Carrying your board to class, into a store, or for your daily Chipotle can be a pain. Backpacks are one of those items that I've struggled to find a perfect solution for years. There's tons of great options on the market, but there's always a drawback to each one.
That's why I decided it was time to break down the top longboard backpacks on the market in 2017. There's even a cool new option for when all you really need to carry is your board!
Watch out for other so-called "REVIEW" articles where it's clearly a post to make money through amazon affiliate ads. They are made without real effort and are simply there to make money for the writer. If every link is an Amazon link then you should check elsewhere.
Keep in mind that most longboard backpacks are actually just skate bags. The principle is the same but they aren't all perfect for skateboards. A great alternative is a snowboard bag because it's made to carry a longer setup. You'll see that in here as well.
Features to look for to pick the best longboard backpack
First and foremost does it serve it's purpose? Can you carry everything that you need to bring? The backpack should be a functional tool, don't settle here.
Comfort / Durability :
I want a pack that's going to last, but it also needs to be comfortable. There's too many longboard backpacks on the market that are simply not comfortable. The straps need to be thicker, it should breathe a bit on the back, AND it should last. You don't want to waste your money here.
No one wants an ugly backpack. You could settle for an uglier backpack if you need too, but with so many options theres just no need. Pick one that matches your style.
Does it carry a laptop? Can you fit your helmet inside? Are there loops on the outside for attachments? Does it walk your dog so you don't have to? Everyone loves features, especially when they actually work and help.
Ok, so here's our favorites in no particular order and our thoughts on why they will make a great pack for your needs.
Nixon Landlock II
This pack has the support you need for a full day of skating, commuting, studying, and working. It's padded shoulder straps and extra back padding, along with a chest/sternum strap keeps it in place for a long day. The laptop compartment is padded as well adding to security.
Access from the top is easy and makes a TON of sense for when your board is attached. If a pack opens from the front you have to pull the board every time you open the pack up.
It ships in several color ways and stealth black for keeping it professional / low key. If you want something to wear all day long than it's a clear winner.
If you are looking for something very basic the Dakine Atlas would be the best choice, but this pack will take everything you throw at it on a daily basis.
Element is a huge name in skateboarding. They have several models to choose from but the sheer volume of styles in this bag makes it a great choice.
It's a little more on the basic side but sometimes that's all you need. Durability is great and unlike the other bags has a breathable back mesh. It also has the sternum strap making for a comfortable lasting fit. The bag fits a 15" laptop and is padded for protection.
Front access works but is less desirable than back or top access. The added sunglass fleece lined pocket is always a welcome addition.
Sector 9 Field Backpack
If you've longboarded (and you wouldn't be here if you haven't, unless you are gifting this) than you've heard of Sector 9. They are the largest longboard company in the world.
This backpack is made for carrying your longboard, has every storage solution you can think of, will store your glasses, and has the padded laptop compartment. It's built for long days in "the field" and features breathable mesh to keep your back cool.
The sternum strap keeps it in place and helps keep you from pitting out. It has divider pockets making it easier to organize.
Our one complaint is that the pockets are all configured in the standard way, without purely top access or a back access panel. This is tougher for opening pockets when the boards still attached. A small detail to stress over though when you consider how well this pack is built.
It would also be nice to see more colors and patterns.
The Dakine Atlas bag was made for skateboards but fit's snowboards and longboards perfectly. It's just the right size for cruising around all day and gives you a solid way to carry your board comfortably. The straps are a good weight, not too heavy or light but are not a great fit for a long day.
The back is not mesh and will get a bit hot on the hotter days. The important factor here is that it's a Dakine back. They are known for the best quality and you won't have buckles snapping and issues with material tearing. I've had Dakine packs for years with no issues whatsoever.
Design wise it's available in a ton of color options making it easy to get one that matches your style.
The atlas will carry most standard 15" laptops but the pocket isn't super well protected so try not to throw it around or crash.... If you can skate you probably aren't crashing while walking but keep that in mind while you are skating.
One additional note is that there is no sternum strap or waist strap. If you like this added support than this is not the pack for you. These straps make the pack stay in place better and help you avoid pit sweats..
Hopefully this helps you get a perfect pack for every day. If you have any questions or comments please add them in the comments below.