5 small backpacks to get you through your day

Updated: August 12, 2019

Cotopaxi backpack in grey with blue, green and orange details Courtesy of Cotopaxi

Everyone needs a backpack, and a good one at that. So why not have a backpack that can accommodate everything no matter what your day looks like. These packs are great for all activities; from day hikes, to downtown commutes, to days at the beach. Sure, they’re small, (they all hold 20L or less), but they might surprise you with some of their features.

Patagonia Atom Sling

Small Patagonia backpack sling bag in teal and grey
Courtesy of Patagonia

Fit: Unisex

Size: 8L

Main Features: Small, but mighty. The single strap design of this bag allows for easy access to anything inside. If you are always on the move you’ll love that the strap has a built-in phone pocket. Inside the main compartment of the pack there’s a padded tablet sleeve, and the smaller pocket has a key clip. This pack is finished off with two exterior compression straps, put them to use by attaching a jacket or a yoga mat.

Fun Feature: This pack has a water repellent finish.

Osprey Daylite

Osprey packpack in red
Courtesy of Osprey

Fit: Unisex

Size: 13L

Main Features: Keep things organized with this simple but efficient pack. We love that the main compartment has a deep opening, and an interior sleeve to hold your tablet or notebook. The smaller front pocket has a mesh organizer and key clip. If it’s a hot day you’ll appreciate the breathable back panel that has a padded sleeve and hang loop for a hydration reservoir. Plus more water is always on-hand thanks to the two large mesh pockets on the sides of this bag.

Fun Feature: The sternum strap has a whistle built into the buckle.

Cotopaxi Inca Backpack

Cotopaxi backpack in grey with blue, green and orange details
Courtesy of Cotopaxi

Fit: Unisex

Size: 16L

Main Features: This pack isn’t afraid to show its colours. It features a phone pocket on the shoulder strap, and a top pocket with a key clip for small items. Inside the main pocket there’s a sleeve big enough for a laptop. Meanwhile, on the outside of the pack there are two pockets for water bottles, and daisy chains all down the front of the bag to attach anything else you might need for your next adventure.

Fun Feature: There are stowable ice axe loops built into the side pockets.

Gregory Nano H2O

Gregory backpack in grey
Courtesy of Gregory Packs

Fit: Unisex

Size: 18L

Main Features: Low profile enough to bring to the office, functional enough to bring on the trails. This pack features a big main pocket to hold everything you will need for the day as well as a separate zipper pocket for a hydration reservoir or laptop. There is also a smaller front pocket has a mesh organizer and key clip. Plus, on the sides there are two very deep mesh pockets to hold water bottles.

Fun Feature: The waistbelt on this pack is stowable.

Salomon TrailBlazer

Salomon backpack in navy blue
Courtesy of Salomon

Fit: Unisex

Size: 20L

Main Features: Pockets, pockets, pockets! This pack has so many pockets you won’t know what to do with them. The main compartment has a sleeve for a hydration reservoir, as well as a padded sleeve for a laptop or tablet. There is a front pocket with a zipper for even more storage and a top pocket for small items with a key clip. The hip belt has a zipper pocket and a mesh pouch for keeping a phone or small snack handy. Hikers will love the exterior stretch loops for trekking poles, and reflective loop to attach a light in case that hike goes a little late.

Fun Feature: The sternum strap has elastic in it, it’ll stretch if you are breathing heavily.

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