Irish Mountain
Running Association

Overnight Running Backpack Recomendations?

Eoin KellyFeb 16 2021, 7:18pmHi All,

Another gear related question - would anyone have any recommendation for a 35ish litre backpack that is comfortable for running for a day or two?

Looking for something that will take a lightweight sleeping bag, mat, one person tent and stove to allow overnight adventures in comfort. I have an osprey 32 litre bag for hiking that is seriously comfortable for long days walking but i find that it rubs at my lower back when running to the extent that I'd be bleeding after 25km.

I was looking at the ultimate direction fast pack 35 which gets great reviews, but is expensive and hard to get.

Before dropping that sort of cash I wanted to see if anyone has any alternatives that they have used?

Planning for when I won't get in trouble for going outside of 5km!

Thanks all,

Elizabeth WheelerFeb 17 2021, 2:05pmHi Eoin,
I have used the OMM Marathon 32L pack for the Mourne 2 Day event for several years now. Its ultra light, waterproof, strong with good padding and an insert sleeping mat. I have never suffered any chaffing with it. You are welcome to take it for a test run if you like before you buy one?
Eoin KellyFeb 17 2021, 2:57pmThanks Elizabeth. Just googled that one and it looks good indeed. Where are you based? Would be great if I could get a look at it. I'm North Wicklow. Cheers. Eoin
Rory BurkeFeb 17 2021, 9:47pmHi Eoin,
I've had the 15L UD fastpack for over two years now and it's probably the best bit of gear I've ever owned. It gets daily use on my bike commute, been through plenty of overnight hikes and a few 4 hr plus runs and I have had zero comfort or quality issues with it. It's also a lot more spacious than advertised as its got a few extra elasticated stow pockets that dont count towards the 15L... I can fit a tent, sleeping bag, change of clothes and a days food in the 15L fairly comfortably so the 25L version might be enough for you if that's easier to source? I'm in south Dublin and you're also more than welcome to try mine for a bit before you buy!
Eoin KellyFeb 18 2021, 4:42pmThanks Rory, I was convinced i needed about 35 litres after stuffing my 1 man tent, sleeping bag, mat and stove into my 32 litre hiking bag and not having much space left for anything else.

I'll look into the 25 and see if I could make it work. If i need a quick look i might give you shout next time i'm in the office in Dun Laoghaire.
Paul SweeneyFeb 18 2021, 7:56pmHi Eoin, have the UD 25L on sale now at the moment, I picked one up recently myself, cheapest price I could find online.

Hi Rory,

I would be interesting in knowing what tent & sleeping bag you use that you can manage to fit it all into a 15L backpack, would be great to get my overnight gear down to that kind of pack size.

Rory BurkeFeb 18 2021, 8:48pmNo worries Eoin, best to have too much space than too little anyway!

Hi Paul - the tent is a 3F UL 1 man trecking pole tent, similar to this model It's thin, flimsy and only just more comfortable than a bivy but it does keep (most) of the wind and rain out! I think if you are space limited and are would be using trekking poles anyway then trekking pole tents are a great option.

I've been using a jungle bag blanket which packs down really small instead of an actual sleeping bag, it's fine for the summer months in Ireland but I would invest in a proper ultralight sleeping bag if temps were lower than 10 degrees or so
Paul SweeneyFeb 20 2021, 5:20pmThanks Rory,

Trekking pole tents look like a great job.
Elizabeth WheelerFeb 22 2021, 3:33pmEoin,
Sorry I haven't checked back to the site for a few days. I'm in Ringsend - why don't you email me and maybe we can work something out as I do travel for work sometimes. My email is
Eoin KellyMar 1 2021, 7:08pmAnother update, OMM classic 32l arrived today from Seems like a really good pack, very light, very comfortable and should easily swallow what I need (want!) to carry for my Wicklow way overnight run.
Thanks for the advice everyone.

I got a shoulder strap 'go pod' also as I carry a bottle of electrolyte there on my small running vest so wanted that functionality.

Also grabbed the 4l chest pouch as I thought it looked like it might be really handy for maps, compass etc.

Looking forward to giving it a try out at the weekend.
Eoin KellyMar 16 2021, 9:36amAnd in case anyone is interested I can report back on the OMM after a short test run yesterday. I figured it would be sensible to give it a test run on a short run initially. So I packed it up with my one man tent, thermarest, sleeping bag & liner, stove, gas, some dried pasta dinners and a litre of water and went for a 12 km run.

First up, the bag swallowed all of that with no issues at all, and there will still be space for the additional clothes, food and water that i will need with ease.

Not sure of the weight but it was enough that it is not insignificant, but not too much, the extra water might tip that over the edge though!

The bag fits very comfortably with the weight in it. The compression straps on the sides are very easy to use and also efficient at keeping everything nice and tight. Straps sit well on shoulders, with a good balance between padding and weight. I would probably have benefited from a cm or so more space between the straps, but overall very comfortable. Chest strap and waist strap work nicely to keep the pack in place and it doesn't jump around when running. Note that the weight is firmly on the shoulders though, the waist strap provides stability, not weight distribution to the hips (for me anyway).

The 12 km run was fine, cruised along the coastal path near me at around my usual pace without any extra discernible effort. The bag stayed in place with minimal movement. I did have to cinch the shoulder straps tighter every now and then as they seemed to work a little looser despite some very good plastic buckles. Not a big deal.

The go pod on the shoulder strap made a good place to stash the phone initially, but after a few km I had to move it as it was at the exact height that it was bouncing off my nipple and got really annoying. I'll have to try it with a soft flask to see if that works! If not the go pod will be a gonner!

Overall, delighted with the bag and zero chafing issues on it's maiden voyage and seems like just the right size for my gear for an overnight adventure.

The mesh pockets on the side and front are massive too, and made from a stretchy material so can really swallow extra stuff easily.

If anyone wants to see it or has any questions on it feel free to ask.
niall flynnMar 21 2021, 7:58pmHow should a backpack/running vest hybrid sit on the back?

I got the Ultimate Direction Fastpack 15 in size large, but I cannot find a comfortable set of adjustments. When I load the pack up with about 7 kg of weight, I can either tighten the sternum and rib straps fully (where the pack knocks off the small of my back), or i can leave the pack sit lower on my back (where it moves around too much).

Any advice on backpack adjustment welcome.