Sea to Summit Hydraulic Dry Pack Review

We put this bag to the test on a 16-day trip down the Grand Canyon. Casual.

By: Kyle Frost + Save to a List

This past August I spent 16 days rafting the Grand Canyon. That's 225 miles of fun times, huge whitewater, desert sand, extreme temps, and more. It was a wild time and the perfect testing ground for the Hydraulic Dry Pack.

Let's start with the obvious. Does it keep your gear dry?

That'll be a resounding yes. This dry pack spent 16 days on and off of a raft, getting slammed through massive rapids and thrown on cobble beaches. Sometimes it was on top, getting the brunt of crashing waves, and other it was shoved into the bottom, covered by other bags but perpetually kinda wet. Luckily we didn't have any flips on my boat but my clothes, gear, and costumes all remained dry throughout the trip.

The one caveat to that -- when you're using the bag at a lower capacity, you'll need to be careful about keeping your folds tight. If it's not as full, you might think that you can just roll it a couple times and be good, but you still need to make sure that those rolls are nice and tight. The only issue I ever had was one day where I was a bit lazy with rolling, and did the required 3 folds but they ended up a bit loose. My clothes were all dry but a few drips wormed their way into the folds.

Fully packed for 16 days
Not a bad testing ground

Sizing

I found the 90L size to be plenty for my needs. The Grand Canyon is not a "pack light" trip, you can bring pretty much whatever you want. I had plenty of room for my clothes, electronics, costumes, and running shoes and warm clothes that never even left the bag. Mostly costumes. It would probably also be a serviceable size for a trip requiring more layers of clothing or sleep gear, however, many people prefer to split their bags up into 2 more manageable sizes rather than 1 large bag. But that's personal preference.

Design and construction

The bag is made of 600D TPU heavy-duty laminated fabric, which is about as tough as it gets. The material is waterproof, although you should avoid full submersion, as water can eventually squirm its way through the folds with enough time and force. The backpack straps are a great addition to have when moving your bag from the boat to shore and wandering around to find your sleep spot. The straps and hip belt are removable, but I never found them obtrusive when strapping the bag down on a raft.

The verdict

This is a high quality dry bag that will take all the abuse you can throw at it and keep your gear dry. The straps make it a great option for canyoneering (or just easier transport). Highly recommend!

Learn more about the Sea to Summit Hydraulic Dry Pack

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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