First Impressions of The Patagonia Black Hole Backpack.
The Patagonia Black Hole Backpack is part of the brand’s large Black Hole collection, which includes anything from 5-liter fanny packs to 100-liter behemoths like the Patagonia Black Hole duffel. It’s also the unisex counterpart of the 23-liter Black Hole bag for women, which made our list of the best women’s backpacks.
All of the Black Holes are made differently than practically any other backpack in Patagonia’s lineup. They all feature exceptional durability, tough materials, excellent water resistance, and fantastic eco-credentials in common.
The Patagonia Black Hole 25-liter backpack is constructed with a durable finish that is water-resistant enough to keep your belongings dry in mild to moderate rain showers. There’s a zipped top pocket, a spacious front pocket, a pair of mesh pockets large enough to accommodate 1-liter water bottles, and a strip of strong daisy chain webbing (see: backpack components) that allows you to connect additional gear to the pack with accessory cable or carabiners.
The back panel of the pack is beautifully padded and curved to enable ventilation between the fabric and your back, and the shoulder straps have an ergonomic form that keeps them well away from your neck – something that’s likely to come in handy when carrying a bigger load. The absence of a hipbelt is the biggest disadvantage of this pack.
While carrying lower weights or walking on smoother terrain, this absence means the pack may bounce about a bit when the road becomes rough, and your shoulders will take the brunt of the pack’s weight (more on this in how to choose a backpack).
The true magic takes place within the bag. The first appealing feature is the wide-mouth, bucket-style opening, which allows you to plainly view all four walls of the pack by simply flipping back the hood and simplifying loading and unpacking.
There are also several storage choices, ranging from a large, cushioned sleeve that can carry a 15-inch laptop to pen holders and a slew of smaller pockets with Velcro or buckle closures. Check out our advice if you’re unclear if the Black Hole Backpack’s 25-liter capacity will be enough.
- Lightweight and sturdy recycled polyester is ripstop with a TPU-film lamination that is extremely weather resistant.
- The main pocket is easy to reach and has a cushioned sleeve that fits most 15″ computers.
- Top zippered pocket for small stuff
- Large front storage pocket for storing necessities
- Air-mesh back panel for added comfort and ventilation
- A sternum strap and padded shoulder harness
- Hydration compatible, featuring a port at the top of the rear panel.
- Stretch-woven compartments can accommodate a variety of water bottle shapes and sizes.
- Top-mounted haul handle with reinforcement and front daisy chain for lashing
Patagonia Blackhole 23l Backpack
It was love at first sight for me. It has a stylish and distinct appearance without being overly “fashionable” or “mountainy.” They also often come in incredibly lovely colors. The design is fantastic, and the backpack keeps its elegant form while being really comfortable to carry whether filled or empty.
This backpack is made of Patagonia’s Black Hole fabric, which is a 100% recyclable ripstop polyester bonded with a TPU film. It’s lightweight yet strong, and any dirt can be quickly washed away. The material itself is water resistant, however, when it rains, water may readily enter through the zippers.
The Cushioning and Shoulder Straps
This 23l backpack has curved shoulder straps and a shorter torso length to match a woman’s physique. It’s quite pleasant to carry, and I feel adequately supported even when it’s full of a laptop, a tablet, a camera, and several other items. I appreciate the chest strap since it provides good support when needed but does not irritate you when not in use because it is tiny and not too lengthy. There is no waist strap, which is a benefit for me since I don’t need one with my daypack.
The straps on The Shoulders. Patagonia Blackhole 23l Backpack
Pockets on the sides
These side pockets for water bottles are fantastic. These are elastic, sturdy, and can accommodate a variety of water bottle forms. They are also ideal for various items that need rapid access, such as umbrellas, sunglasses cases, hats, gloves, scarves, and so on. They fold flat against the pack when not in use, which is excellent.
Pockets on The Sides. Patagonia Blackhole 23L Backpack Main Compartment
I’m not typically a fan of top-loading packs, but this one opens wide and is roomy enough that I can readily see and reach what’s within. It also has a two-way zipper, so I can secure it with a little lock while I’m traveling.
Zipper with two openings. Patagonia Lock 23-liter blackhole backpack
Laptop Sleeves Are a Disadvantage
My 13″ laptop (in a plastic case, as shown in the picture) fits snugly and pleasantly in this pocket. I tried to insert my laptop while it was in a soft case. It kind of went in, but it was a battle. According to the product description, this bag is “suited for a laptop up to 15inches,” however I’m not sure whether all 15″ laptops will fit. If you own a 15-inch laptop, go to a shop and try it out before purchasing.
Zip Pocket on The Top. Patagonia Blackhole 23l Backpack
Everything is readily accessible, and the space is so large that even my camera fits comfortably. This is not an additional compartment, and anything you place here will take up space in the main compartment.
As a result, the more you put in this pocket, the more it sticks out and gets in the way, which may be irritating. Technically, the contents of the top pocket do not prevent access to the main compartment since it opens so wide, but the pocket swings down owing to its weight, which I can do without.
The main compartment Patagonia Blackhole 23l backpack
Zip pocket on the front
Although useful, the entrance is small and hence has limited use. It’s ideal for tiny, thin goods such as a passport or a ticket, as well as soft materials such as gloves. An A5-sized book with a 2cm thickness fits in comfortably once inside, however, the procedure of putting it in and getting it out is not. I had to wriggle the book out by first squeezing it in from the bottom. I could miss my bus if I attempt to stuff my book back into this pocket!
Zip pocket on the front. Patagonia Blackhole 23L Backpack Price
As much as I like this backpack and think it has a lot of wonderful features, it is expensive, and I wouldn’t spend £100 on it. At the end of the day, this is a plain backpack with a few problems. I would guess £70-80 is more reasonable.
23l or 25l?
Backpack Patagonia Black hole 23l or 25l?
25l bottles offer additional color possibilities. I notice a lot of ladies using the 25l, and it’s definitely plenty for a tall(er) person. The difference between 23l and 25l was significant for me (5’1″). The 25l simply didn’t feel right on my back and shoulders, however, the 23l feels like an extension of my back and is quite pleasant to carry.
23l is also less deep and more doable for me. I have just enough room for my journey, commuting, day out, or even a 1-2 night/s excursion. When comparing photographs on websites, 23l and 25l may not seem to be significantly different, but if you are a not-that-tall person like me, 23l is worth considering.
Patagonia in a Glimpse
Patagonias Black Hole backpack review: 1% for the Planet picture
Patagonia is well-known, and for good reason.
They provide high-quality clothes and outdoor gear that is guaranteed by an Ironclad lifetime warranty.
Even better, these items are designed with social and environmental issues in mind. This may be seen in the way their goods are created as well as in their basic beliefs of “inspiring and implementing solutions to the environmental challenge.”
Because of this, they are forthright about their products, sourcing, supply chain, and working conditions at their foreign factories.
The Black Hole collection extends beyond these 25L, 32L, and 45L bags and includes totes, cubes, backpacks, and duffels in a variety of sizes and colors.
Patagonia Black Hole Model Differences and Similarities (25L vs 32L vs 45L)
Aside from size, I assume you’re most curious about the variations between the backpacks. That is the focus of our Patagonia Black Hole review.
But, for the purpose of completeness, I’ll also explore their commonalities. In reality, I’ll begin with the similarities and then go on to the contrasts.
I’ll make the comparison based on:
- Design and craftsmanship;
- Material and structure;
- Dimensions and weight;
- Comfort and fit;
- Organization and storage;
- Design and high quality
Patagonia Black Hole backpack reviews: 25L, 32L, and 45L models
Check out Patagonia’s Black Hole 25L.
The Patagonia Black Hole backpacks all feature similar designs and build quality, with minor variations.
So let’s start with the commonalities.
First and foremost, these are high-quality packets that have been meticulously crafted.
This is based on people’s testimony and assessments of how well it has served them over the years. Years of usage for day-to-day tasks, trips, and even outdoor activities.
Each pack has a clean and gleaming aesthetic appearance that works well in both urban and outdoor situations.
On the outside, a fairly big Patagonia brand symbol is featured in either a prominent or subtle hue depending on the colorway chosen.
What Are The Distinctions?
Their carrying capacity is the most noticeable.
The smallest of the three bags is the 25L. It’s more compact and adaptable for a variety of activities such as daily usage, short treks, and brief getaways.
The 32L bag is the standard size. With a TSA-approved laptop compartment that lies flat for simple airport screening, it’s significantly more capacious and travel-friendly.
The 45L bag, on the other hand, is intended for travel. It has a baggage passthrough sleeve, a separate laptop pocket, and a large capacity to hold essentials for a 4-7 day vacation.
It is unusual in that it can be carried in three different ways: as a shoulder bag, a backpack, and a briefcase.
As of the time of this review, the 25L bag is available in six distinct colorways, the 32L in four, and the 45L in three.
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