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Best Cycling Backpacks of 2022

By Jordan Grimes   /  Last updated - September 22, 2022   /  Bike Bags, Reviews

orange backpack in the alley way

Cycling backpacks are accessories tailored specifically to make your life easier when you ride.

The features of cycling bags differ greatly between manufacturers and intended purposes. Things you should consider before you choose a cycling pack include:

  • How you like to ride
  • The size/weight of what you need to carry
  • The duration of your trip
  • The terrain
  • The weather conditions where you live

Premium cycling bags should be waterproof or water-resistant, lightweight, breathable, comfortable, and durable. The best commuter backpacks will be larger than regular cycling backpacks, as they require a padded pocket to protect your laptop.

The right backpack should be compact, yet have enough space for all of the gear you need for the ride. This includes basic repair tools, water, clothes, work equipment, your laptop, and more. Size and features vary, so make sure to choose one big enough and with the right spec for your needs.

What features should a good cycling backpack have?

  • Ventilation
  • Stable when loaded
  • Padded straps
  • Chest and/or hip closure
  • 15-25L volume
  • Variety of pockets
  • Hydration (off-road)
  • A laptop pocket (commuter)
  • Weatherproof

Looking for waterproof commuter bags?

The waterproof cycling backpack we have covered in this article is the Thule Pack’N’Pedal. This stylish backpack is covered in more detail below. Most of the other packs have waterproof rain covers that can be pulled over the pack when needed.

In the rest of this article, we cover a range of the best-reviewed and most popular cycling backpacks. Whether it is a mountain trail or the daily commute to work, we’re going to help you choose the right bike backpack for the job.

Best Cycling Backpacks

1. Osprey – Raptor Hydration Pack (14L) 

The best osprey backpack for mountain biking!

osprey raptor 14 backpack

MSRP: $150

  • 14L gear carrying capacity 
  • 84.5oz liquid carrying capacity
  • Strap magnet holds bite valve
  • LidLock helmet and Blinker light attachment points

Osprey is the maker of premium backpacks and they back that up with a lifetime repair guarantee. Their Raptor cycling backpack easily delivers on all of that renowned quality.

They have designed the Raptor to be feature-rich. These features range from a lightweight sternum strap magnet for easy access to water to scratch-free electronics and sunglasses zippered hip-belt pockets. 

The main pocket has a removable roll-up tool belt to keep your maintenance tools organized. The capacity of the bag is 14 liters, leaving room for 84.5 (2.5L) of liquid. 

Finally, the Raptor backpack is especially comfortable to ride with.  A ventilating ‘AirScape’ back panel paired with a padded hip belt for stabilization makes the bag joy to use even when fully loaded. 

Buy from REI.com

2. Thule – Pack’N’Pedal Commuter Backpack (24L)

Best bike backpack

thule cycling backpack

Designed for cycling – comes with a waterproof pouch

Thule is a brand that’s been around for 75 years creating some of the most durable transportation products for active families. Their motto is centered around bringing as much as possible to all of those fun adventures.

Did you know, that Thule used to have a 25-year warranty policy for their early backpacks? That’s pretty much a limited-lifetime warranty!

The Pack’N’Pedal in black is long-lasting and lightweight. The pack is comfortable to wear with padded shoulder/chest straps, and there is more than enough space and pockets, allowing you to carry all the essentials you may need for your trip.

  • Weight: 2.6lb
  • Helmet pocket out front
  • Great organization
  • Waterproof cover
  • Chest zip
  • Reflective stripes

Buy on Amazon

3. REI Co-op – Commuter Pack (25L)

Best cycling backpack with hip and waist belt!

REI Co-op Commuter Pack

MSRP: $90

  • Weight: 1lb 10oz
  • Hip and chest belt
  • Compression straps double as helmet-carry attachment points
  • Made by using Bluesign-approved materials

With their commuter pack, REI Co-op has delivered an excellent cycling commuter backpack, at a very competitive price.

This 25-liter bag is built with sleek, lightweight, and durable oxford packcloth. The material is then coated with water repellent to help keep out the elements, with a built-in rain cover also included, for extra protection.

This cycling backpack still has ample storage despite its compact size. The spacious main pocket has a laptop sleeve that can be adapted for extra water storage with the purchase of a hydration reservoir. For quick access to essential items and water, the bag is fitted with two side pockets and a zippered top pocket.

Finally, REI has added padded shoulder straps, an adjustable sternum strap, a detachable waist belt, and a mesh foam back panel to make their bike bag one of the most comfortable on the market.

Buy from REI.com

4. SealLine – Urban Pack (26L)

Best waterproof cycling commuter backpack

sealline urban pack

MSRP: $189

  • Weight: 3lbs
  • Fits up to 15″ laptop
  • Made of waterproof materials
  • External bike light attachment

SealLine is a specialized bag brand that prides itself on its versatile products. The Urban Pack is a premium-quality cycling commuter backpack that delivers on that promise.

This innovative bag is constructed with waterproof material with welded seams, finished with a roll-top opening and QuickClip flap closure. A notable feature is its color-coded interior with a padded laptop pocket.

This pack has a unique suspension system that includes soft padded straps and a breathable padded back panel to make your commutes extra comfy.

Buy from REI.com

5. Camelbak – Mule Commute (22L)

The urban model of Camelbak’s famous Mule pack

camelbak mule commute 22 backpack

MSRP: $130

  • Fits a laptop in a weatherproof sleeve
  • 3L hydration pack available as an extra

Camelbak is one of the widely recognized cycling backpack brands. Their Mule commuter bag is of exceptional quality and highly functional, like all of their products.

This commuter backpack is designed with innovative features including an Air Supportâ„¢ back panel with Body Mapping Technology that cushions the back without sacrificing ventilation. 

For storage, 2 large mesh pockets help keep your cargo organized, including a weatherproof laptop sleeve and Command Center shoulder strap pockets for quick access to small valuables and electronics. This bag can also fit a 3L hydration reservoir for days spent on the trails. 

To protect you this bag has 360-degree reflective accents and an attachment point for a light. 

Buy from JensonUSA.com

6. Tomshoo (20L) cycling backpack

Tomshoo cycling backpack

tomshoo cycling backpack

  • Mesh cover to hold helmet
  • Removable pouch on shoulder strap for cellphone

The Tomshoo backpack is one of the best small cycling backpacks available. It is also a budget-friendly option packed with many of the features seen in its premium competing models.

It’s got a 20-liter capacity, more than enough for you to take all the essentials you need for a day on the mountain trails. This bike bag is made from lightweight, waterproof, and tear-resistant nylon fabric, making it durable and resilient. It also includes a rain cover.

The Tomshoo lightweight cycling backpack is designed for sports and outdoor activities. It also functions perfectly for light daily usage. It features a hydration system with a convenient tube attachment.

The porous mesh design allows for maximum breathability and comfort, even on hot summer days. Ergonomic and padded shoulder straps also help provide extra back support while you ride.

Buy on Amazon

7. Osprey Siskin 8 Hydration Pack (8+2.5L)

Osprey Siskin 8 Hydration Pack

MSRP: $120

  • Weight: 1lb 7oz
  • 2.5L water resevoir
  • 8L U-zip storage compartment and front fabric pocket
  • Bike helmet attachment
  • Zippered slash pocket

The Osprey Siskin 8 hydration pack is an innovative cycling backpack with unbeatable durability and Osprey’s lifetime guarantee. 

This riding backpack fits tightly with an upper-side compression to balance and secure your load. A sternum strap magnet holds the hydration pack bite valve for easy drinking on the move.

Atilon foam in the backpanel evenly distrubutes load across the entire back panel for a more comfortable fit. In addition, the soft-edged harness provides comfort and stability by contouring the shoulder.

Finally, the Siskin 8 has three pockets for storage, totaling eight liters. These include the main compartment, and easy-access front mesh one, and a scratch-proof pocket to protect sunglasses and electronics. 

Buy on REI

8. Ortlieb – Velocity PS Pack (17L)

ortlieb velocity ps pack

timbuk2 madrone cycling laptop backpack

MSRP: $150

  • Weight: 1lb 12oz
  • Roll-top closure with hook and loop fastener
  •  Removable inner sleeve 

The Ortlieb Velocity PS Pack is a solid urban commuter option with a simple, streamlined design and look.

This bicycle backpack is lightweight, yet comfortable and durable. It is designed to be extremely convenient to use with roll-top closing. When closed, you can secure the bag further with a hook and loop.

The Velocity PS has one main pocket and an inner removable sleeve for separating files or a laptop. The straps make for a comfortable, stable, and secure fitting. It has a foam back, ergonomic shoulder straps, and a removable hip belt.

Finally, the back rear corners are reinforced for extra durability and the IP64 material is resistant to water splashes and light rain. 

Buy on REI.com

9. The North Face Borealis Women’s (27L)

Best women’s backpack for everyday cycling

The North Face - Borealis 27L Backpack - Women's - Tin Grey Dark Heather/TNF Black/Minimal Grey

MSRP: $98

  • Weight: 2lbs 1oz
  • Comfortable, supportive design

The Borealis is a premium sports backpack centered around a highly breathable and comfortable design that makes it a pleasure to use.

This pack comes with articulated shoulder straps, a rounded back panel, and soft fabric for a comfy all-day feel. In addition, The North Face us a FlexVent suspension system to support your back. 

The pack is made with recycled RipStop nylon and has two external water bottle pockets a front pocket with internal organizer pockets, and a laptop sleeve in the main compartment.

Finally, you can take advantage of the external bungee cord system to attach a jacket to the outside of the bag. 

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