Ultimate Guide To Waterproof Backpacks For Outdoor Adventures And Urban Carry

The article titled 'Ultimate Guide to Waterproof Backpacks for Outdoor Adventures and Urban Carry' aims to provide a comprehensive resource for individuals seeking information on the best backpack options for various activities and needs.

The guide covers different types of waterproof backpacks, highlighting the materials and construction methods used, such as PVC and coated fabrics with taped or welded seams. It emphasizes the superiority of roll top closures over zippers in terms of waterproof protection.

For outdoor activities, the guide recommends backpacks with welded seams, exterior hooks/loops, and submersible construction, as well as high visibility colors for easy spotting.

For commuting and urban carry, backpacks with taped or welded seams, coated fabric for flexibility, and ample storage options are suggested, with additional features such as reflective panels and touch points for night visibility.

The guide also includes recommended brands like Filson, Chrome, Patagonia, Db, and Ortlieb, and provides specific use cases for different types of backpacks, including women's waterproof backpacks, dirt bike backpacks, beach backpacks, and backpacks for large men.

Overall, this article serves as a valuable resource for individuals in need of a waterproof backpack for outdoor adventures or urban carry.

Quick Answers & Key Points

  • PVC and coated fabrics (nylon/polyester) are the main materials used for waterproof backpacks, with PVC being completely waterproof and coated fabrics being flexible and durable when coated with PU/TPU.
  • Taped seams and welded seams are two construction methods for waterproof backpacks, with welded seams providing a 100% waterproof seal. Roll top closures are preferred for superior waterproof protection.
  • Outdoor activities require features such as welded seams, exterior hooks/loops, submersible construction, and high visibility colors for easy spotting.
  • For commuting/urban carry, taped or welded seams, coated fabric for flexibility, interior pockets for laptops and essentials, exterior pockets for quick access, and reflective panels/touch points for night visibility are recommended.

Types of Waterproof Backpacks


The types of waterproof backpacks can vary based on their construction materials and features, such as welded seams, roll top closures, and coated fabrics, which determine their level of waterproof protection for outdoor activities or urban carry.

PVC material is thick and stiff, providing complete waterproofing, while coated fabrics like nylon or polyester offer flexibility and durability when coated with PU or TPU.

Taped seams use waterproof tape but may not be the most waterproof option, while welded seams fuse two materials together for a 100% waterproof seal.

Roll top closures provide superior waterproof protection compared to zippers.

For outdoor activities, waterproof backpacks often have welded seams, exterior hooks/loops, and submersible construction, while high visibility colors make them easy to spot.

For commuting or urban carry, taped or welded seams, coated fabric for flexibility, and various pockets for essentials are common features.

Materials and Construction


Materials and construction play a crucial role in determining the waterproof capabilities of backpacks. When it comes to materials, there are two main options to consider. PVC is a thick and stiff material that offers complete waterproof protection. On the other hand, coated fabrics such as nylon or polyester are more flexible and durable, becoming waterproof when coated with PU or TPU.

In terms of construction, there are several factors to consider. Taped seams use waterproof tape, but they are not the most waterproof option. Welded seams, on the other hand, fuse two materials together, creating a 100% waterproof seal. Roll top closures offer superior waterproof protection compared to zippers.

By understanding the materials and construction of waterproof backpacks, adventurers and urban commuters can make informed decisions about the best backpacks for their needs.

Recommended Brands and Use Cases


Filson, Chrome, Patagonia, Db, and Ortlieb are among the recommended brands for backpacks suitable for outdoor activities and commuting/urban carry.

These brands have established a reputation for producing high-quality and durable waterproof backpacks that cater to the needs of individuals seeking freedom in their adventures.

Filson and Chrome are well-known for their rugged and reliable backpacks designed specifically for outdoor enthusiasts.

Patagonia offers a range of waterproof backpacks that are not only functional but also environmentally friendly, reflecting their commitment to sustainability.

Db (Douchebags) is a brand that focuses on creating innovative and stylish backpacks for urban carry, incorporating features like interior pockets for laptops and tablets.

Ortlieb is renowned for their submersible construction and welded seams, making their backpacks ideal for water-based activities.

These brands provide a wide range of options to cater to different use cases, ensuring that individuals can find the perfect waterproof backpack to suit their specific needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I properly clean and maintain a waterproof backpack?

To properly clean and maintain a waterproof backpack, start by emptying and wiping down the interior. Use a mild soap and water solution to spot clean any stains or dirt on the exterior. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that may damage the waterproof coating.

Allow the backpack to air dry completely before storing it in a cool, dry place. Regularly inspect the seams and zippers for any signs of damage or wear, and repair or replace as needed. Following these steps will help ensure the longevity and effectiveness of your waterproof backpack.

Can I submerge a roll top waterproof backpack underwater without damaging its contents?

Submerging a roll top waterproof backpack underwater generally protects its contents from water damage. However, the degree of protection may vary depending on the backpack's construction and sealing method.

Are all waterproof backpacks suitable for extreme outdoor activities like hiking and mountaineering?

Not all waterproof backpacks are suitable for extreme outdoor activities like hiking and mountaineering. It is important to consider factors such as durability, construction (taped or welded seams), and specialized features designed for rugged conditions.

Can I use a waterproof backpack for water sports like kayaking or paddleboarding?

Waterproof backpacks can be used for water sports like kayaking or paddleboarding. They provide protection for your belongings against water exposure. Look for backpacks with welded seams and submersible construction for optimal waterproofing during these activities.

Are there any eco-friendly options for waterproof backpacks available on the market?

Yes, there are eco-friendly options available for waterproof backpacks on the market. Some brands offer backpacks made from sustainable materials such as recycled plastics or organic fabrics, reducing environmental impact while still providing waterproof functionality.

About this Guide

Written By Alex
Last Updated On August 10, 2023
Reading Time 
6 minutes
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