5 Best Backcountry Ski Backpack Reviews in 2020

So you’ve become a snowboard extraordinaire and so it’s totally understandable that you now want to have the best ski and snowboarding backpack.

Not all snowboarding backpacks are created equal. You can get slim skinny models all the way down to others that are much bigger and much bulkier. Some are made to strap to your own back while others are created to be carried by hand.

There isn’t one type that’s any better than the other and it all boils down to personal preference. We spent 44 hours testing and reviewing 17 backpacks to narrow down to the best 8 ski and snowboard backpacks that you should buy for the next trip to the mountains.

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Best Ski and Snowboard Backpack that Money can Buy

1. BCA Float

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BCA Float offers plenty of space for lunch, extra layers, water bottles, and a backup puffy coat. It can also carry a DSL-R camera with an extra lens.

Main Features

Extra roomy goggle pocket big enough for at least one pair if not two.Extremely comfortable back padding and also super comfy broad shoulder straps.

Adjustable airbag deployment pull trigger that can be moved from right to left depending on user preference.

Easy to adjustable torso length. It can go from a size small pack to a size large simply by unfastening the Velcro behind the back and moving the hip-belt up or down.

It has a nicely tucked away helmet sling and easily accessible to expedite transitions but won’t snag on tree branches during descent.

The compression straps double as the vertical snowboard carry system.This backpack has several anchor points useful for attaching additional gear with carabiners.

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2. Patagonia SnowDrifter

Patagonia Snow Drifter Backpack 30L - 1831cu in Fatigue Green, L

The Patagonia Snow Drifter backcountry pack comes in 20 -litre, 30-litre and 40-litre models. It has been designed to make things easier for you out on the mountain.

Main Features

Like many backcountry specific packs, the Patagonia Snow Drifter has a front pocket for avy kit with slots for your shovel, handle and probe. You’ll also find a fleece-lined pocket for goggles at the back.

The main compartment is accessible from both the top and the back panel, so you can get at your gear without unloading.

The pack is externally covered in DWR (durable water repellent) treated, 420 denier Cordura nylon that has been made to hold off as many scrapes as possible.

An Air Flow mesh in the shoulder, back and waist straps helps with overheating issues you might have.

Finally, it has cam locking straps to provide options for strapping your board to the outside of the pack without worry it will come loose.

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

3. Burton Day Hiker Pro

Burton Day Hiker 28L Backpack

The Burton Day Hiker serves various needs of snowboarders wanting a solid backpack for all occasions. The bag also comes in different volumes from 25 litres to 28 litres.

Main Features

It contains a large main compartment that has an internal laptop storage in addition to a fleece-lined tablet pouch.

Another plus is that Burton have also added a stretch front pocket complete with useful areas to store a variety of items that you might need to lay your hands on quickly.It also comes with a dual stretch mesh water bottle pockets on each side and a fleece-lined goggle/accessory pocket too.

On top of all that, on the outside you will find two straps that will enable you to carry your snowboard vertically. Also, a skateboard will fit in perfectly.

Comfort and stability are guaranteed with the Day Hiker Pro’s padded, ergonomic shoulder straps and removable waist belt.It also comes with Airflow back panel that is not only designed to keep your back from sweating but also comfy.

Burton Day Hiker 28L Backpack
  • Classic Blue Ripstop: bluesign Approved 75D x 150D Polyester Ripstop with PU Backing / bluesign Approved 840D Nylon Jr. Ballistic

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

4. Dakine Poacher

Dakine Poacher R.A.S. 36L Backpack Men's

The Dakine Poacher is not only a sleek and well-designed pack but it is also loaded with useful features.

Main Features

On top of the Poacher you’ll find two buckles wrap around the “brain” of the pack, and there’s a cinching section that lets you add volume as needed.

Another plus is the multiple pockets including a small one on the waist strap. On top of all that there is access into the main compartment through a double zip mechanism on the back of the Rucksack.

This is designed as a Ski/Snowboard sack, so it is a little heavier because of its more robust construction.

Finally, it is well padded and really comfortable as long as you have the right back length

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

5. The North Face Snomad

The North Face Snomad 26L Backpack

The North Face Snomad although simple and sleek didn’t skimp on the essentials. The Snomad is available in 26-liter size and also available as a 34-liter.

Main Features

It contains a separate savy tool pocket that keeps layers from mingling with wet, snowy gear like climbing skins, and includes a list of 10 backcountry essentials to be mindful of when packing.

The main pocket is accessed via a sturdy back panel and it includes a sleeve for a hydration reservoir.It comes with a separate goggle pocket and utility pocket that you can access from the top of the pack.

Another plus is the big enough single hip-belt pocket located on the left side for easy access, its sturdy ice tool holder and hip-belt tool loop.There is a mesh helmet-carry sling that attaches at the top of the pack and is easily secured.

Nonetheless, no matter whether you’ll need a backpack type or perhaps a carry-on type, there are several basic features that you must have.

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Features to Consider When Buying Ski and Snowboard Backpacks

The first and most important is that your bag will need a water-resistant shell. You won’t be satisfied with a jacket that doesn’t repel water.

Trust me, don’t settle for less in relation to your snowboard carrier. You want to safeguard your snowboard if it’s not in use or when you’re commuting. A water-repellent shell is an absolute must for all serious boarders.

A ski and snowboard backpack or bag also needs to be large enough to allow your snowboard to fit inside completely.

You don’t want to ever spend tons of money buying the best snowboard and then carry it around in a bag that wont completely house and protect your own investment. Many bags out there are constructed to expand, allowing an easy fit for all different size snowboards. These may cost more, but in the long run, they’re worth it.

When purchasing a snowboarding backpack, make sure that your backpack is made from high-quality materials. This will ensure many years of usability and enjoyment.


Whether you select the carry along or the backpack type, make certain that the straps specifically are strong and secure. Check out the seams; you don’t want the straps to split and tear up from the bag the first time you ever use the item.

The same refers to any zipper pouches that could be on your bag. The zippers need to be of good quality, not some cheap plastic type that could rip apart with very little wear. Remember, you simply get what you pay for these days.

Many bags are created to accommodate more boards in comparison with just one snowboard. If you want a bag that can easily hold a pair of boards, please make sure the padding on the inside goes from one end of the bag to the other.

Don’t waste time or money with padded inserts you can remove. All you get with all the inserts is time lost attempting to find where you left them right after they were removed. Go with padding that is a permanent feature from the inside of the bag. You’ll save yourself a lot of time, trouble, and hassle.

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