Best 3-Day Backpack for the Outdoors

best 3-day backpack

Sometimes you need a backpack that's more rugged, a bit tougher, and capable of the challenges coming your way. When you're looking for the best 3-day backpack, start by looking at what's in use by police and military personnel.


Whether you are looking for a bag that'll carry all your gear or simply an everyday bag built for endurance, a tactical backpack is a solid choice. There are some fantastic bags in this class that are diverse enough to excel in the outdoors.

1. Sandpiper of California Bugout Backpack

The Sandpiper of California Bugout Backpack is small enough to fit as a carry-on for domestic and international flights, but large enough to fit all your gear for full 3-day trip.

The Bugout backpack is designed to keep you organized. There are zippered sections within the largest pocket and a number of sections throughout the bag. This makes it easy to find everything from a headlamp to your passport.

Also, this backpack can be expanded to accommodate everything you need for a longer expedition.

2. Red Rock Outdoor Gear Assault Pack

The affordable price of the Red Rock Outdoor Gear Assault Pack draws you in, but the quality is what makes you a lifelong believer in the backpack. It is sturdy, with high quality buckles and zippers that are made to last.

So put aside your initial concerns about taking this bag on a 3-day trip or through a rugged environment, it's up to the challenge.

For its compact size, this backpack can fit a lot of stuff. Whether it's your laptop, gym clothes, or outfitting for a trek, this bag can hold everything you need.

The only complaint about this bag is that the MOLLE is not to US military specs.

3. Kelty Redwing 50-Liter

The Kelty Redwing 50-liter has the option to front-load the backpack, which is a bit unique for tactical bags, that are typically loaded from the top.

However, in this case you are given the option to unzip the panel or pack your stuff from the top.

This makes it ideal for packing, organizing, and grabbing gear quickly.

4. Condor 3-Day Assault Pack

Condor is one of the most recognizable brands in tactical backpacks, and for good reason. All of Condor’s bags are made for the most extreme conditions.

The exterior of the Condor 3-Day Assault Pack is made of heavy-duty material, and the interior has seven different pockets to organize your gear.

The size of the Condor 3-Day Assault Pack is ideal for three days, including food and water. The inside of this bag can fit 50 liters of gear, and the seven compartments keep it all in place.

The pack also has the capacity to carry six liters of water in two separate hydration bladder bags.

5. Snugpack Endurance 40

When you need versatility on a multi-day adventure, the Snugpack Endurance 40 offers it in spades.

First, the Snugpack Endurance is literally covered in MOLLE attachment points. There are places to latch on attachments down the sides and front panel of this bag. This creates a lot of options for extending your gear setup.

Another highlight is its incredible comfort, even over long distances and periods of time. The shoulder straps are wide and generously padded, which minimizes discomfort in the shoulders and prevents the straps from digging into your neck and underarms.

The hip belt features similar features and design, making it easy and comfortable to carry the heaviest of gear.

6. Tactical Rush 72 Backpack

At first glance the 5.11 Tactical Rush looks like a really tough bag. Luckily, that initial observation is correct.

This bad is made to carry everything you need for 72 hours, and made of 1000D nylon, a fabric that'll withstand all types of weather and terrain. There is no need to worry about rips, tears, or damage to this 3-day backpack.

People who look for a tactical bag are usually interested in carrying a lot of gear, and getting to it quickly. The 5.11 Tactical Rush has you covered. The exterior MOLLE is great for attachments and exterior pouches, and is conveniently located along the waist belt.

You'll find the same attention to detail inside the pack, with the largest pockets divided into smaller sections to keep all of your gear organized over 72 hours.

7. Maxpedition Vulture-II 3-Day Backpack

The Maxpedition Vulture-II 3-Day Backpack has the right qualities to be the only backpack you need.

It is durable enough to take on deployment and active duty, but street smart enough for daily use and travel. The 19” x 15” x 7.5” larger pocket can hold just about anything you want on a 3-day hiking or camping trip.

In addition, you get another medium compartment and a separate compartment for hydration bladders, which provides space for your other gear.

The best feature of the Vulture-II is that it offers everything you need, without overdoing it with extras that add weight and complication.

8. Camelback BFM

The Camelback BFM looks like a military bag from the outside, but it unzips across the sides and front to reveal an orderly interior.

There are tie-down straps to keep your bigger gear in place, and a separated mesh section for smaller items.

The mid-sized compartment, small compartment, and back compartment are similarly organized, so you'll never misplace items again.

Get the Best 3-Day Backpack for You

The thoughtful and smart design of tactical backpacks, not to mention durability, is what makes them ideal for outdoor enthusiasts. So get out and find the best 3-day backpack for you.