When I moved to north-central Pennsylvania, I found myself in the middle of the Endless Mountains. I was close to several state parks and forests, and it was easy for me to spend a day or a weekend out on the trail. As a result, I needed a lightweight, waterproof daypack for short treks through the wilderness. The Livingstone Brand 25L Alberta Pack provided an excellent solution for my needs.
Before You Buy a Daypack
Daypacks are not intended for long trips where you will need several days’ worth of food, lots of gear, and heavy equipment such as tents and stoves. Day backpacks hold essential items that are generally smaller and not very heavy. Although the material is durable, I would not recommend carrying items with sharp corners, as there is little padding and support.
A daypack is perfect for someone who plans to travel, and who needs a lightweight, condensable pack once they arrive at their destination. Daypacks are great for short hikes in the woods, and they would also be suitable for a day at the beach or an afternoon exploring a city.
Giving Back & Paying Forward
This backpack was designed by the Canadian company, Livingstone, for anyone who loves the outdoors and traveling. To assist national parks with the preservation of natural wonders, Livingstone donates a part of the proceeds from every backpack they sell to a National Park around the world. And what’s more, each backpack comes with a lifetime guarantee.
When you carry things on your back for several hours throughout the day, you begin to feel every ounce. That is why Livingstone created a daypack that weighs less than half a pound. Through intelligent craftsmanship and careful material selection, they succeeded in producing a backpack that provides maximal space, without adding weight to your load.
And they’ve also managed to make it packable: the daypack rolls up into a little bag (included and attached) for easy packing. This makes it a great choice for travelers who plan to do some exploring on their next trip and who might not have room for an extra, bulky backpack. Once it has been rolled and stored, the Alberta pack measures no more than 7 inches long and a few inches wide.
It’s Water Resistant
The Alberta pack contains a water resistant material that is nearly waterproof. I have been caught in the rain several times while hiking, and each time the Alberta pack has kept my belongings completely dry. While I would not recommend dunking it in a river or lake, if you happen to get caught in a storm or accidentally slip in a stream, the contents of the daypack will generally remain dry.
This pack also comes with a YKK zipper which increases the product’s water resistance and durability. And a seal on the zipper closes when zipped and helps keep water out.
When you are spending long hours outside, knowing that you can depend on your backpack to keep your belongings dry is so important. This feature provides incredible peace of mind, especially if you plan to take a camera, GPS device, or your phone.
The backpack is also made with a durable, nylon material that resists accidental tears from regular use in the wild.
While I try to avoid it, I have the habit of finding most (if not all) of the briars and thorn bushes along a trail. Northern Pennsylvania is notorious for Multiflora Rose, and this invasive species of rose comes with more thorns than leaves, making it easy to snag your pants or jacket. To my delight, the tight weave of the backpack’s nylon did not allow the thorns to catch, and thus tear, the material.
Furthermore, Livingstone chose a reliable brand for their zippers. YKK zippers come with a reputation for superb quality, and they are used in products all over the world. Combined with durable nylon, this daypack offers a tough option for dayhikers.
Unfortunately, the Alberta pack does not come with extra padding in the shoulder straps or against the back. Unlike some of the other backpacks intended for long trips, this daypack does not come with any kind of back support frame, chest clip, or waist strap. While not a flaw in the design, it may cause discomfort for some hikers.
But, in my experience, the Alberta pack provides plenty of comfort in spite of the absence of extra padding or support. I wore the Alberta pack for over six hours once while hiking in the Alps of France. I was carrying emergency supplies, water bottles, a jacket, food, extra socks, and a camera. Even so, I did not have any discomfort while wearing the backpack.
With the pack resting against your back, it does tend to make you sweat more than normal, but no more than if you were wearing a heavier backpack. The shoulder straps are made with a mesh-like material, and this feature promotes breathability and helps to keep you cool.
What’s more, the straps can be adjusted, so that you can fit them to your specific body type.
The 25L Alberta Pack comes with many useful features, making it practical for short hikes and adventures.
The large, front pocket is made with an elastic top to provide quick access to things you might need, such as a pocket knife, flashlight, or compass. This pocket has mesh sides for ventilation and a hook at the top for securing the opening.
This pouch hangs inside the backpack at the top, and I’ve used it for small items such as keys, chapstick, and earbuds.
The side pockets are just the right size for your water bottles, freeing up your hands when climbing over rough terrain.
The shoulder straps have loops sewn onto them at about chest level, which gives you a place to tie an emergency whistle, as well as bear or pepper spray. They work well with carabiner clips.
When you take the backpack off, there is a convenient handle on the top for carrying. This handle also gives you a way to hang the backpack above the ground when packing or unpacking.
The daypack can be rolled up and stored in a handy pouch. This pouch can also be used for additional storage, either inside or outside the backpack.
Of course, if the 25L Alberta pack does not seem like quite the right fit for you, there are some similar alternatives you might consider.
This daypack comes in a larger size than the Alberta, and Gonex designed the pack to have two clips on either side to secure the folding top of the backpack. It also includes a top zipper pocket and an internal pocket, with two elastic water bottle pockets on the sides. A cheaper alternative, this daypack comes with many similar features.
The Naturehike backpack comes in two sizes and is also cheaper than the Alberta pack. However, the zippers for the main compartment do not unzip as far, and the front pocket has a smaller opening and slimmer design, making it hard to access. It comes with two side pockets as well, along with adjustable, mesh shoulder straps.
The Osprey daypack comes with more features than the Alberta pack and is designed with comfort and utility in mind. Bearing a higher price tag than much of the competition, this backpack includes all the basic features you would expect. It also includes straps for trekking poles, an external hydration sleeve, a helmet attachment, and a waist strap with two zippered pockets.
The 25L Alberta pack from Livingstone offers a quality, name-brand product that is both lightweight and durable, while retaining the elements of comfort – and all for a moderate price.
It comes with the right capacity to fit the necessary items for a day hike, and the fact that it can condense into a small bag makes it ideal for traveling.
It will last you a lifetime and provide security and peace of mind during your upcoming, day-time adventures.
Best of all, part of the money spent will go to support the preservation of parks around the world, ensuring they will be there for generations.
Get yours today from Livingstone Brand!