Pack Rafting with the Southwest 55

swbugas Member Posts: 46
edited July 2023 in OUR STORIES

A few years ago I tried pack rafting for the first time. Armed with a Costco float, my Southwest 55, a mat and some food, I set off with some friends to try our hands at a small rather tame chunk of the Mckenzie river. I trusted my southwest to keep my clothes, my camera gear and my mat dry, which despite being flipped at least three times actually held up better than expected. Still, I know it wasn't technically built as a complete dry bag, so my question is, how do you work with HMG bags/Pods/anything else to go full packraft mode?

I have a growing list of pack rafting trips I'd like to get on some day (from Mexico to New Zealand...and many places in between), so I'm itching to chip away at a viable packing list. Any advise is appreciated, but I also love to see classic gear shots and gear lists.


  • mikesee
    mikesee Member Posts: 5

    Most people put their gear inside of the boat, via the 'cargo fly' watertight zipper.

    In addition to keeping your gear dry and safe, it lowers your overall center of gravity, which makes the boat more stable.