There’s nothing more annoying then spending a great day on the water only to find your cell phone or wallet marinating in that flimsy Ziploc bag you thought would be good to go. We live in such a wired world these days that our phones, iPods, and GPS units seem to accompany us on any adventure we embark on.

Whether you’re enjoying a day on the boat, hiking through the Cascades, or just lounging at the beach, keeping your expensive electronics and valuables dry is paramount. Enter the UST Five-Liter Lightweight Dry Bag.

UST Brands have been in business since 1936 and are based in Jacksonville, Florida. They offer a complete assortment of survival and camping equipment through three brand lines: Ultimate Survival Technologies, UST Marine, and Blue Sky Gear. The Ultimate Survival Technologies line of personal safety and survival tools includes LED lights, patented all-weather fire starters, targetable and unbreakable signal mirrors, premium outdoor cutting tools, first-aid kits, signal whistles, survival kits, and more.

I was recently given the UST Five-Liter Lightweight Dry Bag to review right before my departure to Florida to escape Mother Nature’s icy grip on northern Michigan and do some SCUBA diving. So I added it to my dive loadout and set out to sea with a local dive charter.

I keep my SCUBA credentials and dive log in a digital format on my iPhone, which needs to accompany me on the dive boat—a very hostile environment for any unprotected electronics. With soaking-wet equipment, and wetsuits constantly draining corrosive saltwater on everything in sight, it’s difficult to keep anything dry.

UST 5-Liter Lightweight Dry Bag
Loaded up dive boat

I used the UST Five-Liter Lightweight Dry Bag to store my iPhone, wallet, Oakleys, ZT 0350 knife, hat, and t-shirt for the week-long duration of diving activities, and I’m pleased to report that, even though my valuables were sitting in a puddle of saltwater for a couple of hours on each dive, everything remained bone dry.

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UST advertises their PVC-coated polyester dry bags as water resistant, not waterproof, so I wouldn’t try to submerge them, but they performed as advertised in a very wet environment. The cylinder-shape bag is closed by rolling the top of the bag shut and clipping the two ends together with a Fastex clip. I found it effortless to open and close quickly, and the bright orange color was easy to locate in a bag full of black dive gear.

Features:

  • Easy to use quick-release buckle for one-handed opening
  • Rounded base fits more gear
  • D-ring for securing the bag

Specifications:

MSRP: $7.99

Color: Orange

Size: Flat—14” x 11” (356 x 279mm)

Weight: 2.6 oz. (73g)

Warranty: Two-year limited warranty

Bottom line:

UST offers Lightweight Dry Bags in both five and 20-liter sizes, and at $7.99 and $10.99 respectively, you can’t go wrong. It’s an inexpensive insurance policy to protect the valuable items we use daily and seem to be unable to live without. I own several expensive dry bags from Outdoor Research that I use for sea kayaking expeditions, but with the quality and low price point of these UST dry bags, I’ll be adding a few more of the larger-size bags for use on our power boat this summer.

(Featured image courtesy of ustbrands.com)