10 Best Fanny Packs for Hiking of 2024

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Tempest (Women’s) – Photo credit: Heather Eldridge (CleverHiker.com)

Fanny packs may have made a comeback! Nowadays it seems like we don’t make it a mile down trail without seeing a few hikers rocking one of these versatile little bags. We have researched and used dozens of different hip packs and covered over 1000 miles over the years using them on day hikes and multi-day outings. In that time, we’ve learned what matters the most. We look at weight, capacity, waterproofness, pocket configurations and more to help you find the absolute best fanny pack for your next adventure.

If you need more than just an accessory-carrying companion, our review of the best daypacks for hiking has what you need. If you want to add a hydration system into the mix, our favorite hydration packs are worth a look. And of course, if you are going out for many days (or weeks) at a time, you have to see the top picks on our backpacking packs list.

Quick Picks for Fanny Packs

Check out this quick list of the best fanny packs, or continue scrolling to see our full list of favorites with in-depth reviews.

Best fanny pack overall: Cotopaxi Bataan ($33)

Best ultralight fanny pack for backpacking: Atom Roo ($53 standard / $60 large)

Best small-capacity fanny pack: Patagonia Black Hole Mini ($35)

Lightest fanny pack for backpacking: LiteAF Featherweight ($45-$55)

Best waterproof fanny pack: Matador Freerain ($60)

Best fanny pack for day hiking:  Osprey Talon – Men’s / Tempest – Women’s ($90)

Best budget fanny pack: Jansport Fifth Avenue ($30)

Best blend of space, low weight & water-resistance: Hyperlite Mountain Gear Versa ($79)

Stylish fanny pack for everyday use: KAVU Spectator ($25)

Comfy & customizable fanny pack: Thrupack Summit Bum Classic ($60-$65)

Minimal ultralight fanny pack: Hightail Designs The Ultralight ($65-$75)

Affordable & compact fanny pack: TINYAT Travel ($10)

Durable hiking fanny pack with a large capacity: Mountainsmith Tour Lumbar ($90)

What’s new

The CleverHiker team has been checking out the latest and greatest fanny packs available and has continued to test old favorites:

  • The Cotopaxi Bataan is still the pack to beat. It’s super spacious, water-resistant, and lightweight.

  • We added the Atom Roo to our list and with nearly 400 miles of use on it so far it’s safe to say that it’s one of our favorite fanny packs of all time.

Cotopaxi Bataan

Best fanny pack overall

Price: $33

Measured Weight: 4 oz.

Capacity: 3 L

Best Use: All-around, but we really love it for backpacking

Pros

  • Excellent weight-to-capacity ratio
  • Spacious
  • Excellent value
  • Secure front stretch pocket
  • Water-resistant

Cons

  • Can’t pick your colorway

The Cotopaxi Bataan is a truly unique fanny pack. Each one has a unique colorway designed using off-cuts of scrap fabric to reduce waste – which we can all get behind! While the hodge-podge of bright colors won’t appeal to everyone, we think they’re completely cool and love rocking our one-of-a-kind fanny on trail.

The other major standout of the Bataan is its impressive weight-to-capacity ratio. At 3 liters, this is one of the largest backpacking fanny packs on our list – and it feels even larger than the numbers imply. Its weight is on par with fannies that have about half the capacity, and it’s priced lower than anything comparable.

We love sporting our unique Bataan on the trail, and we’re constantly blown away by how many snacks and small items we’re able to fit in it.

Atom Roo

Best ultralight fanny pack for backpacking

Price: $53 / $60 (standard / large)

Measured Weight: 3.4 oz. / 3.5 oz.

Capacity: 1.5L or 2.5L

Best Use: Backpacking

Pros

  • Ultralight
  • Compact
  • Highly water-resistant
  • Excellent value
  • Secure front stretch pocket
  • Very durable for the weight
  • Zero waste

Cons

  • Color scheme is left up to chance unless you go with black

Most of the time it’s relatively easy for us to pick out a drawback or two about a piece of gear, but we really struggled to find a flaw with the Atom Roo. The capacity is just right (we prefer the large size), the materials are high-quality/durable, the pockets are designed to functional perfection, and the Roo is incredibly light for its size.

The Roo is made from off-cuts of VX-21 (210d; more commonly known as X-Pac) used in the construction of Atom’s backpacks. So waste that might’ve ended up in a landfill is instead being used to create this neat little hip pack. VX21 is waterproof and highly tear/abrasion-resistant by nature, but it’s important to keep in mind that the Roo isn’t seam-sealed against downpours.

The only real “drawback” we could think of is that – since the Roo is made from off-cuts of whatever custom backpacks Atom Packs was making that week – you don’t have control over the color. We purchased a custom backpack at the same time we bought our Roo, and to our delight the Roo complimented our backpack beautifully. We reached out to ask if we got lucky or if they often try to match the colors. We were told it’s common – but not guaranteed – to get a Roo in a similar color scheme when you order a custom pack since the same person is likely to be making both pieces.

If you can’t stand to leave it up to chance, you could always go with the Roo RE which comes in black. We chose the large size because it’s a lot more space for a negligible amount of weight added and only $5 more. There’s plenty more praise we’d like to give this hip pack, but in the interest of not being too long-winded we’ll say this: we’re convinced this is as close to perfect as a backpacking fanny pack can get.

Patagonia Black Hole Mini

Best small-capacity fanny pack

Price: $35

Weight: 2.8 oz.

Capacity: 1L

Best Use: All around

Pros

  • Excellent value
  • Ultralight
  • Versatile
  • Durable
  • Compact
  • Water-resistant
  • Stylish

Cons

  • Small capacity

The Patagonia Black Hole Mini has been one of our favorite fannies for many years due to its compact size, comfort, and stylish design. This versatile hip pack is streamlined enough for backpacking and good-looking enough for travel and everyday use, so it’s a great choice for those looking for a bag that can do it all. Despite having only one liter of capacity, the Black Hole feels much more spacious and fits all of our small essentials for hiking and day-to-day use. Just keep in mind that the Black Hole isn’t waterproof, so you’ll want to line it with a Ziploc if you’ll be hiking with it in inclement weather. That said, the low weight and practical design of the Black Hole make it an excellent value for those wanting a fanny pack that’s just as useful on trail as it is around town.

LiteAF Featherweight

Best ultralight pack for backpacking

Price: $45-$55 (depending on fabric)

Measured Weight: 2.4 oz.

Capacity: 1 L

Best Use: Backpacking

Pros

  • Ultralight
  • Compact
  • Highly water-resistant
  • Excellent value
  • Secure front stretch pocket

Cons

  • Small capacity
  • Slightly less durable than some

The LiteAF Featherweight is one of the lightest fanny packs on our list, and the compact design keeps essentials close at hand but out of the way. We particularly love the front stretch pouch on this fanny because it’s convenient for quick access to stuff we need often, and tight enough to keep items secure. We typically stash our phone in the front pocket, so we can access it easily when we wanna snap a photo or check our navigation app. The thin material and minimal zipper hardware make this fanny a little less durable than others, but these features are also what make it ridiculously light. If you don’t mind being a bit careful with your gear, the thoughtful design of the Featherweight will add a ton of convenience to your backpacking setup.

Matador Freerain

Best waterproof fanny pack

Price: $60

Measured Weight: 4 oz.

Capacity: 2L

Best Use: Backpacking/hiking & watersports

Pros

  • Fully waterproof
  • Versatile
  • Lightweight
  • Compact
  • Durable
  • Large capacity for the weight

Cons

  • Thin strap can be uncomfortable with heavier loads

We’ve been using the Matador Freerain Hip Pack for a long time now, and it’s proven to be infinitely useful for daily life and all kinds of adventures. This pack is fully waterproof, so you can keep your phone and other essentials safe but convenient. We’ve worn the Freerain Pack for everything from hiking in the rain to creek wading, paddleboarding, floating the river – even swimming! The sleek and sporty style looks great on anyone, and you can wear it two ways – at the waist or cross-body. What we like most about this pack is that it’s so lightweight and minimal that you can barely tell you’re wearing it, yet it can expand to fit a small water bottle or a windbreaker when you need it to. To top it off, the Freerain is an excellent value for an ultralight, waterproof fanny pack.

Osprey Talon / Tempest

Best fanny pack for day hiking

Price: $90

Measured Weight: 14 oz.

Capacity: 6 L

Best Use: Hiking

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Good organization
  • Comfortable

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Heavy
  • Bulky
  • Not as versatile as some

Tired of having to take off your backpack and dig around every time you need a small item on day hikes? Ditch the daypack and go with the Osprey Talon (men’s) / Tempest (women’s). This large-capacity fanny pack has plenty of space for essentials on fair-weather hikes when you don’t have to worry about packing bulky layers. There are two water bottle sleeves, a large main compartment, hip pockets, and a front pocket that will keep your items well organized and easily accessible. If you’re familiar with Osprey’s backpacks, then you’ll already know how comfortable and breathable they are. The Talon and Tempest feature the same padding and breathable back panel, so they’ll stay comfortable during long days on trail.

Jansport Fifth Avenue

Best budget fanny pack

Price: $30 (different colors/patterns may cost more)

Measured Weight: 4.1 oz.

Capacity: 2.5L

Best Use: Casual/everyday

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Good organization

Cons

  • Thin strap can be uncomfortable with heavier loads

For casual use, you’d be hard-pressed to find a higher quality fanny pack than the Jansport Fifth Avenue at this price point. This bag is built with the same durable materials and built-to-last construction that you remember from your grade school backpack. We love the simple, yet effective pocket design – one large main compartment and a generously sized front zipper compartment keep your items well organized and easy to access. The Fifth Avenue isn’t weather-resistant, so it’s not the best choice for longer hikes or areas with unpredictable weather. But for strolls to the park and everyday use, it’s one of the best and most affordable options available.

Hyperlite Mountain Gear Versa

Best blend of space, low weight & water resistance

Price: $79

Measured Weight: 4.2 oz.

Capacity: 2.25L

Best Use: Backpacking

Pros

  • Highly water-resistant
  • Versatile
  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • Large capacity for the weight

Cons

  • Expensive
  • A bit bulky

The Hyperlite Mountain Gear Versais a seriously adaptable fanny pack that can be worn in several different ways to suit your needs. We wear it as a crossbody bag around town, attached to our hipbelt or sternum strap for backpacking, and around the waist for travel and day hikes. The Dyneema (DCF) material makes the Versa pretty spendy, but this fabric is waterproof and will keep your important items protected in inclement weather. DCF also has an incredible strength-to-weight ratio, so the Versa is an excellent choice for those wanting a durable fanny pack that keeps weight to a minimum. Check out our full review of the Versa here.

KAVU Spectator

Stylish fanny pack for everyday use

Price: $25

Measured Weight: 4.6 oz.

Capacity: 1 L

Best Use: Casual/everyday

Pros

  • Durable
  • Excellent value
  • Stylish
  • Streamlined pockets

Cons

  • Dries slowly
  • Not as versatile as some

We love the value-priced KAVU Spectator for its streamlined design and 90s-esque styling. This small waist pack is made with extra durable 600-denier polyester, so it’s perfect for the demands of everyday use. Because the body fabric isn’t waterproof and doesn’t dry as quickly as others, we don’t recommend the Spectator for any rigorous hiking. But it works well for jaunts on trails in city parks, and then it transitions seamlessly back to town life afterward.

Thrupack Summit Bum Classic

Comfy & customizable fanny pack

Price: $60-$65 (depending on color)

Measured Weight: 3.7 oz.

Capacity: 2.5 L

Best Use: Backpacking

Pros

  • Fully customizable
  • Great value
  • Good balance of capacity-to-weight
  • Excellent organization
  • Highly water-resistant
  • Versatile

Cons

  • Strap can be a little hard to tighten since it’s not fixed
  • Can be a bit frumpy when packed with heavier items

The Thrupack Summit Bum Classic has an excellent balance of low weight to storage capacity. The classic version has 2.5L of storage, but you can use the custom Thrupack builder to go larger or smaller depending on your needs. There are a ton of colors and patterns to personalize the look of your fanny pack, which is just plain fun. One option we definitely recommend is the Comfy Strap. The Summit Bum itself is well padded and is already one of the most comfy fannies on our list, but this strap upgrade really ups the ante.

Hightail Designs The Ultralight

Minimal ultralight fanny pack

Price: $65-$75 (depending on pattern)

Measured Weight: 1.8 oz.

Capacity: 1 L

Best Use: Backpacking

Pros

  • Ultralight
  • Highly water-resistant
  • Lots of color/pattern options

Cons

  • Zipper corners make it hard to open/close with one hand

The Hightail Designs Ultralight Fanny Packis awesomely minimal and delightfully stylish. There’s not much going on with this fanny pack, and we like it that way. Some fannies are chock full of zippered pockets and hidden compartments, making it easy to lose track of small items. The Ultralight has just one large compartment with a small foldover pocket on the inside for isolating items you don’t need during your hike, like a wallet or a house key. We also love that it’s pretty dang waterproof, the thin strap sits comfortably under a backpack, and the capacity is just right for a smartphone, some snacks, and other small necessities.

TINYAT Travel

Affordable & compact fanny pack

Price: $10

Measured Weight: 3.8 oz.

Capacity: About 1 L

Best Use: Casual/everyday

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Lots of color/pattern options
  • Useful pockets

Cons

  • Oblong shape may make it hard to fit larger items
  • Small capacity

If affordability is your main concern, you won’t find a better deal than the TINYAT Travel Fanny Pack. This sleek waist pack comes in a huge variety of fun colors and patterns and is best suited to travel and casual use. The oblong shape of the TINYAT makes it comfortable and manageable, but it somewhat limits versatility if you have bulkier items (like a large power bank) to tote. That said, we find the pockets of this pack to be very convenient – particularly the zippered back pocket that sits against your body which can be used to conceal sensitive items, like credit cards and a passport during travel.

Mountainsmith Tour Lumbar

Price: $90

Measured Weight: 1 lb. 9 oz.

Capacity: 9 L

Best Use: Hiking

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Good organization
  • Comfortable padding

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Bulky
  • Expensive
  • Might be too large for some to wear comfortably
  • Not as versatile as some

The Mountainsmith Tour Lumbar is a beast of a fanny pack that can haul a ton of stuff. It’s almost as large as some of our favorite daypacks, so it may be the only bag you need for hitting the trail. It has a ton of organizational pockets, two water bottle holsters, and a heavily padded harness for maximum comfort when carrying heavier loads. That said, this fanny is quite bulky, so folks with a petite build may find it a little too large to carry comfortably. Still, we think the Tour works well for day hikers who prefer to have all of their items accessible at their waist rather than having to take off and rummage through a backpack.

LiteAF Featherweight – Photo credit: Casey Handley (CleverHiker.com)

What’s Most Important to You in a Fanny Pack?

Price

There are a ton of basic, affordable fanny packs on the market, but you’ll likely pay a premium price if you want something extra large or waterproof. We have fanny pack recommendations for every budget.

Best budget fanny packs

Best mid-range fanny packs

Best high-end fanny packs

Weight

Most fanny packs are small and light by design, but we give extra importance to weight when looking for one for backpacking. The difference may just be a few ounces, but every little bit counts. For day hikes and travel when we don’t want to carry a daypack, we may opt for a larger, heavier fanny pack.

Best ultralight fanny packs

Best lightweight fanny packs

Best heavy-duty fanny packs

CAPACITY

For short hikes when you don’t need to pack a lot of extra gear, leaving the daypack at home and opting for a fanny pack instead feels really nice. This saves you the hassle of having to take off your backpack every time you need to access your stuff and keeps your back from getting sweaty. When we want to keep things more compact and streamlined for backpacking, we typically go with a smaller fanny pack between 1 and 2.5 liters.

Best small fanny packs

Best medium-capacity fanny packs

Best large fanny packs

WATERPROOF

We prefer to have a waterproof fanny pack for backpacking and hiking. Waterproof fabrics are more spendy, but we find the peace of mind they provide is well worth the cost. If you choose to go with a non-waterproof fanny pack, we recommend bringing along a gallon Ziploc or two to protect your electronics and other sensitive items in inclement weather.

Best waterproof fanny pack

Highly water-resistant fanny packs

Mountainsmith Tour Lumbar – Photo credit: Casey Handley (CleverHiker.com)
Hyperlite Mountain Gear Versa – Photo credit: Casey Handley (CleverHiker.com)

Thrupack Summit Bum Classic – Photo credit: Casey Handley (CleverHiker.com)