dry bags for cameras

Hello everyone, I am new to the site and I have a question, I hope this hasn’t been covered a thousand times.

I recently purchased a personal pontoon boat that I will use to drift small streamer and small/medium sized rivers. I am a photographer and I am hoping to bring my Nikon digital SLR onboard with me. I am looking for a dry bag that will keep it dry should it happen to get wet but most bags that I see say they are not intended for eletronics. If the bag would “float” if dropped in the water, that would be perfect. I’m a little concerned about dropping a $1000 camera into the drink but I write/photograph for a magazine and I have to get the shots. Wading is easier and I have done that all my life, the pontoon is going to help me cover a bit more water.

Thanks for any help you guys can give me.

Dry boxes…
are my choice for that. Easier to open in the boat, afford shock protection, as well. Pelican, Otter and others are tried and true by most folks on the board. Can’t beat a UW housing for quick shots, but that’ll set you back at least a G for the Nikon. Way nicer, though.

Look everybody!!! I’m posting again after a self-imposed exile from the board!!

While not a pro…
I recently upgraded to a decent digital and boughta Pelican Case for storage whether in the canoe or not.

These cases are very rugged, shock proof and waterproof. Due to their relative volumes not all may float. I don’t remember reading on the PC site that they claim this. Problem solved by lashing into your water craft.

The only drawback might be quick access but that will be the case with any watertight storage.

Highly recommend the Pelican Cases. Remarkable quality and if you look around there are good prices to be had.

Hope this helps.


Pelicans are great
with one caveat: The pluck-out foam filling can absorb water and grit. I have taken it out of mine and glued in 1/4" minicell for padding. I use small pieces of minicell for padding, cut to size.


But then again …
if you’re a skilled paddler like eskimojo, you can keep your camera in a brown paper bag and save forty bucks.

Dude, what’s with the self-imposed exile? Hope you’re plannin’ on exilin’ yourself on over to western NY to run creeks and rivers with me in about a month.

dry bag vs. dry box
If you are interested in a dry bag rather than a dry box I would check out Watershed - http://drybags.com/ .

They are pretty hard to open, but work well at keeping moisture out.


I just throw my cameras (Canon EOS 20D and EOS 5D) in a Sealine Drybag and it rests under a bungie in front of me on my kayak. I’ve done the Apostle Islands twice and Isle Royale this way.

I think Pelican boxes are too big and bulky. Better for canoes.

Aquapac SLR case
I haven’t tried it, but it might be worth a try. Perhaps someone here has used it. It’s not that big. I’ve got a 20yo Canon T90 which is way too big for this case, or I’d probably give it a shot. Supposed to be ‘waterproof’ to 15’.

http://www.aquapac.net/ -then click on SLR case.

REI has it, BTW.

If you do this, let us know how it works.

I’d never put a camera into an
aquapac. Not unless the camera was waterproof to start with. If your a pro, get pro gear. a pro case or a camera from canon or olympus that has a reasonably prices pro case for undeawater use. sorry to tell you this after you got the nikon but aquapac is not for expensive electronics IMHOP. My aquapac case lasted 13 months and got used for about a dozen times.

Ther are solutions but they are expensive Ikelite and other trad gear.

Get a used nikonos perhaps?

You’re too much, Clarion!
Fibbing to everyone here about my skill level. Tell 'em the truth about how I get all white knuckled just getting into my beached OT Otter!

Name when and where, buddy… I’m there! Man, I’m missing paddling with Pnet friends. Alone is nice, but laughing and fire-watching with you folks is the best! Nice to see posts by the “Hall of Fame” paddlers… Wes, Jsaults, you…thanks folks!

Hey - you got that whole Love Canal area cleaned up there yet? I’m looking for a deal on some upstate NY property. Actually, it doesn’t need to be cleaned up…people won’t know if my looks are hereditary or a result of chemical contamination!

Re: Pros & Pro Equipment

– Last Updated: Mar-08-06 5:33 AM EST –

Having been there, I can tell everyone that being a "pro" by getting full or part time income from shooting does not always justify the purchase of the best equipment available. For every shooter who is either supplied with, or can afford expedition grade gear, there are five or six shooters who struggle to obtain nice glass and accessories. Newspapers and periodicals are notoriously cheap in their photo related pay scales. This has no relationship with the talent/skill level of the photographer. It often boils down to: "Do I reinvest this paycheck, or should I feed the kids this week?".
Oh, check out B&H's selection of vinyl SLR bags. The least expensive is submersible to 15' and roughly the same price as a nice Otter/Pelican/UW Kinetics case. You can shoot right through those bags & don't risk camera damage from wet hands! Handy, as well for those high school football games in the pouring rain. That's probably the previously mentioned Aqua Pack.

Another thing that is tough
is to find a bag that will let you leave on a bigger lens. I just put my camera in a dry bag and then take it out when I want to shoot a pix. If it is rough my wife will stabilize my kayak.

photo quality of bags
How is the optical quality of these bags?

I believe Ewa makes bags that
have a lens on the front that screws on like a filter. so that might work pretty well.

Ewa bag for 35mm SLR

I’m with wetzool… Watershed is THE
bag if you want a bag. The infamous Corran Addison uses Watershed bags to protect his cameras when on whitewater rivers. I have used various Watershed bags, and they are as bulletproof as a bag can be. Unlike roll-top bags, they DO NOT wick water into the bag.