High Sierra Swerve Backpack

8.4 score
[Editors rating (8.4)] = (Gearweare.net) score (8.4)/10

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Editor rating: 8.4 / 10
User's rating: based on 0 user ratings
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High Sierra Swerve Backpack Review Facts

The High Sierra Swerve Backpack is ideal for hiking, travel, and college purposes, as it expands for heavy or light loads with the adjustable compression straps on the sides. You can tote it by hand with the wide carry handle on the top or on your back with the padded, contoured mesh shoulder straps that are adjustable. The Swerve has maximum airflow with the deep channels of air and mesh material to provide excellent ventilation and moisture-wicking abilities. Each side of this backpack has a holder for a water bottle, plus the bottom panel is padded to protect all contents contained. Users will love the many pockets and compartments in this product for organizing gear. The exterior has four pockets, two sections, and the water bottle holders, and the interior has a tablet sleeve, a laptop sleeve, and an organizer panel. This High Sierra item has many positive customer reviews and plenty of models sold because of its superior construction, materials, and usable features.

Editor's Pros & Cons
  • Maximum airflow of the pack and your back
  • Contoured straps are adjustable and padded
  • Expands for heavy or light loads
  • Laptop and tablet areas will protect from shocks
  • Digital gear is easy to access
  • Bottom panel is padded for content protection
  • Each side has a holder for a water bottle
  • Good for toting textbooks or heavy gear
  • Ideal for hiking, travel, and college
  • Straps have swivel clips to prevent twisting
  • Quality is not the same as previous models said some customers
  • A few buyers had trouble with the zippers sticking


High Sierra is a good dependable brand for your outdoor gear judging by the many positive online reviews and buyer feedback. Plenty of customers are highly satisfied with the high-quality, great craftsmanship, and excellent design of this gear item. When compared to competitor models of the same type of backpack, the High Sierra Swerve is moderately priced, has plenty of buyers, has sold plenty more models than the others, and has larger physical dimensions to hold more gear in its lightweight form. This is one of the best backpacks of this size that you will find available online with the many features that the Swerve possesses.


When transporting heavy loads with this item, the suspension system will give the user loads of relief. The weight transfer shock is dampened with this technology that shifts the weight of the pack to the shoulders and the hips to help the back carry the load. Another comfort feature of this terrific product is the ventilation for the user’s back. Enjoy maximum airflow in-between the pack and your back because of the deep channels of air and the mesh Vapel material that is moisture-wicking. When you have to carry your pack for long periods of time, especially in hot or humid conditions, you will appreciate this quality of the Swerve the most. You will not become overwhelmed with sweat on the back because of this aeration technology built in just for your comfort.


The High Sierra Swerve comes highly recommended from buyers who are so happy that they purchased this pack online. A couple of customers said their models are still going strong in great condition after two years of continued use. The durability is a result of excellent engineering, superb design, and durable materials used to construct this item. You can count of it for years and years of reliable service for all of your backpacking needs. It holds its shape well and is very durable after long periods of use. the zippers work well and do not snag according to satisfied buyers. We did find a few negative comments from users who have some experience with older models of this same Swerve model. Their packs of many years of use needed to be replaced, so they bought this High Sierra version. Comparing the older one to this newer one, they said that the overall quality is not the same. They believe that this version is smaller, thinner, and not as durable as the one they had before. We all know that sometimes companies have to make changes to their products, but the many positive reviews for this Swerve model attest to the great durability of this product.


If you are searching for a backpack that has high flexibility for your changing needs, then this is the one you want to try. It expands for heavy or light loads, has straps that are adjustable, and includes many pockets inside and outside. made of polyethylene material, the Swerve includes plenty of pockets for security and organization. You can keep everything you want to bring along in its own space where you can find it easily when you need it. we find in our research for reviews about backpacks that the number one complaint is that packs generally do not have enough pockets and compartments in them to meet most customers’ needs. This is not a problem with this model at all. You will be pleasantly surprised at the space, compartments, and pockets that you have to sort all of your belongings out. This is one of the reasons there are so many repeat buyers for this backpack. It is worth buying and carrying even if you do not have it full because it compresses to meet your individual needs. Also, several color options are offered to give you an eye-pleasing choice.

Key Features

-Deep channels of air and mesh Vapel material
-Plenty of pockets for organization and security
-CushionZone compartment for a laptop
-Protective space for a tablet (TechSpot sleeve)
-36.5L capacity with 2,230 cubic inches of space
-Strong handle and shoulder straps
-USB/cable ports and a key fob (hook)
-Adjustable compression straps on the sides
-Exterior: 4 zip pockets, 2 main sections, and 2 water bottle places
-Interior: tablet sleeve, laptop sleeve, and an organizer panel


The protective aspects of the Swerve come in the form of the padded, contoured shoulder straps that are adjustable, the strong material, and the digital gear sleeves. Most buyers rave about the comfortable shoulder straps and how they protect their shoulders and back from pain. Even when toting this pack for miles, you should not experience any discomfort, as the weight is absorbed and distributed nicely with these great shoulder straps. The compartments for the laptop and the tablet will protect your electronics from shocks and bumps when you are moving about. These work well for other items you want to protect too, such as smartphones. The ripstop material that is used for the Swerve Backpack has fibers of extra-strength woven into the fabric in certain high-use areas to provide tear strength for durability in such a material of lightweight. For those of you who wear a pack in low light areas or at nighttime, you will be glad to know that some of the color designs have reflective accents on them.


High Sierra designed into this Swerve model a characteristic that is used a lot by those with laptops and tablets. In a regular backpack, these items would be bumped around and possibly scratched without any added cushioning. That is why the main compartment of this item features a tablet and a laptop sleeve to be responsive to the needs of such users. There is a CushionZone compartment for a laptop that is fully padded and also a protective space for a tablet with the TechSpot sleeve. Most laptop models of 17 inches or less will fit in the laptop section well. what is really special about having these separate areas for this digital gear is that they are so easy to access without bothering all of the other pack contents. High Sierra has truly responded to its customers’ needs with this incredible product.


Being one of the larger packs available of its kind, the Swerve has a 36.5L capacity with 2230 cubic inches of space in the pockets and compartments. Different sizes of packs fit and rest on the body differently because of the size of the load they can possibly hold. When worn on the back with the shoulder straps, this pack size will fit on the user’s body with the bottom of the pack right at waist level or just above it even when fully loaded. Heavier packs are positioned lower than the waist to make better use of the hips to support the heavier weight. Even though the Swerve holds plenty of gear, it positions well on the back, using the shoulders and hips to make carrying it comfortable.

Also read about best budget backpacks


The strong durable zippers were also a noted quality of the Swerve that many people liked. All zipper clasps have a colored tab to make finding and grabbing them much easier. This product features a system of suspension straps for support of the overall load when worn or carried. It has an exterior flexible clasp on each side to keep all zippered sections together and to provide added stability to the pack. You can carry this item with the strong handle on the top or with the padded mesh shoulder straps that are contoured. Another feature of stability for the user are the two exterior front pockets, which are perfect for quick access objects you may need when traveling or walking. These small aspects may not seem worthy of mentioning, but when these are all combined into one pack, they make the difference in an excellent item and one that is just so-so.


Some means of support are added into the build of this incredible backpack to make the user’s experience with it much better. The media pocket has a USB/cable port and so does the organizer section, plus there is an external key fob. You can put a number of things on this clip for easy access. We mentioned the adjustable compression straps on the sides in another section, but these provide the support needed to keep the whole pack compressed and supported well when it is carried. The bottom panel is padded also for content protection of all sections, and the back, airflow panel that is padded has air mesh for the aeration of the back. Working together, these qualities give your gear the support they need in the pack.


You will love the many, many pockets and sections of this pack, which is wonderful for any type of gear you need to carry. Good for hiking, travel, and college, the Swerve has a multitude of storage options. It has a hook on the front for small items such as keys, sanitizer, and keychains, and each side has a holder for a water bottle. Good for toting textbooks or heavy gear, this model has a media pocket with a lid, pen pockets, and a mesh zippered pocket. The interior has a tablet sleeve, a laptop sleeve, and an organizer panel. The exterior has four zip pockets, two main sections, and the water bottle holders. If you like to keep things neatly organized, then you will just adore this gear product.

Ease of Use

A backpack with plenty of sections and compartments is very easy to use because you do not always have to shuffle items around to make room for them. everything has its place, and you can put your hands on items at any given moment. The Swerve Backpack is very easy to use because it holds plenty of things, has plenty of pockets for everything, and comes with swivel clips on the shoulder straps to keep the straps from twisting. The zippers are covered with material for a bit of added security from others, and the material can be wiped clean easily for the best care. Some people noted that the colors are pleasantly true to the online photos and will not fade or bleed when the pack is washed. We do want to mention about the zippers that some people experienced them sticking some at first.

Bottom Line

When you find a backpack that works as well as the High Sierra Swerve, you want to tell everyone about it. That is exactly what the majority of customers are doing online who have purchased this excellent backpack. They love the many pockets and compartments, the durable materials, the strong build, the comfort of the shoulder straps, and the flexibility it gives them in using it. We think you will love it too. It is one of the better backpacks that we have researched and reviewed.