Commuting back packs?

Once a week i try and make for a big ride. I leave my house ride 10 miles to the bike shop where i work and then head out on a 30 mile ride. I work at the shop all day then ride home taking the long way. when i do this i usually bring my lunch and cloths and anything else i may need for the day i ride to work and i keep it at the shop over night. I don’t like doing this. Im always afraid of someone walking off with my stuff. I would like to pack a back pack that is comfortable and light to carry with what i need to work drop it off and do my morning usual ride. I have tried out a few bags and i have found that i will return them or sell them because they’re not what im looking for. I have used Osprey day bags and some amazon duffle bags I usually carry my lunch with a protein bottle, kombucha my cloths and shoes and snacks for that ride. any suggestions on what bags you may use for short trips that work?

I just used an Adidas rucksack when I commuted tbh!

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Yeah any sort of school type rucksack for a 10 mile commute. You could look for a waterproof one if you’re buying anything specific.

When I commute by bike a lot, I bring a bag with all the stuff I need once a week and leave it in work, and then commute without a pack. Maybe you can get a locker or desk drawer or something like that in work to lock it up?


IDK if your bike can take a rack, but I find doing long rides with a pannier much more enjoyable than with a backpack. I do a similar move with my school. Commute is 7 miles each way, but once or twice a week I stretch it out. I’ve done it lots of times with a pannier and only once with a backpack.

Its apparently discontinued if you check with Timbuk2… but they’ve replaced it with the Clark Commuter.

The Especial Tres is an absolute helluva deal. I bought a second the last time I saw prices this low on it, thinking it was going to be discontinued. My first one has visited 4 continents (overhead legal size), been an every day back pack for car commute, diaper bag duty, two years of bike commuting, etc… It served well, but after 6 years, I didn’t want to be looking for a replacement… It’s rough around the edges but still serviceable.

I commute with coffee (office machine usually gets filled with Folgers, and that aint me), a laptop, lunch, at least a partial change of clothes, rain/cold weather gear. Now that I see those prices, I might just get another… for six years from now…

I sometimes do the long ride on the way home after my workday… I’ve done two hours lightly loaded, 90 minutes with an ancient laptop and a weeks’ worth laundry. Its perfect for the sub hour ride, and obviously, isn’t as great at 90 minute or 2 hours, but for $95, its fantastic.

I have the older version of this backpack

Deuter Race EXP Air 14+3 | Bike backpack

(A review of the backpack i have)

Its a great backpack. Its on the smaller side tho. It was big enough (when expanded) to have my kakis, button down shirt, shoes and breakfast and lunch but not much room left

The backpack was not water proof, but it does come with a water proof cover.

I no longer commute to work (moved to a not bike commuter friendly place), but I still use is as a day trip backpack (for theme parks for example).


I have a alpkit gourdon bag, it’s basically a dry bag with straps but perfect for commuting since everything is dry. It’s also light and minimalist.

Or get a bar bag, again if you can get a sleeping bag in it there’s plenty of space for work kit.

Deuter is you friend. I have been using Transalps (mostly their 28 liter variant) for over a decade now, and they are awesome. They fit 16” laptops (in a neoprene sleeve) in the water compartment. And lots of groceries. Of course, they have smaller backpacks, too. So you should know how much space and bulk you need. I also have a smaller Deuter Compact Exp 12 (with 12 liters of volume), which is great, but, well, much smaller. All of them have a rain cover, side pockets and plenty of reflectors. The breast and belly straps keep your backpack securely fastened.


I used Rapha’s small travel backpack for daily commutes[15L]. I could put my macbook in it, a change of clothes, spares and tools. It’s low profile, narrow, waist belt. Has a rain cover (in a zippered area at the bottom of the bag). I bought a safety yellow one, it has a reflective strip. The nice thing is you get the safety yellow, but don’t have to buy safety yellow kit. :smiley:

That said it’s a few years old, (it’s got probably 15k miles on it, dirty but otherwise in great condition) but I think they’ve changed the design a bit. The old bag had leather pulls, very nice. The new one it appears has metal rings. In any case. if you happen to have a rapha store around maybe check in and see if they have one, you can check it out.

Thanks I have tried simuliar bags as this ill have to youtube review them.

As much as i would love to do that I don’t fully trust doing that… plus I need to leave my lunch there… and I wouldn’t trust the community fridge to hold my beer cold none the less my food for 18-24. hours

I use a Lowe Alpine Airzone. It has a mesh standoff that sits againt your back and allows air to flow so you don’t get sweaty. It’s more comfortable because of the airflow and also because the contents of your bag won’t be poking you in the back. I’ve used mine daily for about 5 years and it’s still going strong.

There are other companies that do a similar thing. Osprey for example.

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The deuter I posted has a similar mesh on the back…

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Hi, I can highly recommend using a bike packing bag when commuting. I used to use an osprey backpack, but now I only use a 17L Apidura seat bag, and its much more comfortably (ie. faster).
Only problem is that it doesnt have room for a laptop, and you may risk scratching the frame.

I use the Kelty Ridgeway 2L hydration pack for my commute. Just take the bladder out 95% of the time but it’s handy to be able to put a blader in there now and then. Not sure if they still sell it…but it’s perfect for a change of clothes, a lunch, some hygiene equipment, plus extra room in the mesh side pockets if you want to stuff gloves/arm warmers/leg warmers in there.

Not sure they still make it, though. But if you can find one it will last forever.

I see there are some on ebay for about $40. Don’t know if I’d pay that much for it. But the form factor is perfect and the durability is good…so, maybe.

I just go the TIMBUK2 Especial Tres and so far im digging it. plenty of room and seem durable; oh and for the price compared to the rest of there product line it was a steal.

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The “plenty of room thing” is what I needed in a weekend backpack - my size 11.5 running shoes don’t fit well in anything in the sub 40L size… I actually thought I’d hate the roll top opening when I first bought one…but 6 years later, I bought an identical bag. The only time it bothers anyone now, is when I get home from work and my wife is on a conference call… #covidlife, #velcronoise. Others have complained that they can’t see over or around it, but I’m six three and figure out the first time each ride, wether I can look over it or have to contort a little more to look around it. You’ll figure that out the first time you truly overload it.

(also, see if you can get comfortable leaving at least the shoes at work somewhere, no one steal shoes, right?)

I’ve thought about the Quattro jumbo size too (also discontinued by now), but it was hard to justify one extra large an another jumbo plus riding backpack.

Glad you like it.

I got the Timbuk2 and love it! its been my goto for a lot of trips!

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I use the Torrent from Exped for my commuting. Think it’s the 30L, but you get them in different sizes. Fits my needs perfectly.

  • Waterproof
  • Light
  • Compactable
  • Durable
  • Cheap

Only thing I miss is an outside pocket for keys, cell phone and access card for work. But I usually wear cycling clothes with back pockets.

I’m quite happy with Rapha’s Pro Team backpack for longer rides to/from work:

The Restrap Sub backpack works well for commuting if more volume is needed:

Both backpacks are snug fit and does not interfere with the back of your head/helmet when in the drops.