Last Updated: July 10, 2019

Best North Face Backpacks – Any Adventure, Big or Small

There are very few brands that travelers the world over will love. One such brand is The North Face - one of the most popular brands known for their sturdy, functional, and stylish bags. The secret behind the durability and use of North Face bags are the people that use them. The company develops bags and technologies based on the feedback of athletes and world-class adventurers. There is a lot of research behind finding the best material, structure, and construction in every bag they make. It may not always be affordable, but it definitely is worth the money.

The great thing about this company is they have several designs that fit several occasions. Finding the best bag for you depends on what you will mostly use it for. The best part is whatever you decide to get, you can be assured of its quality and durability, and it will definitely be more than good enough to take with you wherever you go.

Every bag is protected by lifetime guarantee and free returns.

Best Commuter Backpack

North Face Surge Backpack
North Face Surge Backpack

The Surge Backpack is one of the most popular day packs from the North Face. 

This 33-liter pack is constructed of hyper-durable ballistics nylon and crafted with a padded haul handle on the exterior. It has the FlexVent™ suspension system, which has custom injection-molded shoulder straps, a padded mesh back panel with a spine channel and a wicking lumbar panel for maximum support and ventilation.

It fits a 15-inch laptop in its dedicated laptop compartment. If you have way more stuff inside, carrying this bag throughout the day will remain comfortable. 

It has several fleece-lined exterior pockets designed for quick access on-the-go including pockets for your tablet, gadgets, and sunglasses.

Night commuters and cyclists will also appreciate the 360 degree reflective bike-light loop. On the side, there are two water bottle pockets made with Teksever fabric which can also conceal content. It will be safe to stuff smaller items in there if you need to just reach back without taking the straps off your shoulders.

North Face Surge Backpack

There are several interior pockets for better organization. It also has a sternum strap and a removable waist belt so you can adjust the way you carry your bag any way you want. It's clearly meant to hold a lot of things big and small, which can be its main fault. Because of its shape and the distribution of the weight, the bag will tip over when it's set down. You'll have to prop the front up against a wall or any other structure to keep it upright.

Product Information

  • Dimensions: 19.75" x 13.75" x 8.5" 
  • Laptop sleeve: 10.5” x 13.25”
  • Volume: 33 liters
  • Weight: 3 lbs
  • Material: Ballistic Nylon


  • Many pockets for organization
  • Padded and ventilated back and shoulder straps
  • Dedicated laptop sleeve


  • Tips over when set down

Best Hiking Backpack

North Face Diad Pro 22
North Face Diad Pro 22

A good hiking backpack is roomy, secure, and lightweight. This is exactly what the Diad Pro 22 backpack is. Its 22-liter capacity is enough for you to bring the essentials on any kind of day hike while helping you limit the unnecessary stuff you might end up bringing. The last thing you want on a hike is to carry around a huge bag the whole day up and down trails with things you don't really need.

It's crafted of high-tenacity ripstop nylon, keeping this bag at its lightest. It's also very easy to stow when not in use and won't take up too much space. This minimal pack offers storage in the lid and large mesh exterior pockets for easy access.

Despite its minimalistic design, it doesn't skimp on features. It has a hydration sleeve, a sternum strap, and a daisy chain to hook on more items that don't fit in the pack. The padded back panels help keep the bag comfortable against your bag.

There are few options for organization, so if you have smaller items, you might need extra pouches inside the bag.

Product Information

  • Dimensions: 21" x 11" x 9" 
  • Volume: 22 liters
  • Weight: 0.8 lbs
  • Material: Ripstop Nylon


  • Extremely lightweight
  • Made of durable and stowable material
  • Roomy and adequate for a day or summit hike


  • Few pockets and options for organization

Best Backpack for Backpackers

North Face Terra 65
North Face Terra 65

Backpacking across Asia or anywhere in the world is pretty exciting, but also quite unpredictable. You'll be faced with different terrains, environments, and people. You'll be sleeping in hostels, hotels, BnB's, and maybe even couches. What you'll need is a bag that can hold a lot of stuff that you can still carry around for a full day, a full week, or a full month. That's what the Terra 65 is for.

This bag is made not only for storage and space but for ultimate fit and comfort. Its slim design and lightweight material makes carrying 65 liters of weight more comfortable and manageable. 

It features an OPTIFIT harness system for better load control on the trails or on the streets. It also has dials to adjust the fit between the pack and your body without sacrificing ventilation. This updated harness system basically ensures that the placement of the bag against your body suits exactly the way you want to carry the bag.

The wide hip belt also ensures that the weight is spread out and not all concentrated on your shoulders. 

North Face Terra 65

There are over 7 pockets, a huge side pocket for the main compartment, and a sleeping bag compartment. While the bag itself is durable, some of the external straps don't seem to be made with equal care. The sternum strap and external clips will hold, but if handled carelessly or forced to compress too much items in the bag, there is a tendency for these smaller external parts to break.

Product Information

  • Dimensions: 11" x 6.3" x 19.3"
  • Volume: 65 liters
  • Weight: 4 lbs
  • Material: Polyester


  • Customizable and extremely comfortable fit
  • Large capacity
  • Excellent weight distribution


  • Lower-quality external parts

Best Carry-On Backpack

North Face Refractor Duffel

For great weekend getaways or any kind of flight, the Refractor Duffel Pack is a great choice. Perfectly-sized as a carry-on and still functional as a travel bag, the Refractor has a clamshell opening to make it easier to pack and arrange items and gear. Use the straps for easier carriage as a backpack, or stow them away if you prefer to handle the bag as a duffel.

The exterior has a dedicated 15-inch laptop pocket for quick and easy checkpoint travel. A smaller neoprene pocket at the front can also hold a tablet or other documents. A smaller pocket on the exterior is meant to keep your boarding pass, and an ID window built into the bag is for labeling the bag as yours.

The interior has a mesh pocket for organization and another divider to pack clothes and shoes neatly. There is another side pocket for socks, underwear, or any other small item that you wish to pack in your carry-on.

North Face Refractor Duffel

They polyester and nylon materials used on the bag keeps it lightweight to save precious baggage weight restrictions. 

At 28.2 liters, this bag carries a lot of volume. However, there is lack of support in terms of waist or sternum straps. While the shoulder straps are padded, it can get uncomfortable if you will be carrying this much weight for long periods of time. With the lack of wheels, better padding, or support features, this bag is ideal for quick and easy travel and not extensive backpacking adventures.

Product Information

  • Dimensions: 19.5'' x 14'' x 8''
  • Laptop Sleeve: 18" x 11.5" x 2"
  • Volume: 28.2 liters
  • Weight: 3 lbs
  • Material: Nylon and Polyester


  • Pockets and dividers for easy organization
  • Stowable straps to carry as a duffel
  • Lightweight and durable


  • Lack of weight support straps and padding

Best Women's Backpack

Women's Borealis Backpack
Women's Borealis Backpack

While North Face backpacks are generally unisex, much care has been put in designing for women's smaller frames and different builds. The Women's Borealis Backpack is a crowd favorite. It has excellent design that molds to a woman's body, and also comes in tons of different colors to match any kind of personality. 

Note: We have compared the Borealis before with the Jester

The updated version of the Borealis Backpack is designed with the updated FlexVent suspension system for all-day comfort. The shoulder straps are contoured for an ergonomic fit.

This 25-liter pack is equipped with several exterior and quick-access pockets. Inside is a dedicated 15-inch laptop pocket as well. There are side compression straps to keep items snug and a removable waist belt for added weight support if needed. 

A padded top-haul handle makes for easier handling.

Women's Borealis Backpack

The backpack is durable, but not meant to carry heavy items such as books for school. It will fit documents, but textbooks and binders will be a challenge. As it's meant as a day pack, it travels well for day hikes or daily commute to work.

Product Information

  • Dimensions: 18.75” x 12.5” x 8”
  • Laptop Sleeve: 12” x 13”
  • Volume: 25 liters
  • Weight: 2 lbs
  • Material: Nylon and Polyester


  • Designed specifically for women for an ergonomic fit
  • Several pockets for organization
  • Lightweight and comes in different colors


  • Too small for textbooks and larger documents

Why go for North Face?

North Face bags have been around for a reason - it's a very reliable brand that can endure a lot of wear and tear. It also comes in a variety of shapes, sizes, form, function and price tags. Whatever kind of bag you need, you'll surely find something that suits your criteria.

Technology. North Face is one of the most advanced brands when it comes to storage and carriage technology. The suspension systems built into the bags guarantee ultimate comfort regardless of the weight and length of time the bags are on your back.

Build. North Face bags are built to last. If not forever, at least for as long as you intend to use and abuse the bag for rough travels or long-haul flights. Materials and structures of the bags are well thought out to allow the bag to deliver according to its function.

Design. North Face bags are not subtle. While you'll find more minimalistic designs from the brand, most of the bags are loud and packed with pockets, straps, mesh, and clips. If you're looking for a sleek and futuristic bag, look somewhere else. North Face bags are designed to stand out and be as functional as you need them to be.

About the Author Roger Timbrook

Roger is a little obsessed with travel. He has been to over 40 countries, broken 3 suitcases and owned over 10 backpacks in 12 months. What he doesn't know about travel, ain't worth knowing!

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