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Patagonia Paxat Backpack 32L Review

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Patagonia Paxat Backpack 32LThe Patagonia Paxat 32L is new to the lineup of backpacks from Patagonia for Fall 2017.  The pack designers at Patagonia have been busy creating brand new packs and adding new colors schemes to current lines packs and duffles.  The Paxat 32L is the largest of the new daypacks and can hold nearly everything you need while traveling or heading to the office or class.

As with most backpacks, the Paxat 32L has pockets for nearly every thing you can dream up.  Keep in mind, this backpack wasn’t designed with a outdoors first approach, it’s designed for laptops, tablets, books, cell phones and other work and student related items.  Many times we think of brands such as Patagonia and The North Face as outdoors and active only, but these brands have slowly been taking up more space on retail shelves and our coat hooks and closets.

Inside the Patagonia Paxat 32L Backpack

The main compartment of the Patagonia Paxat 32L is a great dumping ground for nearly all your stuff.  I use it as a work bag and I usually have a laptop or two, a camera, flash and extra lens, notebooks, tablets, food and the list goes on.  I find this main compartment can fit all this equipment without it overflowing.  I commute to work 1/4 of the time and it’s important to be able to fit everything in one trip in my backpack.  While the Paxat 32L isn’t a commuter backpack per se, it meets your needs for commuting.

Patagonia Paxat 32l tablet sleeve

tablet sleeve fits Amazon Fire 8 nicely

On the inside of the main compartment, there is a padded sleeve for tablets.  This sleeve doesn’t allow you to lock your tablet down, but I haven’t found my tablet to slide around too much.  There is a larger zippered pocket on the inside of the main compartment.  This is large enough to hold your tablet, although it’s not padded in case you need the extra protection.

The secondary outer pocket is a great place store all your computer cords, ear phones, charging cables, pens, etc. There is a small padded pocket that can hold a regular pair of sport sunglasses, but larger casual sunglasses are a pretty tight squeeze if you can fit them in.

This outer pocket zips open about 2/3 up the pocket, so it’s not one of those pockets where you can easily access everything inside the pocket without taking it out.  You’ll need to do a little digging if you cram a lot of stuff in.

There’s an outer stretch pocket that is good for storing shoes, wet or stinky clothes and anything else you don’t want to put in contact with the contents of your main or secondary compartment.

The pack has daisy chain loops on the outside of the pack in the event you want to turn your pack into a true adventure pack and strap extra gear to the outside of the Paxat 32L.  I haven’t found a need for these to date because if I am wanting to store more gear, I usually size up in my backpack.  In the event you don’t have extra packs at your disposal, this is a nice feature.

There are two side zippered pockets that hold plenty of gear.  I like to use these pockets to store pieces of fruit as they keep my fruit from getting banged up when taking gear in and out of the pack.  They are also great for carrying water bottles, I can fit a 32 oz Nalgene and it doesn’t slide out.

Outside the pack

The back panel of the Patagonia Paxat 32L is ventilated, but it’s not as effective as a hiking backpack for ventilation.  On the inside of the back panel is a laptop sleeve that can be fully zipped open, making it a breeze when going through airport security.  There is a snap buckle to keep the laptop in place in the event TSA wants to get frisky with your backpack.  I’ve tested both a 13″ mac air and 15″ dell, both fit nicely.  The shoulder straps contour to your lats and chest and there is a female version of this pack to better fit the shape and curves of women.  There is an adjustable sternum strap that goes along with this backpack which keeps the pack from sloshing back and forth too much in the event you’re in an aggressive walking mood.  One thing this pack doesn’t include is a hip belt.

Materials Used

The Patagonia Paxat 32L backpack is made with 630 denier nylon , 50% of it being recycled material and 50% of it being high tenacity for strength and durability on the outer body of the pack.  On the inside of the backpack, Patagonia uses a 200 denier 100% recycled nylon.  There is a DWR coating on the pack that helps keep the Paxat 32L repel water.  I’ve been caught in a number of rain storms with this pack.  For extended trips in the rain, water will get in.  For 5-10 minute periods of rain, you typically should be good.  Keep in mind, this pack is not waterproof and your electronics can get wet if you spend too much time in the the rain.

Final Thoughts

When choosing a backpack, I go with the larger volume packs.  Coming in at 32 liters, the Patagonia Paxat 32L provides just the right amount of internal capacity for everything you need to carry for a day’s work.

In today’s market, products are becoming more and more competitive with each other and when you’re looking at what products to buy, I will spend a few extra dollars knowing that the brand has the right values in mind, and for me, Patagonia is that brand. Visit Patagonia.com for more information.

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About Kevin Fonger

If there's an activity or sport, I'll generally try it at least once. My main activities include running, hiking, skiing, cycling, camping, backpacking, and pretty much anything else you can think of. I love writing product reviews as I like helping people find the right gear so they will enjoy their activity that much more.


  1. Hello! Nice review! Can you tell me if this backpack has a frame sheet? TIA.

    PD: here’s a pic of a frame sheet for reference.
    t http://i1.wp.com/i148.photobucket.com/albums/s15/beballardjr/Molle%20Daypack%20Death%20Match/SAM_1122_zps33fc1058.jpg?resize=590%2C443

  2. Hi Lau,

    The Patagonia Paxat 32L doesn’t have a frame sheet. There are two layers of padding, one that sits against the back which is the thickest layer and one between the laptop sleeve(sits closest to the back) and the main backpack compartment. It acts more like a backpack for work/school vs. a technical pack for outdoor use. I have used it on many of occasions when I didn’t feel like carrying two backpacks with me when going to work and then and doing an activity after.

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