So, you are looking for an awesome backpack and are wondering if the Osprey Sirrus 36 is the bag for you.
Well, you’ve come to the right place. This is the best Osprey Sirrus 36 review on the web.
Here at The Broke Backpacker, we take backpack reviews very seriously. In this brutally honest review, I’ll uncover all of the pros and cons of this bag. I’ll show you exactly if this bag is the perfect bag for you, or if you are better off with a different backpack.
Because at the end of the day, while this is an amazing backpack, I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone.
With the help of this brutally honest review, you’ll be able to easily identify if the Osprey Sirrus 36 is the best bag for you, your budget, and your style.
Let’s jump into the best Osprey Sirrus 36 review on the web. Some of the highlights of this bag will definitely surprise you…
Is the Osprey Sirrus 36 perfect for you?
We like to start our backpack reviews this way.
The first thing we do is see if the backpack is NOT for you. We do this by asking some specific questions about the weaknesses of this backpack. If one of the bag’s weaknesses means it won’t work for you, we’ll make awesome recommendations for a different backpack that does fit your style.
Then if you DO realize that this bag is on par with your needs and style, we’ll break the bag further down to make sure it’s 100% perfect for what you need.
So, let’s start with the first round…
The Osprey Sirrus 36 is NOT perfect for you if…
- Tip #1 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is NOT for you if you are a man
This backpack is designed for women. This is a woman’s bag. If you are a man looking for a similar bag, I recommend checking out the Osprey Farpoint 40.
- Tip #2 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is NOT for you if you are looking for a multi-day hiking backpack
Unless you travel super, super, super minimal, if you are looking for a multi-day hiking bag, the Osprey Sirrus 36 is not going to be a great fit.
This is because the Osprey Sirrus 36 is a 36-liter backpack, and 36 liters is just not enough space for most campers going on epic journeys. Tents, sleeping pads, food, and clothes can get super bulky. We usually recommend a MINIMUM of a 40 liter for multi-day hikes.
Is it doable? Totally! But you might want to go with something bigger, just in case. If you are looking for something bigger, check out our top hiking bags.
- Tip #3 – The Osprey Sirrus is NOT for you if you are looking for a round-the-world travel backpack
Same as the previous point – unless you are a super, super light traveler, the Osprey Sirrus is probably going to be too small to be a primary travel backpack. While 36 liters is certainly big enough for a short backpacking trip, it’ll be difficult to pull it off for any trip longer than 1+ week. It is certainly possible… but challenging.
Similar to our hiking recommendation, we recommend at least a 40 liter size backpack for your world travels. A 40 liter is still considered very lightweight, and the extra 6 liters of space will go a long way.
If you are looking for a great bag to travel around the world, you’re going to want to check out our most awesome travel backpacks.
- Tip #4 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is NOT for you if you are looking for a more modern/minimalist backpack or a laptop backpack
While Osprey has done a fantastic job of redesigning and modernizing their styles, at the end of the day they are still a hiking backpack company. Because of this, all of their bags have the ‘classic backpacker’ look. Some people love it, others want something different.
Because of this, I do not recommend this backpack for Digital Nomads, or anyone looking for a laptop-friendly backpack.
- Tip #5 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is NOT for you if you are looking for a travel DAYpack
Although the Osprey Sirrus is a bit too small for certain situations, it’s also too big for others – like being a daypack.
While it certainly CAN be done, it’s just a bit too big to be a proper daypack. We like our travel daypacks to be around the 20-liter region, and at 36 liters, the Osprey Sirrus 36 is just too damn big!
If you are in the market for something smaller, check out this guide to quality travel daypacks.
- Tip #6 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is NOT for you if you are looking for a cheap backpack
At over $150, this is not a budget backpack. But while this might seem expensive, you need to understand that this is actually pretty middle of the road for a solid backpack. With that price, you’ll get a backpack that you can use for the rest of your life.
Are you still here? GREAT! Then the Osprey Sirrus 36 might just be the bag of your dreams…
The Osprey Sirrus 36 is PERFECT for you if…
Pay special attention! If you answer these qualifiers then you can be very excited knowing you have found a backpack that suits your style and needs.
- Tip #1 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is PERFECT for you if you are a woman
Like I said – this is a woman’s bag. Enough said.
- Tip #2 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is PERFECT for you if you are looking for a hiking daypack
If you are a woman looking for a mid-sized backpack for hiking and the occasional super-minimal camping night… you have met the backpack sent from heaven.
The Osprey Sirrus is made for this exact purpose. It’s materials, feel and overall design is designated to make it light, durable, and perfect for short trips hiking through mother nature. Whether you are hiking the Rockies, trailing through the Appalachians or simply strolling through the woods – this bag can help you carry all of the supplies you’ll need.
The Sirrus 36 is extremely durable and designed to help you easily store your supplies, while also being able to access them quickly and effectively.
- Tip #3 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is PERFECT for you if you are looking for a super-light travel backpack
Again, we wouldn’t recommend this bag for a 3-month trip… it’s simply too small.
But if you are a weekend travel-warrior, or like to travel super-light for 7-10 day trips, this bag will grant you happiness again and again.
This is because that while Osprey bags are hiking bags first, they double as travel backpacks very well. Their material and design works well for both. Which reminds me…
- Tip #4 – The Osprey Sirrus 36 is PERFECT for you if you want a daypack that can be used for hiking and travel
This is one of Osprey’s most important selling points – their versatility!
While more modern backpacks have a sleeker look, they lack the versatility that Osprey packs possess. Modern backpacks make for great travel/work bags, but they can never be used for camping or anything outdoors.
Having an Osprey pack means having options, and if the size is right for you, then you’ll be pleased to know you can use it wherever and whenever you need.
Still not sure?
Worry not! The rest of this in-depth review will assess every part of this bag so you can know exactly if this is the right bag for you.
Top Osprey Sirrus 36 Features
When it comes to great hiking and travel backpacks, most bags are fairly similar. To know if a bag is perfect for you, you need to find the few highlighted features the backpacks have and see if it fits your needs.
This woman’s pack is built to last. It has a rigid frame, a ventilated back system and a ton of other really cool features.
One of the coolest parts about the Osprey Sirrus 36 is that the torso straps and the sternum straps are 100% adjustable. These sorts of modifications are typically rare on a backpack this size. This versatility gives the Sirrus 36 HUGE points and is one of its primary selling points.
But not everything about this bag is perfect. Now we’ll go in depth covering every pro and con this Osprey bag has to offer.
Osprey Lifetime Guarantee
Osprey is a world-renowned backpack company for a few reasons. Yes, they make kick-ass backpacks.
But they’ve also done well for themselves by developing a great relationship with their customers. Included in this is their beloved ‘All Mighty Guarantee’.
This ‘All Mighty Guaranteed’ coupled with years of dedication and service to their customer base has contributed to Osprey developing a near cult-like following. When people buy Osprey, they buy for life – and it’s easy to see why!
Osprey’s ‘All Mighty Guarantee’ states the following…
“Osprey will repair any damage or defect for any reason free of charge – whether it was purchased in 1974 or yesterday. If we are unable to perform a functional repair on your pack, we will happily replace it. We proudly stand behind this guarantee, so much so that it bears the signature of company founder and head designer, Mike Pfotenhauer.”
Cant’ argue with that!
The ‘All Might Guarantee’ gives you an incredible peace of mind. This means that while the backpacks might be a bit pricey, you can rest easy knowing that they are built to last and covered for life.
However, note that there are some exceptions to the All-Mighty Guarantee. They will not fix accidental damage, hard use, wear & tear or damp related damage. Still, it’s a lot better than most guarantees on the market.
Osprey Sirrus 36 Design
It’s important to note here that the Sirrus 36 is designed a little differently than typical travel backpacks.
This bag actually has two sections. The main compartment and the top lid.
The main section can be found in the middle of the bag (pictured above). This part of the bag is a top loader (something we’ll cover in a minute). To get to the main-compartment-top-loader, you have to remove the top lid.
It might sound a little confusing but it’s all very simple and well designed. The two main compartments enable you to pack and organize your gear in different ways depending on your needs.
Osprey Sirrus 36 Sizes
The Osprey Sirrus 36 is a 36 liter, but it also comes in a 24 liter (brightly named the Osprey Sirrus 24!).
Given the large size difference between the two bags, most of the pros and cons in this review are referring exclusively to the Sirrus 36. If you would like an epic review of the Osprey Sirrus 24, let us know in the comments below!
If you go with the Sirrus 36, you’ll notice that there are two sizes.
- Extra Small/Small
- 24H X 12.2W X 12.2D IN
- 3.072 LBS
- This size is technically a 34 liter
- 2197 IN3
- 26H X 12.2W X 12.2D IN.
- 3.197 LBS.
- This size is the 36 liter
If this is your first time traveling or hiking, you need to really think about if this size backpack is perfect for you. I recommend considering things like…
- Will you be hiking or traveling?
- What sort of clothes will you be wearing?
- If you are traveling, how often do you want to do laundry?
- What is the climate of where you are heading (hot vs cold makes a HUGE difference)
- Do you plan to hitchhike at all?
- Do you need room for a large tent? If so how many people?
- Does your bag need to be a carry on?
Asking these sorts of questions will help you get an idea of how much stuff you are carrying, which will then help you determine whether the Osprey Sirrus 36 is the perfect bag for you or if you need a different backpack.
Is the Sirrus 36 Carry on Compliant?
Heck yes it is!
This is one of the best parts about this backpack. 36 liters will be carry on compliant with basically every airline on planet earth. So whether you are flying to go traveling, or flying to go hiking, you can rest assured that the Osprey Sirrus 36 will be coming along with you every stretch of the way.
Osprey Front Panel Storage Pocket
This is one of the most interesting and unique features of the Osprey Sirrus 36. Typically other hiking bags have multiple zippers, or the front panel storage area is on the top.
Not for the Sirrus 36!
The front panel storage pocket is designed as a single zipper, which gives the backpack a very slick, neat look. Also worth noting – no efficiency is compromised for this design.
This panel is not huge but it’s big enough to be able to store some snacks, a map, phone, or even a super light blanket or other articles of clothing.
Important! This bag is a top loader
This is important because there is a large divide in the travel-backpack-community. Some travelers prefer top loaders – others prefer front loaders.
The advantages of a top loader typically revolve around hiking. Top loaders are much better for hikers for a bunch of reasons…
- Top loaders are typically more lightweight (front loaders can be heavy)
- Top loaders usually enable a better weight distribution, taking the weight off your back and putting it on your hips (front loaders weight isn’t as well distributed)
- Top loaders are much thinner (front loaders have a tendency to be bulky)
All of these points above directly benefit hikers. This is why all of the best hiking backpacks are all top loaders.
But when it comes to travel, top loaders are a bit more controversial. Something to keep in mind.
A big perk of the Osprey Sirrus 36 is that it comes with a rain cover!
This is a big deal and can save you some time, money, and keep you dry. Most bags (including Osprey bags) do not come with a rain cover. They are typically sold separately.
But the beauty of the Sirrus 36 is that not only does it come with a rain cover – but it’s also integrated!
The rain cover is actually connected to and a part of the backpack. This means that you won’t have to worry about ever not having it – which is great once you see those rainclouds coming!
Side Zip Panel
Another huge feature is the side zipper!
This well-placed pocket enables you to access the main compartment of your Sirrus without having to unpack it!
This is one of the crappy things about top loaders. The stuff at the bottom of your bag is usually difficult to access, forcing you to unpack the entire bag to grab whatever is at the bottom.
The side zipper means you’ll never have to unpack your bag again! This handy features is arguably one of the coolest parts of the Osprey Sirrus 36 and helps give it extra points if you want to use this as a travel backpack as well as a hiking backpack. Major points for convenience!
Top Lid Mesh Pockets
Located on the bottom of the top lid, this compartment allows quick, easy access to your gear. The mesh pockets make sure that whatever you pack here is safe and secure.
Quick Access Mesh Pockets
A mesh pocket for both sides!
Obviously, this is intended to help anyone hiking, but travelers can also benefit from extra hydration as well.
Awesome Hipbelt Pockets
While zippered hip-belt pockets are definitely ubiquitous, it’s always appreciated!
Side pockets are a hikers or travelers best friend. They are compact, durable, and most importantly they are extremely easy to access.
Side mesh pockets mean quick-access snacks or even an easy to reach storage pocket for your phone (as long as it’s not too big!).
Some travelers even like to use these pockets to store their passport or wallet as they are checking in and out of airports.
Removable Sleeping Pad Straps
These sleeping pad straps are great for hikers (because you’ll need a sleeping pad!) and for travelers (they are removeable!).
This is again why the Osprey Sirrus 36 is one of the best multi-use bags. While it is a slightly better hiking bag, the fact that the sleeping pad straps are removeable shows that the designers took this bag’s versatility into heavy consideration. Bravo!
Cons of the Osprey Sirrus 36
While this bag is a complete gem for some ladies – it’s not without its cons. Let’s take a look at the areas of this bag we don’t love.
Remember, we aren’t necessarily complaining about this bag – we are merely pointing out it’s weaknesses, so you can better decide whether or not this bag fits your personal wants and needs.
Not as versatile as the Kyte 36
Excluding it’s higher price tag, the Osprey Kyte 36 is certainly a superior backpack. This is because the Kyte 36 is lighter, has smaller dimensions, and just has more features (and therefore versatility) than the Sirrus 36.
If you are looking to really get some bang for your buck for a mid-sized hiking/traveling backpack – this is a better choice.
The Kyte 36 is the same exact size in liters, so you get the same packing power, but as mentioned it’s lighter and has smaller dimensions.
But yes – those additional perks do come at a hefty price tag.
For women only
As I said, this isn’t a bad thing. Just making sure men realize this bag is NOT designed for them. Guys, if you are still here check out the Osprey Farpoint 40 instead. It’s awesome.
Some reviewers have complained that the Sirrus 36 is lacking in the pockets-region.
This bag was designed to be simple and minimal. But while I won’t say this bag has a glaring need for more pockets, I can see how someone might crave a few more.
If you are looking for a super-efficient organization backpack, you’re going to definitely want to check out one of the bags made by Nomatic.
Conclusion to the Epic Osprey Sirrus 36 Review
There you have it! The goal of this review was to cover everything you need to know about the Osprey Sirrus 36 – and we think that we accomplished that.
The Osprey Sirrus 36 is a phenomenal hiking daypack bag, and it can serve a few other functions aside from that. If you are a female looking for a well built, mid-sized hiking bag that can also double as a travel bag – you have struck gold!
What do you think about this review? Is there anything we missed? Are you going to get an Osprey Sirrus 36 now? Let us know in the comments below!
Need more inspiration?
Writer and Editor, Ana Pereira is a California native, inspired by Earth exploration and introspection. Recently, she spent several months exploring Africa and South Asia. She spends most of her “down-time” out in the wilderness, climbing, hiking, and beyond, and is feverishly passionate about travel and health.