Tracksmith Olmsted Pack review: Runners' Essential

Tracksmith’s Olmsted Pack is more than just a backpack; it’s the perfect commuter companion

T3 Platinum Award
Tracksmith Olmsted Pack review
(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)
T3 Verdict

The Olmsted Pack features classic Tracksmith aesthetics and a runner-friendly design crafted from 100% recycled polyester. Its ample storage compartments, including a laptop pocket and shoe compartment, ensure organisational ease. Comfortable and secure during runs, it proves durable and weatherproof, making it the ultimate running backpack for commuters and travel enthusiasts.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Runner-friendly design

  • +

    Weatherproof construction

  • +

    Durable materials used

  • +

    Secure laptop pocket

  • +

    Ventilated shoe compartment

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Might be too small if you want to use it as a standard backpack

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It’s hard not to expect only the best from a Tracksmith product. The brand is renowned for its premium products and excellent craftsmanship, and the items I have experienced so far have only reinforced this reputation. The latest Tracksmith masterpiece I had the privilege of trying is the Olmsted Pack, an exclusive running pack designed specifically for commuters.

Named after Frederick Law Olmsted, who co-designed Central Park in New York with Calvert Vaux, the Olmsted Pack is definitely the best running backpack I tried in the last few years.

It’s the perfect size, offering ample space for all your essentials, and boasts a plethora of organization options, ensuring everything has its place. Not only is it practical, but it also exudes a timeless beauty. Most importantly, it sits comfortably on your back, even when you’re running. I’ve been rigorously testing the bag for the last month or so; read my comprehensive review of the Olmsted Pack below.

Tracksmith Olmsted Pack review

Price and availability

The Olmsted Pack is available directly from Tracksmith US, Tracksmith UK and Tracksmith AU for a recommended price of $150/ £150/ AU£265. It’s only available in one colour, Navy/Ivory, but the Tracksmith website says, ‘New colours releasing this summer’, so watch this space.


Tracksmith Olmsted Pack review

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)
  • Best for: commuting, travel
  • Fabric: 100% recycled polyester
  • Volume: 18L
  • Dimensions (H x W x D): 18 x 10 x 6 inches
  • Weather protection: water-resistant main body fabric and liner

Design and construction

Tracksmith Olmsted Pack review

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

The Olmsted Pack has what I would call classic Tracksmith aesthetics, with muted colours, distinct angles, and a lot of functionality. Better still, the bag was certainly designed with runners in mind—not just any runners, but mostly commuters and travel enthusiasts.

Made from 100% recycled polyester, the Olmsted Pack has a water-resistant main body fabric and liner. It also has a nice padded back panel, slightly padded shoulder straps, as well as adjustable sternum and hip belts.

The sternum strap has two buckles, so right—and left-handed people can both undo it quickly. The hip belt is removable if you want to use the bag more like a standard backpack. On the side of the bag, above the two stretchy water bottle holders, there are two additional straps in case you want to store something tall in them, like an Insta360 X4 mounted on a selfie stick.

The Olmsted Pack really shines when it comes to storage solutions. It has four main zipped compartments, one of which is placed diagonally on the front for all your quick-access stuff. It’s a decent size, but it wouldn’t fit anything too thick. Smartphones are fine.

The one behind the diagonal pocket is for all your small items, like wallets, keys, etc. It has five internal compartments, three of which are zippered. You can go bananas here to ensure the weight distribution in the bag is optimal.

The large main compartment hides the laptop pocket, which easily swallowed up my 13-inch M1 MacBook Air. It has a silicone gripper along the top, ensuring your laptop doesn’t bob up and down when you run. You’ll also find a decent size zippered pocket here.

Finally, there is a zippered shoe/used clothing compartment at the bottom with two air holes to aid ventilation. The lining here feels more sturdy to ensure moisture doesn’t enter other parts of the bag; however, I would avoid putting anything sopping wet in here if possible.

Performance and comfort

Tracksmith Olmsted Pack review

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

I went on many runs with the Tracksmith Olmsted Pack, one of which was a 5k shakeout run the day before I ran the Paris Marathon. I had my Sony A7 III camera with the gargantuan Samyang AF 35-150mm f2-2.8 attached, along with some additional layers.

Although I was running considerably faster than my jogging pace, the bag didn’t bother me at all. I adjusted the straps pre-run and made sure the shoulder straps were as tight as they could be (within reason, of course). Lo and behold, the Olmsted Pack hugged my body perfectly, with very little vertical movement involved.

I took the running backpack on more commuting-style runs to see how it fares when carrying laptops and other items. As expected, the Olmsted Pack performed equally well when running slower, with everything staying in place.

Weatherproofing was tested to a certain extent. I find it hard to muster up the energy to test gear when it’s emptying down outside, but I took the pack on runs when it was only drizzling outside. I couldn’t detect any water inside the bag.

As for wear and tear, it’s difficult to tell after just over a month of use, but so far so good. I haven’t noticed any bobbling, rips or stains.


Based on my experience so far, the Tracksmith Olmsted Pack is the ultimate running backpack. It’s a well-made bag with plenty of storage options and just the right size. I’m sure the steeper asking price might deter some people, but it’s worth the money. If you often commute with your laptop and need a reliable bag to store your gear, the Olmsted Pack is your best option. There, I said it.

Matt Kollat
Section Editor | Active

Matt Kollat is a journalist and content creator who works for and its magazine counterpart as an Active Editor. His areas of expertise include wearables, drones, fitness equipment, nutrition and outdoor gear. He joined T3 in 2019. His byline appears in several publications, including Techradar and Fit&Well, and more. Matt also collaborated with other content creators (e.g. Garage Gym Reviews) and judged many awards, such as the European Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance's ESSNawards. When he isn't working out, running or cycling, you'll find him roaming the countryside and trying out new podcasting and content creation equipment.