Together, the Apidura Backcountry frame pack, saddle pack, handlebar pack and downtube pack only weigh 760 g. The company’s lightweight Backcountry series was made for gravel, singletrack and mountain trails, so they need to be tough. Despite weighing only three-quarters of a kilogram all together, these bags are surprisingly sturdy, well-designed and hold their shape without flopping around, even when they aren’t full.
Apidura is a London-based company that makes weatherproof bikepacking bags. The Backcountry series bags are made from a mix of Apidura’s proprietary 420D nylon and Dimension-Polyant VX21, a four-layer laminated fabric originally developed for the maritime industry. The bags are purpose built for durability and waterproofing, with seams that are welded together and attachments reinforced with a rubbery nylon material called Hypalon.
Though the bags are mostly black and grey, they feature little yellow reflective chevrons for increased visibility. Apidura says the Backcountry series helps maintain neutral bike handling and caters to non-standard bike frames—the brand has a sizing chart for riders to check if the bags will fit on their frames.
Apidura Backcountry 11L Handlebar Pack
The Backcountry Handlebar Pack comes in 7L and 11L sizes. The 11L pack (pictured above) can fold up as small as 30cm and can expand as wide 54cm. A strong and easy to figure out system keeps the Handlebar Pack in place, and abrasion-resistant panels keep it from ripping.
Designed to carry bulky, compressible items, the Backcountry Handlebar Pack fits on mountain bike bars and features a roll-top closure system.
Apidura 11L Backcountry Handlebar Pack, $186
Apidura Backcountry Downtube Pack
The Apidura Backcountry Downtube Pack was designed for storage or as a method of carrying additional water on longer rides. It was made for the downtube but it would theoretically fit on any tube wider than 9.5cm, so don’t let the downtube name stop you from strapping it to your seatpost.
The pack can fit a 1L water bottle and has on thick, sturdy velcro mount that stops it from jiggling around when that bottle is full.
Apidura Backcountry Downtube Pack, $96
Apidura Backcountry 2L Frame Pack
The Apidura Backcountry 2L Frame Pack works best for weekend or one-day trips, or long days in the saddle. Though it was designed to fit on compact frame geometries, the bag can be flipped with the narrower end facing outwards to suit either steep or slack angles.
The lightweight 2L Frame Pack maintains its structure even when empty, and Apidura says it’s well suited to store heavier items. Contents can be secured with internal lash tabs to reduce rattling.
A thoughtful addition to the bag is its protected battery lead and hose port for charging electronic devices or drinking liquids on the go.
Apidura Backcountry 2L Frame Pack, $138
Apidura 4.5L Backcountry Saddle Pack
The Apidura Backcountry Saddle Pack is one of the company’s most well-known items. The bag comes in two sizes: 6L and 4.5L (pictured above). Designed to take the place of a rear rack for bikes with limited clearance, riders with dropper are also able use the pack on their bikes when they attach it to a dropper post adapter.
Using the roll-down compression and closure system, the 235g pack can range from 24cm to 30cm lengthwise. The 6L bag includes a bungee cord on the outside to hold down spare clothes for when you don’t want to pull over and go fishing around for your jacket.
The three-point attachment system of the bag keep it stable and stop it from swaying around, even on rougher terrain.
Apidura 4.5L Backcountry Saddle Pack, $205