When you are deciding it is time for you to purchase a water-resistant backpack for your next trip or even as a laptop backpack with a laptop sleeve, you should keep in mind that there is a difference between water-resistant backpacks and waterproof backpacks. Waterproof typically talks more about submersion. A backpack is considered waterproof if you are able to submerge it completely in water and it stays dry and the contents remain safe.
If a product wants to boast of being waterproof, then it must endure several tests to prove the claim including a submersion test. Waterproof backpacks require a different type of material, a different construction technique, and can cost a lot more than a water-resistant backpack.
A water-resistant backpack may be sufficient if you don’t think you will be submerging the bag into water. A water-resistant bag can protect your belongings when exposed to rain and are most commonly made from nylon and polyester material. Though a waterproof bag isn’t always 100% watertight, a raincover can also be used to provide an extra layer of protection in case you are trapped in a downpour and can’t get out of the rain.
The following are some of the best water-resistant backpacks on the market:
1. Clever Bees Outdoor Water-Resistant Hiking Backpack
The Clever Bees Outdoor Water-Resistant Hiking Backpack is made from only high-quality materials and is incredibly lightweight, versatile, and durable. It is made from a highly rip and tear and water-resistant nylon fabric and also features reflective stripes for additional security. It is an ideal backpack for use on hiking trips, cycling, and camping.
|Product Dimensions||4.1 x 5.8 x 6.8 inches|
|Product Weight||0.4 pounds|
- Lightweight and durable
- Includes multiple compartments for storage
- Reflective stripes for safety
- Can fold into a zippered inner pocket so that it can fit anywhere
- Side mesh compartments
- Rip and water-resistant material
- Stress points are reinforced with bar tacking for longevity
- More suited for trips of shorter durations
- Does not include a waist strap for extra security
2. Venture Pal Lightweight Hiking Backpack
The Venture Pal Lightweight Backpack is the ideal pack for camping, hiking, or other trips and is extremely lightweight, packable, and durable. It is made from high-quality tear and water-resistant material that provides additional strength without adding to the overall weight of the pack. There are also bar tacks found at major stress points which further extend the longevity of this backpack.
|Product Dimensions||9 x 2.2 x 8.5 inches|
|Product Weight||11.2 ounces|
- Double-layer bottom piece provides additional carrying strength
- Longevity provided with bar tacks found at major stress points
- Breathable mesh shoulder straps with sponge padding for comfort
- Plenty of pockets and compartments for organization and storage
- Lightweight, durable, and compact; can fold for storage
- Chest strap has a whistle buckle to lock the backpack securely into place
- Very narrow shoulder straps
- Not meant to be water-resistant with consistent downfall or heavy downpour
- Zippers can easily become caught in the thin fabric of the backpack
3. Aqua Quest 30L Waterproof Dry Bag Backpack
The Aqua Quest Backpack is a 30 L capacity backpack that is 100% waterproof and can help keep your gear safe and dry in a variety of different weather conditions including rain, snow, and even sand. It is both lightweight and durable and features an abrasion resistant RipStop fabric, TPU lamination, and DWR coating. It is ideal for all outdoor activities including hiking, camping, ocean sports, boating, and cycling.
|Product Dimensions||22 x 12 x 12 inches|
|Product Weight||1.9 pounds|
- Features double bar-tacked stress points and heat taped seams for longevity
- Waterproof with a ripstop fabric and a coating of a durable water-repellent
- Quality webbing and high-quality hardware
- Lightweight and comfortable with fully adjustable padded shoulder pads
- Ventilated back panels for added comfort
- Hip and sternum straps and convenient carry handles
- May not be suitable for people with smaller frames
- No water bottle or hydration compartments
4. BackSak Waterproof Backpack
The BackSak Waterproof Backpack is made of 500D PVC with welded seams that can keep out rain, snow, sand, and mud. Its design also helps to maintain comfort while providing sufficient back support to help relieve muscle tension. The backpack also features a reflective patch and trim for nighttime safety and improved visibility in the dark.
|Product Dimensions||19 x 12 x 6 inches|
|Product Weight||2.4 pounds|
- Features a padded back and cushioned adjustable straps for additional comfort
- Inner zip pockets for dry and convenient storage
- Splash-proof zippered outer pocket to hold smaller items
- Top clip and adjustable side clips for secure closure
- D-rings to hold smaller gear such as a water bottle
- Reflective patch and trim for improved safety and visibility
- Water resistant vinyl-coated woven polyester and welded seams
- Not recommended for prolonged submersion in water
- Offers no ventilation so backpack can get hot to wear
5. Patagonia Black Hole Backpack
The Patagonia Black Hole Backpack is one of the most water-resistant backpacks that are available in 2017. It is a versatile and durable backpack that is ideal for almost any outdoor adventure including kayaking, hiking, or camping. It is made from 450D polyester ripstop TPU laminate and a DWR coating so that it is water-resistant and ready for the outdoors. The large main compartment offers plenty of space and can even hold most 15-inch laptops.
|Product Dimensions||15.8 x 11.8 x 7.9 inches|
|Product Weight||1.6 pounds|
- Made from eco-friendly and high-quality materials
- 450D polyester ripstop material, TPU laminate, and DWR coating for water-resistance
- Extremely durable and can withstand rough conditions
- Generous amount of space in main compartment including a padded sleeve to hold a 15-inch laptop
- Side compression straps and webbing waistbelt for added stability
- Padded shoulder straps and back panel for comfort
- Convenient haul handle located at the top of the backpack
- Much higher price point than the other options
- Not suitable for submersion or extended time in the rain
Water-resistant and waterproof backpacks can keep your gear dry and secure on your next outdoor adventure. When looking for the absolute best, it is important that you keep in mind the materials that are used to make the backpack, the closure ability, the allocated space you will have, and how durable and versatile it is.
It is also important to remember that while all the above options are water-resistant, it is not recommended that any of them be submerged in water or left in the rain for extended periods of time.