Going for a ride can never be as simple as grabbing your bike and then getting it out of the door. However, if you have a handy saddlebag, you can have your patch kit, spare tube, CO2 and inflator, and a number of other tools organized together to ensure that you don't get stranded on the roadside.
Bikepacking saddle bags come in different shapes and sizes, whereas these can be attached to a bike through the seat post or the saddle rails. For some people, the best saddlebag is the one that uses simple Velcro straps or the Boa dials, as well as permanent clip-on attachments.
When shopping for bikepacking saddlebags, you might want to consider the following steps:
- Get a well-padded bag. If it doesn't have enough padding or cushioning, the contents inside the bag will rattle around and make a lot of noise as you ride on your bike. In addition, poorly protected items can get damaged through friction against each other. However, it is not necessary that every tool that you carry should be cushioned – if they are small then they don't need much protection.
- Make sure there's a proper compression system in place so that when you're riding at high speeds nothing flies out of your pack and gets lost behind you. You should also have something to attach additional gear so that you can expand the size of your bag.
- You should also consider how much storage space is available in the saddlebag that you want to buy. If it doesn't provide enough room for all of your gear, then try opting for a bigger option that has more space (not all bags are expandable).
- There's no reason why you shouldn't pay attention to fashion or color choices – after all, this will be right at your back! Some people find certain colors less irritating than others, so do keep this in mind while picking out the model that suits you best.
- Waterproofing is an important consideration if muddiness and weather conditions aren't your thing. The last thing that you need on a ride is your tools rusting because you didn't opt for a waterproof saddlebag.
Bikepacking saddle bags are relatively new concepts, so if you can find bikepacking backpacks that work for you, then that should suffice as well. Check out the different options available on popular online retail sites or head to your local bike store once you've decided upon the right model.
List of best bike saddlebags
Evoc Seat Bag
This is a middle-volume saddlebag version by Evoc that has an internal capacity of 0.65L. The exterior of the bag comes with PU-coated ripstop nylon that can be seen in the backpacks made by the same brand. Therefore, this saddle bag is durable and can also resist the weather.
In order to keep your gear organized, there are mesh pockets, whereas the three Velcro straps keep the bag in its place, thus making this bikepacking saddle bag great for faff-free mounting. Many users love the Evoc seat pack because it is available in bright colors rather than the flash yellow or the stock standard black that we usually see.
- The size of this bag measures 11.6 x 8.3 x 5 inches, whereas the weight is 510 grams
- 3M reflective details improve visibility from a distance
- There are four attachment points for securing the bag
- A reinforced tail light loop comes with a Velcro strap to secure the tail light
- A quick access tool compartment is perfect for inflator, patch kit, and multi-tool
- The bag breathes well and prevents issues of sweat
- There's a lot of space inside the saddlebag
- The compression straps keep everything in place
- Setting up this bikepacking saddlebag is quite difficult as compared to other models on the market
Waterproofing is not great but can be improved upon using waterproof bags or covers. This Evoc seat pack costs around $49, which is worth it for the features that it offers.
Scicon Phantom 230 Roller 2.1
The Roller 2.0 bikepacking saddle bag by Scicon utilizes a bracket that gets attached to the saddle rails as well as the back clips. The Phantom 230 Roller is among the easiest of the bags that can be swapped between different bikes. On the pack's exterior, there are mounts for the two tire levers so that you can get free space inside the bag. Most of this bikepacking saddle bag is made from nylon, and it also has a carbon optic mountain base.
- The size of this bag is 19 x 4.7 x 5 inches
- This saddlebag has an internal volume of 1.8 liters and weighs around 300 grams
- It can be removed from the bracket and your bike in a jiffy thanks to the quick release clips
- Mounting and unmounting both are easy, no matter if you're using Scicon's clip or another type of accessory (like Topeak MTX) for mounting this bag on your bike
- The material used is sturdy as well as durable enough to last quite some time
Price - that's always a downside! However, it should also be mentioned that Scicon has made sure that their product is worth the high price thanks to all their attention to detail. Scicon Phantom 230 Roller 2.1 Saddlebag costs approximately $130.
Silca Seat Roll Premio
Silca bikepacking saddlebag is very popular for its high-quality gear and its best saddlebag. The Seat Roll Premio is no exception. It is made from waxed canvas and comes with three internal pockets and some room for tire levers, a tube, and a patch kit. The pack can roll up, and by using a Boa dial, it gets attached to your bike. There is also a rail guard included by Silca so that the lightweight carbon rails can be protected.
- Made from 210 denier nylon that is made from recycled bottles
- A weight of only 190 grams makes this one of the lightest bikepacking saddlebags on the market
- The size of this bag measures 15.5 x 5.0 x 3 inches, which gives you enough space for your needs
- It is available in different colors and there are patterns to choose from as well depending upon what you'd like to have. You can even use custom patterns if you wish so! This way, it's much more personalized than other options out there.
- Low cost is an advantage, as the Silca Seat Roll Premio costs less than $100.
- There aren't a lot of pockets, and this may be a problem for those who need to carry a lot with them. However, it's a small price to pay because the weight is light
Lezyne Loaded Caddy Saddle Bag
You can get different options of bikepacking saddlebags with Lezyne, but if you are looking for a complete set, the Loaded Caddy Saddle Bag comes with patches, tire levers, multi-tool, and a tire boot. This bikepacking saddle bag secures itself to the saddle rails and seat post with the help of Velcro straps. In order to keep the wheel spray at bay, this pack uses a water-resistant zip and woven nylon construction.
- Made from 600D nylon
- Weighs around 500 grams and comes with a claimed volume of 9 liters
- Price is affordable and the experience of using this product is good as well. It costs around $100 or less, which is sensible for what it offers to you.
The size of the Lezyne Loaded Caddy Saddlebag is 18cm x 4.7cm x 5cm, which may be too small for some people. Another downside that this pack has is that it does not come with an external pocket, so you might have trouble storing your smaller essentials in there. It all depends on what you are looking for in a bikepacking saddle bag!
Arundel Dual Seat Bag
This bikepacking saddle bag is called Dual by Arundel because it is made to carry two tubes, including any other essentials required to fix a flat. The saddle rails and the bag are looped around through a single strap without requiring to be anchored by the seat post. Under the middle of the bag, there is a zip that runs, and the carrier happens to sit up underneath the saddle so that you can have protection from water and grit that flings off the rear wheel.
- The dimensions of this product make it easy to mount and remove the Arundel Dual Seat Bag from your bike
- The stuff that you can carry in this bag can be easily accessed because there is a zip at the bottom which gives you access to the contents inside. You even get a reflective strip for safety while riding at night!
- It is available in different colors so that you can have more choices depending upon what you wish to have
- You can even use this for daily commuting or other purposes apart from bike touring, which gives it an edge over the other options out there
- At $80 or more, this is not the cheapest option. However, those who are looking for a minimalistic setup that can hold two tubes and some accessories should consider getting this one!
Over the past few years, bikepacking has seen quite a bit of popularity, and we can see more people strapping gear on their bikes and preparing to go out on adventures. Saddlebags can easily be attached to mountain bikes, road bikes, and gravel bikes, which makes them very versatile. Therefore, whether you are planning to go out for a day's ride or planning to set off on a multi-day tour, your best saddle bag will surely be an invaluable piece of gear as a cyclist.