REI 25 L Trail Pack

I recently decided to break down and purchase a day pack for use on day hikes and hopefully even some solo overnight trips. In my search I was recommended this pack from the REI Outlet store. The pack is normally marked $45, but it was on clearance as last years model for $29.  While it was a little smaller than I wanted, I figured it was definitely worth a shot at this price. So, I purchased the pack and in four short days it was sitting on my doorstep!

So, this pack is 25 liters, or 1525 cubic inches. Here are some of the features as listed on the REI site:

  • Fully padded back panel features additional contact-point padding at scapula and lumbar regions
  • Foam-padded, curved shoulder straps feature a sternum strap for comfort
  • Main compartment holds the essentials and accommodates a hydration reservoir of your choice (sold separately), with 2 exit ports for tube to be routed on either side
  • Front pocket features a key-keeper clip and an organizer for compass, lip balm, wallet, sunglasses and other small essentials
  • Side mesh pockets create convenient storage and on-the-go access to water bottle, sunscreen, snacks or small electronics
  • Adjustable waistbelt lets you pull the load close to your back for increased balance and stability
  • Side compression straps let you cinch down loads for jostle-free carrying
  • Single ice axe loop stows away when not in use, tucking away into bottom slot with rip-and-stick closure

I have been happy with the pack. As soon as I got it I loaded it up with all my gear for an overnight trip and took off to the Smokies. I packed everything except a shelter (or in my case a tarp) since I was staying inside a shelter. Everything else; food, water, gear, fuel, etc… fit easily inside the pack and came to a total of 14 lbs. Following is a list of those items in the pack as well as a video:

REI 25 Liter Trail Pack    25 oz
GoLite RS 1+ Season Quilt    27.1 oz
Jag Bag Fine Silk Liner    3.6 oz
NeoAir (Large)    13.8 oz
Exped Air Pillow    3.2 oz
5.5′ x 6.5′ – 2 mil plastic Ground Cloth 6 oz
1 Gallon Ziploc for Garbage    0.4 oz
Backcountry 700 ml Ti Pot (Lid & SS)    4.3 oz
Gram Weenie Pro Alcohol Stove    0.7 oz
Windscreen & Heat Shield    1 oz
REI Long Handle Ti Spoon    0.5 oz
Light My Fire Scout Fire Steel    1 oz
~ 6 oz HEET in 2 fuel bottles    6.7 oz
REI Plastic Mug    1.8 oz
Small Towel (wrap stove in)    0.2 oz
100 oz Camelbak w/ ~ 40 oz H2O    45 oz
32 oz Nalgene Wide-Mouth Cantene (empty)    2.2 oz
Aqua Mira Drops    3.2 oz
First-Aid Kit (Homemade) w/ Extra Batteries, rope, etc…    6.1 oz
Vivitar Digital Camera    4 oz
Carabiner    0.8 oz
Blue Foam Pad (sit pad & pack structure)    1.4 oz
Trekking Poles**    19.5 oz
Princeton Tec Fuel Headlamp    2.3 oz
Gerber Paraframe Knife**    2.6 oz
OR 15 L Dry Sack (for sleeping bag/clothes)    2.6 oz
Map (in Ziploc)    3.6 oz
MSR Medium Nano Packtowel    1.3 oz
Small Toothbrush    0.6 oz
Travel Size Toothpaste    0.9 oz
Wet Wipes    1.8 oz
Ziploc w ID, etc…    1 oz
Cell Phone    5.8 oz
Watch**    1.3 oz
Under Armour Sleeping Shorts (carried)    6.7 oz
1 Pr SmartWool Hiking Socks (worn)    2.9 oz
1 Pr SmartWool Hiking Socks (carried)    2.9 oz
1 Pr Under Armour Boxer Briefs (worn)    2.8 oz
Columbia Convertible Hiking Pants (worn)    12.6 oz
Outdoor Research Dune Shirt (worn)                6.2 oz
Patagonia R1 Flash Pullover (carried)     12.8 oz
Cheap Poncho (Rain/Pack Cover)    1.5 oz
LOWA Renegade GTX Mid Boots    50.2 oz
Food    24 oz

Carried (Including Pack)    225.8 oz / 14.11 lbs

After returning from my trip, these were some of my thought about the pack:

“I recently purchased the REI 25 L Trail pack. It held all my supplies (gear, food, water, & fuel, etc…) and even had a little room to spare. I used a 100 oz Camelbak in the hydration pocket and it fit fine. There is a little loop at the top of the bag in which the hook on the Camelbak slides into and it will hold the bladder in place. I did use a piece of blue foam inside and against the back of the pack to provide some sort of structure. The pack carried well with this amount of weight. I did not have sore shoulders at all during any part of the hike. The only complaint I have is that at times it was difficult to drink from my Camelbak. I only filled the bladder with about 40 oz of water, but I think that everything inside the pack was  pushing against the bladder and actually pushed the valve against the back wall so that I couldn’t get any water to come out. I will have to work with this issue a little more to figure out how to handle it exactly. However, I am stoked about this bag and plan on carrying it many more times!”

3 Responses to REI 25 L Trail Pack

  1. Pingback: Terra Nova Laser 35L Backpack Initial Review | Stick's Blog

  2. Bill R. says:


    I also bought one of these day packs but haven’t had a chance to use it yet. Thanks for the review and packing list. I can’t believe such a great pack is is under $30.00. The 2009 version is much better than the 2010: Better shoulder straps and padding back-padding set-up. Keep up the blog. I really like it.


    • Stick says:


      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. And I do agree with you on the pack, it is a great deal. I am very happy with it, and even more so now that I know that I can use it as a very minimalist approach for even an overnight trip! Although, I would like to get something between the 30 and 35 liter size to use for more “comfortable” overnight trips or even for a 2 – 3 day trip bag. I was eyeballing the Osprey Talon 33 but the price tag certainly is not as attractive as was on the Trail Pack…



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