Top 5 backpacks for 2017

Whether you’re looking for a rucksack for your next holiday, or a backpack for the trail and camping, it’s important to consider a few different factors, which can lead to difficulty in choosing the perfect backpack. Factors to consider include potential weather conditions, duration and size. To help outdoor lifestyle enthusiasts and travellers alike, we’ve chosen our top 5 backpacks for walking in 2017.

We’ve taken a look at our favourite releases in the past few months to find a range of different styles from rain resistant to lightweight or extra large sizes, and gathered all the information together for ease of searching. We hope this will give you an informed choice for which backpack to choose.

Our Top 5 Walking Backpacks in 2017

Osprey Ariel 65/Aether 70 Walking Backpacks


These backpacks featured last year, but we’ve included them again due to their top capacity and sleek design. Choose between a slighter smaller capacity anatomical fit for ladies and the larger Aether for men for an ideal fit. With a large 65/70l capacity, Osprey’s Ariel and Aether backpacks have plenty of room for packing and storage, making these ideal for long haul trips and hikes. With StraightJacket compression straps to hold gear in place, you can easily adjust the volume. With plenty of outer straps for adding extra equipment and a removable top lid with dual compartments, this backpack was built to create the highest capacity possible. The AntiGravity 3D suspended mesh backsystem has been made from a soft foam for constant airflow and comfort. Finally, the adjustable torso length, sternum strap with emergency whistle and hipbelt create a personalised comfortable fit required for a long trail.

Fjallraven Abisko Hike 35l Backpack

98195-zoomFjallraven’s Abisko 35l Hike has been created from G-1000 Heavy Duty and G-1000 Eco for thick fabric where you most need extra protection, and a lighter fabric in less vulnerable places to create a hard wearing but lightweight bag. With a good size for shorter hikes or trips when camping over, this has a classic top opening and side zip opening to make it easy to unpack your gear without having to get everything out at the top, which is then covered by the compression straps for added protection so your gear can’t fall out, or you can pack extra equipment into the expandable top lid, complete with an internal security pocket and key clip to keep your important bits and pieces safe. Padded shoulder straps and a padded hip belt provide all day comfort whilst walking, and an innovative mesh back system keeps the backpack breathable.

Jack Wolfskin ACS Hike 24 Womens Backpack

102405-zoomJack Wolfskin’s ACS Hike 24l backpack puts emphasis on outstanding ventilation, with a suspension system with a mesh pad at the back to create a space between your back and the rucksack, for effective back ventilation, along with padded shoulder straps specifically designed for women. The backpack has been created from an incredibly light but strong ripstop fabric, emphasising on a ladies typically smaller frame. With a large main compartment with an inner pocket which doubles as a stow pouch for drinks, a base compartment perfect for hiking boots, an outer front pocket for smaller equipment and a lid compartment with a key clip, the backpack has been designed for organisation and easy access.

Exped Cascade 20 Mens Backpack

103594-zoomExped’s Cascade Backpack carries 20 litres in the sleekly designed minimalist backpack. Minimal zip openings and a weatherproof nylon material reduces any chance of water pouring into your gear, making this the perfect backpack for a one day hike in the rain. The weatherproof front sleeve pocket fits small bits and pieces, and you can be sure any cameras or 13” laptops will be safely and dryly stored in the main area with laptop integration. A removable hip strap enables you to use this backpack every day or during extreme weather hikes, and padded shoulder straps keep the weight comfortable. This is finished with a foam back built for comfort and ventilation.

North Face Borealis Ladies Backpack

99367-zoomThe North Face are known for their structurally sound and innovative backpacks, and the North Face Borealis Ladies Backpack is no exception with its technical details. A FlexVent system sees injection moulded shoulder straps and a mesh back panel with an anatomically correct spine channel and a moisture wicking lumbar panel also provides comfort and support. The backpack includes a fleece-lined laptop sleeve, organisation pockets throughout the bag and compression straps to adjust the volume. Complete with a sternum strap with an emergency whistle, and a bike-light loop, making this ideal for day or night time trips.


We’ve chosen a variety of backpacks for our top choices of 2017, with features including weatherproofing, a light weight and bags packed with space and compartments, along with ventilation and comfort. We hope you will find the perfect bag for the appropriate hike or adventure, but we have chosen our favourites for three different categories; best performance, value and looks in case you need more information.

Best Performance – Osprey Ariel 65/ Aether 70 Walking Backpacks

We feel that all of these backpacks are great for different conditions, but the Osprey backpacks are packed with carrying features and a large capacity. With soft ventilating mesh backs, this backpack was made to stay comfortable on long hikes and journeys.

Best Value – Jack Wolfksin ACS Hike 24 Womens Backpack

This backpack is the cheapest of our choices, which is great with the technical features packed into it. It’s also bigger than two of the backpacks here, so with the lightweight but strong material, this is a durable backpack at a great price.

Best Looks – Fjallraven Abisko Hike 35l Backpack

Fjallraven always create timeless styles, and the Abisko is no exception. With minimal straps and clean lines, the backpack only features the iconic fox raven for extra detail, meaning the backpack will last for years and never go out of style.