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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 5 bushcraft backpacks to get for your upcoming survival tour.
Reviews of the 5 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The last one from mPac is able to keep you up in outdoors regardless of the weather. Whether it’s rain or snow, this backpack will not let your outdoor adventures get ruined. It can repel rainwater and protect your belongings from the sun as well.
With its extensive 35 L storage capacity, you can carry your laptop, phones, eBook reader, camping gears, sleeping bag, flashlight, water bottle, clothes, and shoes in a very convenient and reliable way.
Its spacious zippered compartments, shoulder straps, and padded back make it a perfect companion for hiking, trekking, camping, hunting, traveling, and bushcrafting without any issue.
There are 2 main compartments along with multiple front and back bags to store all your touring items. The hydration compartment helps you to keep your body hydrated throughout the journey. However, the backpack doesn’t come with a hydration bladder.
The backpack has enough space for storing all your outdoor equipment, tactical gears, accessories, and everyday items.
Besides, the sturdy Molle webbing allows you to attach additional pouches and gears while giving you easy access whenever you need them. So, you can customize and expand the storage according to your needs.
This military-grade bushcraft pack is made of 600D higher density waterproof fabric. Its double-stitched zippers and top-grade POM buckles assure you of its durability for years. These materials can outstand heavy abuse and extreme weather condition on a regular basis.
Apart from its 35 L storage and waterproofness, the backpack feels very comfortable to wear and walk for prolonged hours. There are mesh paddings on the shoulder straps as well as at the back to provide you a breathable backpack wearing experience. A hip strap is also there for comfortable weight distribution.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Frequently Asked Questions
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Brian Millar is the owner and author of Backpackreviewed. Brian spent every possible minute outside. His passion for the outdoors led him to earn a degree in Biology from Nebraska Wesleyan University in 2010. A guy who is trying to get away from his desk so that he can fish, hike, travel and just be in outdoors!!!