Best High Sierra Backpack Reviews in 2020

Why should you look for the best High Sierra backpack? There are many reasons, and all of them are good!

High Sierra is to backpacks and luggage what Coleman is to tents and footprints. They understand you hunger for outdoor adventure. Therefore, they go out of their way to make you a backpack that can help you stay out longer.

You will want to choose a backpack that meets your needs perfectly. Thankfully, High Sierra has quite a dashing array of outdoor and travel packs. You will get more than enough choice.

Long story short, they have backpacks for all budgets, sizes and needs. But don’t worry about features and stuff. Here, we bring you five reviews of some of their best backpacks. We will also bring you a short buying guide to help you through the selection process.

Get value for money! Keep reading.

5 Best Rated High Sierra Backpack Reviews

With hundreds of High Sierra backpacks for you to choose from, it can be a bit hard to pick the real top of the cream ones. All of their backpacks are very good. Therefore, even these five are the first among equals. We did the research for you and without fear of contradiction; we can say the five that we bring you here are the best:


High Sierra Loop Backpack for Men and Women

This is a compact backpack and it is available in more than 30 colors. If you are looking for a college or work backpack, look no further than the High Sierra Loop. With a volume of 33 liters, you can carry your books, laptop and other things in the pack. It has room for a change of clothes and more gear.

Best High Sierra Backpack

You get a few main compartments and many pockets for organization. Inside, you will get a pocket specially designed for your tablet. On the exterior, you will get side pockets to carry your water bottle, umbrella or travel coffee mug. For gear that needs no protection inside the backpack, there are loops to attach it.

This backpack is not only very efficient and effective; it also comes with some good comfort features. For example, the shoulder straps have comfortable padding. They are also non-slip. Therefore, once you adjust the straps, they lock into place nicely and snugly and they stay there. Another comfort feature is the cushioned back panel with good ventilation. It allows airflow between your back and the bag thus preventing you from excess sweating.

When you do not need to carry a lot of gear with you, you need to minimize the backpack. There are compression straps for just that.


  • Made of high quality Polyester material
  • Versatile backpack for hiking, school, work or even traveling
  • Fits nicely under the plane seat
  • Easy to keep your gear organized with many compartments and pockets
  • Lightweight – weighs about 2 pounds


  • The inner lining feels too fickle
  • Zippers could be stronger – some users have complained that theirs broke at TSA inspection

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High Sierra Swerve Laptop Backpack

Versatility is one of the qualities associated with all of High Sierra backpacks. This is true of the Swerve, which can be used for hiking, trekking, work, college and even as a laptop backpack. It is available in many colors, so you will most likely find your favorite one in the mix. Since this backpack is made of polyethylene material, it is water-resistant to a certain point. However, do not stay too long in a drench if you do not have a rain cover or an umbrella.

high sierra swerve laptop backpack

For storage, you will get a volume of 37 liters, which is divided into several pockets and compartments for organization. Even from a casual glance, you can count three main compartments and many exterior pockets. The back compartment that is close to the straps is for your laptop.

It is nicely cushioned to keep your laptop protected. The main compartment has an organizer pocket, and even a key fob that secures your smallest items. The pack has a USB port through which you can access your media to enjoy music while you are on the move.

For comfort, the shoulder straps are well-padded. Thus, even when you load the pack to full capacity, you can carry it comfortably on your shoulders without feeling the strain. The back panel is breathable for airflow. You also get a top carry handle for the moments when you do not want to hoist it onto your shoulders.


  • Laptop compartment fits 17-inch laptops
  • Has a water bottle pocket on the side
  • Shoulder pads are non-slip in design
  • There is a dedicated tablet sleeve
  • Laptop compartment has padding on the bottom so your baby has protection all round


  • Zippers feel a bit stiff when pulling
  • Meshed side pocket feels a bit flimsy

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High Sierra Karadon 45L Frame Pack

The High Sierra Karadon is one of the best-looking backpacks for hiking. At 45 liters, this is a huge backpack. But do not let that prevent you from buying it because it is compressible to a smaller size. It is perfect for hiking and other outdoor adventure.

high sierra hiking backpack

By design, this backpack is a bit different from the ones that we have reviewed above. First, it has a detachable top cover. This lid has a zippered pocket, which gives you more storage room for things that you may need to reach fast. In addition, the main compartment is secured with a drawstring. The pack also has a zippered bottom compartment. Big in size, this compartment also has a divider so that you can pack your sleeping system there.

For your refreshment, there are side pockets for your water bottles or soda. In addition, this backpack is also compatible with hydration pack, complete with easy access and refilling option without having to take the hydration sleeve out of the backpack.

The backpack has compression straps. They are very effective for reducing the size when you need to carry just a few items. The shoulder straps have nice, thick cushioning that protects your shoulders even when carrying the full weight. They are non-slip by design such that when you adjust and lock them into place, they stay intact.


  • Available in different colors
  • Has clips for attaching things on the exterior
  • Compression straps are a good idea
  • It has a hydration clip that you can refill easily
  • Has a hidden rain cover


  • Too heavy at more than 4 pounds

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High Sierra Fatboy Backpack

When you see this backpack and then you see its name, you cannot help thinking just how appropriate the name is. Indeed, it looks like a fat backpack, short in stature with most of its room coming from the girth. But there is more to this backpack than just the looks.

high sierra fatboy backpack

There are enough compartments to keep your gear in good order. A nice organizer compartment allows you to store gear in organized manner for easier access. There is also a dedicated tablet sleeve, a key fob and many pockets for holding different items. These pockets have zippers so your items should not slip out and scatter even when the backpack is inverted.

This backpack has been designed with high quality 600D duralite fabric. The fabric is tear and abrasion-resistant. If you need to buy a good pack for a student, you need one like this as it can withstand a lot of abuse. It also comes with a coating that makes water-resistant that keeps your gear safe and dry.

For easier carrying, this backpack’s straps have nice cushioning. They are adjustable and the buckles lock the straps nicely into place.


  • Has a USB port so you can charge your mobile on the move
  • The price is quite affordable
  • Backpack comes in different colors to meet different tastes
  • The back panel has padding for comfort
  • Compression straps on the side


  • Back panel lumps up with time
  • Some users have complained about zipper quality

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High Sierra Unisex Powerglide Laptop Backpack

This list of High Sierra backpack that can meet your needs perfectly would not be complete without including this high quality travel backpack. The Powerglide backpack is made of 600D polyester fabric. It is water resistant, so you should not worry too much if a light rain catches you outdoors.

high sierra powerglide wheeled backpack

You will get 38 liters of volume. This is enough for light travel, or even for college work. Actually, this backpack is targeted at students mostly. It comes with many compartments and pockets for storage and organization. There is the main large compartment, a laptop compartment that can fit any 17-inch laptop and an organizer compartment that has mesh and zip pockets. You can keep all of your small gear securely in respective places for easier access. The pack has a media port, good for listening to your music when you are on the move.

As a rolling backpack, it has a few important features. First, there are the jam-free wheels that move smoothly on paved ground. Secondly, there is the telescopic handle that locks into place when you are pulling the pack behind you.

When you cannot roll the backpack, you can carry it on your back. It has a comfortable and breathable back panel. It also has adjustable shoulder straps with high quality and comfortable padding.


  • Hidden shoulder straps stay out of the way when you don’t need them
  • Has a nice grab handle with good padding
  • Stands upright on the ground
  • Fits in the overhead luggage compartment and under some seats
  • It has a warranty of 5 years


  • Warranty only covers recreational use
  • Water can get into the bag when pulling it in the rain through the handle enclosure

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Information about High Sierra Brand

In 2017, High Sierra Sport Company, an adventure travel luggage and backpack maker celebrated 30 years in business. Considering how competitive the outdoor and sports industry is, it takes a lot of gut, sweat, blood and diligence to survive for that long. Even after it was acquired by Samsonite, which is the biggest luggage company in the world in 2012, High Sierra continues meeting the needs of its customers perfectly. Today, they are among the most respected owners of casual bags in North America. Their range of products meets the needs of camping, hiking, skiers, snowboarders and adventure travellers. These products also have a high appeal to students and other youthful consumers.


Key Features to Look For When Buying a High Sierra Backpack

Same as any other backpack, not all High Sierra backpacks will have the features that you need. For example, you cannot expect a school backpack to have the same features as a hiking backpack. Even outdoor adventure backpacks are not equal. Some may be water-resistant; some come with a rain cover and so on.

Here, you will see the key features to look for when buying a High Sierra backpack.

  • Internal and exterior pockets

You need a backpack that has secure pockets on the inside. That way, you can keep your valuable items such as passport, keys and other items. These pockets should have some form of security. Mostly, these pockets will have zippers or Velcro tapes. That way, you know that even if the backpack tips over the side, the items in these pockets will not spill out.

In addition to the compartments that a backpack may come with, you will also need some exterior pockets. Most backpacks have a side pocket or two. They are good for storing items that you need to access fast such as umbrella and water bottle.

Some exterior pockets are also zippered for some sort of security. A zipper without a lock might not prevent a thief, but it will prevent your items from spilling out.

  • Adjustable and comfortable straps

It is called a backpack for a reason – you carry it on your back. Therefore, to carry the backpack without too much trouble or strain, you will need shoulder straps that have ample padding. If you can find one with wide straps, it is more preferable than narrow straps, which tend to dig into the flesh causing you a lot of strain.

Apart from the shoulder straps, some High Sierra backpacks may also come with extra straps such as chest and waist straps. These help in securing the backpack to your back properly especially when you have to hike steep trails.

Another important thing that your backpack straps should have is adjustability. Therefore, whether you are tall or short, you can find a backpack that will fit you perfectly. When you adjust the straps, the buckles should have stoppers so that the strap stays intact after adjusting.

  • Enough storage and organization

This is about the volume of the backpack. Whether you need big or small backpacks, you are going to find them at High Sierra. They have backpacks that you can use for one day hiking, and some that you can even use for hiking the entire Pacific Crest Trail. Check the volume of the backpack. In addition, it should have some organization.

A good backpack must have a few compartments. For example, it can have a padded laptop compartment, the main compartment that you can use to carry a change of clothes and an organizer compartment with different pockets for organization. We have already discussed the interior pockets.

For more storage options, you can look for a backpack that has clips and daisy chains so that you can attach some gear on the outside.

  • Water resistance

A backpack should have some form of weather resistance. While the backpacks may not be 100 percent waterproof, at least, they should keep your gear dry if you are caught in the rain.

Water resistance is a means to prevent water penetration. This is done by the application of a special coating, mostly polyurethane coating. In addition, you can also look for a High Sierra backpack that has a rain cover, or buy a rain cover separately to keep your gear completely dry when you are caught in the rain.


Frequently Asked Questions

Buying a High Sierra backpack is different from buying any other backpack. There is a lot of information about these backpacks because this company has been in business for a long time.

Here are the most common questions that people ask when looking for a High Sierra backpack:

  • Do High Sierra backpacks come with warranty?

Yes they do. This warranty is registered to the first owner of the backpack. If you buy your backpack through our site here, you will be directed to an online marketplace and the warranty will be valid. However, as soon as you get your backpack, register it with High Sierra to activate the warranty. Also, check whether the product is covered by warranty because some may not be covered. If the pack sustains damage due to manufacturer defects, High Sierra can replace or repair the backpack.

  • How can I take care of my High Sierra backpack?

How you clean your backpack depends on the material used in its construction. For example, if the material is duralite Polyester, never wash it in the water directly. Just use a damp cloth to clean it. If your backpack is nylon, use a damp cloth and don’t clean it in the washer because it has a special coating. You can clean a cotton canvas backpack in a washing machine with cold water, but separate it from other items because it bleeds.

  • I want a laptop backpack. What should I consider?

It must have a laptop compartment with cushioning to protect your laptop from shock and impact. It should also have enough room to carry the other laptop accessories. The main compartment must be enough to carry a change of clothes or books. There should also be a couple of extra pockets for water, umbrella and so on. Consider the waterproofness of the backpack to protect your laptop from the elements.


Choosing the best High Sierra backpack is going to be easy once you read the information we have brought you here. They have everything that you need. Whether you are looking for a rugged backpack for outdoor adventure, a wheeled backpack for traveling or a small laptop backpack, they have it for you. Their backpacks have all the features that you need to make your adventure a happy one. Whatever kind of backpack you are looking for; this brand name has it for you. Here, we have looked at five of their top performing ones. You can choose any with confidence.  Join millions of other happy users around the world.

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