YETI Sidekick Dry 3L Review: Sweetspot Sizing

Last updated on April 30th, 2024.

Leonard Schoenberger

If you’re heading out for a day of fly fishing, a waterproof bag can come in handy.

These bags are offered in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Some prefer a waterproof backpack since you can pack a lot of stuff in it. Others swear by a waterproof sling since it offers less obstruction when casting. And then, last but not least, many fly fishermen have grown fond of a waterproof and often fully submersible hip bag. The YETI Sidekick falls into the latest category. In this review I want to take a closer look at this hip bag and tell you who it is for.

Quick Overview of the YETI Sidekick.

Sizes: 1L, 3L (in this review) and 6L

Dimensions (3L): 11.8″ x 3.0″ x 6.9″

Weight: 0.5lbs (empty)


Optional Sideclick strap available

Price: $40 (1L), $50 (3L) and $70 (6L)

Disclaimer: All products in this guide are independently researched by our team. We only recommend products we believe in and never get paid for the reviews. Learn more about our review process here.

First Impression of the Sidekick Dry

YETI Sidekick on the rocks with fly rod
The YETI Sidekick in the 3L version in charcoal. Photo: Christian Anwander

YETI is well known for producing some of the toughest, most durable gear in the business. They started out producing coolers (that you can use as a casting platform on a boat) and soon after got into making waterproof bags such as the YETI Panga Duffel and YETI Panga Backpack. The Sidekick is another addition to their lineup and a great bag for any fly fisherman or woman.

It comes in three sizes: 1L four your essentials, 3L, the version we tested and the size I like best since it’s great for a day of fly fishing but not too bulky around your waist and a 6L version if you want to bring a little more gear. In this review I want to focus on the 3L version since it hits the sweetspot in terms of sizing in my eyes.

Build Quality

YETI Sidekick with fly box
The YETI Sidekick opens and closes with a magentic closure and an additional rolltop flap closure. Photo: Christian Anwander

Right out of the box you realize that the Sidekick Dry is made from the same, ultra durable rubber material YETI uses in their Panga lineup. The design is straightforward and very functional. On the back of the bag it features belt loops to attach the Sidekick to your wading belt. Alternatively you can also attach it to YETI’s soft coolers or the YETI Panga backpack. If you want you can also get an extra strap to sling it around your back.

Fly Fisherman wearing the Yeti Sidekick Review
With its slim shape, the YETI Sidekick will never get in your way. Photo: Christian Anwander

You can get the Sidekick in many different colors and its fabric is not only very sturdy but also very easy to clean.

Waterproofness and Closure System

Yeti Sidekick Waterproof Bag Review
The Yeti Sidekick holds a couple of fly boxes, an extra spool, a lunch or a drink. Photo: Christian Anwander

At the heart of this bag is its magnetic closure system (be aware of that when using a pacemaker). The absence of a zipper makes it virtually maintenance free and still provides a secure, waterproof lock. After closing the bag with the magnectic closure you flip over the top for additional protection. I’ve found this sytem to work very well and the ease of use reminded me a little of the “zippers” fishpond uses in their waterproof (and even fully submersible) hip bag.


Fly fisherman wearing the YETI Sidekick while wading in the water
Wading amongst rocks while fishing for sea trout in Denmark. Photo: Christian Anwander

Now, why do I think the 3L version is the way to go? In my eyes, it fits your essentials such as car keys, a wallet or phone plus some additional gear such as an extra fly pool, a spare spools, extra tippet or even a camera. I’ve also used it for a packed lunch and a can of soda. I even made a lightweight rain jacket fit. Of course, the 6L version can do all of that and more. But what’s great about the 3L version (as you can see in the photos) is that its slim silhouette means it will never get in your way no matter whether you wear it on the side or on your back. The 1L version can really only hold the bare minimum such as wallet, car keys and phone.

How Does the Sidekick Dry Compare?

Yeti Sidekick Dry on fly fisherman
Wearing the YETI Sidekick Dry 3L while out fishing for sea trout in Denmark. Photo: Christian Anwander

If you’ve been reading more of our gear reviews, you know that I am a big fan of waterproof hip packs such as the Patagonia Guidewater or the Fishpond Submersible Lumbar. These two have the additional benefit of being fully submersible. The Sidekick Dry (officially) isn’t submersible (I’ve tried it and everything on the inside stayed dry – but do that only at your own risk). However, these two are significantly bigger. The 3L version of the Sidekick has the advantage that you are hardly realizing you’re wearing it on your wading belt while still having the opportunity to keep valuables dry no matter how hard it’s raining. And last but not least the YETI comes at only $50 which is an excellent price in my opinion considering the quality of the bag.

Verdict on the Sidekick

The Sidekick will find a permament place in my fly fishing gear that’s for sure. Its slim shape means you can always bring it on a trip and decide last minute whether you need it or not. It’s magentic closure system does an excellent job and I haven’t had any problem with it flipping open during use.




Rely on Our Experience

Leonard Schoenberger and his team spend plenty of days out fishing. Their goal is to test and review products for you so you can make a solid purchase decision and improve your fly fishing game. We always express our honest opinions, never get paid for reviews and are proud of our editorial independence.

Frequently Asked Questions: YETI Sidekick Dry

What is the main purpose of the YETI Sidekick Dry Gear Case?

The YETI Sidekick Dry Gear Case is designed to provide a durable, waterproof storage option for protecting small, valuable items from water, dirt, and debris during outdoor activities. It’s ideal for use during fishing, boating, camping, or any outdoor adventure where your belongings might be exposed to harsh elements.

Is the YETI Sidekick Dry Gear Case completely waterproof?

Yes, the YETI Sidekick Dry Gear Case is fully waterproof thanks to its DryHide™ Shell construction and HydroShield™ Closure, which uses powerful magnets to create a water-tight seal, ensuring that the contents remain dry and protected.

What are the dimensions and weight of the YETI Sidekick Dry Gear Case?

The case measures 11.8″ x 3″ x 6.9″. It is compact and lightweight, making it easy to carry and attach to other YETI products like the Hopper soft coolers, thanks to its HitchPoint™ Grid.

Can the YETI Sidekick Dry Gear Case float if dropped in water?

The case is not specifically designed to float, and its buoyancy may depend on the weight and type of items stored inside. It’s recommended to test floatation in a safe environment before relying on it to float in deep water.

How do I clean the YETI Sidekick Dry Gear Case?

Cleaning the case is straightforward—simply wash it with mild soap and water. For tougher stains or dirt, a soft-bristled brush can be used. Ensure the case is completely dry before storing it to avoid mildew or odors.