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Gear Review: Wilderness Technology Springwater 35L Dry Pack
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Gear Review: Wilderness Technology Springwater 35L Dry Pack

Gear Review: Wilderness Technology Springwater 35L Dry Pack

Value Rating: 10
Durability Rating: 9
Overall Rating: 9
Location of Test: Oswald West State Park
Duration of Test: Daily Bike Commute & Surf Trips
Product Name: Springwater 35L Dry Pack
Product Brand: Wilderness Technology
Best Use: Waterproof Backpack

The Full Review:
This backpack is my go-to for surf trips, day hikes and my daily bike commute. I was instantly drawn to the clean look, high contrast colors and bold fluorescent orange accents. As a bonus, there is a good amount of reflective material on the face of the backpack for high visibility when biking through Portland at night!

The design of the Wilderness Technology Springwater 35L is super functional—the rolltop allows you to compress your load, making the bag less bulky while the large top opening makes it super easy to find your gear inside, reach in and grab out what you need. There are so many great pockets on this bag—one large stash pocket with a reflective accent on the face and two zip pockets on the sides of the backpack, all in bright orange, plus two zip pockets and two sleeves on the inside for phone and valuables, or sunscreen! I wish the anchors that buckle it shut were positioned further down on the side of the bag to compress it further— however, the benefit is that there is an easy to reach bottle holder located in that spot. The spacer-mesh back panel and shoulder straps are super comfortable and make carrying any kind of load a breeze.

I haven't tested this bag in super wet conditions, however, I question the waterproof design when it comes to the exterior zippers/pockets. There is no doubt that the main compartment is waterproof, however, the zipper/pockets do not have an airtight seal. If you're not submerging this backpack underwater, it should perform just fine.

The Springwater 35L fits all my surf gear (wetsuit, hood, booties, gloves, towel, wax, sunscreen) along with my camera, after-surf beverages and snacks and I still have room to spare! This pack has gone on some awesome adventures and I love it!

The Good: 
Large 35L Roll-top compartment
Waterproof welded construction
Durable PVC fabric with bonded seams
So many pockets!
Reflective daisy chain loops for attaching gear
Side mesh bottle holder

The Bad: 
The sternum strap rests too low down my chest and causes the shoulder straps to stick out—unable to make full contact with my body. I'm able to loosen the shoulder straps and adjust the sternum strap to rest higher and more comfortably, however, the bag then rests too low down my back and this makes it hard to carry around.

It could be cool if one of the side pockets got converted so that you can access the inside or bottom of the bag.

The Bottom Line: 
This backpack looks great, performs reliably and is a killer for the buck. I highly recommend it!

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