If you spend a lot of time outdoors, you may have already used one or more backpacks. Certain weather and terrain conditions mean that your possessions can become damaged. In order to protect your backpack and your items against rain, snow and other damp conditions, you should invest in an effective waterproof backpack. There is plenty to choose from with different styles and construction material too. You are sure to find something to suit your needs. Use this useful buying guide and review to find out how you could benefit from using a waterproof backpack. We have included some reviews for the best waterproof backpacks on the market.
5.11 Tactical Rush 24 Back Pack
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Ortlieb Velocity Backpack
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Seibertron Falcon Water Repellent Hiking Camping Backpack
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OverBoard Waterproof Pro-Sport Backpack
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Timbuk2 Spire Backpack
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Phantom Aquatics Walrus 25 Premium
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Best Waterproof Backpack Reviews
1. 5.11 Tactical Rush 24 Back Pack
If you’re looking for a versatile dual shoulder strap waterproof backpack, then the 5.11 Tactical Rush may just be what you’ve been looking for. At an affordable price, this backpack offers excellent value for money and has a great tactical looking appearance.
Although this backpack isn’t appropriate for an office setting due to its appearance, you can still fit a laptop into the padded hydration sleeve. It also has plenty of other pockets and storage compartments, so if you are going to be cycling to work, for example, you will be able to fit all your cycling gear in when you don’t need it.
If you want a backpack that is suitable for outdoor pursuits, then this backpack is excellent. It can comfortably fit all your things and thanks to the waterproof construction material, you can be sure that the damp will not penetrate to the inside of the backpack. This backpack is suitable for 24-hour use, which means it’s perfectly large enough for everything you need for a full day of outdoor pursuits. With larger compartments as well as smaller pockets, you can keep all your items well organized and easy to grab in a rush.
2. Ortlieb Velocity Backpack
The main compartment of the Ortlieb Velocity Backpack is large enough to keep all your things including your food, reading material, and electronic gadgets. A roll-top flap allows you to easily open and close the compartment with the Velcro fasteners. One of the main setbacks of this backpack, however, is the lack of zipper fasteners.
Plenty of inner pockets are included so that you can store smaller items that could easily become lost. These pockets are completely removable too for your convenience.
To improve ventilation and for complete comfort, this backpack has comfortable foam padding along the back of the backpack. It also has two adjustable shoulder straps that are padded to prevent rubbing and injury. There are also lumbar straps and sternum straps to keep the backpack anchored into place and shifting the weight of the lower spine and shoulders. For additional carrying and convenience, you can make use of the quick grab carry handle. Thanks to the storage capacity of this backpack, you should be able to last for around 24 hours with this backpack by taking 24 hours’ worth of items. This is a stylish waterproof tactical backpack that is suitable for rainy weather and damper condition.
3. Seibertron Falcon Water Repellent Hiking Camping Backpack
The main compartment on this backpack is highly useful as it is expandable for when you need that bit of extra storage capacity. This feature makes this a highly versatile backpack. The Selbertron Falcon Water Repellent Backpack also has an interior meshed enclosure so that you can stow away your smaller items so they won’t become lost in the bottom of the backpack.
A large central compartment provides even further space for your larger items and there is a useful mesh pocket for small gear. These interior pockets are zippered to keep the items in them secured. The two medium-sized and smaller compartments can be used for any small accessories or tools whilst the side and top of the backpack offers, cinched down security straps to keep your gear secure whilst you are on the move.
If you like having expansion capabilities on your backpack, you can make use of the Molle Loops. These are compatible with any accessories that use the Molle Loop System. This is a backpack that is ideal for outdoor use. It is made from fully waterproof 900D material, which is durable and resistant to tears and snags.
4. OverBoard Waterproof Pro-Sport Backpack
It is the high-quality nylon construction of the OverBoard waterproof backpack that makes it so resilient against wet weather conditions. The 600D nylon material is PVC coated and features a fully welded style of manufacturing. The lack of seams makes this backpack as waterproof as possible.
Larger outer mesh pockets to the side of this backpack are useful for carrying water bottles or maps whilst there is also a top carry handle for easy transportation. You can keep your map and other documents in the large mesh pocket at the front of the backpack, which is zippered, to secure any items you may wish to keep inside.
A large internal pocket is useful for keeping all your larger items including clothes and sleeping bags. This pocket has a zipper fastener too, which can be padlocked if you wish. At 20 liters capacity, this is a larger backpack that is suitable for a day’s use. For complete comfort, the back of this backpack features an airflow design that is padded and comfortable to wear. The shoulder straps are also padded and are adjustable. There is additional padding to the lumbar region to protect the lower back.
5. Timbuk2 Spire Backpack
This Timbuk2 Spire Backpack is made from a fabric material. Although it is not essentially waterproof on its own, it does come with a waterproof roll-top to keep the rain away from the contents of the backpack. The back zip access features an incognito design, which is ideal for waterproofing and quick access.
You can store your jacket, clothes, books and other bulkier items in the main compartment, as it is roomy and convenient. This backpack is also perfect for the office user as it has a 15” laptop compartment as well as a compartment for a tablet device. If you need to keep connected or work on the move, you will find this backpack highly useful.
In order to maximize your comfort, this backpack has a fully-ventilated back panel that is also padded to protect your back from being rubbed whilst you walk. The shoulder straps on this backpack are padded too so that you won’t experience any pain from bearing the weight against your shoulders. The 32 liter capacity of this backpack ensures that you can have all the space you need to take all your essential gear with you the next time you go outdoors.
6. Phantom Aquatics Walrus 25 Premium
This waterproof backpack can offer you complete protection against damp and rainy weather. The roll-top prevents moisture from getting into the backpack and if you should drop it into the water, it is actually designed to safely float so that you can get your gear back without it becoming lost or damaged!
The high frequency welded construction of this backpack ensures that it is sturdy and built to last. It cannot only protect your things from moisture, but also from dust, dirt, and sand. You can even secure the backpack properly thanks to the two-way sealing system.
For complete comfort, this backpack has plenty of padding to the back, lumbar region, and shoulder straps. The back also has an airflow design so that you will not feel uncomfortably hot when you are traveling with it on your back. Front elasticated webbing keeps everything compressed into place and for safety whilst on the move, there are reflective panels on the front of this backpack and on the shoulder straps too. The large internal zippered compartment allows you to take all your essential items with you and there are plenty of additional pockets and pouches to allow you to take smaller gear.
7. ArcEnCiel 70-85L Adjustable Capacity
This large backpack has a 70 to 85-liter capacity. It has a military-style and is scratch resistant. The high-quality material will not fade easily. As this backpack is made to military specifications, it has high-quality stitching and webbing. You can be sure that it is durable and built to last. Thanks to the long and fully adjustable shoulder straps, this backpack will be comfortable regardless of your build.
If you are constantly out in damp terrain, you can damage your backpack by letting it get damp and then dry again if it is not made from a waterproof material. This backpack is made to be water-resistant and will remain durable and strong no matter how wet it gets. The material will also protect your gear from water damage in the rain.
If you want to add additional compartments to this backpack, you can do so thanks to the Molle compatible expansion system. You can attach any Molle compatible pouches with ease, including water bottle holders and gear pouches. To prevent your backpack from falling off your back due to badly manufactured parts, this backpack comes with sturdy nylon buckles that are made to withstand heavy use and that match the backpack.
8. Monkey Paks Bundle with 2.5L Hydration Water Bladder
This backpack is a great choice if you like to be on the go for as long as possible. If you get tired of having to stop to take your backpack off just so that you can get a sip of water, the Monkey Packs Tactical Backpack is for you. It comes with a unique and highly useful water bladder. This allows you to carry 2.5litres of water with you, which is enough to keep you hydrated for the whole day. A large mouthpiece makes drinking from the water bladder as convenient as possible.
This military-style waterproof tactical backpack is a larger style and features enough storage for you to easily carry 3 days’ worth of items. Plenty of Molle webbing allows you to take all your tools and equipment with you. You can use any accessories that are compliant with the Molle system, as this backpack comes with 3 Molle attachments. This allows you to expand your backpack as much as you need to. The 600D nylon construction makes this backpack waterproof and highly durable. It is certainly built for any terrain and heavy use. The large teeth zippers ensure that your gear will stay safely zipped away regardless of how tightly you want to pack your things.
9. CVLIFE Outdoor for Camping Hiking and Trekking
This large 30l backpack has two large compartments, which is great for keeping your items organized and separated if you need to. It is not only comfortable to wear, but it is also constructed to be durable, waterproof and useful.
A wide lumbar belt is included as well as a 1-inch strap across the sternum. This makes the CVLIFE tactical backpack stable and shifts the weight from your shoulders and lower back. This is especially important when you have packed the backpack to its full capacity as it can become heavy due to its compartment size. The design of this backpack minimizes the stress on your back and results in less chance of any injuries developing.
The compartments fasten with the use of zippers that are not only strong but that will not snag on the fabric, as they are being opened or closed. The material itself is also strong and durable. Although this backpack is listed as a tactical backpack, it seems to fall short slightly when it comes to meeting military specifications. Although it is highly functional, it is not exactly a military backpack. Having said that, however, it is perfectly adequate for the outdoor pursuit enthusiast.
Waterproof Backpacks Buying Guide
When you are looking for the perfect waterproof backpack, it is important to consider a few different points to make sure that you’ll be getting the backpack that you need.
Of course, the price will be an important factor when you are buying your waterproof backpack, but be careful that you don’t sacrifice quality for the price.
First of all, you need to establish your budget. You should try to buy a backpack that is at the higher end of the price range for your budget so that you can be sure that you are purchasing a high-quality item. The higher the quality, the longer the backpack is likely to last for.
If you want to save a little money when it comes to buying your waterproof backpack, you should try to look around to find sales or online discount offers. This will ensure that you can make your money go a little further. End of line or end of season waterproof backpacks are often sold at a much cheaper price than at the height of the season so if you can wait for a seasonal sale, this would be your best waterproof backpacks for saving money.
Another way to save some money is to purchase a backpack that is as close to your requirements as possible. Buying a high-quality backpack will ensure that you will not need to replace it for a while but buying a backpack that is perfect for your needs also means that you will only ever need 1 backpack. If you buy a backpack that is only meant for24 hour use, if you need to spend longer outdoors, you will need to purchase a different backpack.
Waterproof backpacks may be useful enough as they are waterproof, but an important factor, of course, is that you should be able to take all your possessions (pens, glasses, earmuffs, scopes, flashlights, etc) with you when you need to. If you are taking a lot of things, it is important to have plenty of storage compartments.
Storage compartments are necessary for a good organization. If you need to stop to grab something out of your backpack, it is important to be able to get to what you need as quickly as possible. If you only have one large compartment, you will struggle to find what you need in a hurry, especially if it is at the bottom of the compartment. Many waterproof backpacks have multiple storage pockets.
Consider what you want to take with you in your backpack. Some backpacks have compartments for documents, which is essential if you need to take tickets, a map or your passport with you. Protective eyeglass compartments are useful if you wear spectacles for reading or if you want to take your sunglasses.
Different backpacks have different methods of securing the pockets. The most secure systems are zippers as these can be padlocked for security. You can also purchase backpacks that have hook and loop losing wallets.
If you want a backpack that is simply made for longer trips, look for the 2 or 3-day style waterproof backpacks. These allow you to store more items in them. If you won’t need that much storage room all the time, you don’t have to purchase a larger backpack if you don’t want to. There are plenty of modular 24-hour backpacks. These backpacks have clips that allow you to clip on other compartments to expand the storage capacity. You can purchase these additional compartments at the same time as the backpack or at a later stage if you need to save up some more money before you can afford the additional accessories.
As for any other piece of outfit or accessories, you should be sure that the backpack that you are purchasing is indeed made of good material. You can check this by making sure that it is made from a waterproof material. These are some common backpack materials that will help you to determine how waterproof and durable your backpack is likely to be.
Cotton Canvas – This material is not likely to be waterproof on it’s won. It is a heavyweight woven canvas style material that is made from cotton. Although these backpacks are not waterproof, you can often purchase waterproof covers that can be rolled up and put into a pocket in the backpack. This keeps the backpack dry in a rain shower, but you shouldn’t rely on the rain cover as a long-term solution.
Pack Cloth Style Nylon – This material uses a type of smooth nylon, whose weave runs in a horizontal and vertical pattern. You can often determine this fabric by touch as it will feel smooth. This is a material that is highly waterproof and is so durable that it is water-resistant but you should be aware that this material can be quite heavy and will add additional weight to the backpack.
Cardura Nylon – This is a more lightweight fabric that is specially treated. It usually feels a little fuzzy in texture but still has the plastic feeling of nylon. Although this is not a material that is very resistant to punctures, it is a reasonably waterproof fabric. This is the kind of fabric to choose if you are only expecting light rain. It will not be as effective in the heavy rain.
Rip-Stop Nylon – This kind of nylon is becoming quite popular amongst backpack manufacturers. It is designed to prevent tears or rips which means that it is durable and will last a long time. It is also highly waterproof and lightweight. This is a good material for your waterproof backpack.
You should make sure that your backpack would actually fit you properly when you use it. In order to do this, you will need a tape measure so that you can measure your torso. The length of your torso will determine what size of backpack you need. Whilst most people have an average length torso, others need to choose a special backpack that has been made for users with longer or shorter torsos than average.
First of all, you should bend your head down towards your chest. This will cause one of your vertebrae at the base of your neck to stick out slightly. This is the top of your torso when measuring for backpacks.
To find the base of your torso, you need to place your hand on your hips. The part where your thumbs lie is the base of your torso. Imagine that there is a line between your thumbs and this will be the point you should measure too.
You should have a friend measure the length of your torso, as it is quite difficult to measure your own back! Remember that if you are female, you should choose a ladies’ backpack. These backpacks are not only designed in a more feminine style, but they are made to be slightly smaller than the male backpacks because women have a smaller average torso length.
Try to avoid buying unisex backpacks unless you can be sure that they are going to actually be the right size for your torso. A backpack that is not the right length will cause injury and discomfort, especially when used for prolonged lengths of time.
5. Padding and Adjustments
When you are walking along whilst wearing a backpack, it is important that it can be strapped tightly and securely to your back. All backpacks have the ability to be worn over the shoulders. Some are meant to be thrown over one shoulder, but the majority have 2 shoulder straps to keep the backpack as secure as possible.
Shoulder straps are always adjustable and can be altered to keep the backpack securely against your back. Some backpacks come with additional straps to secure the backpack in place.
A sternum strap fastens from shoulder to shoulder across the chest. This helps secure the upper part of the backpack against your back. This takes the strain off your shoulders and prevents injury. A lumbar strap fastens across the front of the hips and is used to take the weight away from the shoulders and lumbar region. The weight is transferred to the hips thanks to the lumbar strap to reduce muscular pain or back injury.
The shoulder straps are usually padded with a cushioning layer of foam. This will be a welcome feature when you are carrying several kilos on your back. To stop the backpack from rubbing your back or causing you any back pain, the back of the backpack is often padded. When you are carrying a heavy backpack, you’ll be thankful for all the padding that you can get, so make sure that the backpack is advertised as having plenty of padding to ensure maximum comfort. When you are traveling with your backpack, it can be a good idea to use compression straps. These will compress the items in your backpack to that they take up less space and this can help you to ensure that the backpack fits nicely in any overhead or luggage compartments.
Best Waterproof Backpacks Comparison Chart
|5.11 Tactical Rush 24 Back Pack||$$||Multicam||1050D Nylon||2275 cubic inch / 37 liter|
|Ortlieb Velocity Backpack||$$$||Black||Plastics and nylon fabrics||24 liter|
|Seibertron Falcon Water Repellent Hiking Camping Backpack||$$||Black||900D waterproof||37 liter|
|OverBoard Waterproof Pro-Sport Backpack||$$||Yellow||PVC coated 600D nylon||20 liter|
|Monkey Paks Bundle with 2.5L Hydration Water Bladder||$$||Tan||600D strong nylon||1320 cubic inches|
|Timbuk2 Spire Backpack||$$||Army/Acid||Canvas||32 liter|
|ARCENCIEL 70-85L ADJUSTABLE CAPACITY||$$||ACU Camouflage||1000D nylon||70L to 85L|
|Phantom Aquatics Walrus 25 Premium||$||Black||PVC over nylon||25 liter|
|SKORCH Original Waterproof Backpack||$||White with Black||Durable UPVC||30 liter|
|CVLIFE Outdoor For Camping Hiking and Trekking||$||Black||Waterproof 600D Nylon||30 liter|
We hope that you have found this buying guide useful and that the reviews help you to choose the best waterproof backpacks for your needs. Unfortunately, buying a waterproof backpack isn’t as simple as going with the one that is the most popular online. Different users have different needs, so you should consider all the points in the buying guide so that you can find the backpack that is the most suitable for you.
If you still can’t make up your mind about which size of the backpack to choose, you might be better choosing one that is modular in design. This will let you add more compartments as you need to so you can use the backpack as it is but if you need it to be larger, you can expand it. Don’t forget to check the size of the backpack and to make sure that it has all the adjustability that you need.