Best Hydration Packs of 2019: Complete Reviews with Comparisons

Best Hydration Packs - runningbuzz
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After a long run or challenging hike, nothing tastes better than a fresh sip of water. One of the best ways to stay hydrated is by using a hydration pack. These handy devices are a step up from your generic water bottle, as they don’t require you to use your hands.

Whether you’re hiking, climbing, or cycling, it’s crucial to stay hydrated. As such, we will introduce you to the best hydration packs of 2019.

Comparison Chart

Mubasel Gear Insulated Hydration Backpack Pack with 2L BPA Free Bladder

Osprey Packs Women’s Raven 14 Hydration Pack, Royal Purple

TETON Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack | Free 2-Liter Hydration Bladder

CamelBak Aurora Crux Reservoir Hydration Pack, Deep Purple/Graphite, 2.5 L/85 oz

Vibrelli Hydration Pack & 2L Hydration Bladder – High Flow Bite Valve Hydration Backpack

Best Hydration Pack Reviews

1. Mubasel Gear Hydration Pack

The Mubasel is an excellent hydration pack for anyone looking to have a cold supply of water throughout the day. The backpack is more innovative than other hydration packs and includes a large two-liter capacity.

It also features a sturdy build that has been FDA approved and has thermal insulation, which is a feature not commonly found in hydration bags. The design itself is perfect for running, hiking, cycling, and camping.

Highlights

Here is a feature overview of the Mubasel Gear Hydration Pack:

  • Perfect set: The set includes a two-liter bladder which is crafted only from BPA-free materials. It’s been FDA approved; that way, you know that no harmful materials are going into the packaging. The bladder test report is sent to your email upon request as well.
  • Thermal insulation: One of the unique features you won’t find in any other water bottle is the ability to keep the water insulated. Fill the water bladder compartment up with cold water, and you’ll be able to keep it cool for the next four to five hours depending on the outdoor temperature.
  • Large capacity: There are three storage pockets included in the bag, which makes it convenient to carry your possessions. Use it to fit your keys, phone, wallet, or loose change. The main compartment doubles as a carrying bag, which can be used for extra clothing, gear, or snacks. For easy access, the front pockets use a mesh material and are conveniently placed for easy access during a hike, use it to store your phone.
  • Leakproof design: The screw is designed to securely fit onto the bladder, ensuring that there won’t be any leaks. It uses a click connection instead of traditional screws, which reduce the chances of water leaking from the top.
  • Satisfaction guarantee: The design features padded shoulder straps, a lightweight system, and an excellent mesh fabric. The mesh keeps you insulated and doesn't restrict airflow, keeping you cool throughout your workout.

What's to like about the Mubasel Gear Hydration Pack

We enjoy that the Mubasel Gear brand offers up to two months warranty with each hydration pack they offer. If you’re not 100% satisfied, you’ll be able to get a replacement pack, or they will do their best to accommodate your needs.

What's not to like about the Mubasel Gear Hydration Pack

The water bladder is only medium quality and may wear down after a few months. Luckily, you can purchase extra bags from the company. However, the hydration backpack itself is of outstanding quality.

PROS

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    Extra storage pockets
  • Well ventilated
  • Keeps water cool
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    Comfortable to wear
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    Doesn’t leak

CONS

  • The water bladder is just okay.

2. Osprey Raven 14 Hydration Pack

If you’re searching for a hydration pack that also functions as a bag, then the Osprey Raven 14 is suited for you. The bag itself features a unique design which keeps all of your gear neatly organized.

Multiple compartments are ranging from small to large. Each compartment is sealed by a reinforced zipper which keeps your gear protected and safe. As for the durability, the bag is made from thick materials and excels at long term use.

Highlights

Here is a product overview of the Osprey Raven 14 Hydration Pack:

  • Front stash pocket: The front of the bag features a pocket which is secured by a zipper. This is perfect for smaller items such as keys, phones, and your wallet. It features a scratch-free lining and can safely secure your items when you're on the go.
  • Hip belt pockets: There’s a dual zippered hip belt which can be used to carry smaller items. This is useful for keys, snacks, or tools. The pocket is secured by a sturdy zipper and can be used to carry a few items at a time.
  • Hydration compartments: Many hydration packs don’t come with hydration compartments. The sleeve can be placed into the bag and will zip into the bag, which enables it to be installed instantly without any struggle. The whole bag has a three-liter capacity and is sufficient for a few hours of use.
  • Mesh material: The mesh material is located on the front pockets. These pockets stretch to fit the item you place into them and enable you to have quick access. It’s excellent for stashing gear and other items that may bulk up your bag.
  • Lidlock helmet attachment: At the top of the bag there is a lid lock helmet attachment that can be useful for carrying your cycling helmet. It works by clicking onto your helmet and secures it t the top of the pack.
  • Blinker: The blinker light attachment is a strap that runs across the base of the bag. The light is reflective and can be seen in the dark. It’s useful when you’re cycling or biking on the side of the road, as it gives signals of where you are to passing cars.

What's to like about the Osprey Raven 14 Hydration Pack

The storage is the outstanding features on this pack. It includes a large capacity which is perfect for longer trips. You can store multiple types of items regardless of shape. The front pockets give you easy access to your cell phone or a quick snack while the side pockets can be useful for tools.

What's not to like about the Osprey Raven 14 Hydration Pack

The only downside to this pack is that it isn’t made with a mesh lining. The problem with this is that it can cause you to sweat and may make you uncomfortable and overheat if it’s a hot day. However, this can easily be fixed by dressing accordingly and planning.

PROS

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    Excellent storage space
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    Multiple sized pockets
  • Large capacity
  • Safety feature
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    Large water capacity

CONS

  • No mesh lining

3. Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack

Teton is known for making outstanding sports products. The hydration pack is an excellent buy if you’re looking for a duo bag and cool drinking pouch. It features a large two-liter capacity which has a large opening at the top for ice.

The design is used initially for hiking, running, and cycling. However, we’ve found that because the bag is so large, it can be used as an everyday backpack.

Highlights

Here is a product overview of the Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack:

  • Large hydration bladder: The Oasis features a large hydration bladder which can hold up to two liters of water at once. The wide opening of the bladder features a screw-on cap that is two inches in diameter. This is quite big enough to accommodate most ice cube sizes and enables you to clean the pack without much hassle.
  • Compression straps: The compression straps can be adjusted around your torso, waistline, and around the pack. This enables the pack to have less of a bounce and keeps your gear rested against your body. For hiking, climbing, and other activities that require balance, it’s essential to have no sway.
  • Sewn-in rain cover: A rain slip is a feature you won’t find in any product. This bag has been designed for hikers, campers, and travelers. The slip is attached to the outside of the bag and can be unfolded and will keep your bag dry when it rains.
  • Comfortable design: Besides the other features, this pack includes an air mesh panel which helps with proper air circulation and keeping you cool during your trip. You can adjust the pack to your body, and each shoulder cushion features some padding. You won’t find yourself getting sore or regret wearing this pack for long hours at a time.

What's to like about the Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack

This is the ultimate hikers best friend when it comes to features and capacity. You’ll be able to keep all of your gear protected while still being able to keep everything neatly organized. The added rain cover is a nice extra touch and can come in handy when you’re camping in the offseason.

What's not to like about the Teton Sports Oasis 1100 Hydration Pack

There are many reports that the zippers aren’t as high quality as other parts of the bag. Expect the zippers to need replacement after consistent use.

PROS

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    Large capacity
  • Comes with a water bladder
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    Protected from rain
  • Adjustable fit
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    Perfect for camping

CONS

  • Zippers are of the OKAY quality

4. CamelBak Aurora Hydration Pack

The CamelBak Aurora is a unique and slim designed hydration pack that is useful for thirsty drinkers. The pack features multiple designs that help make drinking water more comfortable while you’re on the move. Overall, it’s an excellent pack for everyday events and activities.

Highlights

Here is an overview of the CamelBak Aurora Hydration Pack:

  • CamelBak design: The CamelBak Aurora features an ergonomic handle and valve which makes drinking easier. An on-and-off lever is present at the end of the straw and enables you to drink up to 20% more water at a time.
  • Mesh paneling: Overheating is a massive problem with hydration packs. The design helps cut down on overheating by using a back mesh panel that enables airflow. Since the fabric is aerated and has small holes, it cuts down on the overall weight of the bag.
  • Magnetic tube trap: If you’ve ever had issues with the straw swinging back and forth and being hard to grab, have no fear. The magnetic tube trap encases the straw and holds it in place.
  • External hooks: The external hooks are located on the top of the pack and enable you to attach helmets, shoes, or other clothing items.
  • Storage compartment: There are two different zippered storage compartments. One features a main capacity which can be used to store bigger items. The lower chamber is made from a stretchy fabric and is ideal for oddly shaped objects.

What's to like about the CamelBak Aurora Hydration Pack

The pack has a slim and compact design, one of which you won’t see in most other hydration packs. If you’re in need of a lightweight and durable pack, you can't go wrong with the CamelBak.

What's not to like about the CamelBak Aurora Hydration Pack

It’s very limited on space when it comes to placing extra items into the compartments. We’d only recommend this for light use.

PROS

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    Lightweight
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    Compact design
  • Multiple compartments
  • Large water capacity
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    Enables airflow

CONS

  • Small carrying capacity

5. Vibrelli Hydration Pack

The last hydration pack on our list is the Vibrelli Hydration Pack. The pack has been designed to be antimicrobial and enhanced to have a slim build.

If you’re looking for a non-bulky style bag that can keep your possessions compressed, then this is the bag for you. The water bladder is attached with a high-flow bite valve, making it easier to drink water, and the enhanced materials make the water taste fresh.

Highlights

Here is an overview of the Vibrelli Hydration Pack:

  • High-flow bite valve: The valve incorporates an easy-to-use shut off button that can be triggered using one hand. This prevents the tube from leaking and enables the water to be sipped at a faster rate.
  • Better tasting hydration bladder: The bladder has been enhanced with medical-grade materials which use an anti-microbial coating to help prevent a buildup of germs. The treatment is also effective at preventing algae growth in the house and throughout the main hydration bladder.
  • Multiple storage pockets: There are numerous compartments which enable you to keep your possessions organized. The fabric is made with 420D ripstop technology and repels water. This creates a safe place to keep your keys, gear, and more.
  • Comfortable fit: Weight is among the most significant factors when it comes to comfort. The whole pack only weighs about 14 ounces. It’s easy to adjust and contours to your body.
  • Eco-friendly materials: The materials used to craft the water bladder are free from harmful chemicals and don’t contain any BPA or PVC substances. This ultimately reduces the chemical taste that other plastic bottles may have.

What's to like about the Vibrelli Hydration Pack

It’s one of the best anti-bacterial bags out there. If you’re planning on an extended stay in the wilderness or overnight event, this bag will stay hygienic. Overall, the treatment prevents bacteria, mold, and algae from building up in the straw.

What's not to like about the Vibrelli Hydration Pack

The mouthpiece doesn’t contain a cover, which leads the end of the valve to get dirty if placed on the ground. When using this pack, it’s best to bring some hygienic wipes or craft your own cover to prevent any dirt from slipping inside.

PROS

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    Compact design
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    Antibacterial properties
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    Best tasting water
  • Multiple storage compartments
  • Water-resistant fabric

CONS

  • No mouth cover

BUYER'S GUIDE

Now that we’ve reviewed the top five models of hydration packs, let’s get into what features make them the best. It’s important to understand that it’s easy to grab the first hydration pack off the shelf. However, not all of them are built the same.

Some of them come with bottles and bags while others are just the packs. The size, fit, storage, and other factors change between brands, so it’s best to get to know what’s out there.

1. Types of Hydration Packs

There are multiple types of hydration packs on the market, each designed for a different sport. Most of the time, though, you can use one with another.

First, you’ll find cycling packs, and these are the most common. These are the most compact and often are restricted on space, but they have a tighter fit and usually have attachments for gear and a helmet.

Climbing, hiking, and jogging packs will be the next type you will find. These have a larger capacity because they enable you to carry snacks, drinks, and other gear. The hydration packs come with larger capacities, and the size range will depend on the brand.

2. Hydration Pack Capacity

The size of the hydration pack will vary from each model. In general, you’ll find that two liters are the most common, but you can find ones that go up to five liters or more. As such, check to see the capacity of the pack before purchasing. Most of the time, the pack won’t come with a bottle or water bag, so it’s good to know what size is compatible.

3. Hydration Pack Fit (Torso Length, Waist Size)

Making sure that the pack fits is the most crucial factor. If you’re doing intensive workouts, it can become dangerous if the pack is slipping from side to side and throwing off your balance. An excellent method to gauging if the pack will fit is by making sure that the torso length fits.

The torso straps sometimes do or don’t adjust that is why it’s important to check beforehand. Most of the time, if the pack doesn't adjust at the torso, they will offer multiple sizing options that range from small to extra large.

Check the sizing guide for each hydration pack before purchasing, as it will help you avoid a bad fit. On the other hand, the waist size will usually be adjustable.

4. Weight

The weight of the pack before adding water will be listed in the product description. It’s crucial to get an idea of what the weight of the pack may be like.

To compare, a school bag filled with textbooks can be anywhere from five to 12 pounds. That being said, hydration packs usually only go up to two pounds without water in them. When you add water, you’ll need to add the ounces or liters.

5. FDA Approved and BPA-Free

One of the features that newer models have is the exclusion of BPA chemicals and toxins. If you’re looking for eco-friendly versions, try and look for hydration packs that are FDA approved. This means that the plastic is officially approved and the packaging isn’t lying about what material goes into making the bladder.

F.A.Q.

1. What Are Hydration Packs?

Hydration packs are a type of backpack that helps you transport water. They function similarly to a water bottle but are carried on your back.

The hydration system is filtered through a tube and is used to drink the water while you’re on the go. There’s no need to stop, as the plastic bag connects to a valve and you can drink directly from the pack.

2. How to Choose Hydration Packs?

Choosing a pack should be based on the type of activity you plan to do, what size you’ll need, and how much storage you’ll need. If you’re running a marathon, you may need a few liters of water.

On the contrary, if you’re only taking a quick jog, then a liter or less will suffice. On top of that, choosing the pack size is critical to making sure that it fits.

An extra feature to look out for is the storage. Not all packs include storage pockets, which can be useful when it comes to carrying your keys, wallet, and phone.

If you want to bring extra bottles, snacks, or gear, then you’ll need more space. Other features include safety signals, compression straps, and mesh lining.

3 How to Clean Hydration Packs?

For cleaning a water pack, it’s vital to stray away from any chemical cleaners. The best method is to use water, baking soda, or a bit of bleach. Cleaning out a hydration bag can be tricky, and if you don’t, you could be consuming bacteria and promoting the growth of germs. Here are the recommended steps you can take to cleaning your water reservoir;

Materials:

  • Two tablespoons of baking soda or bleach
  • A cup of water
  • Mild soap
  • Cleaning brush

Steps:

  1. Mix the two tablespoons of baking soda or bleach into the water reservoir and mix well.
  2. Allow the mixture to sit in the bag for at least 30 minutes before draining.
  3. Hold the valve and allow the mixture to run through it completely.
  4. Rinse the reservoir thoroughly before rinsing it with a pinch of mild soap.
  5. Once that has been completed, take a cleaning brush and scrub the insides of the bag and end of the valve, as this will ensure that there’s no buildup of sodium or germs.
  6. Rinse the bag again and allow it to dry thoroughly.
  7. Pat dry since if there’s water left in the bag, there may be chance molds and bacteria will grow.

4. How to Use a Hydration Pack?

Using a hydration pack is quite easy as long as you test the product out. First, check to see that you’ve gotten the right torso size. Check this by looking at the product description or by trying it on in the store.

From there, place it onto your back after filling it with water. Adjust the straps and shake back and forth to ensure that the pack is fitted securely.

Once you have it correctly adjusted, it’s time to use it! If you have any storage, be sure to place the items into the bag beforehand. Take the valve and wrap it around the front of the pack.

When you’re thirsty, take the valve and switch the opening to “on.” The water will release, and you’ll be able to drink from the pack. It's ok to have the pack in your mouth as you run, but if you don’t want the valve to leak or spill, turn the valve “off” by moving the switch.

Drink the water as you run and use the pack as a small bag. When you’re all done with your run, be sure to drain all of the water from the bag and pat it dry.

An excess buildup of water can lead to bacteria and mold growth, so it’s best always to keep it dry when not in use. Rinse the pack if needed. Don’t place any other beverages into the bag, as they aren't designed to be used with anything except good old water.

5. How to Fill a Hydration Pack?

To fill a hydration pack, you’ll need to unscrew the cap at the bag opening. Fill the water up until the bag is full. When it reaches max capacity, place the cap back onto the bag and slide it into the hydration backpack.

From here, slide the valve through the bag and make sure that the water bag is secured. You’ll want the valve and hose secured at the bottom of the pack and make sure that they are not tangled.

FINAL VERDICT

We’d have to say the best hydration pack is the Mubasel Gear Hydration Pack. The hydration pack includes a large capacity which features a unique design that’s been FDA approved. The bladder can be insulated and is refreshing to drink on a hot summer day.

No matter what activity you’re doing or where you plan to go, you’ll have enough space to take all of your gear and possessions. Lastly, the leak-proof design and satisfaction coverage make this an excellent pick for anyone unsure of picking a product to test.