Earlier this month my old no name brand backpack finally ripped open along the zipper and ate the dust, and I decided this was a good opportunity to justify using what little money I had in my bank account to buy the back pack I’ve had my eyes on for a while.

photo via art of backpacking

It was really important for me to get a versatile bag because I could only afford one and needed it for a variety of purposes, as listed below…

-Carrying my heavy load of school books. And not just carrying, but biking hunched over at least 5 miles per day with them.

-For use as a day pack on hiking and camping trips.

-For use on overnight trips or during travel, of course

Comfort both while walking and biking is a problem I’ve encountered with many bags. The popular messenger bike bags are miserable while standing upright and many back packs place weird pressure on my spine when I’m leaned over biking. So obviously I had a few important priorities: comfort, durability, spaciousness, ventilated for sweat during hiking or biking, water resistant (it rains a ton here!) and at least a mildly pleasing aesthetic appearance.

Well, here is my perfect pack…The North Face Borealis. It definitely fits all of my qualifications, plus it came in this very pretty blue. It is endorsed by the American Chiropractic Association and extra padded for super comfort. Even when I stuff it with textbooks and bike uphill, my back doesn’t hurt and I feel well balanced. Plus it has a nice laptop storage space and a spot for my water bottle on the side. It definitely functions for trails and hiking and I wouldn’t be embarrassed to carry it around while sight seeing, either.

What is your favorite day-pack? Do you use it just while traveling, or for other activities as well?

post by Jackie Clark