13 Best Waterproof Backpacks of 2023 [Keep Your Gear Dry]

Waterproof backpack with beads of precipitation on it, leaned against a rock with a Zpacks label
Waterproof Backpacks for Hiking, Travel, Cycling, Commuting & More

Ever hiked in the rain, eager to change into the dry clothes inside your pack… only to find out they were soaking wet? I sure have, which is why I created this list of the 13 best waterproof backpacks of 2023. These weatherproof packs are a match for any humid or wet-weather adventure out there.

Whether you’re searching for collapsible daypacks, personal item carry-ons, or high-capacity adventure bags, we’ve got you covered. Our list includes backpacks for every scenario — traveling, hiking, cycling, or rafting — and will satisfy the needs of both minimalists and glam globetrotters.

We looked to the most trusted names in the industry, including Patagonia, Osprey, and Timbuk2. These brands offer high-quality, durable, and reliable waterproof backpacks for any adventure — perhaps a minimalist weekend in Morocco or a month-long trek through the Andes.

Don’t let a little moisture stop you from exploring. These rugged packs are up to the challenge of keeping your change of clothes dry and your gear safe. With one of these waterproof backpacks, your adventures in 2023 will soon be some of your driest yet.

Table of Contents

Best Waterproof Backpacks of 2023

Best Overall Waterproof Backpack
Patagonia Black Hole

Patagonia Black Hole

Weight: 2.15 lb | 975 g
Capacity: 25L
Materials: 100% recycled polyester with TPU film laminate and DWR finish
Pros: Versatile, sleek, rugged, sustainable materials, comfy
Cons: Moderately heavy, some reports of zipper problems

This is the one. The alpha of waterproof backpacks. This Patagonia Black Hole is not only our top overall waterproof backpack of 2023, but it also has the chops to prove it. With its approachable price and well-reviewed performance, it’s a top pick for anyone needing a versatile bag that can take a beating.

This bad boy sports a 25-liter capacity that’s ideal for day hikes, commutes, or weekend trips. Its padded shoulder straps and back panel ensure a comfortable carry, but with only one slash pocket on the outside, it can be challenging to find small items quickly. It can also feel bulky when packed.

If you’re looking for a reliable, waterproof backpack, check out this one. I also love that it’s made from recycled materials, making it a sustainable option. Besides, how cool would it be to tell your friends that you’ll be packing a black hole?




Best Ultralight Pack
Zpacks Bagger ULTRA

Zpacks Bagger ULTRA ultralight dayhiking pack

Weight: 10 or 12 oz | 302 or 342 g
Capacity: 25L or 40L
Materials: ULTRA Polyethylene 100D & 200D, 3D spacer mesh
Pros: Light as a feather, sealed zippers, compact
Cons: Limited organization pockets, higher price point

Looking for a backpack that’s lighter than air and keeps your gear dry? Here it is — at just 12.6 ounces, it’s the lightest pack on this list. It has weather-sealed zippers that keep your stuff dry even in a downpour. Our founder, Noel, says this is his favorite personal item pack for travel and day hiking.

This pack is stripped down to the essentials. It’s easy to load and unload, with just one main compartment, a front pocket, and a hydration port. The weather-sealed zippers work like a charm, but the minimal shoulder strap padding could make it tiring if overpacked.

If you value function over form, the Bagger ULTRA is a minimalist’s dream for weekend traveling, short treks, or as a secondary pack on longer adventures. But you’ll sacrifice a bit of comfort for a lot of weight savings. If you want a more padded and feature-rich pack, look elsewhere.


Fully Submersible for Life on the Water
Breakwater Supply Fogland

Black fully-submersible water bag

Weight: 2.4 lb | 1.1 kg
Capacity: 25L
Materials: Hydrowall 420D Nylon TPU
Pros:  Made for life on the water, submersible, highly durable, more full-featured and affordable than YETI bags
Cons: Fabric is a bit stiff, but that’s to be expected for a submersible bag

If you spend a lot of time on the water or in wet climates, the Breakwater Supply Fogland should be on your shortlist. It’s completely waterproof, fully submersible, and designed for boating, fishing, and other types of high-precipitation adventure travel.

With a high-density 420D nylon shell, the Fogland is built to withstand rugged voyages into the worst Mother Nature has to offer. It sports a trekking pole loop, dual water bottle pockets, daisy chains, and a convenient front pocket for high-use items. And, at 25 liters, it’ll fit perfectly under the seat in front of you on an airplane.

Its design is clean and minimalist, so you can wear it with pride on land and sea. For its adventure-forward use case, I’m having trouble finding many downsides aside from its semi-rigid Hydrowall exterior. Don’t splurge for a YETI bag; the Fogland is a lighter and more full-featured option for $100 less.


Best on a Budget (Sub-$100)
Osprey Daylite

Green Osprey Daylite daypack

Weight: 1.1 lb | 0.5 kg
Capacity: 13L
Materials: 300D Recycled PET packcloth
Pros: Lightweight, ventilated mesh shoulder straps, lower price, compatible with Osprey storage options
Cons: Small capacity, may need an additional rain cover, not the most appealing design

This backpack offers a lot of bang for your buck; it’s lightweight, minimalist, and rings in under $100. It’s perfect for budget-minded day hikers, peak baggers, and nimble urban dashing. If you’re looking for more storage capacity, check out the larger Daylite Plus.

The Daylite is a compact carry for the essentials. It has external pockets, but internal storage compartments are limited to hydration and laptop sleeves. It lacks a hip belt, which can be noticeable on long hikes. But it can also be attached to larger, more deluxe Osprey packs as supplemental storage.

The Daylite comes in an array of bold colors and patterns that complements its somewhat austere design. It lacks the fancier waterproofing features but should keep your gear dry in everything but monsoons. For those who value simplicity and affordability, the Osprey Daylite is a solid choice.



Our Favorite High-End Pick
Misson Workshop Fitzroy

Misson Workshop Fitzroy high-end commuter bag

Weight: 3.3 lb | 1.63 kg
Capacity: 40L
Materials: Waterproof 1000D nylon with urethane coating
Pros: Elegant design, large capacity, multiple straps to optimize weight distribution
Cons: Pricey, only one external pocket, on the heavy side

The Mission Workshop Fitzroy is a high-end, top-loading technical and luxury backpack. Hand-made in San Francisco, this bag is a durable and stylish choice for anyone wanting the best. It’s built for anything, from trekking through the wilderness to navigating the concrete jungle.

The Fitzroy’s 40-liter capacity, waterproof 1000D nylon with urethane coating, and roll-top closure make it perfect for extended trips. It also features a padded 17″ laptop sleeve. But with a limited number of pockets, it’s more challenging to organize than some. Also, the weight and price tag are higher than average.

This boxy-but-stylish bag is a favorite with backpack connoisseurs. It’s bound to get you compliments anywhere you go, from Rodeo Drive to the Amazon rainforest.


Collapsible Daypack
Matador Freerain22

Matador Freerain22 collapsible waterproof daypack

Weight: 10.6 oz | 300 g
Capacity: 22L
Materials: Waterproof Cordura
Pros: Lightweight and compact, can be packed down into a pocket-sized pouch, durable construction
Cons: Limited capacity, minimal padding and support, limited organization pockets

The Matador Freerain22 pack folds down to a palm-sized ultralight 10 ounces. But don’t let its small size fool you; it’s made from a 30D waterproof Cordura fabric with sealed seams. It also has a roll-top closure that locks out downpours and a front zippered pocket for easy access to your essentials.

The Freerain’s primary downside is its lack of back and shoulder padding, but that’s a tradeoff for its tiny collapsed size in your luggage. That also makes it a no-brainer to bring along for travel, day trips, and as a backup.

Think of the Matador Freerain22 as a more waterproof version of the Osprey, but still very budget-friendly. If you’re a ‘dry or die’ ultralight traveler, this backpack should be on your list of top contenders.


Laptop Bag for Commuters
Timbuk2 Lane

Timbuk2 Lane commuter laptop bag

Weight: 2.4 lb | 1.09 kg
Capacity: 18L
Materials: Polyethylene, polyurethane, Cordura, nylon
Pros: Stylish, multiple compartments, many features, lifetime warranty
Cons:  Smaller capacity, stiff zippers, expensive

The Timbuk2 Lane is probably the most streamlined, upscale, functional, and well-made waterproof backpack on this list. For many urban bicycle commuters in rainy areas, it’s undeniably seductive and irresistible. I’m going to ask Santa for one this year.

The Lane has a rugged outer shell, a waterproof liner, a removable rainfly, plus a side access pocket for 15″ laptops. Bonus features include reflective panels on the shoulder straps and rear panel, as well as magnetic compression straps and pockets… the marriage of solid functionality and luxury features.

The Lane isn’t as well-padded as some, the zippers can be stiff, and it’s on the small side. But it’s also well-reviewed, reliably dry, and has major bragging rights, style-wise. If you’re an urban professional in wet environments, this just might be your shiniest badge of commuting pride.


Built for Travel
Tortuga Outbreaker

Tortuga Outbreaker travel gear

Weight: 5 lb | 2.3 kg
Capacity: 45L
Materials: Nylon, polyester
Pros: As roomy as carry-ons get, comfortable for extended periods of time
Cons: Heavy when fully loaded, boxy design, limited color options, pricey

Frequent flyers, take note: this behemoth is the largest carry-on size many airlines allow. Its waterproof material keeps everything dry, but the bigger story is how amazingly comfortable it is. Fully loaded, the Outbreaker can be heavy when packed with a few weeks worth of gear, but it keeps all that weight balanced. Here’s how:

Extra-thick padding on the back panel, shoulder straps, and hip belt cushion the load, and the highly-adjustable harness system keeps the weight close to your body. Inside, the clamshell-style Outbreaker has a padded pocket for 17″ laptops, plus many other organizing pockets.

If you travel frequently and want a stylish backpack that keeps gear dry and organized, check out this pack. Whether you’re a digital nomad, a backpacker, or George Clooney in “Up in the Air,” the Outbreaker is a sherpa-worthy option to consider.



Ultralight Daypack for Hiking
Hyperlite Mountain Gear Daybreak

Hyperlite Mountain Gear Daybreak hiking pack

Weight: 21 oz | 597 g
Capacity: 17L
Materials: DCH150
Pros: Ultralight and compact design, durable materials, highly customizable
Cons: Limited capacity, minimal padding, pricey

I wish I’d had this pack in northern Spain for my day trips that didn’t require a lot of gear. With its innovative nylon composite material, the Daybreak can withstand even the most intense rainstorms. The cherry on top: it’s also quite comfortable, and its clean design is versatile enough for both town and trail.

Feature-wise, the Daybreak doesn’t disappoint. This sturdy pack has a streamlined design that’s both lightweight and durable. It has a roll-top closure that keeps your goodies dry, and there’s even a hydration port. The only cons to consider are its higher price and modest capacity.

Overall, the Daylite is a good match for people seeking a reliable waterproof daypack that can pull double-duty in urban and outdoor environments. If you value high-quality gear and don’t mind paying a bit extra for it, this pack is worth considering.


High-Capacity Bag for Backpacking Trips
Gossamer Gear Mariposa

Grey Gossamer Gear Mariposa

Weight: 1.9 lb | 865 g
Capacity: 60L
Materials: 100 & 200 denier high-tensile strength nylon
Pros: Spacious, multiple pockets and features, very comfortable
Cons: Utilitarian design, on the expensive side

The Mariposa’s reputation as one of the most comfortable ultralight backpacking gear haulers earned it a spot on this list. Its 60-liter capacity will tote all your gear for long backpacking trips, while still providing all the other features you look for in a pack.

It’s definitely full-featured, with many pockets, a hydration sleeve, and even a removable lid that doubles as a fanny pack to hold snacks and other essentials. Sure, it’s a bit pricey, and some may not like its see-through external mesh pockets, but it’s well worth a look if you’re in the market for a reliable high-capacity pack.

The Mariposa won’t carve into your back every time you shoulder it. You’ll appreciate its comfort, quality, and durability for years to come. If I was only allowed one backpack for the rest of my life, this might be it.


Built for Cycling
Rapha Roll-Top

Rapha Roll-Top cycling

Weight: 2 lb | 925 g
Capacity: 30L
Materials: Oil-waxed nylon for water and abrasion resistance
Pros: Roll top closure, stylish design, durable, multiple compartments
Cons: Not the comfiest on long rides, lacks a waist belt, limited colors

This one is very close to my heart because I used it every day when I lived in Amsterdam. Made by Rapha, a cycling- and commuting-focused company, this backpack was created primarily for cyclists, but it’s also versatile enough to serve as a minimalist one-bag travel option.

It comes with plenty of pockets and a single spacious main compartment, perfect for those who know exactly what they’ll need on short trips. The lack of a waist belt can be a deterrent, but if you’re only looking for a cycling pack, this shouldn’t be an issue.

If you want a backpack that’s both durable and functional, this Rapha pack has a large reflective stripe for commuting, and its extra-rugged waxed nylon construction is built to last. Yes, it’s relatively heavy, but for those needing a reliable pack to keep their gear dry, cycle out and give this a go.


High-Capacity Roll-Top on a Budget
Earth Pak

Earth Pak budget-friendly roll-top gear hauler

Weight: 3.0 lb or 1.36 kg (55L) | 3.5 lb or 1.6 kg (85L)
Capacity: 55L or 85L
Materials: 500D PVC
Pros: Large capacity, budget-friendly
Cons: Not a lot of features, a bit heavy, not the most eye-pleasing

Looking for a high-capacity roll-top bag that won’t break the bank? That’s the Earth Pak, a no-frills, top-loading ‘dry bag’ pack for anyone needing to haul a lot without paying a lot. It’s offered in three sizes: 35-, 55-, and 85-liters, all of them under $100.

The Earth Pak’s roll-top closure is simple and effective. Made with thick PVC, this bag will float but is not submersible, so unless you’re a scuba diver, this bag will do the job. The pack’s padded shoulder straps and breathable back panel keep it comfortable over the long haul.

This large and waterproof bag won’t win any beauty contests, and its main compartment lacks dividers or pockets. But when you seal that roll-top closure, your stuff is going to stay bone dry, and your bank balance will thank you.


Waterproof Backpack Cooler

Grey and black RTIC backpack cooler

Weight: 8 lb | 3.6 kg
Capacity: 20 to 30 cans
Materials: Heavy-duty nylon
Pros: Well-insulated, lots of color options, it even floats
Cons: Heavy and bulky, plain looking

Keep your beverages cold and your food fresh — that’s exactly what the RTIC backpack cooler does, and far better than most. The RTIC’s waterproof design is ideal for a day at the beach, on a boat, in the countryside, or for any outdoor activity involving food and drink. Think of it as a fridge you can carry on your back.

The RTIC will keep your ice solid for days and your food and beverages frosty, thanks to its premium insulation and welded seams. It’s completely waterproof, with the only downside being the bulk and weight of this high-capacity cooler.

The RTIC is basically a well-insulated cube with shoulder straps. No, it won’t fit under your airplane seat, but it’s ideal for tailgating, camping, boating, and many other outdoor adventures. If you’re looking for a packable cooler that’s built to last, grab this one.



Factors We Considered When Analyzing Products

Main with beard wearing a rain jacket in a storm in Iceland
Relentless rain on the Laugavegur Trail in Iceland

In making this list, we considered a range of factors in order to share only the best of the best. Here are some of the key factors we took into account:


Waterproof backpacks are only as good as the materials used. We looked for backpacks made with durable and proven waterproof materials like ULTRA, oil-waxed nylon, and DCH150. We also considered the quality and design of zippers, buckles, and other hardware, as well as assembly issues such as the stitching or sealing of seams.


Being waterproof is a good start, but backpacks also need to have the everyday features people want and use. We looked for backpacks with padded laptop compartments, multiple pockets for organization, ease of access, daisy chain tie-down loops, hydration ports, ventilated back panels, and roll-top or airtight closures.

To learn more on this topic, check out Thule’s excellent “backpack parts” post.


The frameless packs listed here put most of the load on the shoulders, so padding and adjustability are essential. Other straps help balance the load — hip belts, load lifters, and sternum straps, for example. Look for packs with ample padding and multiple straps, but it’s even more important to read buyer comments about long-term comfort.


A waterproof backpack must not only withstand the elements, but also the wear and tear of regular use. We looked for backpacks made with abrasion-resistant materials and favored those with reinforced stitching and other no-fail features.


Every ounce counts when you’re on the move, so we’ve included a handful of ultralight backpacks. But remember, there’s always a tradeoff — less weight may sacrifice comfort features or durability. And saving a few ounces on pack weight doesn’t matter much if you’re going to bring too much gear.

Storage Capacity

A waterproof backpack must hold all your gear and keep it dry, from your clothes, food, and supplies to your laptop. We wanted packs with versatile storage options, including multiple compartments and well-placed pockets. We’ve also listed backpacks with compression straps and other volume-adjusting features.


For most of us, price is always a factor when choosing a backpack. That’s why we’ve tried to cover the financial spectrum, from budget-friendly basics to high-end dream packs. As a cyclist, I’m happy with my middle ground Rapha, but in my dreams, I’m wearing the Timbuk2 to wow the folks at the metro station.

Final Thoughts: Best Waterproof Backpacks of 2023

Hiker in a yellow rain jacket wearing a backpack and looking towards a lake
Grab a pack to keep your gear dry, no matter the weather

Has my list of the 13 best waterproof backpacks of 2023 inspired you to schedule your next rainy day adventure? These backpacks are designed and built with water- and weather-resistance in mind, so they’ll keep your gear dry and safe, even in the wettest of conditions.

Whether you’re a traveler, hiker, cyclist, or just looking for a new EDC pack, this list has you covered — from collapsible daypacks to high-capacity adventure bags — and from trusted brands like Timbuk2, Patagonia, and Osprey. You can count on any of these for high-quality and durable products.

So, do you have any tips or drenched gear stories? If so, please share them in the comments section below. Don’t let a little water spoil your next adventure — grab one of these backpacks and get out there. Keep exploring, and stay dry!

More Travel & Hiking Resources

Last Updated on August 25, 2023

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Ze Eduardo Penedo

Ze is a writer and translator with over a decade of globetrotting — from the Portuguese and Spanish countryside to the inhospitable Andes and Amazon, and cosmopolitan cities like Milan and Amsterdam. He travels slow, takes his time to learn new languages, and immerses himself into local culture.

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