Which bike backpack would you go for?


Nr Cambridge
Good afternoon, I'm after a new pack mainly for day to day on the bike with shopping included and for days out etc, so for the bike and general purpose. Not for carrying laptops and tablets.
I've ordered myself the Osprey momentum 32 at £55.00 but thinking about it I think I should have got the Osprey Escapist in a 32 because that suits me better. The only problems are I dislike hip pads as I dont like things round my waist and I dont like the phone pocket on the strap. So thats not ideal really either.
Has anyone any other suggestions of a 32 L bike rucksack? I really want a bike one because the hiking ones tend to be too long in torso length for me on the bike. Thanks.
First off my answer is panniers. Wearing a 30+ litre rucksack on your back full of shopping as you cycle has got to be some sort of punishment bordering on masochism. Secondly if you find a rucksack is too long in the back for you it probably is. It is like wearing a pair of size 10 shoes if your feet are a size 6. Osprey do female specific rucksacks, which tend to be much shorter in the back as women have shorter backs than men, narrower shoulders and of course different upper body anatomy. Therefore the chest straps of ladies Osrepy packs are a slightly different shape to mens' packs to account for the differences in ladies and mens shapes.

Having said all this I still think you should use panniers as carrying a heavy 30 litre rucksack on your back whilst cycling will not be a great experience and likely compromise your cycling performance and your control of your bike It will certainly make you feel very top heavy with a high centre of gravity and may also cause pains in your wrists, shoulders and back more generally.


Legendary Member
Deuter have anything? I have one of their smaller ones, rarely use but doesn't sit on my hips (I am quite tall tho)


I don't use not-panniers often enough to justify a cycling-specific backpack, so I use my general hiking backpack (OMM Jirishanca 35).
It's fine, so long as I don't stuff it full, which would push my head down when in the cycling position.


Puzzle game developer
I have a 35L rucksack which I made the mistake of using on a 4-day mini-tour. After suffering with the weight of that on my back, I put a rack on the bike when I got home! :okay:

I still use the rucksack for local shopping trips on my singlespeed bike which no longer has a rack on it. (I tried it with a rack and mudguards but decided that I wanted that bike as light and simple as possible so I transferred them to other bikes.)

It is actually a hiking rucksack and I didn't think that I would use the chest and waist straps but I soon found out that I needed to when the full rucksack moved as I looked over my shoulder in traffic. The change in my centre of gravity threw me off balance and almost caused an accident. Once I had adjusted the shoulder, waist and chest straps properly the rucksack was much more comfortable and I can now cycle safely when carrying heavy loads in it.

35 L is actually quite a big bag and 32 L is only a bit smaller. I am 6' 1" tall but I have the leg length of a typical person of about 5' 10" and make up the extra height with a correspondingly longer torso. The 35 L bag is a good fit for me so I'm not surprised that you (Liz) find bags of that kind of size a bit long. Couldn't you get away with a 25 L bag instead?


Senior Member
Carnaby Street
Timbuk2 classic messenger bag in a small is big enough for a 5ft 11 man, so plenty big enough for you liz, unless you are very tall.
It squashes down when not much is being carried. Very steady on the bike and looks cool off it.


Quite dreadful
lost somewhere
I bought a Karrimor Urban 30 litre pack for about £15 in a sale. It's not ideal. The hip strap is completely redundant if you are reasonably tall. I cut it off. The zips snag....something that drives me even more bonkers every time I use them. However, the shoulder straps are pretty wide and comfortable.

It was pretty cheap and I've used it for a couple of years. I'll get something else pretty soon. Good luck in your quest.
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