If you’re a keen kayaker, you’ve probably at some point experienced the nightmare of trying to keep all of your belongings together and dry. There is, of course, a simple solution, leave your items on the shore! However, as we all know, this is not possible for the most part.
Investing in a good kayak dry bag is a great way to keep your belongings dry and in the same place. The range of dry bags available is absolutely huge. In this guide, we’re going to take a look at what makes the best dry bags and how to choose one that’s suitable for you. We’ll also review some of the best kayak dry bags on the market.
What To Look For In The Best Dry Bag For Kayaking
Dry bags come made of a variety of different materials. You’re likely to be able to find kayak dry bags made from just about anything. Most commonly you’ll see them constructed from fabrics like nylon and vinyl – just like regular bags. However, some are made from more durable materials such as plastic, PVC or rubber.
It’s a good idea to look out for bags that are made of thick, dense material. Not only are these often more waterproof than thinner fabrics, but they’re also more durable meaning that you’ll get better and longer use out of your investment.
Make Sure The Design Suits Your Use
This is a common error that’s made when shopping for a kayak dry bag, and unfortunately, one that’s often only realized when you start using your new bag. Make sure the bag that you’re looking at is going to be suitable for your uses.
For example, if you’re a kayaker that often walks a fair distance before kayaking, then you’re going to want a dry bag that you can carry that distance in comfort – a large bag with a tiny handle would be no use. You’re going to want a bag that’s a suitable size for carrying on your bag, and most likely one with comfortable shoulder straps too.
A Suitable Size
Similarly to design, you should choose a bag that’s got the correct amount of space for what you’re going to be storing in it. You should also choose your bag size based on the length of trips that you usually take out on your boat, since longer trips tend to require more equipment and essentials.
If you’re in the market for something small to secure just your personal items in, a bag size of 5 or 10 liters will be more than sufficient for your needs. On the other hand if you’re planning on heading out on the water for a day trip or more, a larger size of most likely more than 30 liters will be suitable.
Bright and noticeable colors are a great option for kayak dry bags for two reasons – safety and ease of finding. If you happen to manage to drop your bag off the side of your boat and into the water, one that’s brightly colored such as orange or yellow is going to be easy to find. On the other hand, a blue or black bag could be extremely difficult to locate, especially once in the water or if the light is low.
The second great reason for getting a brightly colored bag is safety. If you happen to get stranded out on the water for any reason, other people will be able to see you far easier if you use your brightly colored bag as a signal. A black bag or similar is never going to be seen from any distance if you’re in need.
The Best Kayaking Dry Bags
Earth Pak – Popular Kayak Dry Bag
Earth Pak’s kayaking dry bag is one of the most popular solutions for dry equipment whilst out on your boat. Available in sizes ranging from 10 to 40L, there’s a size that’s suitable for all users. They’re also very inexpensive, making it easy and even sensible to purchase a couple in different sizes, for different outings on the water.
When full, the bag has a cylinder-like shape. It’s got an extremely waterproof design, with no zips or seams. It’s also made from PVC that’s 500 denier thick. Not only is it functional, it’s got a great look and feel too. Thanks to this, the bag is buoyant as well – if it falls of the side of your boat, you won’t be swimming to the bottom to retrieve it!
Carrying the Earth Pak is easy and comfortable too. The smaller 2 bags available are fitted with a shoulder strap so you can quickly pick the bag up and sling it over your shoulder. The larger 30, 40, and 55L options come kitted out with rucksack-like straps for the ultimate carrying comfort. As a nice additional extra, the Earth Pak comes supplied with a waterproofing phone case too – great for when your phone is in or out of the bag, and caters for devices that are up to 6.5” in size.
- Extremely effective and one of the most popular dry bags on the market
- Easy to carry
- Available in a range of sizes for different uses
- Comes supplied with an IPX8 waterproof phone case
- Suitable for use in a variety of sports, especially water sports
KastKing – Military Grade Waterproof Kayak Bag
The KastKing is quite unique in it’s great design. One of the issues that we often find with dry bags that you might not think about very often, is knowing where all of your things are once they’re packed away in the bag! This often results in tearing absolutely everything out of your dry bag, and then having to pack it all back in once again.
In order to combat this as much as possible, the KastKing features a large window on one side of the bag, without compromising on durability or waterproofness. This means that you can easily see what level of the bag what you’re looking for is, and decide whether it’s really worth emptying the contents for that packet of sweets at the bottom!
The KastKing is extremely durable, and extremely waterproof. Being military grade, it’s made of 500D PVC, with extremely waterproof “fusion welded” seams. Once packed, carrying the KastKing is easy too thanks to the adjustable shoulder strap that can also be removed if you’d prefer to pack the bag away without it. You won’t need to be concerned about water getting into the bag, even if it ends up in the water.
- Extremely durable and waterproof, with 500D PVC military-grade construction
- A see-through panel that’s very helpful for knowing where things are in the bag
- Roll top that double closes, making sure of water-tightness
- Easy to pack away when not in use
- Comes with IPX8 buoyant and waterproof case for devices
- Looks great
- Great for a variety of uses – kayaking, fishing, walking, the list goes on
Unigear Dry Bag – Durable Kayak Dry Bag
The Unigear dry bag is an exceptionally well-reviewed and loved product. As well as being cost-effective, the bag is durable, extremely waterproof, and looks great. There are many reasons that it’s one of the best-reviewed kayak dry bags on the market today.
The most important factor of all kayak dry bags are how waterproof they are. Thanks to the roll top closure highly waterproof material, this Unigear is extremely watertight. As well as being perfect for protection from water, the Unigear is ideal for all-round protection of your belongings from dust, dirt, sand, etc too.
Taking the Unigear around is easy whether it’s packed full of stuff or empty. When full, the shoulder strap that can be both removed and adjusted makes it very easy for slinging onto your back. When empty, it can be folded down to a small size that can be packed away into another bag without problem.
- Extremely durable and waterproof
- Easy to carry whether full or empty – can pack away easily when empty
- Extremely well-reviewed by almost all users
- Welded seams for extreme durability
- Great after-sales and customer care
Marchway Floating Kayaking Dry Bag
The Marchway floating kayaking bag is great at doing just what it’s designed to – it’s a simple design and looks great, whilst being very functional. The bag’s made from tarpaulin, and as a result, is highly resistant to tear and damage whilst still retaining a great lightweight.
Water-proofing is ensured with this Marchway, thanks to the welded seams, tarpaulin construction and roll-down top. Even if you end up losing the bag off the side of your boat, you can still be sure that your belongings will be kept dry!
Packing the bag away into a smaller space is easily done too when you’re not using it. It’s easy to compact, and can be rolled down from the top just as it can be when you’re closing it normally.
To cater for a variety of uses, the Marchway is available in a number of sizes, ranging between 5 and 40L. As with some of the other options that we’ve reviewed, it’s inexpensive and can be a great idea to buy a couple of bags in different sizes, so you’ve always got one for whatever you’re doing!
- Durable and waterproof tarpaulin construction
- Floats – no need to worry about your bag sinking in the event you drop it off the edge of your boat
- Easy to use with roll down top that guarantees water-tightness
- Available in a range of sizes from 5-40L
- Great for a variety of uses, particularly water sports
Freegrace Waterproof Kayak Dry Bag
This Freegrace waterproof dry bag offers great value for money. In addition to the main waterproof bag, Freegrace has included a small waist waterproof bag as well as a waterproof phone case. For the price, it’s excellent value for money. The larger bag is ideal for storing away, whilst the smaller waist waterproof bag can be used for keeping those essentials that you want to have on your person at all times.
The top of this bag is quite different to most of the waterproof bags on the market. As opposed to a roll-top design, this Freegrace bag features a zipping seal that is excellent at keeping water, moisture, and dirt well away from the contents of your bag. Even when submerged under the water, Freegrace claims that your belongings will stay completely dry.
- Double zip seal with buckle – contents stay dry when submerged
- Available in sizes from 5L – 35L
- Constructed from 500D Tarpaulin – very lightweight, durable and waterproof
- Fitted with an adjustable and detachable shoulder strap for ease of transport
- Larger bags supplied with double shoulder straps and a grab handle for portability
- Provided with a waist bag and waterproof phone bag as nice added extras
PIscifun Kayaking Dry Bag – Dry Bag For Kayaking
This PIscifun Kayaking Dry Bag is great for fast-moving water sports, but also calmer water sports and walking too.
To ensure the ultimate in durability and resistance to damage, the PIscifun bag is made from 500D PVC that’s waterproof and tough. Whether it’s getting thrown around on a white water raft or being tucked safely away into a larger bag, it’s suitable for such a variety of activities.
To further ensure sturdiness and water-tightness, the bag has welded seams and a roll-top closure. One of the points we love about this bag is the durable loops and buckles on the outside. They’re useful for whatever you like really – whether that’s attaching a carabiner and water bottle or using them to strap your bag to the top of a fast-moving boat.
- Welded seams and roll-top closure for ultimate waterproofness
- Tough and damage resistant 500D PVC construction
- Strong loops and buckles on the outside of the bag
- Comes with an IPX8 certified waterproof phone protection case
- Sizes from 5 – 40L available