the bag as more than just a cooler as the top section can hold towels or clothes and has a couple handy pockets to go along with it.

Naturally, the price and design means this bag is a little different from the other options on our list, but it is a great alternative to bulkier ice chests.

Aruba Mesh Bag

One downside is that when the cooler compartment is empty, the bag looses its shape somewhat and can tip over. Also, the cooler compartment is a little smaller than some of the other earlier options we mentioned.

These are just a couple of the things to keep watch for.

However, if you are looking for a versatile bag where you can keep your food and drinks cool and carry your towels and sunscreen this is your bag and know you won’t be disappointed.

4. Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler

A longstanding manufacturer of outdoor gear, Coleman produces some of the best budget coolers available for low prices.

Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler

The Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler is one such product. It certainly won’t set you back much on price. T

his cooler has a removable hard liner so you can pack it to your own requirements.

If you need more space, simply remove the hard shell. The adjustable shoulder strap and additional pockets also shows that Coleman had comfort in mind when designing this cooler.

The 16-can size advertised is perhaps a little optimistic, as you'll feel the squeeze when packing that much in. The PEVA liner is easy to clean, while the workmanship is generally sound, so you shouldn't find this wearing out before its time.

As I alluded to earlier, this is one of those budget big brand coolers, so don’t be surprised if the durability is an issue here.

However, if you are looking for a basic cooler at a great price then look no further than this Coleman offering!

5. Freddie and Sebbie Cooler Bag

The final choice on the list of the best coolers for the beach is the Freddie and Sebbie Cooler Bag.

Freddie and Sebbie Cooler Bag

Yet another good budget option, this tote bag is portable and very stylish with a classic blue and white stripe pattern.

Not only is the construction sound, this bag is also made from eco-friendly materials, so you won't have to feel guilty looking out on the stunning nature of the ocean.

The outer pocket is a nice touch and useful for keeping dry goods or toiletries.

The long handles make the Freddie and Sebbie cooler easy to carry, so your stroll down to the promenade won't be too tough.

Want a nice stylish design while keeping your drinks cool, we think this might be your best option.

Yodo 18L Collapsible Soft Cooler Bag

**Honorable Mention**​

Yodo Collapsible Soft Cooler Bag

Our Honorable Mention has to go to the Yodo 18L Collapsible Cooler Bag.

At a low price, this bag will give you a waterproof outer and a roomy interior for your beach-ready banquet. The padded shoulder straps and handles also means it’s as comfortable as it is useful.

Again those price sensitive buyers should look no further than this latest Yodo offering.

Conclusion: What's The Best Beach Cooler For Me?

I hope you have enjoyed our short little beach cooler review List.

I've taken us through our top five choices of coolers available online, and there are some really great, new, and innovative options out there today.

From more expensive brands like the YETI for serious beach goers, to cheaper alternatives like the Freddie and Sebbie Cooler Bag, there are plenty of choices for your next beach trip.  Keep in mind coolers like Yeti Flip Hopper are versatile and hold up well over time.

Think about how often you plan to use the bag, what you want to store in it, and how long you intend on being in the sun, and your decision making process should become easier.

Given how joyful that first sip of a cool drink on a hot summer's day can be, there are definitely worse decisions you could be making.

Best Coolers On The Market | Ice Chest Review Guide

Best Coolers of 2017

An excellent ice chest is part of the dream of the great outdoors: sitting around a campfire together and reaching behind for an ice-cold beer or a fresh snack.

They’re useful at the beach, in off-the-grid cabins and for those bracing, life-affirming ice-fishing trips.

In my ice chest reviews below, I'll walk you through my top five picks of the coolers available online. With so many ice chests on the market, it can be difficult to know where to start, but chill out: I've got you!

I'll look at design, ice-retention, safety, durability and value to make sure you're in the know about the best coolers out there!

Ready to get right to it?  Skip down to the below section that says Top 5 Ice Chests if you want to see our Top 5 Recommendations

Different Types of Ice Chests

There are a few different options and aspects to look at when choosing an ice chest. Let’s take a look.

Safety

Best coolers

Don't be caught out when you're in the wilderness by having a poorly sealed cooler.

This could result in sickness, spoiled food or even a bear attack. Some containers are bear-proof certified. If you’ll be camping in areas known for bears, then this certification is a must.

Value

For the more adventurous or off-the-beaten-track adventurers, an investment in an expensive ice chest from a reputable company will save you money in the long run.

However, if you only need a cooler for a weekend hike or beach trip, then a cheaper, off-brand model will be just fine. There is a broad range of coolers from $50-$200 to chose from.

Size

Some smaller coolers are just fine for a weekend away or a trip to a national park.

However, if you are planning longer trips, you’ll want to bank for a larger size to ensure you have enough space for all your necessities.

Best Ice Chest Brands

My top ice chests come from the best 5 cooler brands on the market. Let’s take a closer look.

YETI

Yeti Coolers

YETI is the go-to model for a lot of outdoor enthusiasts when choosing an ice cooler.

Conceived by two trail-blazing brothers when they were frustrated with the products available on the market, YETI has grown rapidly since the company began in 2006.

Often, other ice coolers will be held against YETI for comparison as they have achieved the mark of a well-respected and innovative outdoors company.

On the expensive side, their products are durable and should save you money in the long run.

Want to here more about Yeti's unique beginning?  Check out the 5 minute video below talking about how and where they got started because their need was so great

Pelican

Pelican is perhaps the most authoritative manufacturer on my list.

It's now in its 40th year of production, but this California based company shows no signs of slowing down.

Pelican Coolers

Started in a garage by an enterprising scuba diver, Pelican now dominates the ice chest market and makes exceedingly durable and well-loved products that should stay with you for a long time.

Personally, we love their coolers and have even given them the winner of our Top Wheeled Coolers for 2017, the Pelican ProGear Elite Wheeled Cooler (shown to the right).

Their lifetime warranty says as much about their confidence in their products.

Want to see Pelican coolers truly put to the test? Check out this video below to see the bears going after it.

Grizzly

As sturdy and robust as the animal after which they're named, Grizzly Coolers are the tough guys of the ice chest manufacturers.

Grizzly 60 quart

They put their coolers through strict IGBC bear resistant testing to make sure you're safe in the wild with one of their products.

As well as keeping you safe from bears, they also keep your precious stores safe from the sun and elements.

Well-sealed, durable and great value for a long term investment, Grizzly Coolers are a big competitor on the market.

Coleman

Coleman is the oldest company on my list and with perhaps the broadest range of goods under its belt.

Beginning first as a flashlight company, Coleman later grew to produce tents, stoves, ice chests and more.

Coleman 120 Quart Coastal Xtreme Series Marine Cooler

The versatility of its portfolio means that it speaks with a little less authority than some of the other manufacturers on this list, but its products are great value for money.

Perfect for the casual hiker or for shorter trips.

In fact, they even have one of our favorite electric coolers, the Coleman 40 Quart Thermoelectric Cooler.

Igloo

The final brand I will look at is Igloo.

Igloo Cooler

Another well-known cooler manufacturer, Igloo began life providing fresh water to worksites.

They have an impressive timeline of products, always placing an easier pursuit of happiness for people at the core of their design.

Based out of Katy Texas, Igloo reaches the more value conscious shoppers with an array of budget coolers.  

Traditionally, there coolers have been hit or miss and have found there coolers to be of lesser quality then Yeti or Pelican mentioned above.

That being said, they fill an important market for those looking for cheap and simple.

Top 5 Ice Chests

Now that I've introduced you to the brands we'll be considering, let's take a closer look at the models themselves.

I've chosen my favorite coolers, some of which are on the higher end of the cost spectrum, but there's a value model in there too for anyone on a budget or having less ambitious trips in mind.

1. Yeti Tundra Cooler 65

As its name suggests, the YETI Tundra cooler is a monster at keeping your perishables cool.

Yeti Tundra Cooler

The roto-molded polyethylene construction and thick walls make this cooler almost indestructible. The rope handles are made from marine-grade nylon, further proof of this cooler's tough make-up.

The YETI Tundra seals beautifully with T-Rex lid latches, making it safe from outdoor threats big and small; no grizzlies or unwanted microscopic guests here!

Yeti Tundra

One of the best coolers available online and at a considerable price point,  the YETI Tundra is a considerable luxury.  So if you're a less fanatic adventurer, then perhaps a cheaper model is right for you towards the bottom.

However, the durability, tight seals, and smart design make this cooler my top choice!

Want to see a video of the cooler in action along with the latest and greatest features?  Check it out below and I assure you, you will leave in awe of their high quality materials.

2. Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler, 65 quart

With firm handles, 10 days ice-retention, and impressive space inside, the Pelican Pro-gear Elite cooler easily makes it onto my ice chest review list.  

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler

It is slightly cheaper than the YETI, but still provides premium level durability and materials.

The design is very well thought out, with broad handles, and press and pull latches for carrying and using the chest while wearing gloves.

The interior when well-packed is closer to the 65 quarts as advertised over some other coolers.  Due to its construction and size, you're going to need help when transporting it.

This cooler is a beast!

With a lifetime warranty the Pro-Gear Elite is a great investment with serious durability and ice-retention.

3. Grizzly Coolers 60- Quart Cooler

It seems a contradiction that the Grizzly 60 quart cooler should have a bear-proof certification, but that's exactly what you should expect from one of the best coolers on the market.

Grizzly Coolers 60-Quart Cooler

Safety should be one of your top concerns when buying a cooler, so keeping your food sealed from hungry, furry forest dwellers is important.

Large mold-in handles mean the cooler is quickly sealed while the smooth services make it very easy to clean so you can be packed up and on your adventuring way in a flash.

Although also serving the quality, luxury market, the Grizzly 60-Quart cooler is made in the USA and has a lifetime warranty.

4. Coleman 120 Quart Xtreme 5 Marine Cooler

Of the most affordable in my ice chest reviews, the Coleman 120 quart Xtreme 5 Marine Cooler is a great buy for the more casual explorer or beach-goer in need of some cool snacks and beers.

Coleman 120 Quart Coastal Xtreme Series Marine Cooler

With UV guard material and a lid that can support up to 250lbs, not only will the Coleman Xtreme 5 Marina cooler keep your food cool, it can double up as a seat under the stars, or be packed under other heavy gear.

Coleman labels it as a marine cooler to bring attention to the fact that it has sturdy, durable materials that keep your ice cool for the entirety of your next fishing and boating trip.​

With the cheaper price-tag, you won't be offered a lifetime warranty and the design is less sophisticated than some of the other models on my best coolers list, but it's a great choice if you're on a budget.

5. Igloo Yukon Cold Locker Cooler

The final ice chest on my list of top rated coolers is the Igloo Yukon Cold Locker.

Igloo Yukon Cold Locker Cooler

Like the slogan of the stunning area it's named after, the Yukon is 'Larger than Life' on design and durability.

This cooler is made from rotational molded polythelyne and has dual lock lids for extra security against any wildlife.

It's very well insulated and will have no problem keeping your goods cool on longer trips. Some nice touches are the integrated fish scale on the lid and 360-degree gasket seals.

A great marine chest for any fisherman, the Yukon Cold Locker can be found at mid-range price, making it a nice compromise compared to some of the larger or more expensive models.  

For this reason we gave it our "Best Value" pick.

Ice Chest Buying Guide

  • Safety should always come first when you consider making a purchase involving the outdoors. Ensure that the ice chest will keep your food free from unwanted bacterial guests and dangerous wildlife such as bears.
  •  Durability should be considered when spending money on an ice chest, especially if it’s an expensive choice. Some of the top rated coolers on my list have a lifetime warranty. Not a bad investment!
  • Ice Retention is of course important when looking at ice coolers. For shorter trips, like a weekend jaunt to the beach, this is less crucial.  But for longer excursions you want an ice box that’s going to stay well iced. Some of the best coolers on my list have ice retention of ten days or so. Impressive and safe if you are storing perishables.
  • Size is a vital factor when making your choice. If you are interested in shorter adventures, then you don’t want an ice cooler you can barely carry. Some of the best soft coolers are smaller at 40 or 50 Quarts and can be carried by one person. Others will definitely require a partner.
  • Value for money can’t be overlooked. If you are a hard-core outdoor enthusiast, then it’s worth investing in a more expensive but long-lasting model like the Yeti Tundra. If your pursuit of the outdoors is casual, then bank for a cheaper alternative.

Still not sure what cooler to go with?  Check out this short, but fun Yeti vs. Pelican coolers video below which puts the durability to the test in an extreme way.

Wrapping It Up

With safety, durability, size, ice-retention, and value in mind, it's clear that choosing the right ice chest for your needs isn't as simple as grabbing the first cooler off the shelf.

However, by breaking down your requirements and taking a closer look at the specifications of each model, picking the right ice chest doesn't have to feel like scaling Mount Everest.

Yeti Tundra Cooler

While my top pick is the YETI Tundra Cooler at the higher end of the price range, there is a host of excellent products available at cheaper prices like the Igloo Yukon Cold Locker which fulfills the needs of the mid-range buyer.

After you think about your personal requirements, making your selection should be a breeze.

Now which cooler will you choose?​

Ready to move onto hiking?  We put together a whole series of posts on the best hiking backpacks on the market in 2017.  We know for sure you will be able to find a pack for your next adventure.  

Ultra-Lightweight Backpacking Gear | The 7 Essentials

Lightweight Backpacking Gear

Ready to go on your next backpacking adventure but don’t have the right gear?

We put together the 7 essentials for lightweight, simple backpacking with all the equipment you could possibly need.

Osprey Aether 70 Backpack

Whether you're a seasoned hiker or just trying to break into the trekking scene, maintaining or building your collection of equipment can be a daunting task.

One thing is for certain though, the more weight you carry, the harder you’ll have to work during your hike.

It’s best therefore to try and make your collection as lightweight as possible for a smoother, less restraining trek.

As technology advances, so too do the range of options available online. There are more choices than ever, which is both a blessing and a curse for backpacking enthusiasts.

Where to begin when purchasing useful, lightweight and super cool backpacking gear online?

We put together a nice list of all the ultralight backpacking gear you will need on your next adventure.

I'll take us through the necessities like backpacks to other handy accessories like a spork to make lightweight eating a nice possibility.

Best Ultralight Backpacking Gear

Through loads of research and some individual testing we put together the best lightweight backpacking gear reviews available online. We know you don’t want to be weighed down by heavy uncomfortable equipment as you will be burning many many calories each day.

Below you will find our list of the top equipment from each important category.

We took the time to research and review each item so please know we would only recommend the best lightweight gear in terms of quality, usefulness, and overall reputation.

1) Backpack​

Osprey Aether 70 Backpack​

**Best Lightweight Backpacking Backpack**

The first step in building your collection of lightweight backpacking gear is a light but well-made backpack.  

Osprey Aether 70 Backpack

Osprey is one of the top names in hiking due to their consistent long lasting reputation and quality backpacks that they have been making for many years.

We love the look of their packs and the overall quality and design to go along with their comfortable feel. They offer simple, but useful packs that don’t weigh you down with heavy materials.

In case that’s not appealing enough, please know they offer a lifetime warranty in case the pack ever gets damaged and needs to be replaced.

Simply put, we love Osprey packs, and believe this pack could be the best one for your week long adventure.

Ready for a complete list of the absolute best backpacking backpacks in 2017?  We put to a detailed guide on the best of the best right here.

Day Hiking Backpacks

Osprey Daylite Backpack


Osprey Packs Daylite Daypack

​For those out there not wanting to buy the big weekend warrior backpacks, we put together a couple excellent daypacks to choose from.

The Osprey Daylight is a great choice if you are planning a shorter trek.

The pack is incredibly simple, with a smooth profile. The limited pockets should curb any temptations to over-pack.

That's not to say this pack is without features. There is the option to attach a hydration bladder and the large zippers mean you won't be fumbling to open the pack when on the road.

Large pockets to the side provide space for any additional outwear you choose to bring, while the keyclip provides the option for any essential attachments.

Deuter Speed Lite 20 Backpack


A durable choice to start your ultralight backpacking gear collection is the Deuter Speed Lite.

Deuter Speed Lit 20 Backpack

This is a sturdier bag with a more robust design.

The Speed Lite is still very lightweight, and as the name suggests it is intended for speed. It has a breathable design with well-shaped back paneling.

Like the Osprey model above, the Deuter Speed Lite has the option to attach essentials with its large loops and zippers.

Its pockets are also cleverly distributed and will make organizing your pack much easier. The chest and waist straps ensure the bag is stable when you're on the move.

This backpack shows that minimalized backpacking doesn't mean compromise on comfort and utility.

Ready to invest in a new daypack but want to see more options first?  We put together a list of the Top 5 Daypacks here.

2) Hiking Poles​

Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles

Cascade Mountain Tech Trekking Poles

Trekking poles are one of the lightest and simplest pieces of kit you can add to your hiking collection.

They are unquestionably useful on a trek for people of any age and ability.

They really provide support and help on the knees in the downward portion of your trek. They propel you forward, distribute the strain away from your leg joints, and are handy tools if you need to clear debris out of your way.

Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber Quick Lock Trekking Poles

Minimalist hikers will want to get a pair of carbon fiber poles as they are very lightweight. I like these Cascade Mountain Tech hiking poles a lot.

Each pole weighs only 8oz and there is a quick lock system so you can adjust them as per your needs.

With the 100% guarantee, you'll be confident using these over any terrain.

3) Hammock or Tent​

Shelter is possibly the most cumbersome item you'll have to deal with on a hike.

Golden Eagle Camping Hammock

For those who like comfort, a simple tarp won't keep the nightlife of the wild away.

Lighter tents have thin bottoms that force you to either rough a night's sleep on top of tree roots or bring a sleeping pad which adds even more weight.

The solution is a hammock, one of my favorite pieces of all the ultralight backpacking gear. There is nothing quite like sleeping in the brisk fall air on a nice comfortable hammock.

Best Camping Hammock

The Golden Eagle lightweight hammock is made from breathable parachute nylon fabric and has triple-stitched seams, which means you don't have to worry about a rude awakening from ripping.

It's mildew resistant and machine washable, making it a great investment for hikers who want to travel light but not be out of pocket every few years.

3b) Alps Mountaineering Lynx 1 Tent

If a hammock is not for you and you prefer a more traditional camping experience, then fear not!

Alps Mountaineering Lynx 1 Tent

There are plenty of lightweight tent options available online.

The Alps Mountaineering Lynx is a great one-person tent choice for the minimalist hiker. The fly and floor seams are well constructed providing secure shelter against the elements.

However, this doesn't make the Lynx a stuffy sleeping experience as the half mesh walls aid airflow.

Alps Mountaineering Lynx Tent

The vestibule is roomy enough to store large packs while still allowing you enough space for a good night's sleep.

The tent's lightweight charm does mean that the floor is quite thin, so if you are a light sleeper, perhaps plan on taking a sleeping pad as well.

4) Water Bottles

CamelBak Chute 1L Water Bottle

Unless you have a hydration pack, water bottles are essential on the trail.

CamelBack Chute 1L

You simply can’t go without drinking water.

We really like these awesome CamelBak Chute water bottles as they not only look cool, but function well and are relatively lightweight (of course the water adds weight…).

The design is nice and leakproof and of course 100% BPA free. Like all there products they have a nice lifetime guarantee in case anything ever goes wrong.

At 1L of size we think you will love this latest edition from CamelBak.

Nalgene Tritan Wide Mouth Water Bottle

Nalgene Titan Water Bottle

This water bottle is the old classic of the water bottle industry.

Nalgene makes great products and excellent water bottles. I use this water bottle when hiking and camping and even use it in the office.

At 32 ounces, I try and make sure I drink at least one or two of them in the office each day.

It has a nice wide-mouth opening to fit in ice cubes or anything else you want to put inside.

The bottle is lightweight and sturdy and for me has lasted the test of time.

6) Sleeping Pad

Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus Mattress

After doing many long hiking and camping trips, I have found yet another thing that I can’t seem to live without—a sleeping pad.

Therm-A-Rest Prolite Plus Mattress

For a good sleeping pad is essential to a good nights rest on the ground.

I find that although I still toss and turn a little bit it is nothing compared to that hard ground surface without a pad.

Nowadays, sleeping pads are lightweight easily compactible and inflatable.

They are well worth the additional weight to your pack.

I have found this Therm-a-Rest ProLite inflatable pad to be my favorite over the years. It is very lightweight and very compactable to less than the size of a basketball.

It has a nice warmth with a thick foam to ensure comfort when fully inflated. The pad advertises that it self-inflates but I have found it is better to just breathe into it for a minute or two to get it fully inflated.

Therm-a-Rest is your brand to go with and they made another excellent sleeping pad with the ProLite Plus.

7) Camping Pillow

Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow

Just like a good sleeping pad, I don’t ever go camping or long term hiking without a nice and comfortable compressible camping pillow.

Therm-A-Rest Compressible Pillow

Pillows are crucial to a good night’s sleep so why should I go without them when I am on the trail?

I have found these pillows to be extremely comfortable and cushiony to ensure a good night’s sleep.

Beyond that, they have withheld the test of time and still hold their shape and comfortability after a couple years.

Best part, once you finish a good night’s sleep, you can easily fold up the pillow into the small little pocket and store away for next time. It is easily collapsible in seconds and worth the extra dollars for a good night’s sleep without weighing down your pack.

Conclusion: What Do You Need Most?

I've looked at just a few options, highlighting the best of the best lightweight backpacking gear available online. You can easily build your collection of outdoor gear depending on your needs and preferences.

If you prefer a little more comfort but want to remain light on your feet, then a lightweight tent is the right choice for you. A hammock is a smart and super lightweight way to bring shelter and not overfill your pack for those nature naturalists out there.

Sleeping Bag

Without a doubt, you want to get a comfortable lightweight and durable pack like the Osprey Aether 70.  ​

A cold climate sleeping bag is also something that could go a long way if you want to sleep in cold evenings.

Camping cookers, rope, and utensils are some other accessories you can use to “pimp your hike” and keep the pounds to a minimum.

A light hiker is a happy hiker, after all.

Did I miss anything?

Let me know if there is any other lightweight backpacking gear that you absolutely can’t live without.

On the market for a new hiking backpack? We put together a thorough guide of the Best Hiking Backpacks in 2017.  Check it out HERE.

Best Hiking Backpacks in 2017 | In Depth Review Guide

Best Hiking Backpacks, Hiking Backpack Reviews

Hiking is awesome.

The meeting of humankind and nature on a brisk hike can inspire and invigorate and comes with an abundance of health benefits.

Osprey Mens Aether 70

I hike because I love to be in nature and experience the beauty around me. The polluted city air pales in comparison to the brisk fresh air of a nearby state park.

Beyond that, I love the journey and how each step moves me one foot closer to my goal of getting to the end.

As humans, we love accomplishing things, and there is nothing quite like the feeling of accomplishment after you have reached the peak of a tall mountain.

Though hiking can be a cost-free pursuit, there are many ways to enhance the experience. Having a comfortable, lightweight backpack is one of the ways to do that.

I'm going to look at the best hiking backpacks, taking into account a range of specifications that can improve your long walks in the wilderness.

From capacity to cost to durability, our hiking backpack reviews cover the top backpacks on the market in terms of quality, comfortability, and price among other things.

Best Backpacks For Hiking – Article Structure

As mentioned earlier, we measured the lightweight design with the overall durability and quality of construction when choosing our top packs.

hiking backpack reviews

We also considered other factors such as breathability, cool features and organization, and of course overall value. Without a doubt, we only chose brands that had an excellent reputation in the marketplace and have been known to deliver on everything they say they do over time.

The way we structured this article is in three parts in this order:

1) Hiking Backpack Buyer’s Guide – If you are interested, we tell you what to look for in a hiking backpack and what we used to rate our top packs. If you just want to see the top packs for each category, just skip down to section 3, 4, or 5. In each of the three sections we listed our “Editors Choice” Top pick along with our “Best Value” pick for affordability.

2) Top Hiking Backpack Brands In this portion, we shared our favorite brands among the many to choose from in the market place. Again, we only mention the best.

3) Best Extended Trip Hiking Backpacks (5+ Day Trips) First, we outlined the best extended trip hiking backpacks for those going on those long hiking and camping trips that go for a week or longer. The packs are larger in size, but are still great to use.

4) Best Multi-Day Hiking Backpacks (2-6 Day Trips) – Next, we laid out the top multi-day hiking backpacks that serve the needs of those hikers going on trips for longer than a day, but shorter than a full week.

5) Day Hiking Backpacks (1 Day Trips) – Finally, 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 well.

Feel free to skip down to whatever section you are looking for or read through the whole article if you want to be best informed on the top hiking packs on the market.

After finishing the article, we recommend our latest list of the Top 10 Day Hikes in all of the United States. I hope you check out a couple!

Hiking Backpack Buyers Guide

As hiking has evolved as a hobby, so too has the required gear.

The breadth of backpacking gear on the market can be overwhelming. Let's take a look at some of the important factors you want to consider when choosing your next backpack.

Size

The needs of the backpack change based on the type of hiking trip you are going to take.

Best Backpacks for Hiking

Personal Needs should be at the top of your list of requirements when buying a new backpack. Each hiker’s needs are different. Think carefully about what yours are and choose your backpack accordingly.

The most important aspect when deciding this is size. Sizing of backpacks are made in liters which is the amount of liters of water that could fill the backpack.

Hiking packs can range from smaller day-trippers of 20-40 liters (think 40 1-liter Nalgene bottles) to larger expedition sizes upwards of 75 liters. It's important to choose the capacity that's right for your trip.

Check our Guidance Below:

Extended Week or More Trips: Recommended 70 liters and up

Weekend to Week-Long Trips: Recommended 40-70 liters

Daypacks for Day Trips: Recommended Up to 40 liters

Durability

Are the materials durable? Are the seams well stitched? Is there all-weather coating on the outer cover? There's a lot to think about in choosing the best-made backpacks.

It is incredibly important when buying a good hiking backpack as you want one that will endure all kinds of weather and terrain. No matter how hard you try to avoid it, your backpack will be abused by the great outdoors.

Top hiking backpacks

Hey, you’re in the great outdoors after all. It’s important to choose one that will be long-lasting and give you good value over time so you aren’t having to shell out more cash a year from now (unless you want a new one).

We only reviewed the best of the best hiking packs and ones that had an excellent reputation and that lasted the test of time.

Frame

Internal frames are better at load bearing but because they hug the body, an external frame is better for ventilation.  Although often times the frame is overlooked, it is certainly something to consider depending on the climate you're hiking in.

Unique Features

The features certainly of a pack certainly play a role. The features should be matched along with your personal needs.

Will you be hiking on terrain that requires a lot of tools and extra accessories?  Then you need a back with big belt loops and lots of pockets.

Will you be sleeping outdoors? A camper will soon feel the benefit of a special compartment for a sleeping bag or wet laundry. We certainly made sure to consider the best camping backpack reviews in our extended trip choices.

**Heading to a wet climate?  If you are looking for excellent waterproof backpack check out this article.​

Price

Most Affordable Hiking Backpack

The price should feature less prominently on your list of requirements as a backpack is a long-term investment.

However, for many, it is still important.

Casual hikers can afford to look at cheaper models, while serious trekkers will see the benefit of more expensive lightweight materials and construction that provides durability through any journey.

If you are going to take hiking seriously, take your pack serious as well.

Best Hiking Backpack Brands

Hiking daypack reviews

As you will come to notice, I mostly recommend the following three brands in my hiking pack reviews: Osprey for overall quality and versatility, Deuter in a close second, and lastly Teton as our value pick for those looking for a great backpack at an affordable price.

We also really liked CamelBak for the shorter range hikes as their packs are smaller and lightweight with an awesome hydration bladder system. As mentioned later, I simply love using the CamelBaks.

Let's take a closer look at them below.

Osprey

Osprey Backpack

Hailing from the state that gives us Silicon Valley and Hollywood, this Californian company is incredibly innovative in its backpack design and is relentless in their quality control and customer service.

Born in 1974, it now dominates the hiking backpack industry and continues to build on its pioneering reputation.

It is a well-known and the natural choice for buyers given its popularity, ubiquity on the trails and overall reliability.

It’s fair to say that your first Osprey may be your last backpack purchase for years to come due to great manufacturing and legendary service.

The company offers a lifetime warranty, showing serious confidence in the product. They gladly repair or replace (if necessary) any backpack anytime!

​Below you will find reviews of the best Osprey backpacks available on the market today.

Deuter

Deuter Speed Lite 20

Deuter is a serious heavy-hitter on the hiking backpack market.

Founded in Germany in 1898, this company used to provide the bags for Bavarian Royal Mail.  Now that is some serious backpacking cred!

From there, the company continued to grow and has long been one of the first choices of suppliers for European expeditions, and has provided gear for the German Olympic team for many years.

These bags are well-designed, durable, and innovative.

TETON Sports

TETON Sports Oasis 1100

TETON Sports boasts cheaper prices than most big names on the market.

For casual hikers who are more cost conscious, this could be a better overall choice. What you gain in extra money in your pocket, you perhaps lose in lightweight build and clever design.

However, TETON Sports sees favorable reviews on a number of platforms even when tested over a longer period of time.

They make great backpacks and are really building a name for themselves among value conscious hikers, as well as some seasoned trekkers.

That among other things is why they’ve made our list.

Best Extended Trip Hiking Backpacks (5+ Day Trips)

Are you about to go to a faraway adventure (or nearby park)?  Do you need lots of space to keep all of your gear, clothing, and food?  If you are going on a trip of 5 days or more it might be best to get a full sized hiking bag.

Below, we start with our top picks and finish with our best affordable hiking backpacks choices which offer a super backpack at a great price.

Backpacking Backpack Reviews| Comparison Chart​

Let’s begin by taking a look at my first choice among the extensive trips section of our backpacking reviews.

1) Osprey Aether 70 Backpack


The Osprey Aether 70 is an incredibly lightweight backpack that has both the volume and the usefulness for longer treks.

Osprey Aether 70 Backpack

It’s no wonder why it is our overall top pack and the most comfortable hiking backpack that we reviewed or tested.

The range of pockets offer superb ease of organization, and the hip belt has storage for tools and those all-important snacks.

You'll feel like batman when considering the usefulness of the waist belt.

Design and comfortability is right at the center of the positive feedback when reviewing this backpack.

Zippers have large loops that make access easy when on the move or when wearing large gloves, and the chest strap buckle will share your load more evenly.

Ventilation is great due to the AirScape back panel which makes it feel cool when you are burning up inside. The additional features, including the safety whistle and hydration panel are the icing on the cake and make this backpack a true all-star.

The Aether also comes in a nice looking women’s model as well that ranks as the best women’s 70 liter pack.

2) Osprey Aether 85 Backpack

Need a little extra size for a slightly longer hike?

Osprey Men's Aether 85 Backpack

Osprey also offers an 85 liter pack to make the longest of journeys an absolute breeze.

This pack tops our list as the best thru hike backpack due to its spacious size matches its great features.

With all the cool features of the Osprey Aether 70 it might be worth it to size up a little bit if you have a lot of gear or food to carry on your next camping trip.

The pack offers nice hip belt pockets to keep your phone or camera handy with you at all times in case you see a bear and want a quick pic.

Hopefully, you don’t see one (unless you live life on the wild side), but either way it is nice to have handy pockets where you don’t have to set your pack down every time you want to grab a snack.

Osprey Men's Aether 85 Backpack

It’s got a nice wide mouth opening sleeping bag compartment and is well organized on the inside to keep your clothes and other items easily accessible.

If you need a little extra space and want the best of the best packs for hiking on the longest of trips, go with the Osprey Aether 85.

We promise, it won’t let you down.

3) High Sierra Appalachian 75

A new edition to the list is the High Sierra Appalachian 75.

High Sierra Appalachian 75

We have found there packs to be well put together structurally without sacrificing comfortability and coolness.

The contoured frame bar shapes nicely to the structure of your back. Without a doubt, we loved the simplicity of the pack and how easy it was to change sizes to fit to your particular hiking build.

The pack is very spacious on the inside with 75 liters of space. A few convenient pockets on the outside complete the outstanding features of the High Sierra Appalachian 75.

High Sierra Appalachian 75

With a few color choices to choose from, we know you will like the stylish appeal of the Appalachian 75 while being sold at a mid-range value price point.

Click below to check the latest price.

4) Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 Backpack

The Deuter ACT Lite is a serious hiker's backpack.

Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 Backpack

The extremely durable material and abundance of different sized pockets accounts for some extra weight compared to other backpacks, but its utility and supreme construction are worth it.

The lid has gear attachment loops that won't break under the weight of ice axes, wrenches, and other considerable hiking tools.

The lightweight X frame, adjustable back length, and anatomically shaped shoulder straps make this pack a comfortable and a sturdy choice.

The stretch pockets, wet laundry department and additional 10L of storage round out the features on this excellent backpack.

5) Mountaintop 70L+10L Hiking Backpack

Making the pick for “Best Value” in the extended trips category of hiking backpacks is none other than the Mountaintop 70L+10L pack.

Mountaintop 70L+10L

At a great price point at below a hundred bucks at the time of the article, we found this pack superb in quality and even better in price.

The pack offers 10 excellent compression straps which makes shrinking the large size down easy to do and store away on an airplane.

The back length is effortlessly adjustable to allow the pack to fit for your actual height.

Like a few of the other packs listed, they offer a built in rain cover to protect you on your long journey in case of inclement weather.

If you are hesitant to try out this newer hiking brand, you should feel secure to know that Mountaintop offers a 90-day limited manufacturer’s warranty in case anything goes wrong.

Best Multi-Day Hiking Backpacks (2-5 Day Trips)

Going on a long hiking or camping trip, but don’t want a humongous backpack that holds you back at the airport or weighs you down in the final days?

We put together a list of our five best multi-day hiking backpacks that best suit those hikers going on 2-5 day trips.

Multi-Day Hiking Backpacks Comparison Chart​

Personally, I like the mid-range size the most as it is not too big to weigh you down, but at the same time is versatile enough to go on long trips.  

If you pack well it can even be used on short day hikes if needed.

Check out our outstanding list below.

1) Osprey Atmos 65 AG Backpacks


This backpacks key word is “comfort.”

Osprey Atmos 65

The ExoForm/ BioStretch shoulder raps and breathable back-panelling make for a very enjoyable hiking experience. The hip strap design also provides great weight distribution.

A little smaller than the Aether 70, this weekend warrior our choice for the best 3 day backpack. The Atmos is very light and sports some great features.

The pockets are well positioned and allow for easy access to water bottles and accessories while still on the move.

The removable lid pocket also means that each hiker has more control over what the backpack looks and feels like on each individual hike.

Have a lighter trek?

Simply take the lid off and leave it at home. There are still plenty of pockets you can use.

2) Osprey Stratos 50 Liters Backpacks

Osprey Men's Stratos 50

For those looking for that nice midrange backpack, we believe Osprey delivers yet again with this exceptional 50 liter hiking backpack.

It’s perfect for those shorter weekend trips without holding you back on those longer weeklong trips. We found this pack to be just the right size for success.

**Key to note, it is not too big or obtrusive to take with you when you travel so for me, that is a real plus.

Beyond that, we really liked the comfortable inside out compression straps and well-padded hip belt to keep the weight of the pack distributed to where your power come from, the legs.

Osprey Stratos 50

Perhaps the coolest feature that we liked is the integrated rain cover to keep your clothes and gear dry during those wet and blistery conditions.

Personally, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve regretted not having a rain cover during wet outings.

There are an excellent array of pockets found all around the pack. Without a doubt, we know you will come to love the Osprey Stratos 50 as we do.

This is without a doubt our best 50 liter backpack choice.

3) TETON Sports Scout 3400 Backpack

TETON Sports Scout 3400

This TETON offering wins on overall value alone.

However, the Scout 3400 is a great backpack with durability and style beyond its modest price.

At 55L it's considerably smaller than my first choice, but once again, if your treks demand less gear than this may be the backpack for you.

The adjustable torso length means that you can fit this bag to your stature, and its smaller size makes it suitable as carry on luggage if your hike requires air travel to get there.

There's a bottom compartment for a sleeping bag, and a bungee strap up front should you wish to bring a sleeping pad or additional outerwear.

Altogether, great value for your money and we know you will like this pack.

4) Deuter Aircontact 60 + 10 SL Pack

The second Deuter backpack on my list is the Aircontact 60+10 SL Pack.

Deuter Aircontact 60+10

At 60L, plus an additional 10L of storage space this pack is closer in size to my TETON Sports selection, but with the range of storage available it shouldn't be written off for longer hikes.

Given it's size, the ACT Trekking Lite is naturally much lighter than the other models listed here, and the beauty of this pack is that the anatomic X frame and highly breathable back will make it feel even lighter still.

Deuter Aircontact 60+10 SL

The adjustable back size and removable 10L of storage allow you to fit this pack to your needs.

We have found that the pack comfortably distributes the weight evenly throughout the pack.

Like the ACT Lite above in the extrended trips category, it is also compatible with hydration systems and has attachments for ice poles and other tools if needed.

5) OutdoorMaster Hiking Backpack 50L

We took a stab and decided to review another up and coming brand in the hiking space.

OutdoorMaster 50L Backpack

The OutdoorMaster 50 liter backpack delivers a great pack at an even better price point.

Although perhaps not the swiftest looking multi-day pack that we have reviewed, we wanted to make sure to offer an option for those extra cash conscious hikers.

The price it is selling at is unbelievably low for the amount of space and size that it represents (50 liters).

Just like the Osprey Stratos backpack listed above, OutdoorMasters offers a rain cover to keep the pack dry during heavy rain. A very nice add on if I do say so myself.

OutdoorMaster 50L

Still, we found the pack to be very comfortable while having some useful organizing pockets, and a respectable waist strap to properly distribute the weight of the pack.

If you are looking for a good multi-day pack at a fantastic price, for sure this OutdoorMaster hiking backpack is the way to go.

Best Day Hiking Backpacks (1 Day Trips)

Once again, Osprey easily finds itself at the top of our list for the top backpack for day hikes.

They have an excellent brand and reputation that has held up over time. But beyond that, it is clearly the luxury brand in the hiking marketplace as they pride themselves on top quality packs that are durable and comfortable.

Day Hiking Packs Comparison Chart​

If you are about to embark on another day hike, grab yourself one of the best daypacks on the market.

Just click the titles or images below to see Amazons amazing prices and fast shipping.

1) Osprey Packs Talon 22 Backpack

Osprey Packs Talon 22

We love the Osprey Talon 22 as it has a nice size, 22 liters, but is still extremely lightweight and comfortable.

Buying a lightweight pack is crucial for short hikes as you often times go for the more strenuous climbs when day hiking.

The last thing you want to be is held down by a little extra weight as you are finishing your final mile.

We know you will love the Talon 22 as it has some excellent stretch mesh pockets and openings and a nice and comfortable hip belt as well.

All these things considered, it’s no wonder this pack made our list for top hiking daypack in 2017.

2) Osprey Daylite Backpack

Osprey Packs Daylite Daypack

Okay, so you are probably thinking by this point, wow I am sick of hearing about Osprey.

Sorry about that, but we only recommend the best of the best and Osprey delivers on all their packs.

Just like the Osprey Talon 22 listed above, these daypacks have awesome front-zippered pocked and organizers throughout the pack making grabbing snacks on a the go a breeze.

Just like all their packs, the ventilation is second to none which makes those hot, sweaty hikes much less miserable.

Whether you are going hiking, biking, or just for a long walk, this is yet another great choice for your next daypack.

3) Deuter Speed Lite Backpack

For those willing to give those friendly Europeans a shot, Deuter offers a slew of first-rate hiking backpacks.

Deuter Speed Lit 20 Backpack

Deuter, a German brand, delivers on great quality and excellent feel.

You will not be surprised to find great reviews for their packs all over the world and particularly the Speed Lite daypack delivers on all phases of the game.

It has a nice padded and breathable back panel to keep you comfortable along the journey.

Really not too many negatives of note on this pack unless you carry large water bottles like a 32-ounce Nalgene. We have found the side pockets to be a tad too small to hold them.

Priced securely in the same range as Osprey, we think you will like this Deuter Speed Lite Backpack if you decide to make that choice.

Check them out below…

4) CamelBak Cloud Walker 18 Hydration Pack

CamelBak is yet another powerhouse in the hiking industry.

Camelbak Cloud Walker 18 Hydration Pack

They deliver some totally rad daypacks with a really cool water hydration system.

Just like in anything, drinking water is so crucial to keeping you fresh and hydrated on your dayhike. CamelBak has delivered on this with their fun to use water hydration systems.

Seriously, I actually enjoy drinking water when I can use there easy to use water nozzle where I can easily sip water without even lifting a finger. You just fill up the hydration bladder and then you are good to go.

Beyond the cool water hydration system, we found this pack to be very comfortable and we absolutely loved its low profile design.

Just like Osprey, CamelBak offers superb customer service and a lifetime guarantee on all their packs.

If you want an excellent pack and need a fun way to drink water, we think you should go with this sweet CamelBak Cloud Walker 18.

5. TETON Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Backpack

TETON Sports Oasis 1100

We have found TETON Sports to be the up and comer in the outdoor hiking industry.

As the brand is newer and less established, we saw that their packs are priced considerably less than some of the other high reputation brands listed above.

Due to the excellent price point, the TETON Sports Oasis 1100 easily makes our best value pick for hiking daypacks.

Beyond the great price, we loved that the pack was lightweight and comfortable to wear.

Just like the prodigious CamelBak Cloud Walker listed above, this pack comes with a nice 2 liter hydration bladder to make sipping water a cinch.

In case you are afraid to try out a newer brand like TETON Sports, just know that they offer an excellent customer service and a limited lifetime warranty.

Ready for an excellent daypack at a great price, we think you will love the TETON Sports Oasis 1100 pack.

Conclusion: What Is The Best Hiking Backpack?

Do you feel like an expert in the hiking backpack world yet?

We hope you have learned a few things and are left with a good understanding of the best hiking backpacks for when the time is right for your next investment.

Buying the best trekking backpack that accompanies you on the lightest of walks to the most straining of journeys is no small task. There is plenty to consider when making your choice, from size, to utility, to durability.

All of the choices I've outlined in our reviews will make a hiker happy; they are all great products and we wouldn’t recommend them otherwise.

What's most important is to look at the kind of terrain you will cover and the conditions you encounter and make your search from there.

So by now, you might be wondering, "Which hiking backpack do I choose?"

Well, for one, we tried to make it easy for you, we made our “Editors Choice” top picks in each of the three sections above.

Smaller, simpler daypacks like the CamelBak Cloud Walker 18 or lightweight multi-day packs like the Osprey Stratos 50 will make strenuous hikes faster and are generally less work.

But if you are going on a long hiking adventure where you will be camping out for many nights (5+ nights) we definitely recommend shelling out the dollars to purchase a high reputation, proven bag like the Osprey Aether 70. There’s always more stuff to pack than you originally think.

Sizing is important so make sure you go with the correct size that matches the length of your trip.

Whatever your choice, happy trekking! Let us know where your next hiking adventure leads you.


Now that you have your new pack, are you ready to take on the world? We created a short, but in depth list of the Top 10 Hikes in the United States. We hope you check out our list and plan your next adventure!

Best Waterproof Backpacks in 2017

Best Waterproof Backpacks

There is a lot resting on a good waterproof backpack.

Kopack Slim Business Laptop Backpacks

How well the bag is designed impacts your comfort, but also your safety too.

When going on a long hike or just a short day trip, we are often at the mercy of the elements.

If important gear, clothes, or worse work documents get wet we can be in big trouble. That's why choosing the best waterproof backpack is so crucial.

In order to make your search a little easier, I've chosen my top waterproof or water resistant backpacks available online. I'll be looking at the construction, the design, and the versatility to make my choices.

Best Waterproof Backpacks

In order to make it easier to digest for your particular needs I have separated our top waterproof packs into two lists:

1) Top 3 Waterproof Backpacks For Travelers/ Commuters

2) Top 3 Waterproof Backpacks For Hikers

We separated them out in two different sections with the commuters section first.  For those hiking enthusiasts scroll down to where the header says, "Best Waterproof Backpacks For Hiking."

In both cases, we only chose backpacks with an established reputation where we have found their packs to hold up well and maintain quality, while still at the same time shedding out the rain.

Whether you are using this pack for your daily commute to the office or for your next hiking excursion, we believe you will like these packs.

Best Waterproof Backpacks For Travelers - The Top 3

We put a premium on packs that look nice, are comfortable, and most importantly block out the rain from getting inside your pack and ruining your documents/electronics.

In all three cases, you will find great, handy packs that with excellent interior and exterior pockets for all your books.  We valued easy of use and want to make sure you laptop can be slided in and out with any issues (and staying dry in the process).

We know you will love our top 3 list below.​

1) Kopack Slim Business  Backpack

We loved this backpack because of it’s slick design and outstanding comfortability.

Kopack Slim Business Laptop Backpacks

The fabric is great and appealing while still offering excellent water resistance.

The pack comes with an excellent array of pockets for on the inside to easily place your laptop, books, and papers. It makes for pulling them out effortlessly.

Beyond that, I like that the backpack has excellent zippers that won’t bust open if a thief uses a sharp tool.

Kopack Slim Business Laptop Backpacks

Amazingly, this is backpack also is offered at a very affordable price as of the time of this article.

For the high quality design and excellent materials used, we believe this backpack is a steal of a deal and our top pick for travelers and commuters.

We know you will like this sleek looking waterproof resistant bag.

2) Under Armour Storm Hustle II

The Under Armour Storm Hustle II offers another nifty water resistant pack with some unique aspects to its design.

Under Armour Storm Hustle 2 Backpack

First, for those usual commuters who like to take their work with them wherever they go, there is a 15" soft-lined sleeve for laptops.

The front is also water-repellent for any valuables you might take with you be it papers or electronics.

The bag has a very simple layout with no chest strap, so be careful when carrying very heavy loads as you will miss that weight distribution.

As well as being well constructed overall, the bottom panel is very tough for travellers that aren’t very careful when setting their backpack down.

Under Armour makes great products and quite frankly, we know you will like this wonderful new pack.​

3) Uoobag Waterproof Business Laptop Backpack

Yet another great business laptop backpack at an affordable price.

Uoobag Waterproof Business Backpack

This one really battled with our top choice, the Kopack Slim, as it also a nice sleek look with a couple cool looking colors to choose from.

It has a really nice polyester lining that makes the backpack repel any water that comes its way.

Inside, the pockets are very handy for all your belongings to quickly place in and take out trouble free. The zippers seem to work very effectively without error.

Uoobag KT-01 Waterproof Business Laptop Backpack

If style is important to you, they sell a couple nice black or grey colors to choose from.

Take a look at it and you will find that customers love this backpack and you can purchase it for a very affordable price!

​Best Hiking Backpack Raincover

Osprey Ultralight Raincover

Osprey UltraLight Raincover

Before I begin, it’s worth mentioning that if you already have a hiking backpack you’re comfortable with and don’t wish to swap it out for a waterproof pack, it’s worth considering a waterproof cover for your bag.

Many of the top brands for the top hiking backpacks have some level of water resistance to them so it is not like you are making a huge sacrifice to buy a rain cover and order a top brand.  

Personally, I really like this UltraLight Raincover from Osprey (and we know you will too).  

Click the button below to check out the latest pricing on Amazon...

By the way, we created an Ultimate Guide of the Best Hiking Backpacks available on the market right here!  

We guarantee you will find a pack you like whether it be a day trip or a full on week long trip. 

Best Waterproof Backpacks For Hiking

We know you are here to see the best waterproof ​hiking backpacks and we have done just that. We compiled an excellent list of the tried and tested waterproof hiking backpacks (plus an honorable mention).

 Check the list out below and find the one that best suits your needs...

1)Patagonia Black Hole 25L Backpack

The Patagonia Black Hole backpack is as serious as its name suggests.

Patagonia Black Hole Backpack 25L

This sleek black bag is one of the best waterproof backpacks available online.

Its glossy aesthetic appearance is a walking advertisement for its water repellent construction. Though the high-shine finish may not be for everyone.

Made from ripstop fabric, the Patagonia Black Hole is a tough bag that will see you through all the elements, no matter the load.

A chest strap will also ensure there isn't too much movement or slippage on the move.

You'll be grateful for this extra stability if the heaven's open and the walking floor becomes slippery.

Top-loaded and well-padded, you can trust this pack to keep all your important goods safe wherever your off to.

2) Aqua Quest Sport 30 Pro

Aqua Quest Sport 30 Pro Dry Backpack

One of the more expensive packs on my list is the Aqua Quest Sport 30 Pro.

This backpack is 100% waterproof but is still lightweight compared to some other waterproof models on the market.

The use of ripstop fabric makes this a durable choice, while the range of pockets gives this pack a versatile edge over some of its competitors.

Aqua Quest Sport 30 Pro - 100% Waterproof Dry Bag Backpack

The straps are broad, well-padded and comfortable while the chest and hip straps add that all-important stability.

This is a serious backpack for hikers who expect very wet conditions and who are carrying valuables such as HD cameras and laptops.

3) Phantom Aquatics Walrus 25 Waterproof Backpack

This roll-top 100% waterproof backpack from Phantom Aquatics makes the cut as the last of my five choices in the quest for the best waterproof backpack.

This pack is one of the more comfortable options available with its padded shoulder straps and great airflow at the back. With all straps connected, it also fits snugly to the body.

Though it is totally waterproof, there are some problems with condensation on the inside in hotter conditions.

So keep that in mind if you plan to use this bag in warmer environments.

The roll-top means your possessions are especially secure, while the choice of pockets allows you to organize the bag perfectly to your needs.

The top feature of this backpack is that if dropped in the water it floats. For those clumsy hikers like myself, that’s a useful benefit.

Sea to Summit Flow 35L Backpack 

**Honorable Mention**

Sea To Summit Flow 35L Drypack

The Sea to Summit Flow Backpack 35L is a fully waterproof backpack with a few excellent features.

The waist strap is removable to suit your needs, and there is a hydration pouch separate from the dry compartments. It is well ventilated and has lots of padding on the back panel for increased comfort.

Sea to Summit Flow 35L DryPack

This pack is very large and does appear bulky at first glance. There are also a lot of straps that could annoy buyers who prefer a cleaner profile.

However, all that bulk and padding makes it a durable bag, and something of an investment if you plan on being out in wet conditions.

Summing It Up: Picking Your Pack

The importance of a pack that will keep your possessions safe cannot be overstated.

We take risks with our personal safety and our goods when we're hiking or just out and about, and the weather is an ever changing beast.

Therefore, it's important to invest in a backpack that will keep you and your valuables safe.

I've looked at a broad range of packs above. Buying a nice backpack should be considered an investment, so it's important to consider your personal needs before making your final choice.

Think about space required, the conditions you plan to be in whether it be hiking or just daily commutes or short travels. If you travel or live in a place where it rains from time to time, it would probably be best to go with the top waterproof backpack, the Kopack Slim Business Backpack.

However, hikers that enjoy rainy climates, might be inclined to go with the Patagonia Black Hole 25L as it was our top waterproof hiking backpack.​

Whatever your choice, we have no doubt it will be a good one.  

We hope you liked our choices for the best waterproof backpacks in 2017.

Let us know what water resistant or waterproof backpack you like best.

Ready to take your next hiking journey serious?  We put together an In Depth Guide of the Top Hiking Backpacks for any duration.  Check it out HERE.

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