Deuter Speed Lite 20 Hiking Backpack Review

9.0 score
[Editors rating (9.0)] = (TheGearHunt) score (9.0)/10

Editor rating: 9.0 / 10
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Editor’s Conclusion
The first sensation when wearing the Deuter Speed Lite 20 is the blend of simplicity, comfort and lightness. With an impressive lineup of built-in features and useful extra-large water bottle pockets, this hiking backpack is worth checking out.

A low-profile light backpack that carries above its weight, especially great for long day hikes, off-trail biking, climbing and many more outdoor activities where a light backpack is useful.

The fit allows good freedom for movement up on the slopes of a mountain, remote trails or during other outdoor activities.

For comfort, the shoulder straps are anatomically shaped and easily carry up to medium loads. The features designed into this backpack allow it to work with the body even in very challenging conditions.

For those enjoying day-long hikes or any activities which require a medium carry load, this backpack could well be what you need.
Deuter Speed Lite 20 Hiking Backpack Review Review Facts
Editor's Pros & Cons



Foam back padding

Padded shoulder straps

External stretch pockets

Front pocket

Efficient zip system

Carries a low to moderate capacity



Thin waist belt

Key Features


Though the Deuter Speed Lite 20 backpack looks and feels small, the carrying capacity is impressive and so is the amount of comfort. The shoulder straps are nicely cushioned and built into the back for comfort along with support. The ventilation is different from the mesh panel versions and feedback is very positive to this change.

For day-long hikers or climbers, it carries a decent-sized medical kit, a rain jacket just in case it's needed, space for snacks, a lamp, water and more accessories as and when needed.


The frame structure is minimal. Part of the weight is due to the shoulder strapping and padded back area. This is a light hiking backpack but has good durability due to being constructed from a poly/nylon blend consisting of high-density denier which resists abrasion.

It has a hip belt that can be fastened for support while climbing or cycling or ascending/descending deep slopes. The belt is detachable for when it is not needed.

The back support is 3-D padded-airmesh for strength, ventilation and durability and this model weighs in at only 17 ounces.

More Features

You might work up a sweat while hiking and the padded back is breathable foam to allow ventilation and not trapping a build-up of heat.

Check out the side pockets built with stretch material so that you can carry more, especially large water bottles. These stretch pockets are fine for use with 2 liter and 3 liter hydration systems from Deuter's.

The Speed Lite 20 is versatile, and other uses include a handy airline bag, shopping, fishing, mountain biking, a whole range of sports for which a medium-sized carry bag works.

The bag is protective for carried possessions; the zip systems are very secure and the buckles are a unique Deuter design so make sure not to break them as it will be a challenge to get a new buckle.

Comparison to Similar Backpacks

This is a light, durable and comfortable backpack that allows you to carry necessities and a good amount of water while hiking. For those looking to carry more, the bigger models from Deuter are worth checking out.

This option is about ease to carry and simplicity and does not offer a broad range of features that you would see in larger backpacks. In return, the Speed Lite 20 model gives you the ability to move quickly with a light load.

The larger the model, the more features and more carrying capacity and Deuter offers a range of sizes from a capacity of 12 liters up to 24 liters.

This model is good. If you want smaller you can go for the 12-liter version which carries basics. If you want more, you can go all the way up to 24 liters which also offers more useful features for those looking to carry more gear.


This model is about simplicity and convenience for those that either go on a day hike and intend to move quickly or for those looking for a low-to-medium carrying backpack.

The comfort for the back due is very good and the foam padding allows ventilation. The padded shoulder straps work well and are fine when considering the weight load that will be carried. The waist belt tends to feel thin but it is functional for when a belt is needed and it can also be removed.

Durability is evident due to the use of good quality materials which are synthetic and therefore offer protection from direct constant sunshine and from rain. The two external stretch pockets are certainly helpful for carrying larger water bottles.

The Deuter Speed Lite 20 does perform very well within its design expectations and the price tag, though not low budget, is still affordable in return for a good piece of hiking gear.