Best Tactical Backpacks To Make You Hard To Kill

By Will Brendza | Last Updated: April 10, 2023

Best Tactical Backpacks For Combat & Brutal Terrain

Best Tactical Backpack

There’s just something badass about carrying everything you need to survive on your back.

It’s a feeling of intense satisfaction.

Completely confident you have what you need to disappear into the wilderness or survive an urban combat zone.

Armed to the teeth and prepared to deal with whatever comes your way.

That’s power.

And it’s something all survival backpacks (and tactical backpacks in particular) make possible.

An assault backpack packed and stacked in your home, ready to deploy at a moment’s notice.

Or you can use them more often for hikes, camping, hunting, or fishing adventures.

I even use one to carry my stuff between home and the office because they make great Get Home Bags.

The point is this:

The diversity of their utility is endless.

But, there’s a problem…

In the past, only 1 or 2 tactical backpacks were available on the market.

But nowadays, we’re confronted with a massive variety.

Hundreds of brands, styles, sizes, and shapes will quickly jangle one’s sense of clarity.

  • How big of a backpack do I need?
  • What shade of camo?
  • Is “hydration pack compatible” important – what’s it mean?
  • What is MOLLE?
  • What features should I look for?!

So many questions  – it’s overwhelming.

Fear not, though; I’ve got your back.

I’ve done the dirty work, sifting, sorting, and researching the world of tactical backpacks, specifically:


Best Tactical Backpacks For Sale

What’s A ‘Tactical’ Backpack?

Best Tactical Backpack Features

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Best Tactical Backpacks For Sale Today

Some manufacturers make better products than others.

And this is no exception when it comes to military backpacks.

There are cheap ones, and there are reliable ones.

So here are the best tactical backpacks on the market today:

1. The Bag I Own
EVATAC Combat Backpack

This tactical EDC backpack is as tough as they come at a fantastic price point.

It has heavy-duty zippers, padded shoulder straps, a chest strap, and enough compartments to keep all your survival gear properly organized.

This bag includes a 40L storage capacity. Making it the perfect EDC bag for those who have a lot of gear haul around.

It’s made from thick, durable 600D Polyester.

It comes with heavy-duty clips. Because your EDC bag is only as good as its clips.

It has padded shoulder straps and a padded back panel for maximum comfort. Because a comfortable bag is essential, especially for daily use.

It has a quick lock chest strap securing the bag even while on the run or scrambling. This helps to prevent bag bouncing while on the move!

All compartments are waterproof. This is a must-have feature for high-quality tactical EDC bags.

It includes a total of 10 separate carry compartments. This allows for maximum organization!

Heck, it even has a dedicated padded laptop compartment. This helps protect your fragile items from bumps and knocks.

Similar bags with all these features sell for over $159 (some as much as $229 in many outdoor specialty stores).

But you can get The Combat Bag From EVATAC at a fraction of those insane prices. Click here to see if this fantastic deal is still available.

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↓ Bug Out Bag Review – The Combat Bag by EVATAC ↓

3V GEAR Paratus 3-Day Operators Backpack

First off, let me say that this backpack is a straight-up beast.

It's built tough, with high-quality materials, and designed to withstand serious abuse.

This backpack is ideal for anyone who's looking for a reliable, durable, and functional backpack that can handle whatever you throw at it.

One of the things that I really love about this backpack is its size.

It's big enough to hold everything you need for a 3-day adventure but not so big that it's cumbersome or awkward to carry.

It's just the right size and designed to be easy to load up and comfortable to wear.

Another thing that I really appreciate about this backpack is its organization. It's got plenty of pockets and compartments, so you can easily keep everything you need organized and accessible. Plus, it's got MOLLE webbing all over the place, which means you can attach additional pouches and accessories to it.

But the real star of the show here is the construction. This backpack is made from tough 600D PVC-backed polyester, which means it's water-resistant, abrasion-resistant, and tear-resistant.

It's also got reinforced zippers and heavy-duty buckles, so you know it's built to last.

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↓ 3V Gear Paratus 3-Day Tactical Pack Review ↓

5.11 RUSH24 2.0 37L Tactical Backpack

The Rush72 is a large tactical pack with insanely high reviews.

It comes in a variety of different colors and includes:

  • dual-zippered compartments with YKK zippers
  • an organization pouch for pens, maps, or documents
  • hydration pack compatible
  • an extensive MOLLE system

It's an excellent tactical backpack, but you must pay a bit more for it...

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↓ 5.11 Tactical Rush 72 – Tactical Pack – Field Review ↓

LA Police Gear Operator Backpack

LA Police Gear specializes in military and police gear.

This American company is synonymous with high-quality tactical, camping, survival, and everyday gear.

This pack is made from 600D Polyester with PVC coating making it extremely durable.

Available in three colors (black, green, and tan).

This pack has three mesh compartments inside the main compartment.

It also has radio ports and is hydration pack compatible.

At this price, it's a reliable, high-quality option at a fair price.

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↓ LA Police Gear Operator Backpack – Affordable and Solid Bushcraft Pack ↓

Reebow Gear Military Tactical Assault Pack Backpack

Reebow Gear wants to bring fans of military gear the best equipment possible.

All their gear is a standard of high-performance military and tactical gear.

This camouflaged pack comes in black camo or woodland camo colors.

It's a 34-liter pack made of high-density, water-resistant nylon fabric.

It includes:

  • side and front-load compression system
  • a Molle system, ventilated mesh shoulder strap padding
  • a compartment for a hydration pack

You can get this tactical pack at a budget-friendly price point.

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↓ Reebow Tactical 3-Day Military Backpack Review ↓

CVLIFE Tactical Backpack Military Army Rucksack

This backpack means business.

It's built for rugged terrain and tough conditions and is perfect for all you rough-and-tumble types out there.

With its high-quality, water-resistant material, you won't have to worry about getting caught in a sudden rainstorm or crossing a river.

And it's got more pockets than you can shake a stick at – seriously, it's like a labyrinth in there.

But what really sets this backpack apart is its versatility.

It's designed to be your go-to bag for everything from camping trips to hunting excursions, from long hikes to extended bug-out situations.

And with its durable MOLLE webbing system, you can easily attach all kinds of extra gear, like pouches, water bottles, or even a machete (hey, you never know).

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↓ Budget Bugout Bag Option: CVLife Rucksack ↓

What Is A Tactical Backpack Anyway?

I am glad you asked.

They are designed for (as their name implies) intensive tactical purposes.

Tactical backpacks set themselves apart and above other backpacks in every way imaginable. 

They are a major upgrade to your regular run-of-the-mill Jan-sports back-sack.

Because there are some very important distinctions between these and regular backpacks

Like many of the best survival tools, miltary backpacks were designed originally for the military.

They were (and still are) part of the standard-issue gear that soldiers receive.

These packs are designed to hold the rest of their survival gear and tactical equipment.

Your backpack becomes your best friend in the military and the wilderness.

This is why assault backpacks were engineered to withstand the harshest environments.

The worst abuse you can think of.

These packs must be reliable, so it’s worth spending a little extra cash on a great one.

You want quality when it comes to a military backpack.

Which is exactly what makes them so great for survivalists.

I know plenty of people who use their combat pack as their bug-out bag.

I see them on the trails when I’m hiking, and folks also use them as an outdoor daypack.

They’re also used as an everyday carry pack for computers, books, and notes in coffee shops.

Yes, military tactical backpacks have come a long way from the battlefront.

And it’s only a testament to their utility, versatility, and practicality.

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2 military soliders with tactical backpacks

Best Tactical Backpack Features To Look For

The easiest way to look for the right backpack is to learn what makes a good backpack great.

Here is the thing, though: many of these qualities are subjective.

For example:

Deciding what size backpack to get will hinge on your needs.

The color or type of camouflage you choose should depend on the environment in which you will use the pack.

So always keep in mind:

“What is my situation? What are my needs? How do I intend to use it?”

That being said, here are some general features to look for:

Insane Durability

Any backpack used for tactical, survival, or adventures must be tough.

It should be able to withstand the worst-case conditions.

  • The buckles need to be strong.
  • The compression straps need to be thick.
  • The zippers need to be of high quality.
  • The seams need to be double-stitched.
  • You get the picture…

Seek strength and craftsmanship over extremely low prices or aesthetics.

Extremely Lightweight

Of course, you carry this on your back (usually packed with gear and supplies).

So naturally, you should look for the lightest-weight bag (assuming high quality).

With that said, NEVER sacrifice durability for weight.

There is a fine line here.

A point at which you start to diminish the product’s resilience as you go super lightweight.

So, keep weight in mind but do not make this priority number one.

Includes A MOLLE System

Pronounced “Molly,” this acronym stands for Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment.

Molle is rows of high-durability cordura nylon straps. They are fixed to the outside of the pack.

This allows users to attach a large variety of Molle-compatible attachments.

Side Note: These attachment points are called “PALS”; Pouch Attachment Ladder System.

This allows you to customize your pack for different adventures.

It also allows you to add additional gear you carry over time.


Multi-compartments = Better organization.

Lots of compartments help you keep similar items together for faster retrieval.

You can separate food items from tools and daily-use items from water bottles.

I like having lots and lots of separate compartments for my combat pack.

I like having 1 large compartment for my sleeping bag and many smaller compartments for all my survival gear and supplies.


The heavier the pack, the more straps you’ll want.

And you’ll want those straps to be adjustable and padded.

For example:

A padded hip belt will save your back by distributing the weight from your shoulders to your powerful hips.

You also may want a sternum strap to keep the pack tight against your back.

This is important when running or scrambling, which is key to a pack being “tactical.”

Hydration Pack Compatible

Many packs have a special compartment, hook, and side/top hole for a hydration bladder insert.

I can not overstate the usefulness of this feature.

With a hydration pack, you can drink water from a tube extending from your pack’s bladder.

Hydration hangs over your shoulder on a strap.

You can stay hydrated AND stay on the move.

No need to stop and pull out the water bottle, unscrew, drink, re-screw-repack, and get going again.


Just sip as you walk, run, or whatever.

Laptop Compartment

This is important if you carry your laptop in your backpack.

Now lugging around a laptop in a tactical situation is not the best idea.

However, maybe you also want to use your tactical laptop backpack as an everyday carry pack.

This compartment is an essential feature if you take it around town with a laptop.

But a laptop compartment doesn’t have to hold laptops either.

Laptop compartments are used to keep any sensitive electronics safe in tactical environments.

The padding helps keep your electronic gear safe such as:

These compartments are usually sized to fit a small computer perfectly.

The best ones are lined with extra padding to protect delicate electronics.

Some even come with a waterproof zipper pocket to protect them from water damage.

The Right Color

Many of these packs come in camo.

It is essential to consider your environment and what color will suit it best.

If you live in Moab, Utah, where everything is red, brown, orange, and rusty, don’t buy a blue-tinted camo pack.

You might want a black one if you often travel at night.

If you use it for winter hunting, buy a white and blue-tinted camo pack.

Consider yourself and your own needs before just buying one that looks cool.

It’s an important skill called situational awareness.

A backpack that blends into its natural surroundings is desirable in most tactical situations.

This helps you evade enemies when it’s on your back and keeps them hidden if you need to ditch them.

Good luck concealing that neon sign if your pack is bright pink or hunter orange.

Can You Add Plates?

If you want the ultimate tactical pack, then you’ll want it to be able to carry body armor plates!

They call these types of backpacks – plate carrier backpacks. And they protect your vitals if bullets fly in your direction.

Check Out our article about tactical plate carriers if you want to know about carrying plates for protection.

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tactical backpack with ammo

Final Thoughts

When choosing a backpack for survival, look no further than a tactical pack.

They are light, they are durable, and can last a lifetime.

So much more of an investment compared to standard packs.

Plus, they can be used as:

It’s the reason these packs have become so popular in recent years: they plain work.

Tactical backpacks are necessary for any serious survivalist, outdoorsman, prepper, or hunter.

If you need a pack that will last a long time and serves you well, get a tactical one.

Will Brendza

Will Brendza

  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Colorado at Boulder
  • Member of The 10th Mountain Division Hut Association
  • Certifications: Avalanche 1, WFR (expired), CPR (expired)
  • 8+ Years Researching, Writing, About Survival and Preparedness
  • Awards from Society of Professional Journalists
  • Winner of Camp Cold’s “Happy Camper” award in 2020
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