Best bikepacking bags 2022: A buyer's guide for multi-day adventures

We share the best bikepacking bags for multi-day adventures and how to choose the best for you.

Best bikepacking bags
(Image credit: Roo Fowler)

The best bikepacking bags will let you travel light on your bike while still carrying all the luggage you need for a multi-day trip. While bicycle touring is a long established pursuit, bikepacking is far newer. 

Certainly its roots are to be found in traditional touring and audax rides. But whereas touring usually means a specialist touring bike designed for stability and mounting points for a rack and panniers, most of the best bikepacking bags can be attached directly to the bike's frame, giving you much more flexibility in what you ride and where you can go.

The resurgence in self-supported bike racing on both road and mountain bikes coupled with the interest in all things gravel has led to greater exploration of multi-day rides that piece together both on and off-road sections, all in the pursuit of fun and adventure. 

Today it appears that bikepacking could well be on its way to becoming as firmly rooted in cycling culture as traditional touring - and the development of specific bikepacking bags that don’t require pannier racks has certainly aided its growth.

Coupled with the best bikes for bikepacking these lightweight bikepacking bags, mounted to the frame, handlebars and seatpost, allow you to carry varying loads on both roads and trails. This makes them adaptable for a range of self-supported trips, from mini-adventures to ultra-endurance events and more. 

We've got loads of bikepacking advice on site - check out our bikepacking guide that contains everything you need to know to get started and our bikepacking kit list with absolutely everything you need to go bikepacking. And our guides to the best gravel and adventure bikes and the best touring bikes will help you select the perfect steed for your next bikepacking adventure.

Whether you're planning on a quick over-nighter equipped with little more than a camping stove and a bivvy bag or a trip of a longer duration, we've found the best bikepacking bags and multi-day bike bags on the market. And If you’re new to bikepacking, at the bottom of the page our buyer's guide gives you more detail on all of the things to consider when buying bike luggage.

Best bikepacking bags: seat packs

Best bikepacking bags

Best bikepacking seat pack for carrying large loads

Specifications

Dimensions: 42/ 56 x 15.2 x 20.3 cm (H x W x D)
Capacity: 11L

Reasons to buy

+
Large volume
+
Waterproof
+
Simple to fix and fill
+
Keeps muck and spray off your back

Reasons to avoid

-
Fiddly to access contents when in transit
-
Not recommended for carbon seatposts
-
Noticeably increases your centre of gravity

The Blackburn Outpost seat pack is a clever solution to add a lot of capacity and flexibility without bolting anything onto your bike. The bag itself is a rolltop dry sack and sits in a separate carrier that attaches to your bike, so it's easy to remove the bag for access in camp. 

However it does recommend not attaching to a carbon seat post (but we have in the past). It provides a great level of waterproofing, and its position does act as a bit of an ass-saver, but the extra weight up high does take a bit of getting used to.

The velcro attachment straps were unfortunately noticeable on the back of the legs when pedalling, something worth considering if you're planning on being in the saddle for multiple days.

Read more: Blackburn Outpost seat pack review

Best bikepacking bags

Topeak Backloader Bag

Best bikepacking seat pack for ease of use

Specifications

Dimensions 6 litre: 50 x 16 x 15cm (H x W X D)
Dimensions 10 litre: 60 x 20 x 18cm (H x W X D)

Reasons to buy

+
Easy to use 'in the field'
+
Competitively priced
+
Waterproof

Reasons to avoid

-
A tad heavy

The Backloader from Topeak has been specifically designed for bikepacking as a streamlined way of carrying gear. It is constructed using what Topeak says is a lightweight, highly water-resistant and durable fabric.

The pack has compression straps to help condense its waistline, which should reduce the pendulum effect, and a built-in air release button helps reduce the inner bag further. Available in 6, 10 or 15-litre options, it uses both clips and a velcro mounting system attached to the saddle rails and seat post.

Best bikepacking bags

Best bikepacking seat pack for carrying heavy loads

Specifications

Capacity: 20L

Reasons to buy

+
Rock solid with no impact on riding
+
Great capacity 
+
Ease of use

Reasons to avoid

-
Compression straps can slip when wet
-
Expensive

There are several rear bikepacking Tailfin setups, all of which will require the Tailfin rack system. The whole setup with carbon option will set you back £300 / $390, although there is an alloy rack version that is £70 / $90 cheaper, but a couple of hundred grams more in weight (but you do gain three extra mounts for the ability to add other bottle cages or luggage).

The frame-mounted system boasts to be quick release unlike traditional racks, coming free in a claimed 30 seconds, with either QR or thru-axle compatibility. The seatpost connection is secure and kind to carbon frames, and is designed to wrap around any size or shape of seatpost, including deep aero.

The total maximum load for the racking system is a substantial 9kg. With two Transcontinental Races under its belt, the fully waterproof system has won plenty of fans. On test, we found the system to be ace, with the design simplicity and ease of use making you forget the price on the first ride.

Read more: Tailfin Aeropack S Rigid Seat Pack review

Best bikepacking bags

Revelate Designs Vole Dropper Post Seat Bag

Best bikepacking seat pack for dropper posts

Specifications

Dimensions 7 litre: 30.48 x 21.59 x 38.1cm (H x W X D)

Reasons to buy

+
Dropper post compatible
+
Reinforced lower section

Reasons to avoid

-
Relatively small volume

Dropper posts are standard fare on just about every mountain bike, except for select XC race bikes, and are beginning to permeate gravel bikes too. With most bikepacking seat packs using one or more velcro straps to stabilize the pack, they render a dropper essentially unusable.

Bag brands are well aware of this fact, and we are beginning to see designs that accommodate dropper posts like the Revelate Designs Vold Dropper Post Seat Bag. The Revelate Designs Vole bag comes with WolfTooth Components Valias Clamp, which attaches to the upper stanchion of the post to allow it to actuate, and the underside of the bag sees a plastic skidplate to protect against dirt and abrasions and provide some structure to the pack.

The bulk of the bag is made from Rhinoktek and lightweight plasticized fabrics that keep the elements at bay.

Best bikepacking bags: handlebar bags

Best bikepacking handlebar bag on test

Specifications

Dimensions:: 250 x 240mm
Capacity:: 10L
Weight:: 585g
Colours:: Black, orange

Reasons to buy

+
Roll top entry
+
Large capacity
+
Bungee cord webbing
+
Easily accessible front pocket
+
Built in compression straps

Reasons to avoid

-
Bar straps only have one position on the bag

Restrap's 10 litre Bar Pack is made from durable, waterproof nylon. It has an easy-to-use roll top that's closed using two buckles, with this main compartment complemented by a smaller secondary compartment that uses a velcro closure. Essentially this means that you can still access items while on the go. On test we loved this combination, with the roll top being a real winner.

The bag's generous 10L capacity allowed us to carry all we'd want to in a bar bag, with the compression straps doing a neat job of keeping everything in place. The additional details of both a D-lock holder and bungee webbing only added to the Bar Pack's functionality and appeal.

Read more: Restrap Bra Pack review

Best bikepacking handlebar bag for versatility

Specifications

Dimensions: 9.75" x 8.5" x 4.5" / 24.3 x 21.2 x 11.2cm
Capacity: 3-5L
Weight: 240 grams
Colours: Black

Reasons to buy

+
Great roll top design
+
Useful size
+
Includes shoulder strap
+
Easy to mount

Reasons to avoid

-
Bar straps are fixed in one location

The Chrome Urban Ex is both well-designed and well-made. The roll-top closure makes it easy to access your gear and is suitably robust. Likewise the rest of the bag feels equally durable, with a tough waterproof fabric on the bag's exterior and a decent level of padding on the inside of the bag. Its smaller size means that it's great for everyday use while still being practical for longer trips. The inclusion of a shoulder strap only helps to increase the bag's versatility. 

Read more: Chrome Urban Ex Handlebar Bag 2.0 review

Best bikepacking handlebar bag for value for money

Specifications

Dimensions: 25 x 32 x 11cm
Capacity: 5-8L (fully open)
Weight: 224 grams (214g actual)
Colours: Black, Teal Peel, Chilli, Lego

Reasons to buy

+
Large amount of easy-to-access storage
+
Front webbing 
+
Handy side pouches
+
Easy to fit
+
Good value - RRP £49.99

Reasons to avoid

-
No internal dividers

At under £50 the Alpkit Gravel Bar Bag represents great value for money. It boasts many of the features you'd expect to see on more expensive bags, including a handy roll-top closure, a generously sized main compartment and additional storage in the shape of front webbing (ideal for stashing a waterproof jacket or gilet) and side pouches. It's also made from a durable waterproof fabric, which on test kept the bag's contents nice and dry during showers.

Read more: Alpkit Gravel Bar Bag 5L review

Best bikepacking bags

Best small bikepacking handlebar bag

Specifications

Dimensions 2.5 litre: 15 x 24 x 7 cm (H x W x D)
Dimensions 5 litre: 18 x 26.5 x 10 cm

Reasons to buy

+
Simple yet abundant storage
+
Great build quality
+
Rapid fitting and removal

Reasons to avoid

-
Lid can be a faff to make watertight with one hand
-
Heavy objects can get bounced around
-
Need to add extra clothing/material to prevent rattling

Light and well made, the Apidura handlebar bag is great for carrying all the items you really want to have at hand on a long ride. Just be careful not to overload it with heavy items as it can bounce and rattle a lot over rougher roads as well as making it difficult to close the lid properly.

There are two sizes to choose from, 2.5 litre (as pictured above), and a 5 litre version, both using long Velcro straps to mount.

Read more: Apidura Racing Handlebar Mini Pack review

Best bikepacking bags

Best bikepacking handlebar bag with large storage capacity

Specifications

Dimensions: 18 x 50 x 18cm (H x W x D)
Capacity: 15L

Reasons to buy

+
Great capacity
+
Handy air release valve,
+
Simple to fit
+
Good weatherproofing

Reasons to avoid

-
Quick release clips can be a bit fiddly

The Roswheel Off-Road bar bag is an exceptionally durable, well-made bikepacking bag, capable of reliable performance no matter the weather, terrain or type of bike you choose. Its cavernous storage capacity and easy fitting add to the excellent package.

The bag uses straps for either direct bar mount or attaching to a rack.

Read more: Roswheel Off-Road handlebar bag review

Miss Grape Bud Handlebar Snack Pouch

Best bikepacking handlebar bag for storing small items

Specifications

Capacity: 9L

Reasons to buy

+
Secure fitting
+
Roomy padded main bag
+
Totally universal
+
Water resistant
+
Netted outer pocket perfect for rubbish

Reasons to avoid

-
Fork strap non-removable and could wear paint if unprotected.

Providing a convenient place to store those smaller items you want fast access to (such as your phone, camera or wallet), the bright green internal lining also helps you find what you need quickly. The padding that’s present also helps to protect those more delicate accessories.

The bag does stand up well against showers but isn’t fully waterproof. If you have anything that really doesn’t want to get wet and you’re cycling through persistent rain, you really should combine it with a dry bag.

Read more: Miss Grape Bud Handlebar Snack Pouch review

Restrap Bar Bag Holster , food pouch and dry bag

Best bikepacking handlebar bag for multi-day trips

Specifications

Dimensions (Holster): 22 x 18cm (H x W), capacity 14L
Dimensions (Food Pouch): small 15 x 21 cm (H x W) large 16 x 27cm (H x W), capacity 1L or 3L

Reasons to buy

+
Easy to mount
+
Good choice of durable fabrics
+
Clever use of magnetic buckles

Reasons to avoid

-
14-litre dry bag best suited to flared bars, which might not be your bar of choice

Restrap offers a great option for starting out, and the system includes a holster, dry bag and either a small or large food pouch, which uses a magnetic pin to secure on top for easy access on the move.

The holster fits up to a 14-litre dry bag, which is also included, and is mounted on the bike using what Restrap say is a hard-wearing buckle that is easy to adjust even when wearing gloves. Support straps can be used to attach the holster through the fork crown for when riding on rougher terrain.

Read more: Restrap Bar Pack review

Best bikepacking bags

Speedsleev Diego

Best bikepacking handlebar bag for everyday use

Specifications

Dimensions: 20 x 12.7 x 12.7 cm (H x W x D)
Capacity: 1.24L
Colours: Black, Carbon, Orange, Red

Reasons to buy

+
Easy to install
+
Waterproof zipper
+
Range of colours

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited space makes it less suitable for multi-day trips

Sometimes you don't need to bring the kitchen sink with you, and just need to have snacks or tools to hand. For smaller loads like this, a compact handlebar bag like the Speedsleve Diego might just be the ticket.

Made from Ballistic nylon, it attaches to your bars with two velcro straps and sees a weatherproof zipper to stop the gear inside from getting soggy. Speedsleeve makes it in the ultra-compact 1.24L version or a larger 2.5L version.

Best bikepacking bags: frame-fit