Fly Fishing Gear Review: The Simms Dry Creek Z Fishing Backpack

No matter how nice a backpack is and how well it’s designed and even how much it costs, we abuse them. Gear is gear and needs to be thrown in the back of trucks, take spills down hard terrain, and get submerged in water. On this end, we look for vulnerabilities and potential for failure in bags and packs, and for this reason, we spend one year with the Simms Dry Creek Z Fishing Backpack before reviewing it.

Simms has their lineups of packs and bags pretty dialed now. We’ve been on trips with some pretty tough conditions and been pleased with Simms gear. But with several new innovations or changes made when designing the Simms Dry Creek Z Fishing Backpack, we needed to take a fresh look. And we were pleased.

This 35L backpack has several features that stood out to us in the time we reviewed it:


This bag feels light on the shoulders when loaded up, and weight is distributed in a way that allows for hours after hours of use without being burdened by the pack. The straps feel great, and the fit feels ergonomic. We also wore this pack on a number of hard alpine hikes and loved it.


Simms describes their fabric technology as “300D polyester ripstop with an outside PU coating and inside TPU lamination” that has “TRU® Zip; waterproof self-healing zipper for 100% waterproof-submersible protection.” This backpack is designed to be waterproof and submersible. However, you can always count on us to be honest, and when you scan the web for reviews, some folks had the zipper fail. We did too. Knowing that we had one of the first batches of the backpack, we decided to give it a second chance, and we’ve been pleased.

Additional Features

The internal pocket for laptops or other items (such as bladders) is important on this end. It also allows for some awkward items to stay in place and not throw off the weight and distribution of the contents of the bag. Minimalist anglers will likely love the net holder and hooks, loops, and lash points for other gear and accessories. We did.

The Simms Dry Creek Z Fishing Backpack comes in Tan or Riparian Camo and costs $299.95. To learn more about the Simms Dry Creek Z Fishing Backpack, please click here.

Disclosure: Simms is in a professional relationship with The Venturing Angler. Though potentially benefiting from this relationship, we do not post what we do not believe to be true. To read more, click here.