Army Surplus Backpack

Lawrence Carter
9 min readMar 24, 2024


If you’re in the market for a rugged, reliable backpack, look no further. In this article, we’ve rounded up the top Army surplus backpacks that offer both style and functionality. From durable materials to clever design features, these packs are perfect for any adventure. Whether you’re hiking, camping, or just need a sturdy bag for everyday use, our roundup has got you covered.

The Top 5 Best Army Surplus Backpack

  1. High-Capacity Military-Grade Backpack — Experience the durability and versatility of an Army surplus backpack with a massive 75-liter capacity, perfect for your adventurous exploits.
  2. MT Military ALICE Backpack: Versatile Multicam Survival & Adventure Pack — The MT Military ALICE Pack is a versatile and durable multi-cam army backpack suitable for daily use and can function as a 72-hour emergency kit, hunting or hiking backpack, or a military survival pack.
  3. Molle II Large Rucksack Assembly — Durable Army Surplus Hunting Backpack with Customizable Modular MOLLE System — The Molle II Large Rucksack offers a customizable, durable storage solution for your Army Surplus needs, with a massive 4,000 cubic-inch capacity and a comfortable design.
  4. U.S. Military Surplus Molle Field Pack: Sturdy Backpack for Extraordinary Support and Comfort — Utilize military-grade technology in this durable and versatile U.S. Army surplus backpack, perfect for any outdoor adventure enthusiast seeking optimal comfort and capacity.
  5. Versatile Military-Grade Alice Pack Rucksack for Outdoor Adventures — The versatile Medium Alice Pack Military Rucksack with Frame in OD Green by ATACLETE has earned its reputation in the Department of Defense, offering reliability and adaptability for various challenging environments.As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


High-Capacity Military-Grade Backpack


I recently acquired one of these U. S. Military Surplus Large Rucksacks during a hunting expedition. Being an avid outdoorsman, I needed a bag that could hold all the essentials, from clothing to camping gear, and this bag exceeded my expectations.

One of the most impressive features was the water-resistant construction, which allowed me to pack my gear without worrying about moisture damage. The multiple access points made it easy to locate specific items, and the internal compartments kept everything organized and secure.

However, there were a few drawbacks to this bag. One issue was the lack of shoulder straps, which made it difficult to carry heavy loads without causing discomfort. Additionally, the missing waist belt made it challenging to evenly distribute the weight, causing strain on my back.

As a whole, the U. S. Military Surplus Large Rucksack provided ample capacity and was well-made, but it could have been more practical with the inclusion of shoulder straps and a waist belt. Despite these limitations, I am still satisfied with my purchase and believe it’s a great choice for those seeking a durable, roomy bag for their outdoor adventures.

MT Military ALICE Backpack: Versatile Multicam Survival & Adventure Pack


I recently got my hands on the MT Military Alice Pack, and let me tell you, it’s been a game changer for my daily adventures. With its sleek multicam design, it blends seamlessly with my army fatigues while providing ample storage space. The main compartment has dimensions of 20.8" x 13.8" x 8.6", with enough room to stow all my essential gear.

One of the things that really stood out for me was the comfortable adjustable shoulder straps. These bad boys helped relieve stress on my back, making this pack ideal for long hikes or extended missions. The quick release buckle also added an extra layer of safety in case of emergency situations.

However, one downside I noticed was the weight. At over 50 pounds, it wasn’t the most lightweight pack I’ve used. But considering its sturdiness and versatility, I can look past that minor inconvenience. This Alice Pack truly earned its spot in my gear collection.

Molle II Large Rucksack Assembly — Durable Army Surplus Hunting Backpack with Customizable Modular MOLLE System


I had the opportunity to use the Molle II Large Rucksack Backpack Assembly in my day-to-day activities, and let me tell you — it certainly didn’t disappoint! The 1000D Nylon fabric, made right here in the USA, speaks volumes about its durability and quality.

One of the standout features of this backpack is its huge storage capacity, clocking in at around 4,000 cubic inches without the sustainment pouches. However, add those suckers on, and you’ve got an extra 1,000 cubic inches at your disposal — that’s a lot of gear to haul!

I also appreciated the completely customizable modular MOLLE system, which allows you to add or remove various attachments and pouches as per your needs. The compatibility with the assault packs and waist packs is a major plus, although they were sold separately.

Now, regarding comfort, the backpack did an excellent job at distributing the weight evenly across my shoulders and hips. The 1000D Nylon fabric felt sturdy and long-lasting, and the polymer GEN-IV frame provided the needed support for my gear.

However, there was one issue that came up — the backpack arrived with a couple of grommets missing on the sustainment pouches. Nothing a quick replacement couldn’t fix, though.

In conclusion, despite the minor hiccups, the Molle II Large Rucksack Backpack Assembly proved to be a reliable and versatile companion for my outdoor adventures. From its spacious storage capacity to its customizable MOLLE system, it truly offered the best bang for your buck.

U.S. Military Surplus Molle Field Pack: Sturdy Backpack for Extraordinary Support and Comfort


Recently, I had the opportunity to try out the U. S. Military Surplus Molle Field Pack, and I must say, it’s quite the remarkable piece of gear. This isn’t your typical backpack — it’s a full multi-piece rig that was used by the U. S. Army to evenly distribute a massive amount of essential equipment.

From the moment I unboxed it, I was amazed by the care that must have gone into constructing this pack. The nylon cordura exterior is both abrasion and water-resistant, which is ideal for backpacking scenarios. I particularly appreciated the large main compartment with a zipper near the bottom that allows you to remove a sleeping bag without unloading the entire bag.

The Rigid MOLLE frame was a game-changer, providing excellent support for weight distribution. The padded shoulder straps and fully adjustable support system ensured that carrying the pack was comfortable and hassle-free. I especially enjoyed the expandable waist belt, which made it easy to fit the pack securely while on the move.

However, there were a few minor drawbacks to using this pack. While the product was advertised as “used, “ I found that I needed to replace a few missing buckles and reattach a couple that had been damaged. Additionally, I discovered two cracks in the frame, but these issues were easily fixed with some DIY repairs.

All in all, I highly recommend the U. S. Military Surplus Molle Field Pack, especially for those seeking a reliable and spacious backpack for their outdoor adventures. The combination of its robust construction, functional features, and budget-friendly price make it an excellent choice for any hiker or backpacker.

Versatile Military-Grade Alice Pack Rucksack for Outdoor Adventures


The Medium Alice Pack Military Rucksack by ATACLETE, aka the ALICE Pack, has been a staple in combat training environments for many years. Its versatility and adaptability to different conditions make it a solid choice for those seeking a dependable rucksack. Being able to carry 55 lbs while on ruck marches is a commendable feature, and it’s no wonder that it’s the choice of many within the Department of Defense, including the US Navy, USAF, and US Marine Corps.

However, this rucksack isn’t without its drawbacks. One user mentioned a minor issue with the shoulder buckles, which do not cinch tight enough, leading to an occasional slip. This can be quite inconvenient when walking or carrying a heavy load. Nevertheless, the ATACLETE Alice Pack stands the test of time when it comes to durability and overall functionality for various activities.

In addition, the exceptional customer service provided by ATACLETE is an added bonus, making the purchase experience even more positive. Whether you’re preparing for selection or just looking for a reliable rucksack for your adventures, the ATACLETE Alice Pack is worth considering.

Buyer’s Guide

An army surplus backpack is an affordable and durable option for those seeking multi-purpose carry solutions. These backpacks are designed to withstand various environmental conditions, making them suitable for outdoor activities and everyday use.

Size & Capacity


When selecting an army surplus backpack, consider the required size and capacity. The backpack’s capacity ranges from small (under 50 liters) to large (over 100 liters). Assess the amount of gear you need to carry and choose a capacity that suits your needs.

Material Quality

Look for backpacks made from high-quality materials, such as durable canvas, nylon, or polyester. These materials offer superior resistance to wear, water, and tearing, ensuring the backpack lasts longer.

Design & Comfort

Comfort is crucial, especially for day trips and extended hikes. Check for features like padded shoulder straps, a waist belt, and a sternum strap. Proper padding and weight distribution can prevent discomfort and strain on your body. Additionally, evaluate the backpack’s overall design, ensuring it distributes weight evenly and secures gear effectively.


Extra Pockets & Compartments

Some army surplus backpacks come equipped with extra pockets and compartments. These can be helpful for keeping smaller items organized and easily accessible while on the go. Consider your storage needs and if extra pockets would be beneficial for your backpacking experience.

Price & Availability

When purchasing an army surplus backpack, consider both the price and availability. Look for backpacks within your budget while also ensuring the specific model and size you want is available in nearby retailers or online platforms.

Brand Reputation & Warranty


While purchasing an army surplus backpack, look for a reputable brand with positive reviews and satisfied customers. A good warranty can also ensure your investment is well-protected in case of defects or malfunctions. Consider reading customer reviews and checking the brand’s online presence before making a purchase.


What is an Army Surplus Backpack?

An Army Surplus Backpack is a type of backpack designed for durability and functionality. It usually features a military-style design, including MOLLE (Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment) system, multiple pockets, and straps for attaching gear or equipment.


What are the advantages of Army Surplus Backpacks?

  • High durability due to the use of military-grade materials
  • Versatile design with multiple pockets and attachment points
  • Affordable prices compared to premium backpacks
  • Cool, rugged aesthetic that appeals to outdoor enthusiasts and hikers

What sizes are available for Army Surplus Backpacks?

Army Surplus Backpacks typically come in various sizes, ranging from small daypacks (around 10–20 liters) to larger backpacks (around 50–100 liters) designed for extended hiking trips or overnight stays.

What are the features that distinguish Army Surplus Backpacks from other backpacks?

  • MOLLE (Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment) system for attaching gear or equipment
  • Rugged, military-grade materials for increased durability
  • Multiple, water-resistant pockets for organization and storage
  • Padded straps and back panels for added comfort during long hikes

Where can I purchase an Army Surplus Backpack?

Army Surplus Backpacks can be found at various retailers, both online and in physical stores. Some popular options include army surplus stores, outdoor gear shops, and online marketplaces like Amazon or eBay.

What brands offer Army Surplus Backpacks?

Some popular brands that manufacture Army Surplus Backpacks include 5.11 Tactical, Condor Outdoor, Maxpedition, and Grizzly Outdoor Products. These brands typically offer a wide range of sizes and features to choose from.

Can I modify or customize an Army Surplus Backpack?

Yes, many Army Surplus Backpacks are compatible with the MOLLE system, which allows you to attach various pouches, holsters, and other accessories for customization and additional storage. Additionally, you can add patches or modify the exterior of the backpack to personalize it further.