While Earth Pak is a fairly new company in an already saturated market, their focus on quality gear at a lower price point has made them one of the most popular gear brands in recent years.

This success is mainly due to their flagship product, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag.

While it can come across as a bit bare-bones (full disclosure: it does to me, but this is not necessarily a bad thing), the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag’s two main selling points are two things that define all great dry bags: durability and all-weather protection.

Needless to say, if you’re looking for a solid, no-frills dry bag that’s built for all types of weather and outdoor activities, Earth Pak’s Waterproof Dry Bag is definitely worth considering.

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

3.8

Things we like:

  • check-mark
    Its rugged 500D PVC construction makes it highly water and abrasion-resistant--ideal for a wide range of outdoor activities.
  • check-mark
    The padded shoulder straps of the bigger variants make it easier to carry loads of gear.
  • check-mark
    The dry bag’s sternum strap (for the 30L,40L, and 55L variants) and waist belt (for the 55L variant) make it suitable for a wide range of body types.
  • check-mark
    Its minimalist design and colors make it a more fashionable choice compared to similarly constructed dry bags that have huge logos and/or loud colors/patterns.

Things we don't like:

  • check-markBottom part of the bag is prone to fraying
  • check-markThin plastic clips prone to breaking
  • check-markIts extra phone case is hard to close and is prone to breaking, and its thin nylon strap is also prone to snapping
  • check-markIts lack of reflective strip/s makes the bag less ideal for nighttime expeditions, unlike similarly-priced and similarly-constructed dry bags.

Where to buy:

earth-pak-drybag-product-picture.jpg

Earth Pak Waterproof

Just from looking at the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag, with its minimalist design and no-nonsense logo, one gets a feeling that it isn’t just another copy of a copy of the standard dry bag from bigger, more established companies–and it’s not.

Obviously, it’s still very much a traditional dry bag in design, construction, and function. In fact, it might be one of the most traditional dry bags we’ve reviewed so far.

Not bogged down with adding extra features as a marketing tactic, and pretty much sticking to a tried and tested approach, Earth Pak has designed their flagship dry bag to be sturdily built, utilitarian and stylish.

The Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag does not have exterior and interior pockets (although other Earth Pak products do have these), nor does it have a specialized design to make it more comfortable.

Is it too simple and utilitarian? Maybe (we’ll get to this later), but its reliability and waterproofing (especially for its price) are what makes the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag really shine.

Moreover, while the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag may lack certain features, it does come in 5 sizes, with its bigger variants featuring padded shoulder straps and a sternum strap, making it as versatile as some of the more feature-packed dry bags out there.

Specs & Features

  • 500D PVC construction with welded seams
  • Available sizes: 10L, 20L, 30L, 40L, 55L
  • 10L and 20L variants have an adjustable single shoulder strap with swivel hooks
  • 30L, 40L, and 55L variants have two padded shoulder straps and low-profile sternum strap
  • 55L variant has a waist belt
  • D-rings for attaching the dry bag to a watercraft or a backpack
  • Comes with extra 6.5-inch, IPX8 certified waterproof phone case
  • Comes in 8 different colors (blue, light blue, black, orange, yellow, forest green, white, red)
See the complete list of the best Dry Bags here!
earth-pak-waterproof-standing-on-grass

Waterproofing

As of this writing, it’s not officially tested for its water resistance, so we can’t give you the dry bag’s exact IPX rating.

Nevertheless, as is the case with most dry bags boasting 500D PVC construction, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag is among the most water-resistant dry bags in the market today.

While there are obvious trade-offs when it comes to PVC material (e.g. comfort), for its price, nothing really beats it when it comes to waterproofing and UV protection.

There’s the Skog Å Kust with heat-welded seams that are better, but also a bit more expensive.

Whether you’re out camping in a humid rainforest, or doing some kayaking, or even some hardcore whitewater rafting, as long as the dry bag is properly sealed, it should keep your valuables dry.

The Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag will sufficiently keep moisture out even if you drag it across the water for prolonged periods of time, provided it’s not fully submerged (although you can probably get away with a few seconds of full submersion), of course.

But it’s not intended for submersion. Luckily, it won’t submerse so easily cause it’s airtight, but condensation will seep in after prolonged exposure in water.

earth-pak-waterproof-top-belt-strap

Related Reviews

Transport and Usability

Given Earth Pak’s minimalist approach to the Waterproof Dry Bag, it comes as no surprise that the 10L and 20L variants of the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag come with a standard adjustable and removable shoulder strap.

While a simple shoulder strap may not be as comfortable as, say, a padded strap, it does make the 10L or 20L Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag a versatile outdoor companion for casual seaside day trips.

The 30L, 40L, and 55L variants of the Waterproof Dry Bag are perfect for extended trips through the wilderness where you have to lug around more than a few days’ worth of clothes, some sleeping bags, and/or even your go-to camping cast-iron Dutch oven!

However, while a lot can be said about Earth Pak’s rugged, bare-bones approach to their flagship dry bag, the Waterproof Dry Bag does fall short in the organization department.

It’s not a massive blunder, but at its price point, extra pockets for small essentials should be a standard feature.

Sure, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag does come with an extra 6.5″ phone case, but having to rummage in a 20-55L dry bag, through loads of gear, just to find a small journal or a little survival kit every so often is not our idea of fun.

Durability

As mentioned in the overview, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag is a very simple dry bag that banks on two things–durability and waterproofing.

Made of 500D PVC material with welded seams, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag will (more often than not) sufficiently withstand the typical abuse that comes with a wide range of outdoor activities.

That said, it’s important to keep in mind that while the dry bag is highly abrasion-resistant, you still have to avoid dragging it through sharp and jagged surfaces. It’s PVC, not Kevlar.

Moreover, while welded seams are more durable than taped seams, not all welded seams are created equal. Some types of welded seams hold up better than others. As with most things, the devil is in the details.

On that note, we’ve noticed that the bottom seams of the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag are prone to fraying. While this could be just a manufacturing defect, it’s best not to overstuff the dry bag; and reinforcing the bottom part with protective polyurethane tape should give it some added durability.

What really makes Earth Pak’s flagship dry bag a bit of a mixed bag (no pun intended), however, are its hardware and its extra phone case. While both are easily replaceable, they’re both made of thin plastic that breaks easily at the slightest wear.

Most of these flaws are easily remedied with a bit of DIY magic, though; and with proper care, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag should last you a very long time.

earth-pak-waterproof-held-by-hand

Features

There’s not a lot of groundbreaking features in the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag. It’s a simple dry bag that sticks to its guns and does its job. This isn’t to say, however, that there’s nothing special about it.

Its 500D PVC construction and welded seams make it more water and abrasion-resistant than a lot of similarly priced dry bags. Barring any manufacturing defect, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag will withstand many years of abuse.

Moreover, as mentioned above, it’s not completely waterproof (no roll-top dry bag is), but it will keep moisture out as long as it’s sealed properly and not completely submerged for a prolonged period of time (~anything more than half an hour).

It’s extra IPX8-rated 6.5″ phone case does come in handy if you have to keep checking your phone, or if you need to take pictures in extremely wet conditions.

However, while sufficiently water-resistant, it’s not the sturdiest of phone cases. The lanyard that it comes with is made of thin polyester-type material. If you intend on wearing the phone case around your neck or attaching it to your dry bag, it’s best to replace the lanyard with a thicker strap.

That said, we’ll write this off as a minor issue, as the phone case is really more of a freebie than an actual feature integrated into the dry bag.

The real chink in the Earth Waterproof Dry Bag’s armor is its hardware. Granted, this is par for the course for dry bags at this price point, and plastic clips and buckles are easily replaceable, but investing in more durable hardware would’ve really elevated this already great dry bag.

While the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag lacks extra compartments, it is available in five sizes and eight colors, and getting multiple dry bags with different colors should help you organize your gear better.

While the 10L and 20L version of the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag features a basic shoulder strap, higher-volume variants (30L, 40L, and 55L) feature two padded shoulder straps and a sternum strap to accommodate all body types. The 55L version features an extra waist strap for a more secure and snug fit.

earth-pak-waterproof-belt-strap

Value

Without a doubt, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag is one of the best budget options in the market today.

While the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag’s 10L version is already a great deal (priced at around 20 dollars), its 55L version is pretty much a steal, priced at around 39 dollars–that’s less than a dollar per liter!

Moreover, the fact that the dry bag comes with Earth Pak’s 5-year warranty makes it a compelling alternative to similarly constructed dry bags from bigger companies.

That said, while it’s not cheaply made by any stretch, and is still one of the more durable dry bags in the market, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag does have some issues which could potentially cost you more money in the long run.

While an argument can be made that with its price, buying different variants of the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag is an indirect, but nonetheless a viable solution to some of its issues (e.g. lack of extra pockets), if you’re not necessarily strapped for cash, it’s best to invest a little bit more money on a dry bag with more features and/or better hardware.

earth-pak-waterproof-lying-on-grass

All in all, the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag is perfect for people who are looking for a lot of bang for their buck. While it does have some flaws, it’s a durable dry bag first before it’s a “budget option” or a “poor man’s (Sea-to-Summit).”

While you’ll probably have to take particular care of its hardware, its 500D PVC construction should be more than enough for even some of the more extreme outdoor adventures.

If you are really concerned about durability, buying more than one Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag should allow you to distribute your gear across multiple bags, effectively avoiding overstuffing, thereby preserving the longevity of your dry bags.

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

3.8

Things we like:

  • check-mark
    Its rugged 500D PVC construction makes it highly water and abrasion-resistant--ideal for a wide range of outdoor activities.
  • check-mark
    The padded shoulder straps of the bigger variants make it easier to carry loads of gear.
  • check-mark
    The dry bag’s sternum strap (for the 30L,40L, and 55L variants) and waist belt (for the 55L variant) make it suitable for a wide range of body types.
  • check-mark
    Its minimalist design and colors make it a more fashionable choice compared to similarly constructed dry bags that have huge logos and/or loud colors/patterns.

Things we don't like:

  • check-markBottom part of the bag is prone to fraying
  • check-markThin plastic clips prone to breaking
  • check-markIts extra phone case is hard to close and is prone to breaking, and its thin nylon strap is also prone to snapping
  • check-markIts lack of reflective strip/s makes the bag less ideal for nighttime expeditions, unlike similarly-priced and similarly-constructed dry bags.
FAQ

Frequently asked questions

Does the Earth Pak dry bag float?

Yes. As long as it’s sealed properly, and its carrying capacity is not maxed out so that there’s enough air inside the bag, the Earth Pak dry bag should be able to float easily. That said, it is important to keep the bag tethered to your watercraft or to something stable/anchored to prevent the bag from floating away.

How much can you fit in a 20L bag?

20-liter bags are big enough to hold a few days’ worth of clothes and food for one person, a small sleeping bag, and all your small essentials. That said, it’s important to keep in mind that with the dry bag’s roll-top folded three times or more, you won’t be able to utilize all 20 liters of the bag, and this is a good thing. Constantly maxing out the dry bag’s capacity or overstuffing the bag can lead to its seams ripping apart sooner than expected.

How do you close the Earth Pak dry bag?

As with other roll-top dry bags, to close the Earth Pak dry bag, you have to fold the roll-top closure tightly 3-4 times, and then secure the closure by connecting the “male” (the three-pronged end) and the “female” buckles (the insertion end) found at opposite sides of the dry bag’s closure. These instructions are actually printed on the Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag’s top portion.

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