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hydration back packs

jago43jago43 Posts: 4
Got plans to do a few century rides this year.Thinking of purchasing a 2Litre hydration pack to increase the volume of water i'm carrying. Any experiences on comfort issues on 6-7 hour rides.


  • I've tried a few, the most comfortable one for cycling is the camelback octane xc. The bladder sits at hip level so bouncing is not an issue, in fact you can run with it. Got mine on wiggle. I've tried other camelbacks, this is my fave for cycling and day walking.
  • If it's a solo century your undertaking in the summer then a hydration pack and a bottle is a good idea.
    If it's an organised sportive event your taking part in then I wouldn't bother. They only carry 2 litres of water and tend to make your back hotter and hence you more uncomfortable than if you weren't riding with one.
    Instead I would opt for 2x750ml water bottles. 1 bottle would have High5 Zero in (or similar product), 1 would have SIS electrolyte in (or similar product). Carry some extra tablets and extra pouches. In a sportive there's plenty of water stops along the way to top up your water bottles and it's easier to top up a water bottle than to take the bladder out of your back pack unscrew it and hold it next to the tap.

    Good luck on your first century ride, keep a steady pace and don't get carried away keeping up with a fast group, you'll pay for it later.
    There's warp speed - then there's Storck Speed
  • Tom DeanTom Dean Posts: 1,723
    You should be able to stop and refill your bottles at some point. No point in carrying the extra weight / sweaty rucksack IMO.

    Also highly unfashionable :)
  • amaferangaamaferanga Posts: 6,789
    2 x 750mm bottles should be enough for at least 2 hours riding in British summer weather (it'd last me 4 or 5 actually) so why carry an extra 2kg+ on your back and at the same time make yourself sweaty and uncomfortable when there are very few parts of the UK where you go 2 hours without passing through a town or village where you could top up?
    More problems but still living....
  • nferrarnferrar Posts: 2,511
    Although I always wear a pack on the MTB I wouldn't want to on the road, as has been said there shouldn't be a need for it either assuming it is just drink you want it for. You can get 1l water bottles anyhow, although would depend on your frame size if you can fit them but 2 x 750ml should last you a while and just stop as a shop/pub to refill if needed.
  • yep all fair points if you're in britain... heat exhaustion is far more unfashionable than a camelbak, I find. But I'm in sunnier climes.
  • 2 water bottles are the best option in my view camel backs and similar are just too sweaty on the back even in Spain where I do a lot of my riding. I have never been caught out looking to refill happy riding Andy
    Training for the Cycle to Spain and the Quebrantahuesos
  • jago43jago43 Posts: 4
    Thanks for the replies, had seen a couple of roadies using them, just got me thinking.
  • DubaiNeilDubaiNeil Posts: 246
    I carry 3 (and have capacity for 4) bottles on the bike in hot weather. Two on the frame and one (which can be two) behind the seat. I use the Tacx cage mount (as per with Tacx cages (as per - chosen 'cos that's what I have on the bike frame as well.

    No problems with the cage "ejecting" the bottles over speed bump bunny hops etc so far.

    For hot days I use the Camelbak Podium Big Chill bottles with the "third" frozen solid behind the seat. After two to three hours it has melted enough to be drinkable (at 40+ degrees!)

    Three bottles at 750ml will give you 2.25l and no sweaty backpack.

    In the winter I remove the cage holder from the seat and am back to normal. I only use a Continental spare tube holder under the saddle (rather than a larger saddle bag) and this still fits fine with the cage holder in place.

    As I live in a desert it isn't always possible to reload - so I tend to err on the safe side...

  • RowCycleRowCycle Posts: 367
    I use one all the time, mine also doubles up with a storage compartment to hold spare inner tube etc... I find mine comformtable, or should I say I am no more unconformtable on a long ride with it :o)
  • One quality of a Camelbak style backpack is that water stays cooler. Where I live (Australia) it routinely gets up to the high 30s when I get back from my training ride, or (today) low 40s by the time i commute home. This means that a bottle in my cage gets to the same temperature, particularly considering the high radiant heat from the Tarmac. Water in an insulated Camelbak stays cooler for longer. I find that loading up my bike with bottles results in 2l of really warm water... A camelbak gives me 3l of cool water all morning. And yes sometimes I need over 2l and yes sometimes there's nowhere to fill up a water bottle...that's rural Australia.
  • bigpiklebigpikle Posts: 1,690
    there arent too many places in the UK where you're likely to do a 100 mile route and not pass a shop, pub, garage or other source of water for a top up. Just plan ahead a little and scope out where you can grab something on the way, or if you're staying fairly local you can always stash a bottle of water in advance in a hedge or hidden somewhere along the route to fill up from and dispose of responsibly...
    Your Past is Not Your Potential...
  • briantrumpetbriantrumpet Posts: 7,659
    2 x 750ml bottles for me - that's plenty enough extra weight to be carrying. If it's cool that'll take me about 80 miles, if it's warmer, it's nice to have an excuse to stop and ask someone in their garden for refills (and there are going to be people in their gardens if it's warm.) I've had lovely conversations with people under this pretext, and they've always been only too happy to oblige - the best one so far being an offer to stay for a barbecue that evening and a lift in their car back home after the shindig. Sadly I had to get back home.
  • Dave_P1Dave_P1 Posts: 565
    No harm in wearing a Camelback if you need to drink a lot. I would rather have that than start to worry about wear the closest shop is. I've used one for all day rides and it's been perfectly comfy.
  • GiryaGirya Posts: 23
    Look up Wingnut packs, thy sit much lower on the back than other hydration packs, I use the Assault pack on my single speed road bike as it has no cage fittings.
  • chrisw12chrisw12 Posts: 1,246
    Top tip, put your bladder with liquid in the freezer the night before. If possible get it out about a hour before the ride, then nice cool back and nice cool drink all the way. Obviously a bit of experimenting needed as you don't want to carry a block of ice for 100 miles!
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