One of the most infuriating things about going camping, backpacking, or hiking during the rainy months of the year is reaching your destination and finding all your gear and equipment soaked through. And it doesn’t even have to be raining for you to experience this. Sometimes, crossing a river or a creek or walking under a waterfall is more than enough for this to happen. That is why many knowledgeable and experienced camper or backpacker knows how important it is to have a reliable waterproof backpacking or hiking backpack.
A waterproof backpacking backpack or camping backpack comes with many benefits that you wouldn’t get from a typical everyday backpack. However, some of the latest waterproof backpacks imbued with the best waterproofing technology can be quite expensive which is why some people are on the fence when it comes to purchasing one. If you are looking for a reason or two as to why you should invest in one, we have outlined the best ones below for you. But before we dive into our top reasons why you need a waterproof backpack, let’s go over a brief description of what it actually is and how it is different from another popular type of outdoor backpack, the water-resistant backpack.
Waterproof Backpacks vs. Water-resistant Backpacks
If you step into an outdoor gear shop or visit an online store, you will immediately notice that their packs are categorized into two: waterproof backpacks and water-resistant backpacks. If you did your research before going to the store, then you should already be aware of the differences between the two. Otherwise, you may end up buying the wrong type of backpack. So here is a brief outline of the differences between a waterproof backpack vs. a water-repellent backpack.
What’s a Waterproof Backpack?
A backpack that is labeled as ‘waterproof’ is exactly what its name suggests. This means that you can completely submerge the bag under the water and still feel confident that the items contained inside will remain dry. You can walk under a waterfall or wade through a chest-deep river and not have to worry about your clothes or gadgets getting wet.
What’s a Water-resistant Backpack?
Conversely, a water-resistant backpack cannot offer the same kind of complete protection that a waterproof backpack can. When it comes to outdoor activities, this type of backpack is more suitable for hiking under light rains and boating in calm waters. However, if you’re thinking of going on a whitewater kayak adventure where tipping over is a common occurrence, then you’re going to need a genuine waterproof backpack instead of a water-resistant backpack.
There are plenty of other differences between a waterproof backpack and a water-resistant backpack, so much so that it entails a whole different article. In any case, do your research before making a purchase. Considering your destination and how you plan to get there. If you’re engaging in outdoor activities that involve extremely wet travel logistics or destinations, try to obtain a genuine waterproof backpack. Otherwise, a water-resistant backpack should suffice.
That said, let’s go over the different benefits that can be enjoyed by having and using a waterproof backpack.
Total Gear Protection
The most obvious benefit of using a waterproof backpack is that it keeps your belongings safe from any damage that may be caused by water. In general, waterproof backpacks are safe for mountaineering, camping, and any other activity that involves a lot of water crossings or unexpected dunking. However, keep in mind that this is only true for 100% waterproof backpacks, and backpacks that are labeled as water-resistant or water-repellent only wouldn’t survive under extreme and harsh conditions.
Built to Last
The best waterproof backpacks are constructed using waterproof materials, from the fabric to the zipper. Manufacturers also make use of high-end technologies to create this kind of masterpiece. All these combined results in a backpack that offers complete protection for your gear and equipment. However, an added benefit to that is that you’re getting a backpack that is built to last.
For instance, waterproof backpacks often make use of tightly woven polyester or nylon fabrics, with holes so small that are impervious to water molecules. But aside from that, the fabric is also coated with PVC (polyvinyl chloride), PU (polyurethane), or thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) coatings, which does not only improve the backpack’s waterproofing abilities but also gives it added protection against the elements.
The manufacturing of waterproof backpacks also requires the use of a method called RF-Welding (Radio Frequency Welding), also called HF Welding (high-frequency welding) or Dielectric welding. This type of construction uses electromagnetic energy to fuse the materials and this has become the industry standard for constructing waterproof bags. With this method, there are no needle holes where water can get through.
One of the complaints of many backpackers and hikers before is that waterproof backpacks can be rather uncomfortable. They’re often big, bulky and some people even complain about the strap cutting into their shoulders after a long day of carrying them around. However, thanks to the advances in manufacturing technology and innovative designs, this is no longer the case since the latest and the best waterproof backpacks are just as comfortable as your typical everyday backpack (just make sure that your backpack is properly fitted and sized according to your body measurements.)
Reputable manufacturers of waterproof backpacks now design their products with the users in mind. For instance, although the choice of material is still predominantly influenced by its ability to resist moisture manufacturers are now looking into fabrics that can help to reduce or even remove some of the discomforts that come with using such backpacks. Also, they have designed their backpacks in such a way that it maximizes weight distribution, making sure that the weight of the bag’s content is evenly distributed while being lugged around. This helps not only in terms of making the backpack comfortable to use, but it also helps prevent any shoulder or lower back injury that usually results from carrying an unevenly weighted backpack.
Globo Surf Overview
Whatever it is you’re storing inside your waterproof backpacking backpack, you can be sure that they will remain dry and safe throughout your journey. With a waterproof backpack, you can have the peace of mind knowing that splashes of water or awry weather changes won’t affect your belongings. So whether you want to bring your MP3 player and Bluetooth speaker to the beach or carry along fresh and dry clothes for you to change into after your whitewater rafting expedition, a waterproof backpacking backpack presents an excellent solution.