REI Lookout 40 Review

The REI Lookout 40 is a daypack that will get the job done without any fancy bells and whistles. It’s 40 Liters and has 7 pockets, plus the main compartment, so you’ll have plenty of storage for all your day hiking needs.

It even has twin loops for you to lash on an ice axe or trekking poles, in case your adventure is more technical than a day hike (it’s a great pack for climbing 14ers!).

Below are video reviews of the REI Lookout 40 by people who have owned and used it. Watch these uncut testimonials to get an idea of whether these are right for you!

Video Review

Name:Bree Katz

Pros:Lots of Storage

Cons:Can Easily Pack Too Much

Owned For:A few years


My name is Bree Katz and I was born and raised here in Denver and have grown to love all the outdoor activities associated with living in this area.

This is an REI Lookout 40 Daypack Plus. And one of the great things about this backpack is it’s just got so much room. Especially if you’re like me and kind of paranoid about things like, ‘Did I bring enough water? Did I bring enough food? Do I have enough layers of clothing just in case it starts snowing, which sometimes that can happen here… it can start out 90 degrees and sunny and then there’s 1-2 inches by the afternoon…’ You just have to be prepared.

So, one of the great things about the REI Lookout 40 is that the middle pocket could probably fit a jacket like the one I’m wearing now. I’ve yet to try that out yet, but I’d imagine you could fit a pretty good sized jacket or parka in there. Even an extra pair of snowpants, if need be.

I know I’ve thrown a rain jacket in there, a fleece, an extra couple of sweatshirts and still had room left over.

I really like these pockets on the side for when I’m carrying extra water or extra drinks. While I can obviously put my water bottle in the side pocket here, you just never know. You’ve read about the hike, you know it’s supposed to be about 12 hours round trip, and you know you’re a little slower than that, if you’re me, so you want to bring a little extra water just so you know you can make it through the day. So you can get a good water bottle here, and then you can get one behind it. Same thing on the other side, too, with the other side pocket and the one behind it.

And if you’re really concerned about the amount of water, this does have a Camelbak option, so you can go ahead and fit one in there and make sure you’re getting all your water and nutrients as necessary.

Of course we also have the front pocket here, which is really good for all those little things you might not have room to carry in your pockets. In this case, I have an extra case of allergy tablets, because you never know!

With the REI Lookout 40 backpack, you have to be a little careful with all the extra room you have, as you don’t want to weigh yourself down unnecessarily.

In the end, it’s a really great daypack if you’re going on one of those excessively long hikes that leaves you exposed and out in the wilderness.

Overall, a really great daypack if you’re doing one of those longer, extended hikes. You know, not quite a backpacking trip but not exactly a little stroll through the woods either.

How many stars out of five would you give it?

I would have to give it 5 stars.

Anything you dislike about the pack?

The only thing I would say is there’s a tendency to pack more than you need. And for the most part on some shorter hikes, you’d probably be better off using a smaller daypack. Perhaps a Camelbak or a Fanny Pack, but then you’re exposing yourself to plenty of ridicule.

Otherwise, if you are doing something longer, or even if you need a good, solid pack for a long flight (I’ve backpacked through Europe with just this and another small pack), it is totally solid.

Does it have hip-straps?

It does have hip-straps. It’s got hip-straps, chest-straps, the whole nine yards.

Anything else you’d like to say about it?

Definitely really a great backpack. If you love to travel, love to hike, and want to make sure you have what you need, then you’ll love this backpack.

Where to Buy

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The REI Lookout 40 is sold exclusively at

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