Backpacks for shorter excursions, like day hikes, trips to the beach or wandering around town, should walk a fine line. On one side should be practical features like organizational and quick-access pockets and a comfortable carry system. The other side should be a streamlined form; a daypack should be functional but not overbuilt. The North Face’s Chimera walks that tightrope without missing a step, and it’s currently 40 percent off.
The Chimera has multiple small pockets and exterior sleeves in addition to its main compartment. It also works with hydration systems. But the pack’s core feature is its adjustment system, an innovation by The North Face called Dyno Cinch. Pull the Dyno Cinch cord on the right shoulder strap, and both sides adjust and self-balance while the exterior pocket tightens closed all at once, like magic.
The Chimera comes in 18- and 24-liter volumes, both of which squash down small enough to stash in the bottom of a suitcase. That helps if you like to keep your setup as light as possible, or if hiking — on a trail or sidewalks — is part of a trip, but not the focus.
Both sizes of the Chimera are on sale for 20 percent off, plus an additional 25 percent taken off in-cart, at REI.
The Gear Patrol Commuter, made in tandem with Priority Bicycles, was inspired by — and tested on — the streets of New York City. Streamlined for your everyday grind, it a pairs a durable, easy-to-maintain feature set with an understated colorway you won’t find anywhere else. Buy Now: $899 $799
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