Spare battery? Check.
Somewhere to store them while I’m riding…? Negative.
That’s where I found myself, and I’m sure you’ve been there too! I needed the best bike camera bag I could find before taking my camera anywhere while on the bike.
There are many different types, so there is plenty to consider when carrying your gear. I found the five best bike camera bags, and here are my thoughts!
In A Hurry? Here’s Our Top Picks…
Best Bike Camera Bags On The Market Today
Kulie is a Seattle-based company with a focus on developing European-style bike bags.
For them, it’s all about getting people to do more with their bikes by developing innovative products at an affordable price…which is just what the Urban Tourist bicycle bag is!
The Urban Tourist is versatile. Not only can it be used as a handlebar bike bag, but within minutes, you can convert it to a crossbody or shoulder bag.
It comes with a storage capacity of 2L, so there is plenty of room to store a camera and a few accessories.
While it may not be the largest bike camera bag I’ve looked at, it’s well-constructed. The side panels are waterproof and double-reinforced to ensure that they stay firm.
When it comes to attaching the bag to your handlebars, it uses a 2-point strap system. This keeps things secure but allows you to detach it quickly – hassle-free! A small touch, but a thoughtful one nonetheless, is the 3M reflective tape to boost your visibility at night.
One of the great things about the bike camera bag is that it works well when traveling and potentially swapping hire bikes out a lot, as it’s compatible with almost every type of bike or scooter.
When you do carry it, it’s comfortable, thanks to the padded straps. Should you need to remove these, you can do that too – I told you it was versatile 😁
If you need to access the bag while riding, it can be done with one hand and safely close it.
With many camera bags, there is only room for the camera and gear. The Lowepro breaks that mold, allowing you to carry other items as well.
There is a dedicated camera compartment that is suitably padded. The rest of the bag, well, you’re free to use it how you wish, so it’s ideal for that “all-in-one” solution.
The name “AW” would suggest that you can use this backpack in all weather, and that’s largely true. It’s water-resistant but not 100% waterproof if caught in a seriously heavy rainstorm!
Lowepro has thought about this, and included with the Photo Sport is a water-repellent shell that you can fit into the bag. When not in use, it slots away neatly into a small pocket.
Lowepro is very proud of the camera gear compartment on this bag, so proud that they’ve trademarked it; UltraCinch. Essentially it’s a padded compartment that’s built into the backpack.
What makes this such an attractive backpack is that despite the camera compartment being at the bottom of the bag, you still have quick access to your camera from the side.
In terms of comfort, Lowepro has what’s known as “ActivZone-Balanced.” This system provides support at the shoulder blades, lumbar, and waist. In other words, having it on your back for long periods is very comfortable!
Ibera is a company about the cycling lifestyle, so you can be sure they know a thing or two about bike camera bags.
Comfort and ease of use are at the forefront of Iberas’ focus. Unsurprisingly, the “clip-on, clip-off” mounting setup is easy to use. The upside is that the clamps can be adjusted to give you a custom fit on your handlebars.
It also includes a strap should you want to use it as a shoulder bag, so this design has a good element of convenience.
The Ibera bike handlebar bag is large and measures 28 x 20 x 18cm. It should be capable of storing a camera and several pieces of equipment. To help keep everything in place and safe, the interior is padded. This includes the dividers too.
Externally, the bike camera bag is waterproof, predominantly black, with some orange and some reflective striping on the sides.
One feature I like is the clear sleeve on top of the bag. It’s ideal for storing your phone or a map.
To finish it off, it comes with a waterproof cover, so when Mother Nature turns on you, at least your camera will stay dry!
This backpack is ideal for photography gear. It’s packed with padded dividers and pockets, giving you ample room to store your camera plus accessories without the need to leave things at home.
How much gear are we talking about?
The main compartment is large enough that you’ll be able to store one camera body with a lens attached. Plus, four additional lenses, one flash, and a pouch specially designed for tripod feet.
It doesn’t stop there, either! If you want to check out your photos on the move, a pocket inside the front flat fits a laptop up to 14”. There is also a side pocket for a water bottle or similar.
So it’s got excellent storage capabilities, but I ought to address the comfort factor too!
The Endurax comes with padded shoulder straps and a chest strap. In addition to that, the rear of the backpack offers ventilated back padding, which encourages ventilation and increases breathability. No more sweaty back during your rides!
Durability-wise, it’s a camera backpack that should be with you for many years as it’s fully waterproof. It is constructed from high-density water-resistant polyester material.
It also features a PVA armored front panel which will give the contents of your backpack some much-welcomed protection.
Overall, the Endurax is a bike camera bag that will sit comfortably on your back as you rack up the miles for years.
The Ortlieb Ultimate 6 Plus is designed to be attached to your handlebars and includes a lockable mounting set. Though up to a bar diameter of 31.8mm, so be sure to measure!
One thing worth pointing out is just how excellent this mounting system is. It’s a tiny faff to install, but you reap the rewards once it’s done, and I am only talking about a tiny faff.
Once installed, it’s semi-permanent and should resist theft unless your complete bike is stolen!
The bag itself is easy to access while you’re on your bike as it opens away from you, so you can visibly be able to see the contents quickly when you’re riding.
Like other Ortlieb products, the build quality is fantastic, and it will be a reliable friend through many adventures before it shows signs of wear and tear.
Inside the bag is the main compartment for your camera and a few other bits and pieces. You also get some smaller compartments that are good for SD cards, keys, and similar items.
Overall, the quality of this fantastic and being waterproof only adds to that. The impressive weight capacity of 3kg tops it off.
Buyers’ Guide: What To Look For When Buying A Bike Camera Bag
If you’re planning to go touring or simply a ride out on your bike and want to take your camera with you, you need somewhere to store it.
Here’s what you should be thinking about before you buy one:
Size will be one of the most important things when buying a bike camera bag.
Think about your camera size, what additional accessories you’d like to bring, lenses, flashes, etc. Also, if there’s anything else, you’d like to be able to carry (snacks, rain jackets, tubes, etc) in the same bag.
There are many different types of camera bags out there, and you might prefer one style over another.
Do you want a bag that will be attached to your handlebars, or would you be more comfortable with it on your back?
This will come down to personal preference and how much gear you have.
Now it’s time to consider the quality of the bag.
Look at the amount of padding and how many removable inserts there are. Can you easily store what you need to keep?
What level of protection is there, and will it be used over a long period?
This won’t be a concern for some riders, but you will need to think about how that will happen for those who like to get their camera out immediately.
With a handlebar bag, it should be straightforward, just open it up and shoot.
A backpack? Some are designed to be accessed easily. Some aren’t, so give some thought to your needs!
What Are The Advantages Of Handlebar Bags?
You may still be weighing up your options for which type of bag best suits your bike camera bag needs. So let’s see what’s so good about handlebar bags.
- They’re convenient. The thing about handlebar bags is that they’re designed so you can access them easily when you’re riding. There aren’t many on-bike storage options that offer that.
- Portability. Most handlebar bags can be attached and removed within minutes and used as shoulder bags, backpacks, or tote bags, giving you great flexibility.
- Mounting is straightforward. The joy of handlebar bags is that they’re relatively self-contained. Everything you need to mount them is there. You don’t need to worry about cargo racks or eyelets.
What Are The Advantages Of Backpacks?
So what about backpacks? What are the advantages?
- Capacity – A backpack is a good option if you need to carry a lot of gear. Some will have extra space to store additional items that aren’t camera-related.
- Security – If it’s attached to you, it’s harder to steal. Simple.
- Access – This does depend on the model of backpack you choose, but some are designed so that you can access your camera quickly via side pouches so you’ll never miss a shot through not being able to get to your camera in time!
- No mounting involved – You are the mount, so you don’t need to worry about how to attach it to your bike!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is there any difference between a bike camera bag and a regular camera bag?
Yes, there is. A bike camera bag is designed to be attached to a bicycle and is built to withstand cycling challenges such as vibrations, shocks, and weather conditions.
They are usually more compact and lightweight. They also feature unique attachment systems that regular camera bags do not offer.
Is keeping my camera in a bike camera bag while cycling on rough terrains safe?
Top-quality bike camera bags (like the Kulie Urban Tourist Bicycle Bag) are designed with adequate padding and robust materials to protect your camera even on rough terrains.
However, being cautious and avoiding unnecessary shocks or drops is always a good idea!
When cycling on rough terrains, make sure your camera bag is tightly secured and the camera is well-cushioned within the bag.
The best bike camera bag for you will depend on your needs.
If you want something to carry your camera and a small amount of gear around, my favorite would be the Kulie Urban Tourist Bicycle Bag. It’s compact, hard-wearing, and does exactly what you need it to do.
However, I’d opt for the Lowepro Photo Sport 300 AW II if you want something to do it all. You won’t need another bag as you can fit everything in there. It’s the complete package.
What’s your best photo of the year?