What do you consider to be surfing essentials?
No doubt among them is a good, sturdy functional bag that gets to be your constant companion in your surfing exploits.
How do you know the best one to get?
We have done the groundwork for you.
Here are the best dry bags and backpacks with great features and awesome quality currently available in the market.
Table of Contents
What is a dry bag? How is it different from a normal backpack?
Dry bags and backpacks are bags that have a waterproof compartment for the storage of wet surfing gear and other essentials.
This ensures that the surfer is able to keep things like clothes, electronics, and books dry in the other compartments.
Dry bags are often made of waterproofed fabric, plastic coated fabric like cordura or plastic to make it waterproof.
They are put together by sewing and using seam tape to make them watertight, welding and gluing.
They are waterproof with a select few even being submergible.
Surf packs have additional features like pockets to store accessories like fins, leashes and wax, and even compartments for food and drink.
A surfing dry bag or backpack will definitely improve your whole surfing experience and is as such a worthwhile investment.
How do you pack a drybag?
When packing your drybag, ensure everything goes into its designated pocket.
Then ensure the roll top closure is folded at least three times, to create a watertight seal.
If the dry bag has a zipper, ensure it is well secured to ensure non-leakage.
It is also important to ensure that you do not mix wet and dry items because this could lead to damage of items meant to stay dry, not to mention self-loathing.
And now to the review of the bags.
Best Dry Bags for Surfing
Here are our top 2 choices.
YETI – Panga Submersible Duffel
Made of thick TPU and high-density nylon, these dry bags are puncture- and abrasion-resistant, airtight and submersible.
They come in both roll-top and duffel options and have QuickGrab handles and the duffels feature removable shoulder straps which make them very portable.
They also have a Hydrolok zipper with a U-Dock at the end that keeps all the water out.
While it has a great range of sizes, if you’re travelling, 28L dry backpack or 50L dry duffel would be ideal.
Their quality is also excellent with enough space to carry your gear and flexibility on size.
Dakine – Mission Surf 25L Backpack
Dakine’s Mission Surf 25L Backpack comes in at number two on our list, and it’s easy to see why.
This is a dry bag that is both functional and affordable.
Made of 600D Polyester, it has a waterproof, seam-sealed pocket to store your wetsuit, an organizer pocket that big enough to fit a few books or a laptop and side pockets for accessories.
Its ergonomic shoulder straps with breathable birds eye mesh make carrying your stuff easy and comfortable.
It even has a fleece-pocket to fit in fragile items like your sunglasses.
Its capacity of 25L is reasonable with makes it a very practical dry bag for the practical surfer.
Other Dry Bags for Surfing
Other dry bags that are of good quality and great features to consider for your surfing adventures are:
Dakine – Cyclone II Dry Pack 36L
Made with surfing in mind, the Cyclone II Dry Pack 36L from Dakine combines utility with the practicability of travel.
Its relatively huge capacity of 36 liters allows you to haul around both your gear and other essentials.
It has a roll-top closure and welded design that make it both waterproof and flexible.
It has both ergonomically built shoulder straps and a sternum strap that make for an easy carry.
This bag has an integrated board carry system which will free up your hands and a laptop sleeve with exterior pockets adding to its utility.
Though it might not have a lot of bells and whistles, its features are definitely well thought out and great for surfing.
Channel Islands – Essential Surf Pack
This is a great surfing dry bag because it was designed with the surfer in mind.
Made of 600D polyester and nylon, this dry bag has a roll- down waterproof compartment, accessory organizers for your wax, sunblock, fins and other accessories, 2 water bottle pockets, a sunglass pocket lined with fleece, external pockets and a hanging loop.
Channel Island’s Essential Surf Pack It has plenty of room as its capacity is 42L and it weighs 3.25 lbs.
Rip Curl Men’s F-Light Posse Tech Backpack
This is an ultra-lightweight water resistant bag that will allow you to stash your surfing gear and other essentials into.
Its large 34 capacity ensures you carry every little thing you need.
It has a large insulated wet compartment with a different spacious dry pocket that has a laptop sleeve to accommodate your valuables and clothes.
It is a lightweight yet extremely durable and functional bag.
Mad Water – Waterproof USA Duffel Bag
Up until now, we have not reviewed a duffel bag.
While backpacks and shoulder bags are easier to carry for an extended period of time, duffel bags are a quick fix to transportation issues.
They are easy to pack and you can see everything in the bag at one glance.
The greatest advantage of this bag is that it is not only waterproof, it’s also submersible and it floats.
This makes it very versatile.
These bags are designed for different activities and the Cool Grey range is tailor made for surfers.
Made of double-coated, heavy-duty PVC free polyurethane, they are very hardy.
They come in 3 sizes, the 30L, 65L and 90L capacity and they are absolutely waterproof sealed with a YKK submersible zipper.
While it might not have glitz and glam, it’s very practical especially if there’s a chance of it getting into the water.
SealLine – Baja Dry Bag
The SealLine Baja Dry Bag is an all-purpose dry bag that is PVC free.
It’s made with premium polyurethane-coating which makes it more puncture resistant and lighter than dry bags that are vinyl-coated.
It is both heavy duty and completely waterproof with fully welded seams and secure roll-top closure.
These bags can withstand quick submersions and will float. There sizes are 5L, 10L, 20L, 30L, 40L, and 55L.
Tillak – Kiwanda 10Ltr Dry Bag
This is a light day bag for a light surfing trip that does not require lots of gear.
At 10 liters, it’ll probably only fit your wetsuit and a few other personal items.
It is very handy, modern with a few extra features like adjustable/removable backpack straps and a water bottle.
Made from lightweight but heavy duty 500-denier polyester, it has an external zip pocket that allows you to keep your valuables safe and access them easily.
The Kiwanda 10-Liter Dry Bag is a small yet sturdy dry bag with a modern look and a few handy extra features.
The bag is made from lightweight but heavy duty 500-Denier polyester, it has an external zip pocket that allows you to keep your valuables safe and access them easily.
It also has removable/adjustable backpack straps and a water bottle pocket.
This is an extra bag you can have for your lighter trips to the coastline.
Sea to Summit – Big River Dry Bag
This roll-top dry bag is extremely strong and abrasion resistant.
Made of 420D nylon, its double stitched, tape sealed, reinforced seams make it waterproof.
It has a white interior for better interior visibility and an oval base that ensures it doesn’t roll off.
It also has non-wicking roll top closure and lash loops to secure attachment and keep out moisture.
Though it is watertight, it should not be submerged into water.
It comes in seven colors and has five sizes (in Liters): 5L, 8L, 13L, 20L, and 35L.
O’Neill – Bromuda Bag
It has a 35L capacity roll-top compartment which ensures you fit quite a bit with side fin and wax pockets.
It also has a padded laptop compartment on the side and a passport pocket at the back panel.
Made of 100% polyester and premium mixed fabrication, this dry bag is waterproof but not submersible.
Channel Islands – Pony Keg Pack
This dry bag from Channel Island is a longtime favorite.
Though it weighs only 2.4 lbs., it has a 45L capacity with one compartment that is pretty large in which to stash all your surfing stuff.
It has external pockets and waterproof zippers to keep your smaller essentials dry.
It is a very simple, uncomplicated bag that works.
Channel Islands – Dry Pack Lite
The Dry Pack Lite is another dry bag from Channel Islands.
This bag has a 30L capacity with a courier strap.
It is quite light at 1.5 lbs., and has a roll- top closure which enables you to stuff in all your gear and other surfing essentials.
Its heat welded seams make it absolutely waterproof and it also has welded webbing loops to secure other items on.
Rip Curl – Ventura 2.0 Surf Backpack
Another affordable option, is the Ventura 2.0 dry bag from Rip Curl.
It has a 30 liter capacity and is made from water resistant TPE coated polyester.
With a roll & clip wet section, you can carry your wetsuit and other accessories comfortably.
Its deep front pocket, padded back panel, mesh organizers are great for packing personal items like sunblock and water bottles, and its air mesh shoulder straps complimented by a sternum strap are ideal for comfortable carrying.