Walking, Hiking & Trail Running

Trekmates Drypack 30 Litre Backpack | Review

A lightweight, cheap backpack to keep your kit dry in any conditions

Founded in Nottingham in 1997, Trekmates pride themselves on producing quality, well-designed backpacks and accessories for hill-walking and outdoor pursuits at prices that won’t break the bank.

The Trekmates Drypack here is a case in point. We’ve chosen this for the Outdoor 100 not because it’s the highest spec backpack on the market. It’s not. What it is, is ridiculously good value for money. A fully-waterproof 30-litre backpack for £30 is pretty much unheard of, especially one that’s as well thought out as this.

Essentially what Trekmates have done here is take the classic drybag design and add a few extras to turn it into something you could comfortably carry on your back for day hikes, or even overnight trips.

“…a comfortable companion on a day hike or even an overnight trek.”

The opening at the top of the bag is the same roll-top that you’d expect on a drybag, and it keeps water out in exactly the same way. The fabric is a waterproof ripstop nylon, with a high denier rating of 210, so you don’t have to worry about it tearing. As with a drybag, you could probably play pooh sticks in a Class V rapid with this, and the contents would be just as dry at the bottom.

Trekmates have added an exterior mesh pocket and a bungee on the back for strapping stuff to the outside of the bag, as well as loops for walking poles. The straps are simple and unpadded, but comfortable enough. With a 30-litre carrying capacity, it’s unlikely that the bag will ever be heavy enough to necessitate padding anyway. There’s a simple waist strap to help distribute the weight too.

On the inside Trekmates have kept things pretty plain, but with a bag of this size having a single large compartment isn’t really a problem. There’s no lid or extra pockets either, but this stripped back approach means it’s lightweight – the whole thing is just 480g.

One of the great things about owning a Trekmates product is that you get to say the word 'Trekmates' more. Photo: Chris Johnson.
The bag is incredibly easy and convenient to clip up and close. Photo: Chris Johnson.
...and it's super easy to pack away, and to adjust the pack size too. Photo: Chris Johnson.

If you’re the kind of person who likes to have the latest, priciest, high-end kit then this is not the bag for you. Similarly if you’re heading off ski touring or mountaineering this winter, then you’ll probably want something with a beefier waist-strap and a few more compartments. But if you’re looking for a backpack that will keep your kit dry in any conditions, and that’ll be a comfortable companion on a day hike or even an overnight trek, then this is definitely worth a look. I mean for £30 you can’t really go wrong, can you?

Trekmates Drypack 30 Litre Backpack

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Selected for The Outdoor 100 Winter 2017

View the full 100
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