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which rick steves backpack?

i had one of the light ones and it has a hole in it (my fault), so i am looking at getting another, can't decide which to get. we will be out in pouring down rain at some point. i walk with a cane, so can't do anything too heavy. will be taking my camera and phone and purse items each day. don't want them to get wet if we are on an isle of lewis beach and it deluges. which rick steves backpack would you recommend? i know the light one is great, as i have used it for years, but i'm afraid i might need the heavier weight fabric in a scottish downpour?

Posted by
16894 posts

Maybe nothing can survive a Scottish downpour such as I experienced on the Isle of Skye. (The best solution was to stay in the car.) I suggest having a plastic bag on hand as a "poncho" for your day bag. I once had a day bag that was rubber-coated on the outside, but still the seams weren't sealed. The hemp model is the least water-resistant choice of Rick's offerings.

Posted by
32244 posts


You could also have a look at something like the Tom Bihn Daylight Backpack which is available either in cordura nylon or halcyon fabric. The halcyon should be reasonably waterproof as it's somewhat of a plastic material. The zippers fit fairly tightly but it would probably still be a good idea to place any critical items (such as a Passport) inside a zip-lok bag.

Posted by
5837 posts

Premium solution are waterproof roll-top sacks:
I have a Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Dry Sack that fits inside my day pack.

Low cost alternative are gallon size Slide Lock plastic bags (Hefty or ZipLock) if you have a small camera. While less water tight, a heavy duty garbage bag also works (for a while).

Pack rain covers only work if they fit well and its a gentle female rain. They don't work in heavy rain/wind conditions and you need to tie them to the pack so they don't disappear downwind.

If you use a poncho to cover both upper body and pack, use a belt and hope its not too windy.

Posted by
28 posts

i really like the look of the sea to summit bag - what size would fit the rick steves daypack most optimally? is there a way to tell for sure?

Posted by
5837 posts

...what size would fit the rick steves daypack most optimally? is there a way to tell for sure?

Look at the REI specification page/tab:

2 liter
8x9 inches

4 liter
9x15 inches

8 liter
6.5x18 inches

13 liter
8.5x21 inches

20 liter
10x24 inches

35 liter
12 x 27 inches

The largest weights only a couple of oz.