7 Best Bushcraft Backpack and Rucksack for Wilderness Survival

Last Updated on March 3, 2021

bushcraft backpack  There are some differences between an ordinary travelers’ backpack and a bushcraft backpack.

Travelers mostly fill their backpacks with clothes, gadgets, shoes, necessary accessories, food, goggles, some books, etc.

But things are slightly different when someone loads his bushcraft backpack.

A bushcraft traveler takes all the necessary items and accessories in the pack for survival.

There is little space for fancy things.

If you have to choose the best bushcraft backpack for your outdoor survival trips, you must ensure it can outstand outdoor tear and wear, extreme weather.

Besides, storage space and convenient carrying are also important.

To make things easy, here are the top 7 bushcraft backpacks to get for your upcoming survival tour.

List of 7 Best Bushcraft Backpack

  1. Frost River Royale Bushcraft Packs Best Overall

  2. Teton Sports Scout 3400 Internal Frame BackpackBest Internal Frame Bushcraft Backpack

  3. Helikon-Tex Bushcraft Line, Bushcraft SatchelBest for Low Budget

  4. Karrimor SF Sabre 45 Backpack –  Best Versatile Backpack for Bushcraft

  5. 3V Gear Paratus 3-Day Operator’s Tactical BackpackUltimate Tactical Backpack

  6. Amazon Basics Internal Frame Hiking Backpack with RainflyBest for Hiking

  7. MYSTERY RANCH 2 Day Assault BackpackBest Assult Pack

Quick Comparison Between 7 Bushcraft Backpack

Backpack Capacity Material Weight Price
Isle Royale 45 L Waxed Canvas 3.59 lbs
TETON Sports 55 L 600D ripstop 4.5 lbs
Helikon-Tex Bushcraft Satchel 17 L 500D Cordura 1.06 lbs
Karrimor SF Sabre 45 L 1000 denier 3.97 lbs
3V Gear 41 L 600D polyester 4.45 lbs
Amazon Basics 65 L polyester 5.1 lbs
MYSTERY RANCH 27 L 500D cordura 3.59 lbs

Reviews of the 7 Best Bushcraft Backpack

These recommendations are based on vital aspects such as durability, weather protection, weight distribution, etc. that make a backpack perfect for bushcraft survival.

Frost River Royale Bushcraft Packs – (Best Overall)


The first one on the list is more like a classic retro style backpack. You can use it for packing all your belongings and gears and go in the wilderness. Its classic leather and canvas combination is perfect for making it your daily backpack.

This pack is crafted beautifully by premium leather, waxed canvas, and top-grade brass hardware. All these top quality materials made the backpack pretty sturdy. The manufacturer even provides a lifetime guarantee on this product, which tells you how durable the pack is.

You can easily carry small or big loads in the pack. For everyday usage, you will have plenty of space for your laptop, gadgets, gears, clothes, notebooks, and many more.

As far as traveling is concerned, I would recommend you to go with the larger ones if you have to carry plenty of things for survival tours.

To organize your gears, there are perfectly made pockets, straps, attachments, and spaces available in the backpack. The pockets are about the size of a 1-liter bottle. Space between its pocket and back body allows you to carry thin objects such as a folding saw. Frost River Isle Royale Bushcraft Packs 732-N Isle Royale Jr. (Heritage Black)

You will surely be able to carry all your necessary gears in an organized way.

If you go camping, one thing you must carry is an axe. The backpack features a vertical 2-in-1 pocket straddle for carrying axes.

The backpack also features leather lash squares at the bottom that allows you to carry your bedroll and other accessories.

Its premium buckskin padded backstraps make carrying loads in a very convenient way; they feel comfortable. If you have to walk during the nights, the distinctive design of the straps will help your teammates to locate you easily.

The product comes with sturdy sternum straps. Lashing and compression at both sides are made of quality bridle leather straps. There is a bottom slip pocket at each side of the panel with two D-rings.

Pros

  • Made of premium and sturdy material
  • Built-in axe sleeve
  • Leather lash squares for accessories and bedroll
  • Classic retro style backpack
  • Can be used as a daily pack

Cons

  • Not suitable for carrying huge loads for pro campers and survival travelers

Teton Sports Scout 3400 Internal Frame Backpack-(Best Internal Frame)


This 55 L capacity backpack is perfect for 4-5 day adventures for both young and adult travelers. Although it’s of 3400 cubic inches, the pack weighs about 4.5 pounds, which isn’t bad considering the capacity.

The backpack is made of sturdy 600D oxford canvas and 600D ripstop fabric. You can easily carry longer items such as bedrolls with side and lower gear loops. Its side and front compression straps allow you to carry a tent, sleeping bag, and pad in a secure way. There is a separate compartment for carrying a sleeping bag.

You can keep plenty of small tools and accessories in the side pockets; these pockets got weather guards zipper, so water cannot go inside and damage your precious accessories. On top of that, the integrated rain cover ensures that the entire backpack is well-protected from rainwater.

The side pockets, compression straps, and gear loops help you to keep your gears in an organized way. Teton Sports Scout 3400 Internal Frame Backpack; High-Performance Backpack for Backpacking, Hiking, Camping; Hunter Green

No matter whether you are a tall or short individual, the multi-position torso adjustment will perfectly fit your body. Its ergonomic padded straps will make carrying the load easy for you; there will be no shoulder hurting whatsoever. The back panel ensures enough airflow to make you feel comfortable while walking.

There is an integrated 3 L compartment for carrying a hydration bladder. The padded wide waist belt with locking hip straps makes it easy to carry the load and walk for hours.

If you need quick access to any of your accessories or clothes, you can carry the items in the bungee storage for convenience.

Pros

  • 55 liters’ large capacity
  • Made of durable waterproof material
  • Perfect for camping
  • Integrated sleeping bag compartment, multiple pockets, bungee storage
  • Hydration bladder compartment, weather guard zippers

Cons

  • Low-quality zippers

Helikon-Tex Bushcraft Line, Bushcraft Satchel-(Best for Low Budget)


Want to hike or bushcraft for a day in style? Take a look at this general-purpose field bag. It got dope appearance as well as plenty of spaces for holding your necessary tools, gears, equipment, and more.

Its impressive outlook and stylish design make it a perfect carrying bag for day to day urban activities as well.

Inside the bag, there is a zipper mesh pocket for keeping your most valuable items. In addition, two elastic drawstring pockets fit perfectly when it comes to carrying items such as a water bottle.

On the other hand, the bag features a large zippered pocket along with additional two open pockets on the outside. There are built-in sheaths for holding small size knife/saw/axe, which make it very convenient if you have to use such tools during your trips.

If you are not satisfied with the spaces that this bag offers, you can carry additional items and pouches at the MOLLE/PALS panels. People find it very useful because they don’t have to compromise their necessary items while going for hikes or camping. Helikon-Tex Bushcraft Line, Bushcraft Satchel Multicam

Even if it’s a side bag, still it offers the size adjustment option. The compression straps allow you to compress the size when you use it as a daily urban bag. It’s more than enough to carry a laptop, some gadgets, gears, cloths, and many smaller items without any issue.

You can decompress the bag when you are out with the bag for a day hike or bushcraft activities.

Its wide and adjustable shoulder straps make the bag very convenient while carrying.

Pros

  • Made of 100 Cordura 500D
  • Perfect for day to day urban activity and a day hikes or trips
  • Single external zipper pocket with built-in sheaths
  • Two internal elastic drawstring pockets for carrying smaller items
  • Adjustable and detachable shoulder strap and compression straps
  • PAL/MOLLE side and bottom panels for personalization

Cons

  • Single stitched zippers and single layer fabric

Karrimor SF Sabre 45 Backpack-(Best Versatile Backpack)


Made of tough 1000D ballistic nylon material, this backpack from Karrimor checks all necessary sides for being an ideal special force pack.

The quality of stitching and buckles is excellent. It can outstand heavy abuse and will surely last for a long time without any issue. Even if I say it will last you forever under normal use, it wouldn’t be a lie.

Although the pack doesn’t have an internal frame, it features a rigid plastic sheet, which is similar to foam. Actually, it’s more than foam. It’s very thick and will keep the pack away from your back as well as shoulders. So, there will be enough channels for air circulation, and you will feel more comfortable while wearing it.

The backpack is fully expendable and allows you to pack for your trips without compromising essential stuff. With the spaces it offers, you can go on 5-7 day trips without any issue. If you only pack bare essential items, you can probably carry enough food supplies for a week.

On the other hand, you can also make it extremely small for daily urban activities and commuting. So, it’s one bushcraft pack to rule them all. Karrimor SF Sabre 45 Backpack One Size Olive

If you find the spaces insufficient for carrying your additional items, you have the option to attach extra pouches, and zip and buckle them to the sides. You can easily fit 2-liter bottles on each side while at the same time leaving enough room for attaching additional items.

The pack feels exceptionally comfortable to carry. You can carry the pack up-hill for miles without any significant issue.

Unlike most other backpacks, this one doesn’t have unnecessary compartments. You will get enough compartments to pack your belongings and items. The pack is perfect for camping, backpacking, hiking, and bushcraft.

Considering its quality, durability, versatile use, comfort, and simplicity, this is one of the best bushcraft backpacks on the list.

Pros

  • Made of utmost durable material
  • Provides enough air circulation for user’s back
  • Large enough to pack items for 7 days
  • Available space for additional pouches
  • Versatile use

Cons

  • Hip belts might not be comfortable for some individuals
  • Not adjustable according to the torso

 

3V Gear Paratus 3-Day Operator’s Tactical Backpack- (Ultimate Tactical Bag)

The Paratus 3-Day operator’s backpack is a heavy-duty backpack that can serve anyone well when they’re out in the wilderness. Heavy-duty 600D PVC-backed polyester is used in constructing this juggernaut of a backpack.

With double-stitched seams, this item isn’t coming loose or getting damaged anytime soon, making for a very reliable partner out in the wild.

One of the main draws of this product is the great modular design.

With access to various modules and packs, organizing and keeping track of your gear is very easy. A large amount of space is offered in this backpack, and due to the modular design, you won’t have trouble looking or accessing your gear when needed.

Also, a detachable deployment pack Molle pouches are included in the design. These can be detached from the larger pack to decrease weight and make walking easier. The deployment pack can also be hand-carried and is used for keeping medkits for faster access in case of emergencies.

All these modules can be customized based on preference which results in a very versatile backpack that is worth its weight. It comes in four colors- olive drab, coyote tan, forest green, and black. Threaded zippers for the modules and pockets add extra durability and reduce noise.

Padded shoulder and waist straps offer the best combination of security and comfort. They reduce stress when carrying the bag. For extra comfort, an EVA molded back panel allows for airflow and prevents your back from getting sweaty.

Plastic D rings on the bag offer reinforcement and the ability to hang extra accessories.

Pros

  • Modular design with a myriad of sleeves allows for easy organization.
  • Plenty of room is offered for your survival gear.
  • Adjustable padded shoulder and waist straps.
  • Rapid deployment pack for easier access of essentials like medkits.
  • Modules can be detached for reduced weight.

Cons

  • The plastic connector on the waist belt can come off at times.

Amazon Basics Internal Frame Hiking Backpack-(Best for Hiking)

Available in two styles offering different capacities (65L and 75L), the Amazon Basics hiking backpack is a good starter bushcraft backpack. It is reliable and comes at a very affordable price.

The model is made out of very durable polyester and is durable for use in bushcraft. It won’t tear or get damaged easily. A water-repellent exterior coating is applied to the polyester cover. This, along with the integrated rainfly, offers great resistance against the rain, making it a solid choice for rain heavy areas.

For the 65 L bag, 60 L capacity is offered, while the extension collar offers 5 L. The 75 L variant offers 70 L capacity with the extension collar offering an additional 5 L. Storage space is carefully divided into various compartments for easier access and organization.

This model is a top-loader with a sleeping bag holder at the top. The optional shelf can be excluded for bulkier sleeping bags but sacrifices some storage space. An additional rain cover is also included at the base of the bag for additional protection against heavy rain.

Four side pockets are also available, keeping objects like water bottles inside them. Multi-directional compression straps are available to compress the bag for easier maneuverability and carrying.

Adjustable waist and shoulder straps are also available. The shoulder straps are padded, so they make the bag easier to carry for long hours. Open-cell foam pad and molded channels decrease the strain on your back.

Pros

  • High water resistance due to the waterproof coating and cover.
  • Various storage pockets for easier storage and organization.
  • Padded shoulder straps for comfortable carrying.
  • The bag is lined with soft mesh to help decrease sweating.
  • Very durable construction and won’t get damaged easily.

Cons

  • This is a budget pick, and more expensive bags are often much better.

Mystery Ranch 2 Day Assault Backpack-(Best Assault Pack)

Mystery Ranch’s 2-day assault backpack is a premier choice for a bushcraft backpack. Made from very high-quality materials and carefully designed, it is a versatile backpack that is also comfortable to carry.

The first thing you’ll come to notice is the three zip opening common amongst Mystery Ranch models. A 3 zip opening allows for fast and easy access to the inside of the bag. The zips themselves are sturdy and rarely, if ever, get stuck during opening or closing.

This item has organized internal compartments for the proper storing of your gear and other necessities. The compartments are spacious enough to house necessary gear easily and have sleeves that ensure the items are protected.

Other than these internal compartments, four external pockets are also available with this model.

Water-resistant covers are integrated into this item. You can use it in light rain and damp areas. If you find the bag too large to carry, you don’t have to worry. Compression straps are present at the top and bottom, which you can use to reduce the size of the bag. This is helpful for tighter spaces.

It comes with an adjustable harness and straps. The straps are padded to reduce fatigue when carrying for long hours. This, along with the harness, ensures great comfort and security.

Pros

  • 3 zip opening allows for fast access to stored items.
  • Internal compartments are very neatly organized for use.
  • The bag is water-resistant and can be used during light rain.
  • Compression straps help reduce the size of the bag.
  • Adjustable harness and straps allow for a great degree of comfort.

Cons

  • Mesh sections of the backpack can get frayed.

 

Things to Consider Before Buying Bushcraft Backpack

Not all the bushcraft backpacks look the same. Each backpack is designed to serve some specific requirements. So, you need to pick the best bushcraft pack considering the prior provisions for your trips.

  • How Often You Go Out?

Getting the perfect backpack depends on how often you are out for trips. If you frequently spend time in the wilderness, you are going to need a tough pack. It would be best to invest more in a bag that offers all the necessary features and feels comfortable while you walk carrying on the shoulders.

On the flip side, if you go out for a couple of times a year, then consider getting a pack that doesn’t have huge numbers of unnecessary pockets and sheaths. Why spend much for a thing that you will use once or twice a year?

  • Duration of the Trips

The duration of most of your trips also helps you to determine which size and style to go for. If you take long trips that last about 5-7 days, you will need to carry more supplies with you. In this case, consider getting a bigger sized backpack that has a lot of spaces.

The higher capacity allows you to carry all your equipment, gears, accessories, everyday items without compromising the space.

But if you go with a backpack, which is too big for your height, it will feel uncomfortable during the walk.

However, if you mostly go for one-day hikes or treks, consider getting smaller ones as they are easy and comfortable to carry.

Smaller capacity backpacks don’t offer unnecessary compartments but have enough space to carry your all-day items along with gadgets and essential gears.

  • Accessories that You Must Take

Depending on the purpose of the trip, you would require to take different accessories with you. For example, a wildlife photographer’s packing will not be the same as a regular survival guy.

If you always have some on-the-go accessories, then make sure they all are easily accessible in the bag. The best bushcraft rucksack will have multiple dedicated compartments along with an attachable system for additional pouches. This type of backpack is very convenient as you don’t have to unzip the bag and look for items.

  • Material

The backpack will have to go through regular abuse and harsh conditions. That’s why you must ensure that your pack is made of the most durable material. If there is nothing to worry about rain and snow, you can skip the waterproofing feature.

Top grade backpacks are made of high-denier nylon, ballistic grade plastic, and other similar materials. These are considered super-durable materials that can outstand heavy abuse as well as extreme weather. Teton Sports Scout 3400 Internal Frame Backpack; High-Performance Backpack for Backpacking, Hiking, Camping; Hunter Green

Most premium quality backpacks got waterproof coatings to repel water. These packs stay dry during unexpected weather changes and river crossings.

600D or higher grade canvas and ripstop fabrics make great waterproof backpacks. However, the durability isn’t up to the mark, and cannot bear mild to heavy abuse.

  • Extra Features

There are bushcraft backpack with axe holder, which is very convenient if you prefer camping and bushcraft activities. You can carry a small knife, axe, and saw in such a holder.

Some backpacks offer the Molle attachment system that allows you to carry additional pouches and items for easy access. If you find it convenient to have the Molle feature, go for the one that has it.

  • Versatile Use

If you want to bushcraft pack for multi-purpose use, consider getting the compact ones. You can use one bag for both outdoor adventures and day to day urban activities.

One-sided rucksacks are great for carrying a laptop, notebook, small handouts, and other stationaries. So, getting one backpack to rule them all is a smart option and will be very convenient for those who have to carry a laptop and gadgets daily.

  • Design

Bushcraft backpacks are specially designed for bushcraft activities. You cannot expect a regular school or college or travel backpack to serve bushcraft purposes well.

Consider getting one that offers dedicated compartments for specific items, easy-access pockets, and comfortable straps to put on shoulders for hours.

bushcraft

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are the must-have accessories and tools for bushcraft?

It always depends on the individuals. But there are some items that pretty much everyone needs. Pocket knives, folding saws, axes, canteens, fire starters, flashlights, water purifier, emergency tent, etc. are things that every bushcraft backpack must carry.

  1. What things to consider the most to fit a backpack comfortably?

People aren’t physically the same. Some are short, and there are people taller than others. A person of different physical characteristics would require different backpacks.

Make sure the backpack you buy fits your torso size. Also, the hip belt should be above your hip bone and make sure it’s well tightened. The backpack should sit snugly on you.

Adjust the shoulder straps. They shouldn’t be around the lower back.

  1. How to adjust load lifters on a backpack?

Only heavy-duty backpacks come with load lifters. Your head shouldn’t touch the top-most part of the pack. To relieve the height, adjust by loosening the load lifter.

The load lifter should secure the load on your hips. You can further tighten them until you feel it’s secured.

  1. How to adjust the sternum strap?

The sternum strap shouldn’t touch your neck. If it touches your neck, it’s too high. In this case, consider adjusting the shoulder strap. If the sternum strap is unable to secure the backpack to your back, your pack’s hardness is too wide for your body.

  1. What size backpack do I need?

If you are out for hikes for one day or two, a backpack of 20-35 liters will do fine. However, if you are planning for a three nights trip, consider getting a pack of 40-50 liters of volume.

There are backpacks of 50-110 liters for 5+ nights long hiking, camping, or trekking.

     6.  Is it safe to put your bushcraft backpack in a washing machine?

Yes. Most bushcraft backpacks are made out of materials that are safe for use in a washing machine.

    7. Do bushcraft backpacks have metal frames?

Some do. Metal frames are strong and offer great rigidity to the bag.

   8. Do bushcraft backpacks come with hydration reservoirs for their hydration compartment?

No. They are usually optional and sold separately.

Final Words

No matter which backpack you get, make sure you wear and fit it properly. Improper or uncomfortable backpacks cause back pain and shoulder pain.

The best bushcraft backpack will take care of all your equipment, accessories, and everyday items, and at the same time, it will ensure that you feel comfortable while carrying it.

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