Hydration packs are becoming an increasingly common accessory for everything from marathon running to hiking to mountain biking, and it’s easy to see why. The burden of carrying around a lot of water bottles is both wasteful and exhausting, but a hydration pack can ensure that you get all the water you need when you’re expending a tremendous amount of energy. And the hose system that hydration packs make use of allow you to replenish yourself without having to stop or even slow down.
But if you’re looking for a hydration pack, you deserve the best. That’s why we’ve identified 10 of the top competitors for best hydration pack of 2020 and provided you with the knowledge you need to make an educated purchase.
- 10 Best Hydration Pack
- 1. TETON Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack
- 2. CamelBak M.U.L.E. Hydration Pack
- 3. Platypus Hoser Hydration System Water Reservoir
- 4. Mubasel Gear Insulated Hydration Backpack
- 5. Unigear Tactical Hydration Pack
- 6. MIRACOL Hydration Backpack
- 7. WACOOL Hydration Pack
- 8. High Sierra Quickshot 70 Hydration Backpack Pack
- 9. Vibrelli Hydration Pack
- 10. Sojourner Rave Hydration Pack
- Hydration Pack Buyer’s Guide
- Do You Need a Hydration Pack?
- How Do You Drink From a Hydration Pack?
- Do Hydration Packs Keep Water Cold?
- What is the Best Hydration Bladder?
- What is the Best Hydration Pack For Hiking?
- What is the Best Hydration Pack For Running and Cycling?
- How Large a Hydration Bladder Do You Need?
- Should You Be Worried About BPA?
10 Best Hydration Pack
1. TETON Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack
The Sports Oasis 1100 will suit you well regardless of your height, build, or preferred activity. It's adjustable and balanced to suit men, women, and children, and it makes use of a foam stabilizer and mesh covering so you can more readily carry it for hours on end. The bladder can hold up to two liters of water, and it comes with a bite valve that's both cushioned and push-locked for a higher level of comfort and security. A dedicated opening for space allows you to keep the hydration pack cool even on long hiking excursions, and the entire pack is designed to be easy to clean.
2. CamelBak M.U.L.E. Hydration Pack
The CamelBak M.U.L.E. wears its intentions right on its sleeve. Built specifically for the needs of cyclists, its narrow frame is seriously aerodynamic. But the real innovation here is the design of the tube hydration system. The reservoir allows you to get 20% more water with each sip so you can replenish your energy faster, and the on/off lever prevents you from losing H2O in the process. It also makes use of a magnetic tube trap so you never have to go scrambling to get the water you need. And while it's built for the needs of cyclists, this hydration pack is a superb choice for a wide variety of different outdoor athletes.
3. Platypus Hoser Hydration System Water Reservoir
Just because most of the backpacks on our list come pre-equipped with water bladders doesn't mean that all of them do. If you're looking to retrofit your existing backpack into a hydration pack or improve on your existing model, the Platypus is one of the best options around. Consisting of a tasteless and BPA free reservoir, this lightweight choice is ideal for running, cycling, or any number of other high intensity activities. And the hang and carry loop makes it easy to install in any number of different packs. The bite tube even offers a flow rate 30% faster than that offered by the typical competing hydration pack. The Platypus is available in three different sizes.
4. Mubasel Gear Insulated Hydration Backpack
Keep your water cool on even the longest cycling or running adventures with the Mubasel Gear. This hydration pack is fully insulated to protect it from the hot temperatures of summer, and it's one of the most serious hydration backpacks we have featured on our list. It promises to keep your water cool for up to four hours at a time. It's well built outside of the water bladder too. Three separate compartments allow you to store everything you need and keep all of your essentials readily accessible, while the smart leak proof design ensures that all of your important outdoor gear will remain nice and dry.
5. Unigear Tactical Hydration Pack
Hydration packs are often designed to store as much as possible, and while that's a great choice for long hiking, running, or cycling trips, sometimes you want something a little more stripped down. The Unigear strips out all but the essentials and provides a tactical alternative to traditional hydration packs. That simplistic design makes it an appropriate choice for both kids and adults of any size, and the tough polyester construction can withstand just about anything you can throw at it. The wide screw cap allows you to combat hot temperatures even further by adding your own ice cubes to the replaceable bladder.
6. MIRACOL Hydration Backpack
Miracol has created an incredibly comfortable hydration pack that will still feel good even hours onto the trail. If you find yourself running or cycling for long periods of time, you'll appreciate the comfortable chest and shoulder straps designed to distribute pressure evenly, and the presence of multiple storage pockets makes sure that you don't just have storage capacity for your essentials but easy accessibility to them as well. And despite sporting an incredibly sturdy military grade design, this is a very lightweight hydration pack that's designed to prevent leakage and keep your water cold for up to four hours at a time.
7. WACOOL Hydration Pack
The Wacool is another hydration bladder that comes by itself, and it's both one of the most inexpensive and one of the most solid choices around. Its three liter capacity is enough for a sizable cycling or running adventure, and this hydration pack is built tough too. Its 0.6 mm liner is one of the thickest in the business, so you can confidently install it in your existing backpack without having to worry about it leaking on your things. And its double opening design lets you stay hydrated in any conditions without having to worry about your water being contaminated by your surroundings.
8. High Sierra Quickshot 70 Hydration Backpack Pack
The High Sierra Quickshot 70 is a more lightweight model that's built for the demands of people who need something a bit more nimble. That said, it does offer a decent amount of space within its slender frame. Three interior slip pockets and two external pockets provide you with plenty of space to hold snacks, clothing, and other essentials, and the shoulder straps are designed to be both breathable and lightweight. This smaller hydration pack is an appropriate choice for both adults and children, but it's going to be a better choice for short term athletics than for those going on long hiking trips. And with space for a helmet and a blinking light indicator, it's one of the best options around for cyclists.
9. Vibrelli Hydration Pack
Vibrelli has created an eminently affordable hydration pack that's particularly well suited to the needs of cyclists and runners. Not only is it one of the most lightweight models around, but it's also aerodynamically designed to reduce discomfort and keep your center of gravity even under harsh conditions. Those same design sensibilities make it easy to adjust even on the fly. Despite its smaller frame, the pockets within are highly modular, so you can create a storage situation that's uniquely accommodating to your needs. The bite-valve is high flow but also includes a one handed shutoff button so you don't have to worry about leakage or losing precious water.
10. Sojourner Rave Hydration Pack
Sojourner has constructed one of the smallest and most comfortable hydration packs on the market today. While it's certainly not a great choice for lugging around a ton of gear, it's one of the smarter biking and running models of 2020. A foam stabilizer prevents overheating on your back and improves breathability, and the entire package weighs in at just 13 ounces. The tube is designed to never bunch up, and a separate side pocket gives you access to both your keys and your phone. The Sojourner Rave comes in bright and colorful patterns that make it as great for the festival as it is for the trail.
Hydration Pack Buyer’s Guide
If you still have questions about how to identify the best model hydration pack from the rest of the competition after reading our reviews, that’s what our guide is for. We’ll start by addressing some of the most commonly asked questions people ask about this popular outdoor gear while also providing you with the expert advice you need for picking out the best model of hydration pack for your specific lifestyle.
Do You Need a Hydration Pack?
Technically no one needs a hydration pack, but if you regularly go on day hikes or ski excursions or engage in weekly running or biking, you do need a way to keep hydrated. If you don’t want to have to keep fumbling with water bottles, a hydration pack is an eminently sensible alternative that can also store all of your outdoor gear.
How Do You Drink From a Hydration Pack?
Every hydration pack comes with a drinking tube that connects to the hydration bladders and allows you to drink from it without having to free up your hands. These tubes typically make use of a bite valve that allows you to access your water freely without worrying about leakage when it’s left unattended.
Do Hydration Packs Keep Water Cold?
If you’re going to be outside for a long period of time and you’re worried about the heat turning your water warm, you’ll want to be especially careful about making sure that you pick out the right model. Insulation will keep your water cool in the heat, but not every hydration pack is built with this feature. A properly insulated hydration pack will typically keep your water cool for about four hours.
If you live in a particularly hot environment, you may also want to look for a hydration pack that comes with a wide mouth. A wide mouth hydration pack is still properly sealed to prevent leakage, but it allows you to add ice to the bladder to extend the cooling capacity of the bladder even further. Those in cooler environments may be able to opt simply for a hydration pack with a wide mouth and not worry about insulation.
What is the Best Hydration Bladder?
Each hydration pack on our reviews list has earned their place as the best of the best. They offer durable and reliable water storage and easy access. That means that you can buy any bladder on our list confidently and instead turn your attention towards which hydration pack will accommodate your storage needs whether you prefer biking, running, or taking to the hiking path with trekking poles.
What is the Best Hydration Pack For Hiking?
If you’re going to engage in hiking excursions, you should make storage space a top priority. The ability to hold all of the critical gear you need out on the trail is important here, and you can afford to invest in a bag that includes both a sizable bladder and multiple pockets. Whether you prefer day hikes or months long excursions will determine exactly how much space you need.
If you’re planning on hitting the trail for a long period of time, you may want to consider investing in a separate backpack and outfitting it with a standalone bladder like the Platypus or Wacool. That will allow you to focus on getting a backpack that’s suited to your specific needs as a hiker. Just be sure that your preferred backpack is designed to store a hydration, and make sure that a waist belt or hip belt is present for your safety when looking at heavier models.
What is the Best Hydration Pack For Running and Cycling?
A more lightweight option is going to be the ideal choice for most runners and cyclists. Lighter models will help you keep your balance and reduce unnecessary weight while running or biking. Look for something like the Unigear tactical hydration pack which consists mostly of a hydration bladder and just basic storage for holding your keys and phone.
These smaller packs are often known as an mtb hydration pack, because they’re popular with mountain bikers. You may want to scale up the storage capacity beyond a hydration pack mtb if you’re going on long term runs or cycling adventures, but walk the line carefully, as it can be hard to keep your momentum with a heavier hydration pack.
How Large a Hydration Bladder Do You Need?
One of the most important decisions you can make when shopping for a hydration pack is the capacity of the water bladder. The human body typically needs to replenish about a liter of water for every hour of constant exertion, but everyone’s specific body is different, so you need to take into consideration your own understanding of your health and body when looking at the right size for you.
Also keep in mind that a larger hydration pack is going to add more weight to your pack as well as take up more space. This is an issue for athletes because heavier packs can throw off their weight and for hikers who need to take the weight and size of all of their gear into consideration. Every liter of water you fill in your pack is going to account for a little over two pounds of weight.
Should You Be Worried About BPA?
BPA, or bisphenol A, is a chemical that’s been prevalent in plastics in production since the 1960s. It’s only been fairly recently that health concerns from BPAs have come to light. While the FDA deems BPA safe in low quantities, it has ben linked to health concerns in fetuses and babies and even increased blood pressure in adults. While research into the health implications are still early, you’re best off relying only on BPA free plastics that might come in contact with your food or water. As such, we’ve made sure that every hydration pack we’ve reviewed is listed as 100% BPA free.
A good hydration pack is about safety above all else. Whether you’re a hiker, a skier, or a runner, keeping hydrated is incredibly crucial, and a hydration pack will ensure convenient access to the hydration you need while offering significantly more storage than you’d find in a traditional water bottle. You can rest assured that each and every hydration pack on our list is of top quality and well worth the price.If you liked our article on hydration packs, please share and comment below what your favorite product is.