Best Waterproof Backpack: Top-Rated Picks for 2020

best waterproof backpack

Whether you are exploring the outdoors or roaming the city streets, an unexpected dip in the water or downpour should not ruin your day. If you’re keeping all your essentials like your phone, keys, and wallet in your pack, you’d need to have the best water-proof backpack. To help you get only the best back-packs for all your adventures, we made a list of the top 10 best waterproof backpacks for you to evaluate.

Waterproof Bags Review

A crucial feature that many enthusiasts look for when seeking back-packs is that it should be waterproof. It will give you peace of mind that your belongings will stay dry and safe while you enjoy activities that involve the water. These bags give you a step further than the usual dry bags. It allows you to carry your stuff while your hands remain free conveniently.

Each of these packs has unique features and specifications, which makes them the ideal choice for your needs. You should also check out our buyers’ guide to know more about the factors that make a waterproof backpack stand out from the rest.

The 10 Best Waterproof Backpacks

5/5

The YETI Panga Water-proof Bag Day Pack features a state-of-the-art design. It ensures comfortable wear and multiple options for storage. This product is one of the top-selling waterproof packs for all types of adventures. Similarly, it has a strong waterproofing resistance that will keep water and moisture off your gear. Typically, this is an essential feature for people looking for a waterproof backpack.

Additionally, when it comes to comfort and convenience, YETI ensures that you will be downright satisfied. It also comes with a detachable chest strap and security hip belt for comfortable and secured sea to summit journey. Amongst its features, the zippered pockets, which are operated smoothly, makes it stand out from the rest. It uses Hydrolok technology, which prevents any droplets from getting into the compartments.

This pack uses high-quality materials and guarantees that it will last longer than the usual waterproof backpacks. It is a great choice for a reliable and stylish bag that will ensure that your stuff is organized and protected.

Overall, it’s an excellent pick for those who are looking for a stylish and reliable bag. It can secure your gears, keep them protected and organized. The backpack does an incredible job when it comes down to water-resistance. It’s worth every penny.

Features

  • Dual high-shielding layers of Titan RF
  • MOLLE webbing systems
  • EMI and RFI Shielding Capability

Benefits

  • 40 Liter capacity in the main compartment
  • Snow, rain, contaminant and dirt proof
  • Durable and waterproof
4.8/5

Sports 30 Waterproof Backpack DryBag from Aqua Quest is highly recommended because of its durability, comfort, and waterproofing capabilities. It is more than just your usual dry pack and offers an inner pocket for essentials and several more storage compartments on the outside. As with most Aqua Quest products, this bag proves to be tough and durable. It is perfect for any day adventure and can take on rigorous outdoor activities. It has an external compression system to keep everything stable, no matter how heavy or light you are carrying.

Its top feature is its 100% waterproofing capability. It features a 420D Ripstop material with TPU lamination, heat taped seams, and DWR coating. Its high-quality material makes sure that it will last longer than other bags made with thinner fabric. Even if you use it every day for a year, it will still look and work great. Having this waterproof backpack gives you peace of mind that your electronics and clothes will not get soaked as you enjoy your day outdoors. 

Features

  • 420D Ripstop material
  • Multiple compartments
  • 100% Water-proof

Benefits

  • Comfortable and stable to wear
  • High-quality materials
  • Durable and long-lasting
4.6/5

If you want a waterproof tactical backpack, nothing else tops the Mission Darkness Dry Shield Faraday. This 40-liter bag blocks off wireless signals and shields all your electronic devices from the dangers of tracking, hacking, spying, and corruption. When you place your devices in this bag, there are no apps or malicious codes that can be triggered or wiped remotely; no GPS tracking will work, no access to camera or microphone, and no means of communication will be able to penetrate. Its features make it an ideal backpack for law enforcement, military forensic, data theft defense, EMP protection, personal security, and digital privacy.

It has a 40-liter capacity that is large enough to accommodate devices such as laptops, cellphones, batteries, GPS units, tablets, and other accessories or gear. This military-grade backpack is made durable and waterproof with 500D PVC outer material; thus, everything you put in is guaranteed to stay offline and hydraulic dry in water-drenched locations. Other notable features are the dual paired seams, two layers of high-shielding Titan RF fabric, breathable padding and shoulder straps, and MOLLE webbing in three sides. You will as well love the MOLLE pouches, which are customizable for any arrangement or snap-on packs, gears, and accessories. 

Features

  • Dual high-shielding layers of Titan RF
  • MOLLE webbing systems
  • EMI and RFI Shielding Capability

Benefits

  • 40 Liter capacity in the main compartment
  • Snow, rain, contaminant and dirt proof
  • Durable and waterproof
4.4/5

This SealLine Pro Pack waterproof backpack makes any water-filled day extra enjoyable for water sports enthusiasts. Whether its board and paddles, kayaking, or snorkeling, this hydraulic dry pack will keep all your essentials safe and secure as you head out to the water. SealLine has been in the water-proof bag industry for many years, and they have all the best offerings to ensure that your gears are protected from the elements. This bag has a polyurethane-coated blend of nylon and polyester material, so it’s lighter than most bags of its kind.

It is easier to compress than other bags made from PVC plastic materials. It has lightly padded shoulder straps so you can carry it comfortably even if it is full to the brim. These straps can be conveniently removed if you won’t use it. And if you are not on the water, this backpack can be your perfect bike bag. It has plenty of space to keep your files and laptop in any weather.  

Features

  • Made with polyurethane-coated nylon and polyester material
  • Lightly padded shoulder straps which are also removable
  • Spacious and can accommodate up to 40 liters

Benefits

  • Water-tight interior
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Sturdy hip belt and harness
4.2/5

Timbuk2 might have realized that not all waterproof pack will suit everyone. Thus, they came up with this female-friendly waterproof backpack for women who loved all-weather cycling. The Timbuk2 Lux Waterproof Backpack has all the thoughtful features that make it one of the best waterproof backpacks for women considered essential for their pack. For instance, it has a reflective surface, a magnetic front flap, and neoprene side pockets. It comes with a reinforced water-proof zipper lining so water won’t get in. It also has a built-in mud flap and hood so that your bottom and your top remain safe and hydraulic dry.

One can easily be happy commuting with the Lux Waterproof backpack day pack. Women loved its well-proportioned and nice-looking design to make biking safe and comfortable. It features an air mesh back-panel with excellent ventilation and a secured roll top closure. And since it’s water-proof, you’ll have peace of mind that your gears such as your laptop, mobile or tablet are kept dry.

Features

  • Water-proof seam taped inner liner
  • Roll-top closure with compression straps
  • Reflective printed details

Benefits

  • Airmesh back panel for comfortable wear
  • Lightweight and durable construction
  • Built-in hood and mud flap
4/5

The OverBoard Waterproof Pro-Vis is an ideal rucksacks waterproof for keeping your essentials safe and dry in your outdoor adventure activities. OverBoard waterproof rucksack is a well-known adventure and active lifestyle gear specialist, and they know what enthusiasts need from a waterproof day pack. With their Pro-Vis water-proof backpack line, you are more visible even in low light surroundings. It comes in the standard orange or yellow PVC fabric that ensures high-visibility depending on requirements.

It is made from high-quality and durable materials that prove to be weather-proof and will sure to provide you plenty of wear and use. It is ideal not only for water sports activities but also for snow, sand, and dirt too. You can take this bag to any environment or climate you can imagine. These bags feature 600D PVC tarpaulin material and high-frequency welded seams. Its buckle connectors allow you to secure it to your kayak or boat. Likewise, it has front webbing for quick-access, removable shoulder straps, and a large interior pocket. 

Features

  • 100% water-proof and rugged design
  • High-visibility colors in orange and yellow
  • Seamless construction with roll top sealing system

Benefits

  • Comes with removable shoulder straps
  • Sturdy, durable and made from high-quality PVC material
  • With pockets, looping and elastic webbing
3.8/5

If you are looking for the perfect pack for all your city or outdoor adventure, the Aqua Quest Stylin 30L backpack is the ideal choice for you. It is lighter than other bags of this size, it is 100% water-proof and features a ripstop fabric. The bag is rounded in shape with a tapered bottom when packed. It also has a splash-resistant pocket as well as a front sleeve pocket, which makes it one of the best waterproof backpacks to keep your gear.

To ensure that you are comfortable on your hikes, the shoulder, hip, and chest straps come with an air mesh panel for ventilation and are all adjustable. You also have the option to get a bag with a reflective lining for better visibility in low light conditions. This bag is a top seller for people who want peace of mind when climbing mountains or crossing a river. It keeps electronics safe and dry even if there is a sudden downpour, or it gets accidentally submerged. The bag is designed to suit the outdoors, but it doubles as a regular pack for college and school use too.

Features

  • Thermoplastic Polyurethane or TPU laminated for waterproofing
  • Wet and dry pocket
  • Contoured Straps

Benefits

  • Efficient pocket design
  • Comfortable to wear and use
  • Ideal for outdoors or school use
3.6/5

Another backpack from Aqua Quest makes it to our list of the best waterproof backpacks; this time is the bigger Riparia Waterproof 45 liters Dry Bag. The company has been producing a fantastic product line that’s 100% water-proof to provide explorers with innovative gears. Like most of their products, the Riparia is sure to protect your items from any amount of snow, mud, rain, sand, and even quick submersion.

The Riparia is packed with useful features identified with Aqua Quests. It is the company’s largest waterproof dry bag back-pack, which gives you a spacious 42-liter main-compartment. It has splash-proof external pockets with several storage sections, including a key holder. If you’re out exploring, you’d appreciate having a dual water bottle holder, adjustable comfort straps, side compression straps, and multiple attachment points for easy access. This bag also features an Aqua Quest Flexion back panel, so it’s comfortable to carry even during long hikes. The straps are also padded, and the hip straps can be hidden when not in use.

Despite being lightweight, the Riparia is made from durable ripstop nylon that’s dual coated with heavy PU and TPU. It uses a water-resistant YKK zip and has a protective inner lining. Aqua Quest backs up their products with a Lifetime warranty, so you can always buy with confidence. 

Features

  • 100% water-proof and durable ripstop nylon material
  • Large main compartment and splash-proof pockets
  • With Aqua Quest Flexion back panel

Benefits

  • Comfortable to wear
  • Durable and made from high-quality material
  • Comes with AQ Lifetime warranty
3.5/5

If you are looking for a unique waterproof and lightweight drybag – backpack, look no further. The IDRYBAG offers a 500D scratch-proof, a water-resistant drybag that is recognized for its durability and high-performance in water-proofing. It is a multi-use bag that is suited for camping, boating, hiking, fishing, kayaking, and other outdoor adventures. You’ll be worry-free that your essential stuff will remain dry and safe even if there is a sudden downpour, or you accidentally get submerged in the water.

This drybag cum backpack has a slick design to ensure that no water or moisture will get into the sack. It comes with padded straps so you can wear it comfortably when you’re out on your adventures. Users commend their inner and outer pockets. The internal pocket has ample space to accommodate your gadgets and small essentials, so it’s easy to access. It also has outer pockets to store all items for quick access like flashlights or knives.

Most people like its ergonomic design and reflective trim that keeps you visible in low-light settings. It also has an excellent design and made it comfortable with making your trips enjoyable. So if you are looking for a lightweight, comfortable and attractive looking dry bag back-pack, this one is an excellent option for you.

Features

  • With 500D scratch-proof and waterproof material
  • Lightweight and durable
  • With inner and outer pockets for convenience

Benefits

  • Multi-use backpack for outdoor adventures
  • Comfortable straps for easy wearing
  • Sleek and attractive design
3.4/5

Last but not least, on our list of the best water-proof backpack is the Mariner DryBag Backpack from Surf to Summit. The company is well-known for making outdoor gears that are multi-use and multi-functional. The Mariner is of no exception. It is a fully-functional, waterproof, rugged, and highly durable pack for all types of outdoor activities. It works great as a day hike pack, which will keep your gear dry when you’re on the water or when there is sudden rain, sleet, or snow on the trail. It uses highly durable tarpaulin material with 3-way roll-down closure and airflow back support system for all your wet weather adventures.

Other notable features include shock cord retention system, reflective patch for visibility in low-light conditions, daisy chain durable webbing system, and mesh side pockets for easy access. The Mariner backpack from Surf to Summit perfectly exemplifies that form and function can meet in an attractive design that you’d love to use for all your outdoor adventures. This bag is a must-have if you’re a paddler, camper, hiker, or simply an outdoor enthusiast. 

Features

  • Waterproof bag made from durable tarpaulin
  • Ventilated back panel 
  • Three-way, roll-top closure

Benefits

  • Has multiple pockets
  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • Ideal for all types of outdoor adventure

Best Water Resistant Backpack

Modern-day adventure-seekers prefer to use the best waterproof backpacks for all their outdoor adventures and explorations. A hiking pack offers an efficient way of carrying essentials while both hands remain free. It is of extreme importance to keep your hand free as possible, especially if you are out in the wild, on the water or the trail. Underperforming luggage may only ruin an enjoyable moment if it holds you back from being the moment.

So, to protect your clothing, gadgets, electronics, and valuables from water damage, it is best to choose a backpack that can protect it from splashes, moisture, or accidental submersion. Whether it’s a sudden downpour in the city, quick trips on wet beaches, to extreme adventures in a tropical rainforest, the best water-proof backpack will be your best adventure buddy.

Ideally, outdoor enthusiasts rely on their mobile phones, tablets, and camera to document their travels. And having poor weather conditions, water accidents, or being involved in aquatic activities pose a great risk for these precious items.

But with a useful water-proof backpack or drybag, you can protect them all from water damage, spills, or leaks. These innovative bags are made from durable materials that are easy to clean up. Often, these bags are made from fabrics that repel moisture, such as TUP tarpaulin or rubberized materials.

Choosing A Waterproof Backpack

Now you might wonder about the features to look for when choosing a water-proof bag. Although we have listed some highly recommended picks, here are some more tips to help you identify the most suitable one for your needs. Each company has a unique feature to offer, so pay attention to those superior technologies or innovations that may serve useful for you. 

  • Capacity

One of the top factors to consider when choosing a bag is its capacity. Your choice will vary depending on your personal preference and its intended use. Typically, you will not keep all your items in your water-proof bag; it is ideal for keeping your essential gears dry and safe. Thus, most waterproof packs range from 5 to 35 liters.

Moreso, the size you pick should be related to its intended use. If you want to use a backpack for your kayaking day trips, you can do with a smaller size pack as you will likely have a few gears to take along. But if you intend to use your backpack for overnight hikes, then you should pick out a bigger and more spacious water-proof bag. It means that you need to put everything you need in that single bag.

Additionally, it is essential to remember that the bag’s full capacity may differ from the water-proof portions of the pack. Often, there are compartments in some bags that are fully water-proof. It is usually the main compartment or the largest section that is fully water-proof. So the extra pockets around the bag may not be 100% water-proof and are only water-resistant. Do check these features when shopping around for a pack and make sure that you understand these differences.

  • Pockets and Storage Options

When it comes to best waterproof backpacks, it should store all your essentials for you to enjoy your trip. In most cases, people choose a bag based on the convenient features that it offers. Packs with many pockets is an attractive one to have. It should have internal and external pockets to keep things separated and organized. Interior pockets with zippers will keep essential items from shifting and mixing with the other items in your bag.

On the other hand, outer pockets allow quick access to items that you need. It can be a large mesh compartment for storing trail mixes and water bottles, or flashlight and knives. If these pockets are not water-proof, you can simply find a water-proof cover to protect your outer items from a sudden downpour.

  • Colors

Typically, backpacks come in various colors and choosing one is based on your personal preference. Most people opt for black or green as it blends with the colors of nature. Some pick out their favorite colors, such as blue, red, or pink. But choosing a color for your bag should also be anchored on its intended use.

For instance, your trips are mostly in tropical places; thus, you can opt for a light-colored bag so that the content of your bag and your body will not absorb too much heat.

Likewise, bright and fluorescent colors are an ideal safety feature. If you usually go in overnight hikes, bright colors such as orange, yellow, or those with reflectorized panels can heighten visibility in low-light conditions. This feature can prove to be beneficial in emergencies while you are outdoors. 

  • Waterproof or Water-Resistant

While they may sound similar, there is a big difference between water-proof and a water-resistant backpack. You mustn’t confuse these two when choosing your bag.

Water-resistant backpacks can withstand sudden rain showers, but they may absorb water and moisture when soaked for long periods under the rain. Most water-resistant bags have large main compartments and have several pockets more than a waterproof bag.

On the other hand, 100% waterproof backpacks are ideal for people who explore remote locations and need protection for their gears. These types of bags can withstand torrential downpours and endure being submerged in river crossings. It will protect and keep your items dry even if you are soaking outside. With this type of protection, you can take your most sensitive equipment like dive computers or cameras, wherever in the world you travel. 

  • Price Range

As with every purchase, it is undeniably vital to consider the price and your budget. Doing this will help tone down your selection and for you to come with the ideal choice for your needs. Before setting out a budget, it is wise to do a little research on the price range for the best water-proof backpack so you can generate a realistic budget.

Preparing around $50 to $100 or a little more is an excellent budget. If you have specific requirements, you may prepare a bit extra to get the best item for the best value.

Why Would You Need a Waterproof Backpack?

If you are always on the move or you like traveling, the best water-proof backpack is an excellent addition to your luggage. It is an ideal option for quick overnight trips in the wild, or when you are visiting places, you’re not familiar with the weather. These bags will keep your gears dry and safe no matter what climate or weather conditions come in.

There is no real shortage of benefits when choosing water proof bags over water-repellant ones. Though 100% waterproof backpacks cost a little more, it is always worth the investment. Similarly, there are also features that you can look forward to in waterproof bags.

Waterproofing Features

Now that you know the big difference between water-proof and water-resistant bags, I’m sure that now place top considerations on how waterproof your bag should be. There are different levels of waterproofing, so you should look out for this when choosing your backpack. Some bags can withstand rain and stormy weather but are not reliable when submerged in the water. If you are paddleboarding, kayaking, or boating, you should choose a drybag that is 100% water-proof and will protect your things even if it gets submerged. Likewise, you should note that in some bags, the pockets are not fully water-proof, and only the main compartment is water-proof. These bags are ideal for sea to summit activities. 

  • Comfort Features

Bag companies have been designing backpacks that ensure comfortable wearing. If you are hiking, it is of vital importance for your bag to be extra comfortable so you can wear it for long periods and while it is packed and heavy. Consider bags with padded and contoured straps to ease pressure on your shoulders. Some also have a mesh back features and memory foam designed back frame. A comfortable backpack will not dig into your back or cause discomfort, even if you have a long way to go.  

  • Size and Weight

These days, backpacks have become more lightweight with more durable materials. New advances in technology have put aside the use of steel frames and materials that add up weight. And as your bag weighs less, the more you’ll like using it on your trips. Lightweight bags also mean that you can put more gear and stuff into it because you’ll be able to carry it comfortably. These bags are great options for weekend hikes or backpacking for weeks in different locations. You need the lightest water-proof bag so you can pack some extra stuff without the excess strain.

  • Functionality and versatility

Bags are created differently. Some bags are designed specifically for certain activities. If you’re backpacking across Asia, you’ll need a water-proof backpack that’s lightweight and designed with lots of pockets. If you’re hiking into the woods on the weekend, you’ll need a pack that is designed for the wild outdoors. So each bag can be suited for and will work ideally for their intended design.

For instance, if you are heading to the pacific northwest area where the climate is mostly wet, you should take an entirely water-proof bag. And for a surf trip to Bali, you can take a drybag or a backpack with lots of compartments for your trip. Some bags also have a hydration bladder if you are making a long hike in the wilds.

What backpacks are waterproof?

Many bag makers endorse nylon backpacks to be water-proof. However, plain nylon material is only rainproof or water resistant. Manufacturers use various coatings or linings to make nylon backpacks waterproof. The nylon material alone provides resistance and durability. It makes most bags withstand rips and punctures. But this alone will not keep your essentials dry in case of a downpour or submersion. Most backpacks are coated with acrylic, silicone, or polyurethane material to make it water-proof. These coatings will make nylon or other material impenetrable and more durable.

Aside from nylon, there are other materials used to make water-proof and water-resistant bags. Nylon remains to be the top choice because it is lightweight and durable. It is even used for umbrellas because of its impressive resistance and waterproofing features. Another material is rubber, but it is not as resilient nor as lightweight as nylon. It can be difficult to turn rubber into a functional and comfortable bag.

Vinyl or PVC vinyl fabric is the second most common material used for waterproof backpacks and dry bags. This material is a hybrid of fabric and plastic. It is easy to clean and is water-proof. Also, some bags use oxford fabric lined with a polyurethane coating to make it water-proof.

These are the various materials commonly used to make waterproof backpacks and dry bags. All these have their pros and cons, and depending on your personal preferences, you can choose any of these to keep your gear dry on your travels effectively. 

Are most backpacks waterproof?

Not all backpacks are waterproof. A hiking pack is labeled waterproof if it can be completely submerged in water without moisture seeping inside. Waterproof bags can be used beyond a rainstorm and are ideal for use in extreme conditions.

If you use a waterproof pack, you can take on a white water rafting adventure or pass through a waterfall without worries that your essential items will get wet inside your backpack. But to clarify, bags are not necessarily waterproof. Some packs are made with waterproof materials. It means that the fabric and the zippers can be waterproof too. But generally, backpacks with waterproof fabrics and zippers are classified as “water-resistant” bags. Certain situations may call for 100% water-proof backs, and these include being in extreme water conditions, diving trips, and others.

Are North Face backpacks waterproof?

The North Face offers some backpacks that have great water-resistant features. However, only a few models have waterproofing capability. Like most outdoor gear brands, TNF uses polyurethane film to “waterproof” their bags, yet since most of their bags are made from nylon, it still absorbs water. You will know this as dark patches in your TNF bag soon develop. Likewise, the company has waterproof-ed their zippers and welded seams, but since there are open lids, water and moisture can still get into the bag. Check out each bag’s specific information and features before pushing on with your purchase. 

Is Thule backpack waterproof?

Thule has a lot to offer when it comes to stylish, modern, and innovative back-packs for all types of people. Their overall quality and durability are remarkable. However, most of their bags are not designed for extreme outdoor adventure – and they are not waterproof. Thule back-packs are ideal for students, regular day-trips, and commuting. The Swedish bag maker had made an impressive mark in the travel industry by creating great looking bags that you can use for intrepid travels.

Best Dry Bag Backpack

DryBag backpacks have taken the outdoor adventure world by storm since it came out. Several styles and models came out to suit every preference. But if comfort is your utmost concern, the IDRYBAG drybag back-pack is the best one in the market. It is designed to offer unmatched comfort to the wearer. It has ergonomic fabric to make sure that you have an enjoyable experience while wearing it.

This bag offers 500D waterproof material so that your items stay dry and protected despite severe weather or environmental conditions. For many users, the extra inner and outer pockets make the IDRYBAG stand out from other drybag back-packs in the market. It allows easy organization of items, thus better convenience for the user. It is perfect for those wet and drenched environments because you’ll have peace of mind that your essentials are dry and safe inside. More so, the extra outer pockets allow easier access to small items like flashlights, knives, or water bottles.

The Best Waterproof Backpack for Travel

Our list has provided you with excellent options for water-proof bags for various types of activities. One of the unique products we have and probably the best water-proof backpack for travel that we can recommend is the Yeti Panga Backpack.

Anyone who knows the brand is familiar with the hits that make them highly-recommended for travel bags and back-packs. The Yeti Panga is described as an airtight citadel, so you’re one hundred percent sure that it’s waterproof. Looking at it, though, you know it’s one that you’ll take for extreme outdoor adventures, but it does perform wonderfully as a travel companion.

The Yeti Panga can withstand the most torrential downpour, and you’ll be happy to know that your essentials will be kept safe and dry. It has ergonomic straps for a comfortable carry, and it is designed to blend both in outdoor and urban settings.

Conclusion

After discussing all these lengthy details, we should go back to the first question that you have in your mind – which among the best waterproof backpack should you buy? These are hundreds of options, but only a few can give you the satisfaction and peace of mind that you have indeed made a wise purchase. So, if you continuously find yourself outdoors, exploring forest trails or the urban jungle, then you need to invest in a waterproof backpack. These kinds of bags are not only for aqua sports enthusiasts. When it comes to water-proof bags, they are uniquely designed to suit every occasion or situation. Factor in the activities, your personal preferences, and the situations you would face when choosing your bag. Check out the products on our list as you might find the one that suits you best!