Tested: 7 Hydration Packs
Deuter Hydrolite 3.0 Camelbak M.U.L.E. Hydration packs have come a long way since the original tinkerings of a cycling paramedic experimenting with saline bags and I.V. sets back in the 1980s. Now there are so many companies and subsequent designs that wearable hydration is almost the mousetrap of mountain…
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
Hydration packs have come a long way since the original tinkerings of a cycling paramedic experimenting with saline bags and I.V. sets back in the 1980s.
Now there are so many companies and subsequent designs that wearable hydration is almost the mousetrap of mountain biking if not of outdoor sports in general.
Check out the VeloBak for an example of just how much thought goes into all the possibilities when it comes to toting water on one’s back. But really, is a jersey with a built-in hydration reservoir really an improvement over our cherished hydration packs?
Meanwhile, without even requesting any, much less trying to organize a specific “hydration shoot-out,” we at Singletrack.com ended up with seven packs in the office alone over the last couple of months.
From the obvious like Camelbak to the not-so obvious like Crumpler, we also rode with packs from Deuter, Fox, North Face, Osprey and Hydrapak. So in an effort to at the very least clean off the desk, I thought I’d share some opinions of these particular offerings.
Of course there are many options out there to fit riding styles and needs. We’re just working with what we have at the moment.
And, per what seems to be becoming a theme for my Caesar-like thumb-up or thumb-down, the ultimate question for this heap of hydration is if any of them will replace my smelly, old, beat-up personal pack — a Camelbak Rogue.
The old Rogue is usually all I need but occasionally too small for big rides through inclement weather, and not quite stable enough for me to be entirely happy with as it lacks a waist belt.
So, without further ado, check out which of these new models are worthy of replacing the old rat-pack Rogue.