REI Trail 2 Waist Pack Review

After I made the switch to wearing a fanny pack, I’ve never considered going back. In the backcountry or around town, the secure, on-hand storage is hard to give up. Now I have a growing collection of these versatile pieces, but there’s always room for one more!

The REI Trail 2 Waist pack was a perfect addition to my collection. It’s a smaller size and low profile design keep it from stealing the show, but it still fits everything I need. It’s great whether you want to use it for hiking, running, traveling, or pretty much anything else.

REI Trail 2 Waist Pack At-a-Glance

MSRP: $29.95
Capacity: 2 liters | 122 cubic inches
Number of Exterior Pockets: 2 plus the main compartment
Materials: Nylon shell, polyester lining (bluesign®-approved)
Fits Waist/Hips: 45 inches
Dimensions: 11.5 x 5 x 2 inches
Weight: 3.6 ounces
Gender: Unisex

Intended Use

This fanny pack is intended for hiking, but it would also be great for travel, running, or anywhere else you’d want a fanny pack. 

Circumstances of Review

I took this fanny pack on several hikes over the summer. It came with me on short day hikes, a couple of overnight backpacking trips, and even a few runs.

REI Trail 2 Waist Pack Features

Bucket Style Main Compartment: The main compartment of this fanny pack is easy to access and large enough to hold all the essentials. It’s a nice size so that your items don’t get crowded or lost.

Interior Pockets: Two interior pockets are included for the organization of small items, like headphones or chapstick. 

Key Clip: The key clip is a nice feature to include, you can easily clip your keys inside the fanny pack so they’ll never fall out or get lost inside.

Front Stash Pocket: There’s an extra zipped pocket on the front to store any smaller item you want to keep separate from the main pouch.

Secret Back Pocket: A hidden zippered pocket is included on the back. It’s big enough to fit a phone or wallet. I used this pocket often for backpacking permits as well. It’ll fit a passport too if you’re traveling.


At 2L, the fanny pack carries all the essentials you’d need for the day. I was always able to fit my sunglasses, phone, snacks, headphones,  sunscreen, a small tripod, and more. I typically prefer a slightly larger fanny pack for backpacking so I can pile in even more snacks, but the Trail 2 was great for even a longer day hike.

If you had a larger item such as a camera, it may be a challenge to fit. The smaller size is beneficial in some situations, however. I’ve gone running with it as a crossbody, and it fits just my phone and keys great while not jostling around too much. 


I found the fanny pack to be extremely comfortable whether I was wearing it solo, with a day pack, or with my overnight pack. The webbing strap never dug in and was easily adjustable. I could wear it all day long with no issues. 


Keep it secret, keep it safe — Gandalf.

There is no shortage of pockets with this fanny pack. I always value the interior mesh pockets to throw smaller items that otherwise would easily get lost in the large main pocket. The outside and secret pockets were useful for phones, permits, keys, etc. I hadn’t seen a secret pocket like this on any other fanny pack I’ve used before, and I thought it was a nice feature to keep valuables hidden or just tuck them away more neatly.

REI Trail 2 Waist Pack Pros

Affordable: At $29.95, this fanny pack is a great deal and affordable for anyone.

Extra Features: The secret stash pocket is a nice feature that is often included in daypacks, and it’s great to see on a fanny pack too. The key clip is a nice addition as well.

Good organization: All of the pockets included make it easy to keep everything organized and in its place.

Matching Daypack: If you like the prints on this fanny pack, you’re in luck because REI offers a matching day pack as well! I tested these both together and felt like I was hiking in style.

READ NEXT — REI Flash 22 Backpack Review

REI Trail 2 Waist Pack Cons

Not waterproof: The Trail 2 materials are not waterproof. While that would be a nice feature, it isn’t a deal breaker for me. However, I took it out in a few showers and it never soaked through, so the fabric is reasonably water resistant.

On the smaller side: For backpacking, I usually prefer a slightly larger fanny pack, but it’s nice to have a smaller option for quick day hikes or even runs. This is more of a preference thing, and it can be a plus for certain occasions.

Overall Thoughts

For quick trips where you want a lot of organization, this fanny pack is perfect. It has a low profile, but can still fit a lot. I found that it is best used for day hiking or general traveling, although I did take it with me on overnight trips as well.

There are tons of pockets so you won’t have to rummage around looking for any small items. The key clip and secret stash pocket help with this even more. It even comes in fun patterns that you can pair with a matching Flash pack from REI too. If you’re looking for a simple and affordable fanny pack to get you where you need to go, I’d definitely recommend the Trail 2 from REI.

Shop the REI Trail 2 Waist Pack

Comparable Fanny Packs

Patagonia Ultralight Black Hole Mini Hip Pack
MSRP: $35
Weight: 3.5oz

Chicken Tramper Ultralight Gear 1L Fanny Pack
MSRP: $45
Weight: 2.5oz

Gossamer Gear Bumster
MSRP: $28
Weight: 3.1oz

Disclaimer: This product was donated for the purpose of review.

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