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July 25, 2022 11 min read

Waterproof Fishing Backpacks

GILI waterproof roll-top backpack, blue

There’s no better way to keep all your fishing gear together than in a fishing backpack. Not only are they practical and lightweight, but they also allow you to be hands-free during the most crucial times.

Whether you’re a SUP angler, a bank fisher, or a thrill-seeking ocean fisherman, a fishing backpack should be a part of your must-have gear. In our article today, we’re going to look at 11 different backpacks, all with waterproof or water-resistant qualities, so that you can find the best waterproof fishing backpack for you.

GILI’s Top Picks: By Budget

Best Budget
Sucipi Fishing Tackle Backpack, Camouflage
Sucipi Fishing Tackle Backpack

The GILI top pick budget waterproof backpack goes to the Sucipi Fishing Tackle Backpack, which was designed with numerous compartments to keep your gear organized and easy to access.

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Best Mid-Range
GILI Waterproof Backpack Roll-Top, Yellow
GILI 28L Waterproof Roll Backpack

Our top pick mid-range waterproof back is the GILI 28L Waterproof Roll Backpack. This dry bag is an excellent option for those with tackle boxes as the large main compartment can hold all of your fly fishing gear.

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Best Premium
Yeti Panga Airtight, Gray
YETI Panga Airtight Backpack

Our premium top pick also has one large main compartment with a hydrolok zipper to make it a waterproof fortress. The zip, which runs almost the whole length of the bag, makes reaching for important gear on your fishing trip simple and convenient.

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11 Best Waterproof Fishing Backpacks

GILI 28L Waterproof Roll Backpack

The GILI 28L Waterproof Roll Backpack made it onto our top mid-range fishing backpack pick for a number of reasons.

Firstly, it is made from 500D PVC tarpaulin, which makes the bag completely waterproof. All of your belongings and fishing gear will be bone dry no matter if you’re fishing in torrential rain or if your pack happens to fall in the water. 

Secondly, the large main compartment is ideal for tackle boxes, reels, and fishing supplies. You’ll even be able to fit additional belongings thanks to the 28L worth of storage space.

Although the design of the GILI Roll-Top Waterproof Backpack is fairly simple, GILI added a mesh side water bottle pocket, a front splash proof zippered pocket for smaller accessories, and D-rings on the ergonomic padded shoulder straps for any additional gear.

GILI Waterproof Backpack Roll-Top, Yellow

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Made from 500D PVC tarpaulin
  • Roll-top closure
  • 28L storage space
  • Front zippered pocket
  • Mesh water bottle pocket
  • Ergonomic padded shoulder straps with a chest strap

YETI Panga Airtight Backpack

If you’re after a style as well as a practical waterproof fishing bag, then the YETI Panga Airtight Backpack might just be one of the best fishing backpacks out there. 

This gray high-density nylon and thick TPU laminated backpack was designed by YETI to be puncture-resistant, abrasion-resistant, and completely waterproof. 

Not only were the materials they used carefully selected for their waterproof qualities, but YETI also fitted a hydrolok zipper that’ll keep the contents of the fly fishing backpack bone dry no matter the circumstances. 

Comfort was also meticulously thought about, and YETI equipped their fly fishing backpacks with ergonomic dry haul shoulder straps, removable chest straps, and a removable waist belt. 

The removable waist belt and chest straps help to distribute the weight of the pack from your shoulders to your hips and trust us; you’ll be incredibly grateful for this feature during long days out on the water. 

Although the exterior design of the Panga Airtight Backpack is relatively simple, the interior has a mesh zippered pocket and a pouch to separate smaller items from the main contents of the bag. 

The YETI Panga may not be the most affordable waterproof fishing backpack on the market, but you really do pay for quality. If you’re carrying gear and fishing tools alongside expensive items such as a camera, the guarantee that your belongings will be safe, secure, and most importantly, dry will give you the peace of mind you need while reeling in your catch of the day. 

Yeti Panga Airtight, Gray

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Made from high-density nylon and thick TPU lamination
  • Features a hydrolok zipper to keep water out 
  • Ergonomic dry haul shoulder straps
  • Removable chest straps and waist belt
  • Interior mesh zippered pocket

Fishpond Thunderhead Fishing Backpack

The Fishpond Thunderhead Fishing Backpack comes in three colors and is made from the company's own 1680d TPU coated recycled cyclepond nylon. They claim that it’s bombproof, but we pray you’ll never have to find out. 

The Thunderhead is completely submersible, making it one of the best fly fishing backpacks out there as you can wade through the water without a single worry of your belongings getting wet. 

Fishpond upgraded the zipper in their Thunderhead backpacks to be a waterproof TRU Zip closure that extends to 2” on each side. The company also included a small waterproof front zippered compartment, a set of Lariat gear straps that can be positioned on the right or left side of the bag, daisy chain webbing, and numerous attachment points. 

The Thunderhead is even kitted out with lightweight foam shoulder straps, a padded hip belt, and a back panel to provide optimal comfort and lumbar support.

Fishpond Thunderhead Fishing Backpack, Orange

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Available in three colors: orange, yucca, and camo
  • Made from 1680d TPU coated recycled cyclepond nylon
  • Completely submersible
  • TRU Zip waterproof closure
  • Front zippered compartment
  • Lariat gear straps
  • Attachment points
  • Padded shoulder straps, hip belt, and back panel

Grundens 30L Backpack

If you’re an over-packer or if you just have that much fishing gear that you need a big pack, then the Grundens 30L Backpack is a fantastic option.

Grundens designed their waterproof backpack with 500D PVC tarpaulin and welded the seams to prevent any water from being able to enter the bag. To aid in keeping it waterproof, they also included a roll-top closure which is tried and tested as being one of the best closures for bags that aim to be waterproof.

The exterior of the backpack has a front mesh pocket with tie-down straps and two water bottle holders that can act as a storage space for not only your water bottle but also other gear that doesn’t need to be kept dry.

As the tackle bag only contains one large main compartment, the interior is fairly simple. It does, however, have a zippered security pocket to separate important items such as your keys, phone, or credit cards.

Grunden added chest straps, waist straps, a padded back panel, and padded moisture-wicking shoulder straps to their pack to help with comfort, especially on those extra-long fishing days.

Grundéns 30 Liter Rum Runner Backpack, Camo

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • 30L main compartment
  • Made from 500D PVC tarpaulin
  • Roll-top closure
  • Front mesh pocket 
  • Two water bottle holders
  • Interior zippered pocket
  • Padded chest straps, waist straps, and shoulder straps

Orvis Waterproof Sling Pack

Okay, so the Orvis waterproof backpack technically isn’t a backpack but more of a sling pack. But, in all fairness, you can wear it on your back, so we’re including it anyway.

Sling packs such as this one are a great option for anglers with minimal gear. Not everyone wants to carry a large backpack on their back, so the miniature size of the Orvis sling pack will hold all the essential fishing tackle in its 11L main compartment, as well as a water bottle and fishing rod on its exterior. 

Orvis designed their sling pack out of recycled polyester and added a TPU coating for increased durability. Although polyester is a water-resistant fabric, it won’t keep all water out, which is a slight downfall to this pack.

What makes the Orvis sling pack stand out, however, is the recessed docking station and tippet bar to help you tie knots and reach all of your small fishing gear in a flash.

Orvis Sling Pack, Sand

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • 11L main compartment
  • Water bottle holder
  • Fishing rod holder
  • Made from recycled polyester with a TPU coating
  • Recessed docking station and tippet bar

Gonex Store Fishing Tackle Backpack

The Gonex Store Fishing Tackle Backpack not only features separate compartments that’ll help you organize your gear, but it also comes with fishing tackle boxes to step that organization up to the next level. 

Gonex constructed their fishing backpack out of 1000D high-density nylon that is water and wear-resistant and they also added dual-way zippers to make it easier to reach important items. 

The bag’s ergonomically designed padded mesh shoulder straps and padded back panel mold to fit your specific body shape, which relieves stress from your back and shoulders and also improves comfort and airflow.

As we mentioned before, the Gonex fishing backpack has numerous compartments to help separate your fishing gear. Along with the bag’s main compartment, you’ll find two exterior side pockets, two mesh pouches, two larger side pockets with dividers, two front pockets, and one main waterproof pocket. 

Fishing Tackle Backpack, Black

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Comes with four 3600 fishing tackle boxes
  • Made of 1000D high-density nylon
  • Padded mesh shoulder straps
  • Numerous pockets to separate gear

Piscifun Fishing Tackle Backpack

Another amazing option for the organized anglers is the Piscifun Fishing Tackle Backpack, as it has a number of separate compartments and four included fishing tackle boxes.

The khaki-colored bag is made from a high-quality water-resistant 1200D nylon and features durable two-way zippers on all the zippered pockets.

Piscifun decided to separate their compartments up into 11 sections to help the wearer specify the exact location of all their essential gear. The main compartment has a removable clapboard that you can choose to take out so you can store larger items or place it to separate your belongings. 

The backpack has thick ergonomic padded shoulder straps, which are adjustable and breathable for optimum comfort, making it the perfect fishing backpack for lengthy fishing trips. 

Psicifun also included some unique added features like a hard molded sunglasses case, a protective rain cover, and rubber feet to protect the bottom of the bag from dirt or debris.

Piscifun Fishing Tackle Backpack, Black

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Comes with four fishing tackle boxes
  • Made from 1200D nylon
  • Removable clapboard in the main compartment
  • Ergonomic padded straps
  • Hard molded sunglasses cases
  • Protective rain cover

KastKing Fishing Tackle Backpack

KastKing designed their fishing backpack to be lightweight and versatile, with the ability to carry rods, lures, and other fishing tools.

In order to create their water-resistant backpack, KastKing used 420D rip-stop nylon and coated it with a hydrophobic coating to help repel moisture from the pack and its contents.

When it came to the design features, they aimed to make their bag as organized as could be with rod and tool storage, a large tackle compartment, and a number of other smaller pockets.

They also added a padded back panel, padded shoulder straps, and a waist strap to help distribute the weight of the backpack just in case you’ve packed too much fishing gear. 

Kastking Fishing Tackle Backpack

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Made from 420D rip-stop nylon
  • Coated with a hydrophobic coating
  • Rod and tool storage
  • Numerous compartments
  • Padded shoulder and waist straps

COR Surf Waterproof Backpack

Another roll-top dry bag backpack to make the list is the COR Surf Waterproof Backpack. Although the 25L main compartment of CORs backpack is slightly smaller than GILIs, you would still be able to fit a fair share of fishing gear inside. 

CORs created their bag out of heavy-duty PVC to give it the waterproof and dirtproof qualities that all dry bags should have. They also accompanied the bag with ergonomic shoulder pads made with a breathable mesh to improve airflow and prevent sweat. 

The straps come fitted with a chest and waist belt to help distribute the weight of the pack, and they even include D-rings so you can clip on larger accessories that won’t fit in the main compartment. 

Design-wise the bag is simple, but we do appreciate the two mesh water bottle holders and the front zippered pocket to separate some of your items.

COR Surf Waterproof Dry Bag Backpack, Gray

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • 25L main compartment
  • Made of heavy-duty PVC
  • Ergonomic shoulder straps
  • Chest and waist belt
  • Front zippered pocket
  • Two mesh water bottle holders

Seaknight Fishing Backpack

Our next backpack is the Seaknight Fishing Backpack that comes in green or camo and allows you to upgrade to a more expensive pack that includes fishing tackle trays. 

Seaknight designed their backpack out of high-quality 1000D polyester and coated it with a hydrophobic PVC to prevent water from entering the pack. 

The pack we have mentioned here can hold 7.5L worth of gear; however, Seaknight also does a 25L version for those who need the extra room. 

In the main compartment, you’ll find a removable clapboard that helps divide the large space and once you’ve inserted the clapboard, the bottom section of the bag makes an ideal storage space for tackle boxes.

Seaknight included padded shoulder straps, a chest strap, and a padded mesh back panel to relieve the pressure on your shoulders while carrying the bag over long distances. 

Seaknight Fishing Tackle Backpack, Green

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Can upgrade to include fishing tackle trays
  • Made from high-quality 1000D polyester
  • Coated with hydrophobic PVC
  • Available in a 7.5L or 25L version
  • Clapboard to divide the main compartment
  • Padded back, chest, and shoulder straps

Sucipi Fishing Tackle Backpack

The final fishing backpack on our list and the one that took the top spot for best budget backpack is the Sucipi Fishing Tackle Backpack. 

Sucipi used 600D polyester during the creation of their bag and fitted heavy-duty zippers and buckles to lock everything in place. They really thought of everything when designing this bag, starting with the large main compartment.

The large compartment can be split into two by a velcro partition, or you can choose to remove it when carrying larger fishing items like tackle boxes. Down the sides of the bag, you’ll find two pockets and a water bottle pocket, and on the front are three external pockets for storing items that you need quick access to. 

The features don’t end there, however. On the right-hand side of the bag are two fishing rod straps for storing your rods; the top of the bag has a sunglass compartment to securely carry your glasses, and Sucipi even went the extra mile and included an emergency whistle and fishing pliers. 

Sucipi Fishing Tackle Backpack, Camouflage

Where to buy:

Features & Specs:

  • Made from 600D polyester
  • Large main compartment
  • Exterior pockets and a water bottle holder
  • Two fishing rod straps
  • Sunglasses compartment
  • Included are an emergency whistle and fishing pliers

FAQ’S

🏆 What kind of backpack is best for Fishing?

The best fly fishing backpack will ultimately come down to the amount of fishing gear you have and the style of bag you prefer.

If you’re extremely organized with your tackle neatly tucked away in tackle boxes, then waterproof roll-top dry backpacks are an excellent option. The large compartments of these bags can hold a tremendous amount of gear while also keeping it bone dry in heavy rain or when submerged in water. 

Backpacks with separate compartments are also a great option if you like separating your gear away from each other. Having smaller sections dedicated to one specific thing can cut down on the time it takes to retrieve important items.

In general, a fishing backpack should do these three things:

  • Keep your gear dry
  • Carry all essential items that you may need
  • Be comfortable on your back

👍 Why should I take a backpack fishing?

Fishing backpacks are a great style of bag to take fishing because they allow you to be hands-free while also storing a large amount of gear. 

With many fishing backpacks on the market, you’ll be sure to find one that suits your specific style, needs, and budget. 


🏝️ Would a waterproof backpack be beneficial for fishing?

As fishing is a water-based activity, having a waterproof backpack is extremely beneficial. Especially if you’re a SUP angler or if you like wading out in the water to cast your line. 

There is nothing guaranteeing you that you won’t fall in the water or be caught in a downpour, so having a backpack that is waterproof will keep your belongings dry in all types of conditions. 

The backpack style also means you can hold a large number of items and it allows you to be hands-free when casting or reeling in a fish.

Jay Regan
Jay Regan


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