Aspiring Light Packers, This Bag’s for You: Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Daypack Review

Sea to Summit Ultrasil Packable Daypack Review

I’ve owned the Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Daypack for a year and a half, and it’s the one bag it took to convince me: Not all backpacks are created equal. Who knew it was possible to travel with two bags but only carry one? Perfect for urban exploring, day hikes, and even grocery shopping, aspiring light packers — this backpack’s for you. 

Traveling with the Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Daypack

I recently took the Sea to Summit daypack on my two-month Europe trip. Stuffable and ultra lightweight, it took up virtually no space or weight in my bag.

Traveling for two months with just one bag is extremely liberating but a bit limiting if you don’t have a daypack. This bag was extremely handy to have on our day excursions when a large backpack would have been overkill. (For reference, this backpack was small enough that we didn’t have to check it when we visited the Vatican Museum.)

We used this backpack every single day on that two-month Europe trip, carrying items like rain gear, cameras, light jackets, and sunscreen. If it was empty, it’s so small that Ian could stuff it in his pocket or I could stuff it in my tiny purse. For places with strict ‘no backpack’ policies, we just extend the straps to full length and carry it as a makeshift shoulder bag.

With us, this bag’s been to Costa Rica, Mexico, every single U.S. state, Canada, and twelve countries in Europe.

Sea to Summit Ultrasil Packable Daypack Review | Photo: Hallstatt, Austria

Trekking around with my daypack in Hallstatt, Austria

How Much Does it Weigh?

I’d say it only weighs as much as whatever you’re carrying in it, but technically speaking, it weighs 2.4 oz. — pretty darn low for a 20-liter backpack. The straps are pretty wide, too, so the backpack is comfortable and doesn’t dig in, even if you’re carrying a couple of cameras and jackets inside.

How Small Does it Pack?

In its stuff sack, this Sea to Summit daypack measures in around 2″ x 2″ x 3.5″ — but we use it way to often to store it in its sack. I’m not usually a supporter of wadding up anything in a packed bag, but it’s much faster and fits better if I just wad it up and stuff it somewhere when I’m packing. There’s always some tiny empty space in my bag that it stuffs easily into.

View our Euro Trip packing video to see me stuff it inside the main backpack I packed for our two-month Europe trip.

How Durable is this Daypack?

The pack is made of siliconized Cordura for strength and durability (the same material our water-resistant tent is made from), so it’s surprisingly strong and water resistant. This should be obvious, but I wouldn’t recommend packing any sharp objects inside because it could tear or puncture the material.

We’ve owned our bag and used it very regularly for one and a half years. As we neared the end of our recent Europe trip, it started showing signs of wear. After 1.5 years of regular use, the material is beginning to look worn, mostly on the bottom of the bag. I would hesitate to put anything heavy or pokey in the bag at this point — we actually just slit a small tear near the top of the bag with the sharp edge of plastic packaging — but for light jackets and sunscreen it still works fine.

Sea to Summit Ultrasil Packable Daypack Review

Ready to explore Salzburg with my daypack and camera over my shoulders.

How Much Does it Cost?

At just upwards of $30, it sounds pricey. A year and a half ago when we were shopping at REI, we almost didn’t buy it for that reason, but I’m so glad we did. This bag has treated us so well that we’ll be buying a new one on our next trip to REI.

Where to Buy

As mentioned, we bought ours at REI, which is a nice option because they have a one-year warranty on all items they sell. You can also find the Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Daypack in various colors on Amazon.

Note: Sea to Summit didn’t pay me or even ask me to write this review. I just genuinely love this backpack and wanted to share it with you! As usual, affiliate links are included in this article, which means if you decide to make a purchase and use the links on this page, you’ll help support our site because we’ll receive a small commission from the sale. Thank you for your support!

About the Author

Diana Southern
In March 2014, Diana called it quits on her traditional American working life and set out to explore the world with her partner in crime (and love of her life) Ian Norman. They now live a sustainable life of full time travel, working for themselves and seeking adventure at the same time. Here on North to South, Diana documents their journey in achieving and maintaining this "road less traveled" way of life.

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