Lightweight Hiking Backpacks

      Best Mountain Bike Saddle Bags of 2022

      Updated on November 2, 2021

      Want to ditch your rucksack on shorter rides or go on a multi-day “bikepacking” adventure? If so, then you will probably need a saddle bag. There are bags of different sizes and types available so knowing what makes the best mountain bike saddle bag can be challenging.

      Here at The Adventure Junkies, we do not want you to be confused when it comes to choosing your equipment. We have written this article for you so you can learn what makes a good saddle bag and what you need to look out for. We have also included a list of what we think are the best saddle bags so you don’t have to do all the research yourself.

      For more of our top mountain biking gear recommendations, check out the Best Mountain Bike Racks. 


      Quick Answer The Best Mountain Bike Saddle Bags

      Evoc Saddle BagView at BackcountryTopeak Aero Expanding WedgeView at REITopeak Wedge DryBag LargeView at REIOrtlieb MicroView at BackcountryOrtlieb Seat-PackView at REIDefiance Pak Ratt 2View at AmazonTopeak Back LoaderView at Amazon


      Comparison Table Best MTB Saddle Bags

      For the best experience turn your device horizontally

      Name Capacity Waterproof? Price Rating Review
      Evoc Saddle Bag 1L No $ 5.0 Read Review
      Topeak Aero Expanding Wedge 1.31 L No $ 4.0 Read Review
      Topeak Wedge DryBag Large 1.5L Yes $ 5.0 Read Review
      Ortlieb Micro 0.6L Yes $$ 4.5 Read Review
      Ortlieb Seat-Pack 16.5L Yes $$ 3.8 Read Review
      Defiance Pak Ratt 2 15L No $$ 4.0 Read Review
      Topeak Back Loader 6L Yes $$ 4.0 Read Review
      Name Capacity Waterproof? Price Rating Review

      Reviews The Best Saddle Bags for Mountain Biking

      Evoc Saddle Bag


      Capacity: 1LWaterproof?: No


      PROS: Stylish, durable rip stop nylon, light

      CONS: None

      View at BackcountryView at Jenson USA

      Topeak Aero Expanding Wedge


      Capacity: 1.31 LWaterproof?: No


      PROS: Expanding compartment to carry more gear, internal elastic secures contents

      CONS: Attachment can be tricky

      View at REIView at Jenson USA

      Topeak Wedge DryBag Large


      Capacity: 1.5LWaterproof?: Yes


      PROS: Waterproof material and roll closure to keep contents dry, 3 sizes available

      CONS: Rigid material makes noise if items inside are loose

      View at REI

      Ortlieb Micro


      Capacity: 0.6LWaterproof?: Yes


      PROS: Roll closure to remove extra space, reflective logo

      CONS: Opening is small

      View at Backcountry

      Ortlieb Seat-Pack


      Capacity: 16.5LWaterproof?: Yes


      PROS: Large capacity, roll closure, waterproof

      CONS: Heavy items need to be packed close to the saddle otherwise it will sway

      View at REI

      Defiance Pak Ratt 2


      Capacity: 15LWaterproof?: No


      PROS: Roll closure, robust material

      CONS: Not waterproof, buckles are prone to breaking

      View at Amazon

      Topeak Back Loader


      Capacity: 6LWaterproof?: Yes


      PROS: Mount and compression straps prevent swaying, included waterproof liner keeps contents dry

      CONS: Dry bag is not the same shape as external bag

      View at Amazon





      The first thing you need to think about is how much gear you need to transport. Do you just want somewhere to stash your tools on your regular rides so you can leave the rucksack at home? If this is the case then you will only need a small bag to fit a spare tube, multitool and maybe a CO2 inflator. A pump is unlikely to fit but can be attached to your frame.

      If you want to go on longer rides without your rucksack, then you might need a slightly larger bag to hold a jacket or snacks. Remember that if the bag is only half full, then the contents will rattle around. The consequences of this are not dire, but you may have to put up with the sound of tools jingling around. If your bag is not full, consider wrapping your multitool in a cloth or wrap your spare tube around it to reduce noise.

      Large saddle bags are generally used for bikepacking when you need to transport extra layers, camping equipment and food. On a bikepacking trip, you are unlikely to be able to fit everything you need into one saddle bag, even if it the biggest available. For this reason you should also take a rucksack and consider using other frame bags or handlebar bags. Check out this article to learn more about how to set up your bike for bikepacking and have a great overview of some recent tech that has entered the bikepacking market.



      Due to its position on the bike, a saddle bag will be constantly bombarded with dirt, stones, mud and water that get kicked up by the rear wheel. You want your bag to be made out a material that can put up with this abuse. Unless you are OK with the contents of the bag getting wet, you should also look for a bag that is at least water resistant or waterproof. This is especially important when bikepacking because you do not want your warm camp clothes to be soaking wet when you need them to keep you warm. The same goes for your sleeping bag.



      How securely the bag attaches to the saddle or seatpost is important for two reasons. The first is that you do not want your bag to fall off while you are riding. This shouldn’t be a problem with any good quality bag however. A problem that bigger bags encounter is that the more they extend rearwards, the more they sway from side to side while you are riding. This can be very annoying. If you are looking for a bikepacking saddle bag, choose one that has been specifically designed not to sway. Some have additional braces to prevent it, but you can play your part too by packing the heaviest items nearest to the saddle.



      Some bags are designed to work with dropper posts. Others may work with them but it is not guaranteed and some manufacturers with discourage using their bags with dropper posts. The reason for this is the extra weight and forces that big bags can exert on the seat post.


      BIKE FIT

      If you ride a hardtail, you can just strap a bag on and get riding. If you are on a full suspension bike, then you will need to think about if a bag will fit before you purchase. As the shock compresses, the distance between the rear wheel and saddle decreases. Depending on how much travel you have and how high your saddle is (especially if you have a dropper post), there may not be enough space for a saddle bag when the shock is fully compressed. You can check how much space you have by releasing all the air from your shock and letting it compress. Measure the distance between the saddle and tire.


      For more of our top mountain biking gear recommendations, check out these popular buyer’s guides:

      Mountain Bikes for Men

      Women’s Mountain Bikes

      Mountain Bike Pedals

      Mountain Bike Tires

      Mountain Bike Brakes

      Mountain Bike Helmets

      Mountain Bike Shoes

      Mountain Bike Shorts

      Bike Computers

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