By Brian Allison, North Carolina, October 31, 2013
Just bought one for my son in 7th grade, with the idea that it will last him through all of high school. That means my expectations are high, and can only be fulfilled in the long run. So far, I am impressed with the design and construction details - and the zippers! The only concern I have is around size, and being able to fit all 27 books it apparently takes to get educated today (yes, that's exaggerated I'm pretty sure, but wow!). I am secretly thrilled to have a very high-quality product made in America, thank you!
By NJ Mom, New Jersey, October 24, 2013
Purchased this backpack for my child in kindergarten... truly is the best backpack we've ever owned. Extremely well made/durable, so easy to pack and zip, space is so efficient and best of all... made in USA. Can't say enough about it. Going to purchase one for my other 2 children no doubt.
By Andrew, Ontario, Canada, October 11, 2013
After purchasing a new backpack for each of our kids, each year that they have been in school, I did the math.
It became a very simple decision to purchase the K-12 pack for our kids... my daughter selecting a colour (color for my friends to the south of the boarder...) was not so simple however! :)
Both the kids packs have been wonderful, in fact they are our go-to pack for family outings to the beach, apple orchard, sleep overs etc. etc.
Our son has had his for 15 months now and it still looks brand new, particularly beside my daughters 3 month old pack.
You will not regret this purchase. It is worth every penny.
By Anonymous, Wyoming, October 10, 2013
Great Bag. Lots of storage. Great Colors. Waterproof lining keeps things dry.
By Alex Brown, Winston-Salem, NC, September 12, 2013
I am 9 years old. My Mom and Dad bought me the K-12 for school. I love my backpack because everybody loves it. They say that I have caught Sponge Bob. I love my indestructible backpack. I plan to bring my backpack to Iceland.
(A note from his Dad: on our last trip to Iceland the Velcro on his old backpack failed and dumped it's contents on the floor of the airport. I said then his next pack would be the K-12.)
By Paul, San Antonio, September 5, 2013
Great pack. My son is using for his every day school bag. Fit and finish are great, like usual. The only thing I would do is increase the dimensions just a tad. One of those 2" binders eats up a lot of the room.
By Steven, Santa Monica, CA, July 1, 2013
As always, the superb build quality of Red Oxx products shines with the K-12 Kat Pack Backpack (say that product name 10 times fast! ;-)). I needed a backpack I could carry my computer, computer accessories, some office clothes, towel, and snacks for when I walk or bicycle to work. Being able to open the backpack up completely makes it easy to put in folded clothes without them getting wrinkled. Th K-12 has worked out great.
I also like that Red Oxx included a removable adjustable sternum strap at no extra cost. Thanks! :-)
The only possible adjustment I would recommend is to make the reinforced bottom of the backpack padded like the Gator Carry On Bag to help guard a computer from getting banged up when setting the bag down standing on the bottom. Obviously this can be addressed with a separate soft computer pouch; so it is no big deal. Other than that the bag is great for everyone, not just kids! Enjoy!!
By Lisa, California, March 11, 2013
So...kind of a Red Oxx junkie here. My main bag's the Skytrain and I have an assortment of duffles, sundries kits and a Mini-Ruck. The Kat Pack is for me one of the most useful Red Oxx pieces I have (and that's saying a lot).
Since I use a Skytrain, I wanted a backpack that was unstructured and light to pack inside the Skytrain, but sturdy enough to carry my laptop and whatever else I need when I'm out for the day. The Kat Pack is perfect for this. I love that the zippers for the main compartment go all the way down the sides so you can get at stuff on the bottom without having to pull everything out. Love that the water bottle exterior mesh pockets actually hold a water bottle and it doesn't fall out. Love the red interior that makes things easier to find, the slash pocket and padding for the laptop. Love the indestructible zippers!
The only thing I might suggest is a simple interior pocket for one's wallet (though the thickness of the zippers makes me think a thief would have a hard time being stealthy if you put your wallet in one of the exterior pockets). This is a great travel pack, and a great pack for urban adventurers.
By Andrew, Ontario, Canada, March 7, 2013
My son, and daughter seem to be very hard on backpacks. We usually need to dig out the duct tape mid-way through the school year and never have we actually completed a school year with the same backpack.
When my 5 year old son saw the backpack and I explained it to him, he was excited to get one... dark green like the Hulk. My daughter initially said she wanted a new backpack each year, that was until she saw her brothers.... we will be placing another order soon for her.
The pack is MUCH better built, with higher quality components than I have ever seen on a children's pack. Having the warranty is great piece of mind; however, I don't think I will even need to use it.
By David Killick, Christchurch, New Zealand, March 4, 2013
Is this the world's best daypack? Quite possibly. It's certainly the best one I've ever owned. I got fed up with cheap (or not so cheap) packs that fell apart after a few years. The K12 is ultra rugged, typical RedOxx quality that will last and last. Those zips and seams are massively over-engineered imparting a feeling of confidence. It has just the right number of pockets. Simplicity is a virtue. A cube shape is much better at holding stuff than a teardrop shape, but the pack somehow doesn't look as square when you get it as it looks in the photos.
Two criticisms: The colors on the website don't do this product justice.
Also (not really a criticism): I already have the C-Ruck and two CPA briefcases and now I am tempted by another travel pack!
By Rebecca, North Carolina, January 24, 2013
A few months ago I bought the Air Boss for an overseas trip and love it so much, Red Oxx was my first choice when looking for a multi-purpose backpack. I wish I knew about this when my kids were in school because Red Oxx seems indestructible. I bought the K-12 Kat to use as a range bag and as and to pack for quick trips. The square shape looks a little funny but makes the pack cavernous and easy to pack. It's roomy and simple, not cluttered with a million useless pockets. It's exactly what I need and the price is in the same neighborhood as less sturdy packs.
By Robert Donalson, Fort worth, Texas, November 10, 2012
Like every red oxx product I own this one is bullet proof !!!! Quality is just unbelievable. I wanted a smaller day pack for my wife and this one is the perfect size . I like it so much I may buy another one for me. Thanks guys !!!
By John B, Cleveland Ohio, October 11, 2012
At 35 I am going back to school. I wanted a quality backpack, one i would not have to worry about breaking on me. A bag not so big I can't find anything in it, but will be be able to carry what I need. The. k 12 is that pack. This pack works for kids and adults!
By Dave, Minnesota, September 20, 2012
Sometimes simple is best. This is a GREAT quality, well designed, well made, bag -- and is a great value too. All the goodness and all the toughness we are used to, without the bells and whistles that actually complicate your enjoyment and distract from solid, aesthetically pleasing design. I encourage RedOxx to develop more of these "basic" type products that are stripped down to the core and priced so they are easy to say yes to, versus the more expensive bags which require deeper commitment. Great job on this bag. And thanks for keeping it made-in-USA.
By Walter Sereth, Los Angeles, CA, September 20, 2012
Beautifully made, as are all Red Oxx products, At this time I'm unable to give an opinion as to the good or poor qualities of the backpack. I haven't used it. One of these days I'll use it as a backpack, after which I'll be happy to give an opinion about it.
By Anonymous, adventureland, September 13, 2012
So i'll take a stab at giving a review on this new product. Its awesome. The size is great, the straps are beautiful, and the material and make is just as &*^& tough as RO always makes their stuff.
The reason i gave it 4/5 stars: there are two water bottle holders (one on each side) - why? The design would be much better with a handle on one side and a bottle holder on the other. Aside from that, the other major flaw is related to the pack's rectangular design. The rectangle is sweet, but it means that when you have it loaded heavily, the bottom "corners" dig into your back. Check out the cheapo bag manufacturers (those that start with J or E, for example)..
There's a reason the "teardrop" backpack shape is always supremely popular; because the bottom roundedness helps with carrying. Likewise, move the straps to top of the back, not have them 5 inches down, would help with distribution of weight.
Still, awesome bag.
By Anonymous, , August 29, 2007
My daughter used this bag from 1st to 9th grade. It is a great, durable, all purpose bag, and an exceptional value.
By Anonymous, , October 3, 2006
I purchased 2 of these for my daughters after endlessly buying backpacks that fell apart before the end of the year. They're great--still like new and hold books and binders very efficiently. My kids love the capacity and bright colours and I love the zippers that actually work and seams that don't rip!
By Anonymous, , September 22, 2006
The Pros: The bag is simple, rugged & reliable. The Cons: I wish it had side pockets for water bottles. Overall: I am very pleased with the daypack and would definitely recommend it to others.
Frequently Asked Questions
What's the difference between the K-12, Roadster, and Airborne?
The K-12 is our official school backpack designed for the rough use as only kids can dish out. Instead of being a top loader like our rucksacks the Roadster and Airborne, the Kat Pack has zippers that open the bag all the way down the side for easy access to deep packed items.
Will the K-12 Kat Pack Backpack meet personal item carry-on standards?
Certainly, the K-12 will easily fit into any overhead bin and even under most airline seats. It's not just for school, it's also a great travel backpack.
What's the best way to pack the K-12?
The most efficient way to pack this backpack is to pack items you may need easy access to towards the front or top of the bag. The raised exterior front pocket and flat zipper pocket are designed for storing smaller items. Another option we recommend for easy access is to use the daisy chain accessory loops located on the backpack straps to carry stuff that can be hung with carabiners or key rings.
How many days worth of school supplies will fit in the Kat Pack?
Depends on how good a packer you are. Most people can get a weeks worth of school supplies in the K-12. If you're considering the bag as a travel pack, probably a weekend's worth of clothes.
Will a laptop fit in the K-12? What size laptop?
Virtually any laptop with up to a 15" diagonal screen and two-inches thick will fit inside the backpack notebook sleeve.
What's the red fabric on the inside of the bag for?
Having a bright color on the inside of the pack helps to see what's inside. It also adds an extra layer of weather resistant protection.
Does the Kat Pack have a belly strap?
The K-12 Kat Pack Backpack does not have a built-in frame, so a belt strap would not help to balance the load. It does come with an adjustable chest strap.
Are there any interior pockets?
There is only a raised exterior pocket and a flat zippered pocket located on the front of the backpack.
Is there a way to securely lock my pack?
Sure, you can use any TSA approved bag lock
or try our Cable Lock
for a simple, semi-secure solution. Watch this video where CEO Jim Markel demonstrates how you can use the cable lock that comes with the Dog Tag price tag
to secure your bag
. Keep in mind, any determined thief can still cut open your backpack with a sharp knife.
My zipper broke. The teeth have separated. Do I send it in for warranty repair?
No need for warranty repair, try to fix it yourself. Check out this video where CEO Jim Markel shows how easy it is to do it yourself.
Can you ship USPS?
Yes, Red Oxx will ship USPS upon request. Simply state, "Please ship USPS" in the cart comments during checkout and we will adjust your billing accordingly.
“K through 12 - start 'em off right!”
K-12 Kat Pack Backpack
91081-CoalOn back order100
91081-MarinerOn back order100
91081-SaffronOn back order100
In stock orders ship same day if received by 4:00 PM Mountain Standard Time!
Why buy a new backpack every year?
Buy the Red Oxx K-12 Kat Pack Backpack for life.
BACK PACK IN THE DAY.
Once upon a time, there was the Red Oxx Daypack Backpack. You see them once in a while on auction sites or at second hand stores. Simple, sturdy, and square. Sadly, a couple years back, it went away. New priorities on the production schedule pushed it aside.
Then, one day Lacy, our production manager, decided to upgrade the Daypack Backpack for her growing kids. Her middle school children’s backpacks needed a raised front pocket, a reinforced bottom using our toughest ballistic nylon, a nice upgrade for the shoulder straps featuring a softer, yet stronger hi-tech Uni-Suede, a series of daisy chain accessory loops stitched to the straps and finally, a couple elastic mesh side pockets. Needless to say, her kids were stoked. The redesigned and renamed K-12 Kat Pack Backpack was born.
RECTANGULAR BACKPACKS CAN CARRY MORE.
Working with the same design philosophy we incorporate on all our bags, the K-12 Kat Pack Backpack has our typical spacious rectangular bag shape, a design set in motion by our flagship soft-sided carry-on bag, the Air Boss. Expect a spacious "fatback" school backpack that will easlily haul large, heavy text books.
At nearly under a grand in cubic inch volume (917 cu. in.), the main compartment features the same 420-denier red nylon lining as our other travel bags. The bright color makes searching inside the pack easier and adds a level of toughness and weather resistance not usually found in typical school backpacks, including those pricey famous name brands sold in department stores.
SOLVING THE TYPICAL BACKPACK'S WEAK POINTS.
Ever had a backpack start disintegrating from the inside out where the lining tape covers the seams? Our lining seam tape is woven sideways instead of lengthwise, effectively eliminating the loose weaving threads that tend to run. In fact, unless you're going to regularly fill your K-12 backpack with sharp rocks, broken glass and rusty nails, it's doubtful the interior will wear out. If it does, our ironclad "No Bull" Lifetime Warranty covers pack repairs and, if needed, bag replacements.
STRONGER SHOULDER STRAPS.
Have you despaired at seeing your shoulder straps ripping loose? The K-12 Kat Pack has reinforced double box stitching at major stress points: the top of the bag's shoulder contact area and the base's outer corners. Overbuilt? Hardly. Then we added a strip of two-inch poly webbing to anchor the box stitches all across the entire width of the back of the pack. At the bottom, the one inch nylon strap anchors down the corners. If there are any kids alive who can rip out these straps, team USA Olympic wrestling committee will want to talk to them.
BIG ZIPPERS THAT LAST.
Ever had the zipper break on a pack that otherwise still looks new? It's the number one failure zone on every backpack built-- except ours. The #10 YKK nylon self-locking zipper, a touted feature on all our bags, is about as tough and practical a zipper as money can buy. The competition can go "zip, zip" open and close with their cute little straight-line zipper puller testing machine, but when it comes to a kid using a zipper in the real world, we can guarantee it won't be "zip, zip" in a straight line.
These excellent zippers are easily repairable, even in the field; they will hold their place, that is, they "lock"; they are difficult to penetrate, thereby increasing the security of your belongings; they function smoothly in inclement weather and they can be yanked from a variety of angles without losing teeth or becoming separated.
Instead, think-- grunt, yank, jerk, and rip in every direction imaginable. Our zipper will also work in any extreme weather conditions, right down to well below zero. We top off this prized zipper feature with our fair trade Monkey Fist Zip Knots, sized just right for anyone's grip. Every pocket and compartment on this backpack has not one, but two of these fail-safe monsters.
If you've ever watched kids roaming home from school you're aware that their "backpack" is anywhere but on their back. For some reason, kids find dragging a pack not only more fun than wearing one, but a deep-seated challenge to shred their pack to pieces. Although one can't be sure, it's probably due to some secret longing to lose their text books and school assignments along the way.
BACKPACK BUILT LIKE A TANK?
Our customers like to define our gear as "built like a tank". While obviously you're not going to be toting around backpacks that weigh 50 tons and have three inches of armor plate, the comparison is still valid. For a backpack, they are built tough. Starting with one of the most durable textile materials available, 1000 weight CORDURA® nylon fabric, we hold it all together with super strong UV resistant thread that's double stitched into every seam.
BOUND AND BAGGED.
Places where two separate pieces of fabric are stitched together are then bound --that is, we take a long piece of one inch wide nylon webbing and fold it over the edges of the two pieces and stitch them together, this creates a strong seam, or binding, that prevents the pieces from unraveling on the inside of the backpack, or gives it a clean finished look if on the outside of the pack. In addition, each exposed fabric edge, such as on a pocket flap, is also bound using a thicker binding material. Inside edges typically receive a thinner nylon webbing, whereas outside corner edges that are exposed to wear will have a thicker nylon binding. All of our binding material is vertically woven to prevent fraying, peeling or splitting that you may commonly see in the competition's backpacks that brag of "binding" their edges.
WHY DOUBLE BOX STITCHING?
Each stress point, such as where the shoulder straps attach to the bag, is double box stitched - which is where we get the "double XX" in our name, Red OXX; a stitching practice we adopted from our time as parachute riggers.
DRAG TESTED - AND PASSED.
Buy the one and only backpack you or your kids will use from grade school to graduation and beyond. The K-12 Backpack probably is one of the few fatback school bags built with a "ballistic bottom." The 1050-weight ballistic nylon shields the bottom of this backpack from grit and gravel. This is the same material that's used on our roughest, toughest oil rigger and railroader bags. It's even designed in a cup-like pattern to keep the seams from scraping on the ground. Not that scraping the seams would do damage to the UV protected #92 bonded SolarMax nylon thread. The thread that’s so tough it will slice your fingers clean off before you can break it.
A SAFE PLACE FOR YOUR TABLET.
The K-12 Kat Pack Backpack has other clever design features. The raised outer pocket was developed to carry any number of the popular modern electronic tablets and e-readers like the iPad, Kindle, and so on. The flat zippered pocket located above it will also fit these tablets. The back area in the main compartment is padded with a dense 4 lb. Volara closed cell foam padding that is not only comfortable on your back, but also protects your notepad laptop computer.
TAKE YOUR WATER WITH YOU.
The dual elastic side pockets will securely hold a couple of water bottles, a thermos, camera, hat and gloves, a smartphone or calculator. Moreover, the mesh fabric will quickly shed moisture from a leaky water bottle or condensation.
BUT WHAT ABOUT THE COMPETITION?
Out of curiosity, we gathered a half dozen popular name brand school backpacks and book bags from a variety of contemporary backpack manufacturers. First we noted they were ALL manufactured offshore! Not one was made in the U.S.A. The differences went beyond our monster zippers, double box stitched seams and heavy-duty ballistic bottom. The most astonishing difference between the Montana made K-12 Kat Pack Backpack and the competition was the startling simplicity of the Kat Pack's design.
SIMPLICITY BY DESIGN.
Every other schoolbag had multiple pockets, flaps, buckles and innumerable surefire fail zones built into the complexity of the packs. Said Kat Pack designer and Red Oxx President Perry Jones, "All those pockets, and hardly any of 'em ever get used." CEO Jim Markel then pitched in, "You couldn't build a school pack like these here in the States. It would cost hundreds of dollars in labor to make them."
In the hustle and bustle of our children's lives, having a simple school pack helps to make the entire existence of the convolution of one's school years oh so very ... simple.
NOT JUST FOR SCHOOL – A TRAVEL PACK, TOO!
The K-12 Kat Pack Backpack was born to be the toughest kid's school backpack on the planet. But it also loves the life of a world traveler. It easily holds a weekend's worth of clothes as your main carry-on flight bag. Since the zippers open all the way down the sides, finding deeply buried items is a no-brainer.
TRAVEL WITH IT AS A PERSONAL ITEM.
This "carry-on legal" backpack will fit in the overhead bins of nearly any commercial airliner, lounge under just about any kind of seat, taxi, plane or bus, and of course, pass as a "personal item" without so much as a bat of a flight attendant's eyelash. Naturally, it also works great as a day pack, an overnight bag, a flight bag or a work carry-all.
BUY IT ONCE, KEEP IT FOREVER, PASS IT ON.
The K-12 Kat Pack Backpack is clearly built to take on the meanest, most ruthless kid on the block. Available in 12 vibrant colors, you and your kids are sure to find a favorite. Since we back all our bags and packs with our "No Bull" Lifetime Warranty, buy it once, keep it forever, and pass it on. This made in Montana backpack is destined to become the world's one and only hand-me-down school bag backpack. Rugged, reliable and tough.
WHY BUY A RED OXX K-12 KAT PACK BACKPACK?
- Lifetime Warranty. Red Oxx lasts longer.
- Rectangle bags carry books better.
- Airline Carry-on legal size
- Simplicity by design.
- Zip down easy open clamshell design.
- Twelve vibrant colors to choose from.
- Hand made with pride in Billings, Montana. U.S.A.
Children's School Backpack Packing Tips:
- Teach your kids to pack only necessary items each day. Warning: this may lead to under packing as an adult. Results have not been verified or tested.
- Kids should carry less than 10-20 percent of their body weight in a backpack.
- Distribute the contents evenly with heaviest items, like books, on the bottom or against the padded back.
- Carry the backpack above the waist. Adjust the shoulder straps until the bottom of the bag rests just above the hips, or the lowest point of curvature, also known as the cup of the lumbar.
- If your child bends forward to compensate for their backpack's weight, the pack is too heavy.
- If your child struggles to put the pack on, it's too heavy.
- If possible, heavy text books should be stored in their locker until needed for class.
- Teach children to use both shoulder straps! This keeps the weight equally distributed and prevents sore shoulders and pinched nerves.
- Each backpack comes with an adjustable chest strap which attaches to the daisy chains on the straps. Using the chest strap can help balance the backpack's load.
Large main compartment: 11.5"W x 5.5"D x 14.5"H
U.S.A. Capacity: 917 cubic inches (1,078 cu. inches with exterior pocket)
U.S.A. Weight: 1.9 pounds.
- Raised front pocket: 7"H x 2"D x 11.5"W
- Front slip pocket: 10.5"H x 11.5"W
"No Bull" no question's asked Lifetime Warranty.
Designed AND hand made in Billings, Montana U.S.A..
UPS Transit Shipping Time Map.
Witness the birth of your bag and learn about the steps it takes to handcraft your gear.
Meet the thundering herd who build your gear.
Red Oxx is a Veteran owned and operated US Manufacturer.
EMAIL POLICY: Online orders will receive an order confirmation email, a UPS tracking information email and a review request follow-up email eight weeks after delivery. Backorders beyond a dozen days may receive an order follow-up assurance email. During checkout purchasers have the option to opt-out of our other occasional email notifications. Your email address is always secure.
Every great school bag needs cool accessories.
Kat Pack Backpack Trivia: While researching a unique name for our new backpack several were selected from a pool of names solicited from our sewing crew. Alas, most proved to be taken by other companies. While tossing out the name rat pack, which was also taken, our Minister of Information suggested calling it the Kat Pack, in honor of our PR Intern at the time Kathleen, who goes by the nickname "Kat". CEO Jim Markel liked it and the rest is history.
- "No Bull" Lifetime Warranty
- Designed AND hand made in U.S.A.
- Fabric: 1000 weight urethane coated, Dupont certified CORDURA® nylon
- Weather resistant (NOT waterproof)
- 400 weight denier soft red nylon interior lining
- All zippers #10 YKK VISLON® self-locking
- Thread: #92 bonded SolarMax Nylon
- Critical seams double stitched and bound
- Double box stitching on stress points such as shoulder straps
- Monkey Fist Zip knots on all zippers
- Embroidered Logo Patches
- Grab loop carry handle
- 4-lb. closed cell Volara foam padding in back
- Uni-Suede padded shoulder straps
- "Wear-resistant" 1050 weight Ballistic nylon bottom
- Padded back with internal sleeve will fit laptops up to 15"
- Includes Cable Lock
- Raised front pocket for school supplies storage
- Deep mesh side pockets for water bottles or school supplies
- Rectangular design to efficiently hold books, files, notepad laptops, magazines
- Plenty of room for books, school supplies, even a lunch
- Daisy chain loops on shoulder straps for keys and other small items
- Includes adjustable detachable chest strap
- Two elastic mesh pockets, each sized to carry water bottles or thermos
- Choose from 12 bright colors
- U.S.A. Dimensions: 11.5"W x 5.5"D x 14.5"H
Raised front pocket: 7"H x 2"D x 11.5"W
Flat front slip pocket: 10.5"H x 11.5"W
- Metric Dimensions: 37cm L x 19cm W x 29cm H
Raised front pocket: 17.7cm H x 5cm D x 29cm W
Flat front slip pocket: 26.7cm H x 29cm W
- U.S.A. Capacity (total): 1,078 Cubic Inches
- Metric Capacity (total): 20.4 Liters
- U.S.A. Weight: 1.9 Pounds
- Metric Weight: 0.86 Kilos
K-12 Kat Pack Backpack Color Translator
- Amethyst = Purple
- Black = Raven
- Bordeaux = Dark Red
- Coal = Gray
- Forest = Green
- Khaki = Tan
- Mariner = Blue
- Midnight = Dark Blue
- Olive = Military Green
- Saffron = Yellow
- Safari = 1940s Olive Drab
Keep in mind: Colors on your monitor will vary from the actual color of the fabric. The only way to accurately gauge a color is to request a swatch.
If out of stock, back orders are typically filled within 14 working days. Visit our Customer Service Help Desk or call our Toll Free Hot Line: 1-888-733-6999.
Red Oxx "No Bull" Warranty
As time rolls a ceaseless course, only the genuine guarantee remains. The mountains will persist, the oceans are bound to endure and Red Oxx will continue to be rugged, reliable, and tough.
To the depths of the Amazon basin to the peaks of the Himalayas, Red Oxx Manufacturing is infallible.
Red Oxx Bags are guaranteed forever, be sure to include them in your will.
Made in U.S.A.
Red Oxx Bags are handcrafted in Billings, Montana. U.S.A.