Osprey Tempest 20 Backpack Review

Last Updated: January 2021

The Osprey Tempest 20 is a versatile, adjustable backpack that combines a simple design with high-tech features, making it ideal for year-round adventures. 

Quick Guide

Category: Women's Day Hiking Backpack

Sizes: Women's Extra Small/Small & Medium/Large

Weight: 1.65lbs (0.75kg)

Gear Capacity: 20 L

Recommended Load Range: 20-30 lbs 

Pros: Women’s-specific features; Very breathable back panel; Built-in support system for weight distribution.

Cons: External pockets are quite small; Strap and buckle on hip belt are thin, which can be uncomfortable.

Best Suited For: All season, day hiking backpack.

Also Check Out: The Osprey Sirrus 24 is a good alternative to the Tempest 20 for anyone that wants more features on their pack.

Final Verdict: The Osprey Tempest 20 is a versatile, adjustable, highly breathable, comfortable backpack that is perfect for year-round day hiking adventures. 

A hiking backpack is a must-have whenever you head into the backcountry. They are used to carry food, water, and other essential supplies. 

Finding the right backpack for all your hiking needs can be tricky, to say the least.

To help you find the right pack for any adventure, we’ve created these short Osprey Backpack reviews.

Osprey’s line up of gear includes some of the best backpacks available on the market today and they have a fantastic selection of women’s-specific packs. 

Osprey Tempest 20 Women's Backpack Review

Osprey has long been a leading brand in the outdoor industry for packs of varying sizes. 

Of their packs, the Tempest 20 continues to be a popular choice. It is versatile, adjustable, and it works for year-round adventures. 

The Osprey Tempest 20 combines a simple design with high-tech features. 

The Tempest 20 is built with an Altion frame sheet. This helps to distribute the weight of your gear across the entire back panel, reducing the load on your shoulders for a better hiking experience.

Also, it features a Biostretch built-in hip belt with die-cut slotted foam, providing ample padding for your hips. The hip belt uses seamless technology to improve its fit for all-day comfort.

Meanwhile, an Airscape Backpanel provides ample breathability, helping to wick away sweat in the hot summer months.

If that wasn’t enough, the Osprey Tempest 20 also has women’s-specific features. Things such as a wider hip belt and ergonomic shoulder straps. These minor adjustments help to provide a more contoured fit for active women.

The Osprey Sirrus 24 is a good alternative to the Tempest 20 for anyone that wants more features on their pack. The Sirrus 24 includes top-of-the-line accessories. Features like an integrated rain cover and a better selection of pockets.

Key Specifications:

  • Best Use: Day Hikes
  • Gender: Women's
  • Fit Torso Length: 13 - 20 inches
  • Number of Pockets: 7

Pros & Cons:

  • Women’s-specific features
  • Very breathable back panel
  • Built-in support system for weight distribution
  • External pockets are quite small
  • Strap and buckle on hip belt are thin, which can be uncomfortable

Osprey Tempest 20 Backpack Key Features

  • Dual-zippered panel access to main compartment
  • Internal zippered mesh pocket with key clip
  • Tuck-away ice ax attachment with bungee tie-off
  • Stow-on-the-Go trekking pole attachment
  • Top panel zippered slash pocket
  • LidLock bike helmet attachment
  • Lower side compression straps
  • Side stretch mesh pockets
  • External hydration reservoir sleeve
  • Easy-access, expandable stretch mesh harness pocket
  • Dual-zippered fabric hipbelt pockets
  • Blinker light attachment
  • Large stretch mesh front panel pocket
day hike couple mountain


What is a Day Backpack?

A day backpack or day pack is specially designed for use on short day hikes.

Day packs are between 10 and 50L in size, but the most common day packs are 20-30L models.

They are meant to carry food, water, and spare clothing for a few hours on the trail and little else. Some day packs are only large enough for a rain jacket, water bottle, and a few protein bars.

Keep in mind that winter trips will demand more spare clothing and, thus, a larger day pack. 

Why are Osprey Backpacks Good Value?

Osprey is one of the oldest backpacking gear manufacturers in the United States. 

They are known for making high-quality equipment that’s very versatile. We love that Osprey builds their packs with plenty of features to make your life easier when you’re out and about.

Plus, Osprey stands by the quality of their packs. They offer their All Mighty Guarantee.

The company will repair any damage or defect on their packs, free of charge, regardless of when you bought it. 

Should I buy a Gender-Specific Backpack?

These days, it is possible to get a women’s specific backpack. Having “gender-specific” hiking packs may seem odd.

However, many women’s models are better suited for people with smaller bodies.

A women’s pack will usually have a shorter length, which is better for people under about 5’9” (175cm) in height.

Additionally, these packs usually have wider hip belts and curved shoulder straps. These adjustments are to accommodate a woman’s body better.

How to Pick the Right Backpack?

A backpack is a critical piece of gear when it comes to hiking. Thus, it’s vital that you fully understand what you are looking for before you buy.

So, when shopping for your next hiking backpack, here are some of the main factors to consider:

Intended Purpose  - When we buy a piece of outdoor gear, we usually intend to use it for a specific purpose. In particular, backpacks come in many shapes and sizes. Some of which are best suited for a specific activity.

Hike Duration - A day hike can be as short as half an hour while a backpacking trip can last for months. The length of your hiking trip will have much impact on the pack you choose to use.

Comfort - Comfort is key when it comes to buying a hiking backpack. Keep in mind you’ll carry your pack over varied, uneven terrain for hours on end. You don’t want to purchase something uncomfortable.

Capacity - Backpack capacity is traditionally expressed in terms of liters of volume. In general, the capacity of pack that you need is dependent on three things: the length of your trip, the season, and the type of activity.

Here’s a rough guideline for choosing your pack capacity:

  • Summer day hikes: 10-30L
  • Winter day hikes: 30-50L
  • Summer backpacking trips: 60-90L
  • Winter backpacking trips: 75-110L
  • Extended (14+ day) expeditions: 90-110L

For more information check out our Best Backpacks Buying Guide or our backpack in-depth reviews for more backpack recommendations.

Key Takeaways

Although there are a lot of good day-hike backpacks on the market these days, you really can't go wrong with the Osprey Tempest 20.  It's women-specific design will ensure you stay comfortable on the trail.

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