The backpack or the rucksack, knapsack, or packsack is something practically everyone uses. I have used it to carry books since I went to school, trekking, camping, and even now for my laptop.
You could say that I pretty much depend on it to take practically anything vital that I can’t bear for long in my hands. I even depend on it to carry clothes for a short trip.
I must say that knapsacks are indeed durably built, and are somewhat water-resistant. However, they cannot withstand most weather and heavy rain. In fact, the rains ended up ruining most of my college notes because rucksacks aren’t 100% waterproof.
However, there now is a solution. You can safely carry whatever you want in your backpack without worrying about it getting wet. It’s all thanks to the best backpack rain covers.
Backpack covers give your knapsack the extra durability it needs to keep your gear dry in heavy downpours. But, like everything else, there are so many brands claiming to be the best backpack rain covers that you have to search for the best.
I had to spend a lot of time trying out a few before I could invariably get the best backpack rain covers for my bag. I decided that I can at least make sure things are easier for you through this buying guide I’ve compiled, and the few backpack cover rating reviews.
With so many sizes and types of knapsack covers around, I had to list out the features to look out for the best backpack rain covers. They include:
Size is most important because the cover should adequately cover your bag. Only then will it be able to protect it, and the contents in it from the rain. So it has to:
Material is also essential to ensure the rucksack cover is waterproof, scratchproof, weather-resistant, and more. Here’s a brief explanation of the type of material to look out for.
The material should be:
Most covers are made of coated nylon as it’s durable, tear-resistant, and stretches well. Some bags are made of siliconized nylon which is nylon with added silicone, for perfect water resistance. Always look for a seamless rain cover because they don’t have gaps for water to flow through.
Don’t forget to check the weight of the cover. You don’t want to carry too much weight while backpacking and hiking! So while most covers are light, some are ultra-light, perfect for ultralight hiking. It’s the material that affects the cover’s weight. And while it’s light, knapsack covers are still durable.
The way the cover attaches to backpacks is another crucial point to consider. The common options for the best backpacks are:
You may have various backpacks, to use for different occasions and reasons. For example, you may use one for urban use like your school or laptop bag, or you may have bags for outside use.
You don’t need too large or too strong a cover for city use because the bag won’t be big or bulky. However, you’ll need a bigger cover for your bigger or heavier hiking or backpacking bag.
It’s always better to search for a model with at least one chord or drawstring to keep your knapsack cover in place.
You can choose your color based on your personal preferences. However, I suggest looking for covers with a highly visible or light-reflective color if you will be hiking in remote or dangerous areas.
Look for the more heavy duty covers because you can use them for a longer time. Besides, the material is less likely to tear under strain.
Some covers have some useful other features worth considering. Examples are:
Do I have to buy a backpack rain cover?
Anyone who has and uses backpacks should choose to buy a rain cover. Why? Well, it’s because supposing you are in a city and are traveling from one place to another with your bag.
You never know when you may get caught in wet weather. Instead of risking damaging your valuable property in the bag, covering it with a rain cover helps prevent water from entering the bag.
Those who use a backpack while outside like hiking, camping, or backpacking have a greater need for covers. However, nature is also unpredictable. You never know which summer shower ends up potentially heavy.
Having a backpack cover handy ensures your knapsack and your expensive clothes, food and phone remain dry through the hiking trip.
What is the best-sized rain cover?
You should minimally get the best backpack rain cover that’s the same size as your knapsack. But it’s better to select a cover that’s a size larger than small. You this way know that it will cover even something protruding from the rucksack.
Do I have to buy the same brand rain cover as my backpack?
No. The brand isn’t essential while buying rucksack covers. It’s just the size that you need to make sure. However, many backpack manufacturers now sell rain covers precisely fitting their backpack. You can save time, and it’s thus also easier to get these backpack covers from the same manufacturer.
Should the cover be waterproof or water-repellent?
While water repellent and waterproof covers both don’t let water permeate through the fabric, the water repellent models are only effective against light rain. It’s the waterproof covers that can withstand heavy rain.
The Joy Walker waterproof backpack rain cover is, in my opinion, the ideal waterproof back pack cover. It’s all thanks to its material, and its triple-layer, ultrathin construction.
This nylon-fibred backpack protection cover is reliable and super-durable to keep out the rain and sustain the wear and tear of time. I also liked its upgraded buckle strap that prevents the rucksack from moving while hiking.
There’s even a choice of colors and sizes to choose from for some personalization. The Joy Walker cover has a triple-layer, but ultrathin construction with three different materials providing for optimal protection.
It has an external rip-resistant fabric that protects the bag from scratches, dirt, and sand. Its internal double waterproof coated layers protect your knapsack from rain, snow, water, and fog.
Cheap and affordably priced
Extra durable coated nylon for optimal water resistance
Comes with a velvet storage pouch
Offers the highest waterproof grade of 5000mm
Complaints of water seeping right through.
In my opinion, the Mountansmith backpack rain cover is the most affordable in this list. However, its affordability hasn’t led to any compromise in its features. Most importantly, it’s available in four sizes. So you are sure of finding a closure cover for your knapsack, no matter how big or heavy it is.
It’s also a versatile cover that keeps your backpack dry in all weathers. No matter how heavy the rainfall may be. Despite its low price, the rucksack cover is of top quality materials. It comprises of 190T nylon taffeta fabric, making the rain sack both water-resistant and durable.
It’s an elastic string, and full circumference drawcord ensures a tight fit while keeping everything wrapped for good coverage. Its convenient, integrated stuff sack provides for convenient and simple storage.
Good quality fabrics
Durable and water-resistant
Includes an integrated stuff sack
Available in 4 sizes
Made of 190t Taffeta nylon with a perfectly fitting system
Easily slips and tears
You no longer have to dodge the rain or avoid trekking because of wet weather with the Osprey Ultralight Rain cover around. This knapsack cover is excellent for defending against any downpours.
It has everything to give your bag a secure and covered fit, with nothing exposed to the elements. It includes a secure hip belt, wrap-around cinch attachment, and harness attachments.
I liked its reflective graphics and blinker lights because of their safety features, letting others see you even when it’s dark. The ultra-light rain cover can be rolled to a light tennis ball size to pack in its pouch for easy storage.
Has reflective graphic designs and blinker lights
Wraps around the entire bag
Light and compact for storage reasons
Doesn’t cover a packed 70L pack
Gets easily shredded by branches
The Outad waterproof backpack cover is a product of excellent fabrics. It’s just right for protecting a rucksack, backpack, or laptop bag. It’s lightweight, weighing just 3.5ounces, and easily fits into its inclusive carry bag.
Its material is 300D water and rip-resistant polyester Oxford fabric. It means the cover not only protects your bag from the rain but also from possible tears and rips.
I liked that there are no seams in the cover, making it entirely waterproof without any gaps for water to leak through. Its double-sided bottom provides for extra protection from the elements. It’s also available in various sizes and colors to choose from.
Waterproof and rip-resistant
Made from quality fabrics
Has a carry case
Ideal for challenging hiking trips
Complaints that it doesn’t fit standard bags
Doesn’t have fasteners to secure it in place
It was the unisex design of this waterproof backpack rain cover that attracted my attention. Besides, there’s no slipping or need of re-adjusting once the rain cover is in place thanks to its drawstring, hook and loop closures, cinch system, and three easy-to-use attachment points.
The backpack cover waterproof is a bright reflective yellow color, assuring improved visibility, even in low light. It’s water-resistant enough to protect your bag and its contents in most conditions. I also liked that the cover is cheap and available in various sizes.
Three secure attachments including a drawstring
Two sizes to choose from
Doesn’t protect large, full backpacks
Sizes are confusing
Coming from a reputable brand, it’s not surprising that the Kelty rucksack cover is one of the best backpack rain covers available today. It comes in various sizes to choose from and is made from durable and waterproof top-quality products.
It’s made of top quality 100% nylon taffeta ripstop that’s durable and both tear and waterproof. It’s also lightweight at just 5 ounces, to keep your load to a minimum while hiking.
It’s a combination of all these features that produce the best backpack cover for any outside adventure like hiking. Besides, its internal adjustable drawstring gives an ideal fit. The cover is available in various sizes to accommodate knapsacks ranging between 3000 to 6000 cubic inches.
Lightweight, compact and durable
Perfect for backpacking
Tear and waterproof
Has an inside slip pocket
Clasps are weak
Doesn’t wrap the backpack well
The Salzmann 3M Reflective Backpack cover is just that you need to protect your rucksack from the rain. It’s not only waterproof but comprises of 3M Scotchbrite reflective material. The specialty of the material is that it can be seen up to 200m away at night and in low light conditions.
I found its elasticized edges with two adjustable fastening shoulder straps a plus point. The tips cover the bag entirely while the straps securely fasten your bag. The cover is available in three bright, fashionable colors and includes standard and XL sizes.
Perfect for hiking, walking, cycling, camping and more
Waterproof and weatherproof
Elastic edges and adjustable straps give a secure fit
3M reflective material makes it highly visible at night
Available in standard and XL sizes
Complaints of poor quality fabric
The Jepeak Waterproof backpack cover seems to be one of the better waterproof backpack cover options in the market, thanks to its high-quality features. A feature worth mentioning is that it can be quickly attached, useful during sudden downpours.
The cover is of light fabrics, making it ideal for hikers and cyclists who keep weight at a minimum. It’s perfect for universal use like while hiking, cycling, backpacking, camping, and climbing.
The firm, stretchable elastic material on the edges, helps it protect different sized products. It folds and fits into the bag’s inside side pocket. Its PU coating is durable, scratch-resistant, and offers 3000mm of rain resistance.
Fit for multiple uses
Water and scratch-resistant
Lightweight and compact
Available in 2 different sizes and three colors
Tends to slip off
If you are looking for the best backpack rain cover for urban, city use, then the Osprey Hi-Visibility rain cover needs checking out. It’s easy to use in unexpected showers, thanks to its easy wrap-around cinch attachment.
It is, however, small in size, thus making it an ideal choice for urban cycling and short cycling trips. It is not suited for more extended trekking and hiking sessions.
I especially liked the safety features for improved visibility incorporated into the cover. For one, the cover is bright yellow in color, and highly visible. It also has reflective graphics painting.
There’s also an LED bike light attachment provision on it. It’s easily seen in low light tor in darkness. Last but not least, the backpack cover has a little case to fold and neatly store the cover.
Small, and ideal for city use
LED light attachment provision
Includes carry case
Available in small and extra-small sizes
Designed for small backpacks
A bit expensive
Heavy when compared to other covers
I found the Terra Hiker backpack rain cover to be the best option of the lot. Why? Well, it’s because of its features. It’s PU coating and fully seam-taped construction offers up to 3000mm water resistance. There’s no worry of any moisture seeping into the bag interiors through seams.
It’s heavy duty and comprises of long-lasting, lightweight, but scratch-resistant300D Oxford fabric. There’s even a reinforced bottom that prevents possible damage from repeatedly placing it harsh surfaces. The neat and sturdy stitches provide for added durability.
The Terra Hiker comes with an accompanying carrying bag to store it in when not in use. I like its user-friendly drawstring closure that keeps the cover fit over the backpack without slipping off.
There are three different sizes of rucksack covers to select from, and they come in various colors, adding to its versatility. It’s the best backpack rain cover to use while hiking, cycling, or while exploring the outdoors.
Protects from showers, scratches, and dirt
Made of 300d Oxford fabric
Available in different sizes and colors
Ideal for outside sports use
Complaints of it being a very basic quality
The name Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil back cover aptly describes how good this rucksack waterproof cover is for all sorts of activities outside. No matter if it’s a camping, hiking, or cycling trip.
The cover has your knapsack and belongings adequately covered! It’s the perfect option for serious nature enthusiasts looking for a top-quality product that comes with a case.
I like that it’s one of the several lighter products in the market, made from top materials. The smallest size weighs just 2 ounces and the XL size, 4.6 ounces. The backpack waterproof cover comprises of waterproof 30D diamond ripstop Sil Cordura material.
It also boasts of seamless construction, so there’s no gap for leakages. The accompanying stuff sack of siliconized nylon. The cover even has a mid-back keeper strap that holds the cover securely in place.
Ultralight and best for outside use
Made of high-quality materials
Has a mid-back keeper strap
Available in sizes X-small to large
No seam construction
A bit expensive
Complaints of sizing issues
The highlight of the Deuter waterproof rain cover for backpacks to me is its one size fits all concept. There’s no worry about it not fitting your knapsack. It is a perfect fit for all rucksacks sized between 50 and 90 liters.
It comprises of waterproof PU coated threaded nylon with taped seams and reflective luminous strips for improved visibility. It is thus an ideal option for use in various outdoor lowlight or dark condition activities.
It’s available in blue or green colors, lightweight at just 4.5 ounces, and comes with a carry sack.
Ideal for outside activities in dark and lowlight conditions
Comes with a carry case
Excess fabric hanging because of the absence of elastic edging
Whoever thought you had to put so much thought into a search for buying the best backpack rain cover? Well, I’ve had an enjoyable experience trying out so many different new covers and have reached a conclusion.
In my opinion, there is no single best backpack rain cover to get to keep your gear dry. It’s better to go through the buying guide and these reviews and choose one that fits your ratings, needs, and activities.
It accordingly means that if:
Backpack Rain Covers