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Dry Bags for ultralight hiking

I agree with the hypothesis that a pack with a single main body is sufficient... for minimalist hiking, generalist hiking, camping, etc... The author of this operating theory makes exceptions for a wet tarp, tent, poncho, towel and other gear. But does not make a recommendation about a traditional pack with lots of pockets, a dry pack with a single chamber or in between.

Since I have been experimenting I have been going down many bad paths.

35L dry pack


regular straps

Many months ago I purchased my first dry pack. That was before I realized or learned that I was going to have to put wet gear in the main compartment. Also, I started to think that the pack was too small at 35L. I was able to get my UL and SUL gear in this pack, but again the all in one was not going to work realistically.


The El Capitan was an interesting pack even though it has a number of flaws. The main compartment is black making it difficult to see anything in the pack. The lattice shockcord on the back does not function well. The sternum strap required a repair from the factory. The side web pockets, while deep, are sticky making water bottles less desirable. The pack itself is kinda heavy so UL hiking will require getting down to SUL gear.

set of 3 arrived with 2 40L bags instead of a 25L.

single strap works for short distances but generally uncomfortable
This YO dry pack was a $20 purchase which they claim is now sold out. It was just a waste of money although I might use it for my kids clothing on our next trip.


This pack has saved me more than once. Every time I tried one of those packs above I find myself falling back to this one. It was pretty good in Seattle for day hikes and basic prepper gear.

Sport sack
I like this Under Armor Sport Sack. The material is light and sturdy. There is the main chamber, front pocket and a small zippered side pocket (for glasses). The straps are padded cord of some kind and I have 3rd party shoulder straps on order. For a sport sack you'd think they would have a sports bottle pocket or something. In the coming week I'm going to reassemble my SUL pack which will likely be made from SOL products.

And so before I close the book on this post... my conclusion is that drybags (-1) and single chamber (+1) but remember a pack liner.

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