Hydration packs are backpacks with internal water reservoirs. They are extremely convenient for backpacking, hiking, and mountain biking. They offer you the ability to stay hydrated without having to use your hands. This is especially important for speed-focused athletes.
Hydration packs come in many different varieties. While some come in the form of backpacks, they can also be found in the form of fanny packs, slings, shoulder packs, or any number of other shapes and sizes.
Below, we have compiled our 3 favorite hydration packs, as well as what we looked for.
The Best Hydration Packs for Mountain Biking and Hiking
CamelBak Franconia LR 24 Hydration Pack
CamelBak products need no introduction when it comes to hydration packs. They are known for premium quality, as well as ergonomic designs that are made to suit all your hydration needs.
Let’s look at what this particular model has to offer.
The Franconia LR 24 is part of the Low Ride series from the brand. For the uninitiated, this means that the hydration pack is set low in the back and is also wider. This is an ingenious design that makes this hydration pack perfect for high-speed rides and twists down a trail.
Because the heaviest part of the pack is located in your center of gravity, you have excellent stability even during the toughest rides.
It also comes with a dedicated strap along with the hip belt that allows you to tighten the reservoir as it becomes lighter along the way. This is another feature that makes this pack great for technical rides.
This pack comes with a trampoline-style suspension, so it is also very well ventilated.
The capacity of the reservoir is 3 liters, which is enough to keep you satiated for hours. When you need to refill it, the drinking tube unclips from the bladder very quickly. This also facilitates the overall hydration of the pack, which keeps the water cool.
The addition of the magnetic tube trap keeps the tubes safe and protected during the harshest movements.
The shoulder, as well as the hip straps, are not the best padded in the Franconia LR 24. However, the lumbar padding is sufficiently padded, which makes up for the metal frame as well as the flimsy shoulder and hip padding.
Considering the size of the pack and how much you can pack in it. It is quite comfortable to carry.
Storage and Compartments
The Franconia LR 24 is not short on storage and pockets. There are numerous compartments and external pockets so you can fit all your gear comfortably.
Osprey Savu Lumbar Hydration Pack
As one of the best brands in the business, Osprey’s hydration packs are great performers. This one is a lumbar design which makes it an excellent alternative for those who are not a fan of backpack designs.
Find out its features below.
The lumbar design of this hydration pack is similar to a fanny pack. Here, you can strap the pack to your waist or your hips according to your preference.
This hydration pack is compact yet has enough room to fit all your essentials. It comes with thick, rigid foam, which is perfect for ventilation.
A feature that you will find most useful is the blinker attachment. Located right below the base of the front panel, you can strap on the blinker, which adds a safety component to your bike rides.
This lumbar hydration pack does not come with a built-in reservoir. However, there are provisions for carrying two water bottles. The maximum water capacity is 4 liters of water. When the water packs are not used to hold the water bottles, they can be compressed, which adds to its convenience.
A feature you will love about this hydration pack is the heat embossed fabric and a scratch-free zippered pocket in which you can store your phone or sunglasses.
The Savu hydration pack is one of the most comfortable packs you can put on. It features an ergonomic strap closure system so you can keep the pack snug to your body. The compression straps and the hip-belt are also angled, so it is a perfect fit.
The hip-belt can comfortably fit anyone with a waist size between 25 to 50 inches.
Storage and Compartments
There are enough pockets in the Savu hydration pack to accommodate all your essential gears. The main compartment can hold your tools. The zippered hip pockets can also hold a couple of energy bars.
Platypus Siouxon A.M Women’s Hydration Pack
A lot of brands produce unisex gears for outdoor activities. However, we have added this particular model to our list for all the adventure-loving womenfolk out there.
This hydration pack is designed to fit the contours of a woman’s body in a seamless way. The length of the back panel as well as the angled hip belt and the shoulder straps are all thoughtfully designed and constructed.
Despite its nice capacity, this hydration pack is also in the lightweight category. The back panel, as well as interior parts, are made of mesh, which facilitates air circulation. Other thoughtful design features include protective rainfly and reflective hits on the panel.
The water reservoir of the Siouxon A.M has a capacity of 3 liters. A smart feature of the drinking tube is that you can route it on the left or the right. The webbing loops that run along the shoulder straps help to keep it in place. However, the magnetic strip works better if you route the tube to the right.
Cleaning and refilling this reservoir is a breeze as it has a dedicated hydration pocket. Another feature which you will love is that the materials used in the reservoir are BPA-free. So, the water is free of any weird taste or chemicals.
The Siouxon A.M is made of soft-touch materials, which makes it very comfortable to use. The inclusion of ergonomic design also aids in making the hydration pack feel comfortable.
Storage and Compartments
This hydration pack has plenty of pockets to store your gear, electronics, and snacks. It comes with zip mesh pocket, front stash pocket and zippered pockets on the hip belt as well.