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The 10 Best Tactical Backpacks You Need for a Rugged Commute or Adventure

A tactical backpack beside a flashlight and rope on sand.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Whether you’re headed out for a rugged multi-day adventure or just need a tough-as-nails bag for your daily commute, the best tactical backpacks will bring durability and functionality to your life. Made from Cordura nylon, these bags can stand up to serious abuse. No wonder they’re the prime choice of the military. MOLLE (Modular Lightweight Load-Carrying Equipment) compatibility allows for customization and that military-grade look. Most of these bags have a sleeve for a hydration bladder or laptop, multiple pockets, and enough space to carry the gear you’ll need.

Whatever your use, embracing the suck just got a little less sucky. If tactical packs aren’t exactly what you’re looking for, check out our roundup of the best backpacks to broaden your search and find the right pack for your needs. Otherwise, read on for our list of the best tactical backpack brands.

Mystery Ranch 3-Day Assault Pack

A camouflage Mystery Ranch 3-Day Assault Pack.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The 3DAP from Mystery Ranch delivers on all fronts: Durability, functionality, and comfort. The first thing you’ll notice is the 3-zip design of this pack. The top opens quickly for easy access and a full-length zipper provides access to those items that always tend to slide to the bottom of your pack. If organization is a priority, you’ll enjoy this pack’s interior webbing, zipper pockets, and multiple sleeves for hydration reservoirs. Built for the mission and made in the USA, this pack will rise to meet any occasion.

5.11 Tactical Rush 72 2.0 Backpack

A black 511 Tactical Rush 72 2.0 tactical backpack.
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5.11 designed the Rush series of packs for use at work, the range, or the wilderness. Design details include 511’s signature centerline design, laptop sleeve, fleece-lined eyewear pocket, and plenty of webbing to customize this pack however you like. Built from water-repellent 1050D nylon, this pack will last through even the toughest adventures.

Read more: Best Laptop Bags

Monoki Tactical Sling Backpack

A black Monoki Tactical Sling Backpack.
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For hunting and fishing trips, or commutes that don’t require a full backpack, the Monoko Tactical Sling is perfect to throw over your shoulder and go. With a bunch of different compartments and pockets, your gear will stay organized and its ventilated mesh shoulder straps will keep you cool during hot days. No matter what you’re carrying this versatile bag will hold it.

Condor 3 Day Assault Pack

A green Condor 3 Day Assault Pack displayed on white background.
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With 50 liters of storage, the 3 Day Assault is in the same size range as the 3DAP and the Rush 72. This pack gives you enough room for a multi-day adventure and if you fill the inside, the exterior has plenty of webbing for attaching the MOLLE-compatible gear you need to get to quickly. Padded shoulder straps, a waist belt, and a ventilating back panel bring comfort to the pack and help keep you cool.

GoRuck GR1

A black GoRuck GR1 tactical backpack.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The GR1 is the perfect blend of the tactical aesthetic with city style. Made from 1000D Cordura nylon with YKK zippers and a padded laptop sleeve, this pack is sure to hold up day in and day out. With a fill zip, the GR1 opens flat, making it easier for you to pack and find your stuff. Plenty of pockets and three rows of webbing make organizing your stuff a breeze.

Read more: Best Travel Backpacks

Samurai Tactical Wakizashi Tactical Backpack

A black Samurai Tactical Wakizashi Tactical Backpack on white background.
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Samurai designs packs for the professional warrior. The Wakizashi has it all: An internal laptop compartment, back and side webbing, a soft pocket for glasses, side compression straps, and a water bottle holder. Perfect for your daily commute or bigger adventures, the Wakizashi will keep you comfortable and your gear safe.

Maxpedition Falcon 2 Backpack

A khaki Maxpedition Falcon 2 on white background.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The Falcon II is built from 1050-Denier water and abrasion-resistant nylon, meaning this pack will hold up through even the toughest trips. Dual direction YKK zippers open clamshell-style to give you full access to the interior of this bag. With an ergonomic shape, padded shoulder straps, and waist support this pack will feel comfortable with even the heaviest loads. Plenty of compartments, pockets, patches, and webbing for your MOLLE-compatible gear will keep things organized and increase the carrying capacity of the Falcon II.

Drakon Outdoors 40L Waterproof Dry Bag

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If you’re looking for a waterproof tactical backpack, look no further than the Drakon 40L Waterproof Dry Bag. 500D PVC, welded seams, and a roll top closure mean no water is getting in. This pack is fully customizable, with six removable exterior pouches, and plenty of webbing to keep essential items at-the-ready. Ready for river trips or rainy days, the Drakon 40 has you covered.

Eberlestock Halftrack Pack

An Eberlestock Halftrack Pack displayed on white background.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The Halftrack is in the three-day category and has plenty of room to carry all your gear. What we love about the Halftrack is the organizational possibilities. The main compartment can be divided into upper and lower containers and the Halftrack has sleeves to carry two 3-liter hydration bladders, a radio rack, and plenty of exterior webbing for whatever you can’t fit inside. With a gossamer polycarbonate frame and padded, deep-cut air mesh foam, this pack will also remain comfortable no matter how much you load into it.

SOG Ninja Tactical Day Pack

A black SOG Ninja Tactical Day Pack.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

If you’re looking for an everyday carry, workhorse of a pack, the SOG Ninja is the pack for you. A large main compartment is paired with smaller zipper pockets and plenty of webbing to clip or attach gear to. An internal sleeve will hold your laptop or reservoir in place, and side water bottle pouches carry even more water or gear. Overall the ninja is a durable, functional pack at a great price.

Editors' Recommendations

Benjamin Buckingham
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Ben lives in Portland, Oregon where he works as a freelance writer and outdoor guide.
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