Selected: The cycling-friendly backpack edit

Since I joined London’s cycle squad a few months ago, I have been meaning to get a new backpack suitable for the needs of the road. Quickly, my three backpacks were proven unsuitable. One was too small. The second one, too unstructured. The third, just not right.

On a full-load day I can end up carrying around my iPad, my laptop (including charger and mouse), gym clothes, toiletries bag, running shoes, rain cape and umbrella…. I have given up on finding one backpack to fit it all, as I risk looking like a sherpa.

I am looking for a streamlined, not too busy, not too many pockets on the outside, structured and hard, water resistant and with lots of space backpack. The holy grail.

Here are some of the ones I am considering.

These two synthetic backpacks do tick most of my boxes. Too small for carrying gym clothes, sure, but they are both perfect for daily commute and carrying around my electronics when I just go out for coffee and writing. The round one even has reflective straps, so perfect for cycling!

Sporty backpack. £39.99 (
Rectangular flap backpack. £49.99 (

A bit more upscale, these two options by Brooks England have the advantage of a brand known for its traditional cycling gear. The Piccadilly style in black is a serious contender, available at MR PORTER.COM.

Dalston knapsack medium. £145 (Brooks England)
Piccadilly leather knapsack. £245 (Brooks England & MR PORTER.COM)

ASOS has some affordable options that would be big enough to carry my gym clothes.

ASOS backpack in black washed canvas. £22 (
ASOS backpack in black with zip top. £35 (
ASOS backpack in black canvas with faux leather straps. £25 (

The last options are a bit of a miscellanea of all the ones I have been considering. Once I make up my mind, I will write about the chosen one in here.

Ortlieb Velocity rucksack. £74.99 (Cotswold Outdoor)
NEXT grey rucksack. £25 (
Rains backpack in black. £75 (