Matador FlatPak Dry Bag Review
The Matador FlatPak Dry Bag is a thin yet durable way to keep your gear dry, though we have concerns about the materials holding up with long-term use.
- Super lightweight and thin to fit into almost any pack
- Hypalon loops are perfect for attaching carabiners or straps
- Bottom gusset makes stowing gear easier
- Extremely thin base materials concerning for long-term use
- Hard to see through small TPU window
- Difficult to keep the folds straight when fully packed
Also available in 8L
1.13 oz (32 g)
2.29 for 8L version
9.5 in x 3.25 in x 5.25 in (24.1 x 8.3 x 13.3 cm)
full | 12.75 in x 10.75 in - flat (2L version)
Ripstop Nylon, Hypalon®, Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU), Unbranded Hardware
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Matador makes a wide variety of ultralight products—many of which we have thoroughly tested—so we were amped to get our hands on a set of their FlatPak Dry Bags. Typically, waterproof and ultralight don’t go hand in hand, but we’re willing to give these a shot as we often have great experiences with Matador’s gear. Let’s dive in!
At the time of this review, the Matador FlatPak Dry Bag comes in two sizes: 8 liters and 2 liters. Matador uses a nylon ripstop that is extremely thin but feels durable. The ripstop gives the bag a sleek look—but we’re cautious of durability in the long run. After a year of use, our FlatPak Toiletry Bottle got a small puncture, rendering it useless. It fought the good fight, but similarly to their smaller brethren, the Dry Bags won’t work if they are punctured.
There’s a Hypalon® strap on the front of the bag forming two loops. One’s larger—big enough to grab with four fingers, and there’s a smaller one more suitable for a carabiner. Hypalon® is a synthetic rubber, and its usage here makes it easier to pull the bags out of a daypack, travel backpack, or for the 2 liter, a sling.
We find the Matador logo and lettering written across the rubber, alongside the literage. The 8 liter is much larger, so you wouldn’t get the two confused, but it’s an excellent addition regardless.
To the right of the Hypalon® is a small TPU window, which we dig. This lets you see inside the dry bag, so you know what’s in there. Unlike the SealLine Baja View Dry Bag, everyone and their mother can’t see your dirty wet underwear—just a sliver of them. That might seem silly, but it’s a great addition. You don’t have to open up the bag to see what’s inside, and you aren’t showing off your dirty laundry to the world. However, moving things around inside the bag to see everything can be difficult.
Near the top, a thin piece of thicker fabric assists with rolling the closure. On the left-hand side are instructions on how to close it, followed by ‘Designed in Colorado | Made in China.’ The font is very technical and oddly satisfying—however, if you aren’t a fan, you can’t see it once it’s closed.
The hardware on the top is unbranded, but we have had no issue with it. There’s a buckle and a D-ring. Both feel durable and are easy to use. The ring makes it easier to attach inside a pack, and the clip is to close the bag.
To close it, fold the top three times over itself. You can fold it more times if you want, but three times is what Matador says is necessary for the water resistance to work correctly. The more rolls you do, the more watertight the bag becomes.
Inside The Dry Bag
Unsurprisingly, there isn’t any internal organization inside the dry bag. It’s just one big chute where you can stow wet items to keep them from dampening your pack or vice versa. The internal material has a TPU feel to it, which is refreshing.
Inside, there’s a large graphic with all of the material and manufacturing information, which we find oddly satisfying. There are a ton of different languages and translations, and it’s neat to see how many different kinds of people use Matador products. Everyone loves traveling, and this is a good reminder of that.
There’s a gusset on the bottom of the bag so that it can hold more gear. It makes stuffing it a lot easier because it’s flat and easy to work with when gear or your hand gets to the bottom.
The 2-liter model is ideal for daily carry if you live or are traveling to a wet environment and want extra assurance for your essential gear. It’s also nice to have on a beach vacation, as you never know when you might want to take a quick jump into the ocean but don’t want to carry around a wet swimsuit all day long.
The 8-liter model is more suited for a travel pack because it’s larger for a backpacking bag on long-haul trips. We often stow the smaller one inside the larger one to both when we arrive at our destination. We can throw the 2 liter into our sling or daypack and leave the larger one for excursions where we know we will need the space.
Although we haven’t had any issues with the durability of the dry bags so far, our experience with the FlatPak Toiletry Bottles worries us about the longevity of these bags. So far, they have been superb—and we’ll update the usage timeline below if anything changes. Until then, stay dry!
- Materials feel incredibly lightweight—we’re curious how they’ll hold up
- Welded seams look nice but, again, give us long-term usage concerns
- TPU window is unique and makes it easy to see what’s inside
- We’ve had no issues with the durability of the materials—yet it’s still a worry long term
- Hardware is easy to use and shows no signs of wear
- Thin exterior makes it easier to roll the top than on other dry bags we’ve tested