Top 5 | Best Waterproof Bags
While water-resistant bags will be sufficient for most carry needs, sometimes you simply can’t afford for gear to get wet. And this is where our Best Waterproof Bag finalists shine. These bags can take a drenching and then some, while remaining burly enough to embrace outdoor adventures at every turn. From super-rugged duffels to multifunctional packs, discover the top 5 best waterproof bags in 2021 and vote for your ultimate winner below…
Ortlieb Atrack CR
The Ortlieb Atrack CR is a unique bag. In some ways, it’s similar to a day bag; in others, it’s a duffle bag. But no matter what, it is waterproof. Perfect for the urban commuter or if you are planning to travel in a rainy climate, the waterproof Cordura fabric not only keeps your gear dry but is durable and can take a beating.
The exterior of the Atrack has some laser-cut daisy chains for attaching extra gear like hiking poles, bike locks, or ice axes. Two mesh pockets on either side are sized for a water bottle or to stuff a jacket. These pockets are roomy and sit tight to the bag when not in use.
At 25L, it gives enough room to pack for several days and allows for compression when needing to only pack for a day trip. The Atrack uses a TIZIP zipper on the rear of the bag. So not only is the bag secure while on person, the zipper allows for a wide opening to pack the bag. The bag’s interior has four zippered pockets for keeping gear organized and a small sealed port for a hydration tube.
One of the unique parts of the Atrack is the adjustable carry system. The user can adjust the back panel to fit their frame, so this pack will work for you, whether petite or tall.
Because this pack falls in the category of an everyday pack you can use it for quite a few activities; mountain biking, watersports, or the city commute. The Ortlieb Atrack packs flat when empty, so even if you need to toss it in a larger duffel when traveling on multi-day trips or just to store the bag, it will not take up much space. For anyone on the lookout for a quality waterproof bag for an active lifestyle, take a look at the Ortlieb Atrack.
Outer mesh pockets
Daisy chains on the exterior
Inner compression strap
Wide zipper opening
Sea to Summit Flow 35L
The Flow 35L is a great all-around dry pack backpack. The bag is seam-sealed and built to handle anything you can throw at it. Toss it in a waterfall, hurl it down a mountain, and the bag will take it.
The large roll-top interior and Hypalon attachment points make packing this bag a breeze. The bag’s main compartment is waterproof and can be submerged for short periods. The exterior pocket is only water-resistant, so not meant to hold anything that needs to be kept dry. You can bring this bag ice climbing, mountaineering, paddle boarding, or just about any other activity that you enjoy.
The harness system on the Flow 35L is very comfortable even when fully loaded. The curved back panel contours nicely to the back, and the padding on the shoulder straps is not too thin nor too thick. The waist belt is removable, so if you want to run this pack as a lightweight commuter pack or have no need to have the extra straps, you can use the Flow as more of a dry bag for gear and a backpack.
Waterproof, abrasion-resistant, TPU laminated 420D Nylon fabric
Top-loading roll-top main chamber
Seam-sealed main compartment
Easy-access hydration compartment
Fishpond Thunderhead Submersible Backpack
I love a bag pushing the envelope and coming up with new ways to protect gear. The Fishpond Thunderhead Submersible is one of these bags. You can keep everything from camera gear and clothing to food and fire starters dry and functional.
While this bag is mainly pushed as a flyfishing bag, do not discredit this bag for any other carry options. If you are out hiking in a wet climate and expect rain, this is a very comfortable bag to take on a day hike and flyfishing. The Thunderhead carries exceptionally well and is functional beyond just flyfishing.
One of the most innovative parts of this pack is the self-healing zipper. You have to see and feel it to believe it. If the zipper happens to separate in places where it should not, you can run the zipper back and forth, and it will “heal” itself. Pretty nifty.
The pack’s interior has a removable zippered pocket for you to store your essentials. The exterior of the bag has a waterproof pocket for quick-grab items and several points to affix gear such as a fishing net, GPS, or comms. The harness system is very comfortable and can be worn for long periods without feeling exhaustion on the shoulders.
One of the great parts about Fishpond is that they are working towards building a more sustainable supply chain. They are the first flyfishing company to become a certified B Corp. One way that they are doing this is with the NewStream fabric. This fabric is made from 100% recycled post-consumer plastic water bottles and other beverage containers. Not only is it sustainable but it retains the durability that Fishpond users have come to expect.
This pack integrates with other items in the Fishpond lineup. The price tag is on the higher end but it’s worth every penny. Not only will you love this bag, but it will last you for years to come.
900D TPU coated NewStream fabric
Fully waterproof, self-healing TRU Zip zipper closure on the main compartment
Multiple exterior attachment points
Subtech Pro Drybag 45L
The Subtech Pro is an insane bag. Airtight and watertight You could put all your precious gear in this bag, hard drives, cameras, laptops, gold bars, and it will be safe and dry. While lightweight, the bag is highly durable.
Made from Hypalon, the Pro 45L is built to last and to be able to take a beating. You could toss this thing on the roof of your Defender as you cross the Kalahari or strap it to your boat as the hurricane rages, and none of your gear will get wet or dirty. There are internal mesh pockets that can help keep your gear organized, as well as an optional “Smart Pack System” if you prefer even more organization.
The Subtech Pro Drybag comes in at the highest rating for waterproof and submersible (IP68). You can take this bag down to 50M, and everything inside the bag will still be good. With the bag being airtight, one added benefit is you could use this as a floatation device if you find yourself needing to cross a river or your boat overturns.
You have several good choices on how to carry the Subtech Pro. You will be hard-pressed to find an uncomfortable carry solution from the backpack mode to various handles. No matter which option you choose, the carry is comfortable. The bag has detachable padded straps in backpack mode and a detachable waist belt that utilizes a Cobra buckle to secure the belt. When carrying like a briefcase, the two handles come together with a padded magnetic handle. If you just need to toss the bag and prefer to use the end handles at either end to pick it up, these handles are strong and will take even a fully loaded pack.
If you choose to pick up the shockproof inflatable system, you have extra protection for all your gear inside. This system creates a second layer of protection and will also help keep the bag afloat when needed. If you are in the market for a high-end bag that will outlast you, then take a look at Subtech and the Pro Drybag.
Submersible to 50M
Rip-proof Hypalon material
Great optional pieces
YETI Panga Duffel
This bag is already legendary. Not only can it take a beating, but it will keep all your gear dry. Take it on a boat. Toss it on your roof rack and have peace of mind that everything will be dry and protected. Coming in three sizes for the duffel (50L, 75L, 100L), you have some excellent options depending on your adventures.
The Panga definitely follows YETI’s long-standing tradition of gear that will survive when it comes to quality. The Thickskin Shell is made of laminated, high-density nylon, and you can feel the quality in this bag the moment you touch the material. The HydroLok zipper is just as strong. It does take some force to pull, but it creates an air/water-tight seal, so you know that your gear is safe.
You can carry the Panga by either the handles on the ends or right by either end of the zipper or using the detachable backpack straps. These straps can be used as a handle but are more meant to be used as a harness for the bag. The webbing handles on either end are strong, and even a fully loaded bag won’t tear them off.
There are only two small mesh pockets on the bag’s interior as far as organization. These are good to keep keys or electronics safe, but other than that, there is no other interior organization. On the exterior, several lash points can be used either to secure extra gear to the bag or to secure the bag to your boat or vehicle.
If you have been in the outdoor world for any time, the YETI Panga isn’t a stranger. This duffel is not uncomfortable to carry on your back, even fully loaded. The price is steep, but most waterproof bags are. It is a simple bag with little organization, but it will last a long time.
VOTING CLOSES [Feb 16th]