If you are an outdoor explorer, a traveler, or a nomad, a quality backpack is a must-have. But the same goes for students on campuses or anyone with a long daily commute.
Essentially, everyone needs a waterproof backpack by their side, and that’s why we collected the top ten sacks with water-repelling capabilities. So, let’s see what makes these models better than everyone else.
- TOP-QUALITY WATERPROOF BACKPACKS: BUYER’S GUIDE
- – MATERIALS
- – CAPACITY
- – COMFORT
- – FUNCTIONALITY
- – COST
- 1. FISHPOND USA WIND RIVER ROLL-TOP BACKPACK
- 2. YETI PANGA 28 LITER WATERPROOF BACKPACK
- 3. FILSON BACKPACK DRY BAG
- 4. SIMMS FISHING DRY CREEK ROLL-TOP BACKPACK
- 5. PATAGONIA DISPERSER ROLL-TOP PACK 40L
- 6. FISHPOND USA THUNDERHEAD SUBMERSIBLE BACKPACK
- 7. ARC’TERYX GRANVILLE 20 BACKPACK
- 8. FJÄLLRÄVEN ULVÖ 23 DAYPACK
- 9. MATADOR FREERAIN22 WATERPROOF BACKPACK
- 10. SEALLINEGEAR BLACK CANYON DRY PACK
TOP-QUALITY WATERPROOF BACKPACKS: BUYER’S GUIDE
Before we dive deeper into the features and characteristics of the best splash-proof bags, let’s revisit the basics and see how you separate the best waterproof backpacks from the rest. In essence, here are the aspects to consider before purchasing:
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see the importance of fabrics for waterproof bags. In other words, these backpacks need moisture-wicking materials with water-repellent coatings. Also, the fabrics should be as durable as possible, so check these elements before splashing the cash.
If you plan to haul plenty of outdoor gear or camping equipment, you’ll need a spacious bag with lots of compartments. But even if you plan to use your new waterproof daypack for commuting or going to classes, it’s vital to find a model with sufficient storage space.
Arguably, comfort is the crucial characteristic of any backpack or rucksack because no one wants to use something that will cause back pain or discomfort. Instead, we all want bags that reduce fatigue and help with carrying heavy loads. Therefore, check the adding in the back area and the shoulder straps.
Another aspect to consider would be usability because outdoor-oriented bags should provide maximum convenience and ease of use. In most cases, high-quality backpacks feature various straps and attachment points to improve functionality and help with carrying extra load.
Finally, new buyers should glance at the price before placing the order. After all, paying for the name might not be the best idea with waterproof backpacks, given that many low-profile brands manufacture excellent models. So, compare several bags to find the best price to value ratio.
1. FISHPOND USA WIND RIVER ROLL-TOP BACKPACK
To start the list in style, we’ll first visit a family-owned company in the shadows of the Rocky Mountains. With over 20 years of experience, Fishpond is a Colorado-based brand famous for its authenticity and creative products. As the name implies, the company primarily focuses on the fishing market, so it’s not surprising to see splash-proof backpacks in the catalog.
For example, the award-winning Fishpond Wind River Roll-Top Backpack is a multi-purpose model with impressive resistance to moisture and dampness. It features a sturdy 900D NewStream fabric with a TPU coating, offering 2138 cubic inches of maximum volume.
Of course, the latest generation of Wind River comes with an expandable roll-top design. Plus, the front area features a specious stretch pocket, ideal for storing your essentials or EDC gear. The roll-top system offers maximum flexibility and expands the Wind River bag to 31 inches in height when fully unrolled.
In total, this backpack weighs only 3.6 pounds. The lightweight shoulder straps are well-padded and ergonomic, while the molded back panel improves the points for comfort. In addition, Fishpond Wind River comes equipped with a removable lumbar support strap.
As expected, this bag’s essential element is the waterproof NewStream fabric, but you’ll be glad to hear that Wind River offers many attachment points and gear straps. Likewise, this sturdy bag is compatible with the rest of the Fishpond lineup, including chest packs and vests.
2. YETI PANGA 28 LITER WATERPROOF BACKPACK
The second entry on our best backpacks list comes from YETI, a relatively young American brand. Their portfolio comprises various outdoor products, such as vacuum-insulated coolers. And, of course, YETI knows how to make a quality backpack for outdoor activities.
The Panga model is a 28-liter backpack with a relatively higher price tag. Nonetheless, it is worth every penny because it offers airtight protection and has a tried-and-true design. And no, this backpack is not a cooler, so don’t mistake it with other models in the YETI arsenal.
YETI Panga is 100% waterproof because it features the patented ThickSkin shell made from high-density nylon and coated with TPU lamination. As a result, the abrasion-resistant fabric will also keep the water away and protect your belongings from rain, slush, or snow.
We should also mention that YETI Panga waterproof backpack comes equipped with HydroLok zippers for an airtight seal. Regardless of how much rain falls, your gear will stay bone dry in the spacious Panga bag.
Besides the excellent technical features, this model also attracts attention with its modern design. Instead of opting for many pockets and compartments, YETI opted for a sleek and minimalist design, making the Panga backpack a multi-purpose model.
3. FILSON BACKPACK DRY BAG
Founded during the Klondike Gold Rush, Filson is among the oldest companies on this list. Filson produced blankets, boots, and sleeping bags in its early days. Nowadays, they offer various goods for adventure-seekers and outdoor enthusiasts, including the eye-catching Filson Dry Bag backpack.
As the name says, this bag is all about keeping your gear dry at all times. To accomplish this task, Filson opted for heavy-duty 840D tarpaulin nylon. Of course, this industry-leading fabric comes with a thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) coating to prevent water penetration. Thus, Filson Dry Bag is 100% submersible and water-resistant.
Besides being durable and resilient, the 840D nylon is also flexible and resistant to UV rays. It even keeps the chemicals away, allowing you to carry food in this waterproof backpack. Likewise, Filson opted for RF welded seams to fuse the fabric layers permanently. The high-quality TIZIP zipper is also a neat detail enhancing usability and protecting the interior.
Another area where Filson Dry Bag exceeds expectations is comfort. Arguably, this is the best backpack for fishing and hunting because it comes with a removable, well-padded hip belt. Believe it or not, the belt even features sport shell loops, facilitating quick reloads when you need to react in a flash.
4. SIMMS FISHING DRY CREEK ROLL-TOP BACKPACK
Speaking of fishing and similar by-the-water activities, we should introduce another brand specialized in this market. Again, the name is self-explanatory, revealing that Simms Fishing Products focuses on high-performance fishing equipment and the accompanying apparel.
Well, the cool-looking Dry Creek Roll-Top Backpack is another high-value product from Simms, and it more than deserves a spot on this list. For example, the durable 300D ripstop polyester is among the best materials for outdoor bags and EDC pouches. Of course, Simms added a PU coating to the front and a TPU coating to the back of the Dry Creek backpack.
Simms offers two color versions of this model, allowing you to choose between orange and black. Either way, you’ll get an attractive hiking bag with exterior lash points, D-rings, and built-in tool storage. Likewise, the Simms Dry Creek backpack features an interior stretch-mesh compartment for extra storage.
Best of all, this waterproof backpack offers unrivaled comfort because it comes with cushioned shoulder straps and a mapped back panel. The roll-top system provides maximum usability, while the 2x mesh pockets on the sides offer a convenient location for your water bottles.
5. PATAGONIA DISPERSER ROLL-TOP PACK 40L
Patagonia’s eco-conscious and activist reputation precedes it, but this company is so much more than a green brand. Namely, Patagonia has been around since 1973, gaining experience and manufacturing top-quality outdoor clothing and accessories. Besides camping tents, sleeping bags, and similar gear, you’ll find plenty of quality backpacks in the budget-friendly Patagonia lineup.
For instance, the 40L Disperser Roll-Top Pack is a feature-rich waterproof backpack for camping, hiking, or mountaineering. As expected from Patagonia, this model comes with recycled materials and sustainably sourced fabrics. The outer shell features 100% recycled nylon, while the back panel and lining use recycled polyester.
As the name says, Patagonia Disperser has a roll-top opening to prevent moisture buildup and keep the interior bone dry at all times. Even prolonged exposure to the elements will be no match to the water-resistant Disperser backpack.
We’ll also notice an integrated net scabbard and spacious interior pocket if we look inside. Remember, we are talking about a 40-liter volume, and that’s why this model is among the best waterproof backpacks for camping and similar outdoor activities. And despite the impressive load capacity, Patagonia Disperser Roll-Top Pack weighs only 2.9 pounds, ranking among the lighter bags out there.
6. FISHPOND USA THUNDERHEAD SUBMERSIBLE BACKPACK
Yes, we already talked about Fishpond and its reputation in the US. Nevertheless, this company deserves another visit because the Thunderhead backpack ticks all boxes for being among the elite. Again, Fishpond might ask for a hefty price, but this submersible backpack could be a worthwhile investment for many outdoor enthusiasts.
Design-wise, we should mention that Fishpond USA offers this model in three exciting colors: Yucca, Cutthroat Orange, and Riverbed Camo. But regardless of your choice, you’ll get a stylish bag, ready to handle urban commute and accompany you on long-distance hikes on the weekends.
Fishpond Thunderhead Submersible Backpack features a heavy-duty 900D New Stream fabric coated with a TPU layer. Thus, this hiking bag will repel moisture and protect your belongings from adverse weather with no hassle. The waterproof TRU zippers are sturdy and easy to use, improving the points for convenience and usability.
Besides the badass fabric, this masterpiece of a bag features an adjustable lumbar support strap, a hip belt, and a molded back panel. In addition, the shoulder straps are well-padded and supportive.
So, if you are in the market for a functional backpack for outdoor explorations, the Thunderhead pack could be right up your alley. Best of all, it has dozens of straps, D-ring, webbings, and attachment points for hauling your camping gear and other equipment.
7. ARC’TERYX GRANVILLE 20 BACKPACK
Now would be the perfect time to visit our neighbors in Canada and head straight to North Vancouver in British Columbia. After all, Arc’teryx is a famous Canadian design company with decades of experience in the outdoor clothing world. Believe it or not, they have more than 80 branded stores worldwide and more than 1,200 employees.
So, given their expertise, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to see Arc’teryx on this list. More precisely, we are talking about the urban-looking Granville 20 Backpack. Besides top-quality weather protection, this elegant bag attracts attention with its sleek aesthetic and minimalist design.
Available in black, blue, and brown, the Granville backpack stands apart from the rest because it features a one-hand release buckle and an oversized flap going over the main compartment. As a result, rain or snow has zero chance of reaching the interior, damaging your gear, or soaking your clothes.
Arc’teryx opted for the innovative AC2 technology and composite materials for the Granville pack. In addition, the Granville bag comes with a 15-inch laptop sleeve and zippered mesh pockets. And so, you’ll get a durable yet lightweight waterproof backpack at a relatively affordable price.
8. FJÄLLRÄVEN ULVÖ 23 DAYPACK
Translated from Swedish, Fjällräven means the arctic fox, which explains this brand’s logo. Also, it explains the essence of Fjällräven, i.e., the specialization to create gear and apparel capable of handling polar temperatures and extreme weather. The versatile Ulvö daypack follows the company’s philosophy and shows what this Swedish brand is all about.
Namely, Fjällräven opted for the high-end 400D Bergshell nylon for the Ulvö 23 daypack. Since this fabric comes from 100% recycled polyamide, the bag could be an ideal choice for eco-conscious customers. Admittedly, the Fjällräven Ulvö daypack is not 100% submersible, but the sturdy Bergshell material will prevent rain or snow from soaking your belongings.
This bag weighs only 650 grams, offering 23 liters of volume. It has five pockets and compartments, many of them zippered and insulated. The Ulvö daypack also features a chest strap and a ventilating arm mesh. So, if you are in the market for a compact backpack, Fjällräven Ulvö is up there with the elite.
Plus, we should add that Fjällräven offers five cool-looking color options for this dependable daypack. The price is also noteworthy, ranking the Ulvö pack among the best cheap waterproof backpacks in 2022.
9. MATADOR FREERAIN22 WATERPROOF BACKPACK
It’s been a while since we visited Colorado, so let’s go back and check what’s been brewing in Matador’s HQ in Boulder. And yes, we are again talking about an iconic American brand focused on manufacturing high-performance travel equipment. These days, Matador offers several attention-grabbing models, but the waterproof Freerain22 takes the game to the next level.
Most importantly, the Freerain22 model is a packable backpack you can compress into the size of a football. Of course, the secret lies in the ultra-lightweight UHMWPE-reinforced Robic nylon. This material offers top-notch durability, but it provides excellent water resistance when combined with a UTS coating and sealed seams.
Likewise, Matador Freerain22 features a roll-top closure for enhanced usability and extra protection against the elements. The main compartment has a 22-liter load capacity, and it also offers impressive tear strength and abrasion resistance.
The area where the Freerain22 backpack exceeds expectations is the versatility of the storage space. For instance, you’ll get a front zipper pocket and oversized mesh pockets on the side. Also, there are two reinforced gear loops for hauling extra gear. Overall, Matador Freerain22 deserves the hype, given that it ranks as the best waterproof backpack for alpinism and mountaineering.
10. SEALLINEGEAR BLACK CANYON DRY PACK
Last but not least, we’ll check the capabilities of the adventure-ready SealLineGear Black Canyon Dry Pack. This backpack also comes from a US brand. Interestingly, SealLineGear invented dual-stripe closure in 1986, designing the world’s leading roll-top packs.
The Black Canyon model continues down the well-trodden path by providing 100% protection against adverse weather. More precisely, the patented DrySeal closure ensures a watertight seal, while the PVC-free nylon offers longevity and durability. The resilient 600D polyurethane is among the best waterproof materials money can buy.
We should also mention that the Black Canyon pack comes in two sizes: 65 and 115 liters. So, you can choose the volume that fits your needs. Likewise, SealLineGear will let you choose between the black, blue, or yellow colors.
In addition, this well-designed outdoor backpack comes with an adjustable waist belt and comfortable shoulder straps. Even though it doesn’t have many pockets and compartments, the Black Canyon backpack features a light-colored interior. Thus, you’ll have no problems finding your gear or other belongings. Of course, as one of the best waterproof packs out there, Black Canyon also comes equipped with several lash points for attaching the accessories.
And there you have it, the comprehensive list of the best water-resistant bags for outdoor activities. At first glance, they might look the same, but each offers specific capabilities meeting various users’ needs.
In any case, these top-quality backpacks will keep your belongings dry and safe regardless of the weather. So, whether you opt for Fjällräven, Patagonia, or Filson, expect only the best protection and maximum comfort.