Most duffels tend to be water-resistant but not that many can be classed as being totally waterproof. This one, the Ortlieb Duffel Bag 60L, has a IP67 waterproof rating meaning that it can be fully submerged to a depth of 1 metre and 39 inches for as long as 30 minutes. We tested this out and can certainly vouch for its waterproofness. Do the zip up properly and you’re sorted.
The zipper is something of a work of art. Made by a company called TIZIP, it involves a plastic coil zipper that compresses and seals two lips of fabric to form a fully waterproof seal. While it makes the zip slightly stiffer than a standard zip it still glides open or closed easily enough.
The fabric used for the Ortlieb Duffle is a ripstop polyester with a PVC coating. It’s waterproof and also ultra tough – I can’t find the denier rating anywhere but I’d say it would be well over 1000. You could chuck this off a 40-metre cliff onto jagged rocks and it will be fine (photographic evidence of cliff chucking below).
The removable shoulder straps have plenty of padding and they’re easy to adjust, so the duffel makes for a fairly comfortable backpack. The alternative way to carry it is like a briefcase and to do this requires Velcro-ing the two shoulder straps together to form a handle.
It has a slightly different build in comparison to other duffels, being pencil case-shaped (if that makes sense) rather than completely cylindrical. The zip comes to a point at either end, meaning that the whole length of the bag can be opened up if necessary. There’s also a hook on each end of the zip and this can be latched down to the side of the bag – it can also be used for hanging the duffel up.