As we should all know that when we exercise, one of the most important things we should do is drink plenty and keep hydrated. Whether you are still researching hydration packs or you already know plenty about them, you will find that Camelbak Hydration Packs are probably the best hydration pack you can buy on the market.
I own a Camelbak myself and used it mostly when I was out on the trails on my Mountain bike and it is one the best things I have bought.
About Hydration Packs
So what are hydration packs? Basically they are a backpack which contain a reservoir or sometimes referred to as a “bladder” inside which you fill up with water. The pack is designed to be snug and not big like a typical backpack. As you can imagine, water can be heavy in large amounts, so you wouldn’t want to be carrying a lot of weight on your back during activities.
They contain a hose which leads from the bottom of the reservoir and usually straps to the shoulder strap near your mouth for easy access. On the mouth end of the hose is a “bite valve” which you have to bite in order to suck the water out. Some hydration packs contain a dust cover over the bite valve to keep it clean and protect it from dirt or dust and some hydration packs are insulated to keep water from being too warm or even frozen.
The whole idea of these hydration packs is so you can take on board some water without having to use your hands, such as having to grab a water bottle. The reservoirs on hydration packs are usually between 1 – 3 litres, even for the bigger packs.
They are mainly used for outdoor activities such as cycling, hiking, kayaking and many more. These are sports where your hands maybe busy contributing to your activity so grabbing a quick drink of water would impact this without a hydration pack if you had to reach for a bottle.
The reason I mainly use mine for Mountain Biking rather than Road Biking is because when I am on the trails, the terrain is always changing, bumpy and challenging and when I need a drink, I don’t really want to be riding one handed while taking on some water using a water bottle or have to keep stopping. With the hydration pack, I just simply get the tube in my mouth and suck in some water while both hands are on the bars and managing to keep riding and focusing on the trail and challenges ahead. On my road bike, the roads are fairly steady so it’s easy to just reach down for your bottle and take fluids on board with just one hand on the bars.
Importance Of Keeping Hydrated
Hydration is one of the biggest safety points during exercise you should know. Hydration is about giving you body the right amount of water needed before, during and after any activity. This is extremely important whether your a professional athlete or a beginner, you are human, your body needs water!
Water regulates your body temperature and lubricates your joints, as well as helping to transport nutrients around the body. If you are not hydrated, then you may start to experience dizziness, headaches, muscle cramps, feeling tired and any other serious symptoms.
This may sound a little disgusting but its to do with health so I am going to say it anyway, a good way to see if you’re hydrated is by checking the colour of your urine, yes that’s right! If your urine is colourless or light yellow, then that’s a good sign that you are hydrated, but a dark yellow or amber colour could mean you are dehydrated.
Knowing how much to drink during exercise is different amongst us all as we all have different sweat rates but it also comes down to how long you are exercising for, the environment in terms of heat and humidity and how hard you exercise.
Although some water is extracted from the food we eat, you should be looking to drink around 1.5 to 2 litres of water a day but of course you need to increase this if you are exercising.
During exercise, a water loss of 1-2%of our body weight can impair performance by around 10-20%!
Best Camelbak Hydration Pack 2019
Here are some of the best Camelbak Hydration packs on the market at the moment;
One of the longest best-selling Camelbaks. It has a narrow-gauge design that keeps it light and maneuverable, so even when it’s fully loaded for a day of mountain biking, it won’t get in your way. Features a magnetic tube trap that snaps easily into place, so you can hydrate without taking your eyes off the trail.
This pack has grownup features, 1.5 liters of water, a bike tool organizer pocket, and zippered compartments for layers and essentials in a package that fits younger explorers. There is also added reflective strips and a safety whistle to make kids easy to spot on the trail.
The name says it all: the Classic is the quintessential bike hydration pack, now updated with a Crux reservoir for a faster flow of water. This is actually the one I own myself which I have had for over 6 years now and it’s still going strong!
One of the most trusted and well-known minimalist packs, the ThermoBak continues to impress with updated features and technology.
The convenience of external fill in a sleek bike pack. Two external pockets for small items like keys, wallet, phone or storage for a shed layer. Also, added are reflective accents to keep you visible on early morning and evening rides.
Cleaning And Caring For Your Hydration Pack
As you can imagine, the reservoir may eventually need cleaning after so many uses otherwise you will start to get that rubbery water taste coming through the hose which is something you don’t want while riding along gasping for some fluids!
Some people will fill the bladder with flavored juices, now you know for sure that once you have done that, it is going to take some cleaning to get rid of that taste for when you want just water in there (I have done this once before, I stuck to just water after!)
So the best way to care and clean for your Camelbak hydration pack is to use soap and water and dry it thoroughly after every use.
If you find that the reservoir has become smelly or mouldy, here is a cleaning tip;
1. Use hot water and 2 tablespoons of baking soda and mix it inside your reservoir, then hold it up above your head and pinch the bite valve to allow the water to flow out through the hose and stop once the hose is filled. There are also some Camelbak cleaning tablets you can use.
2. Leave the cleaning solution and the reservoir to sit for 30 minutes.
3. Wash the reservoir with hot water and mild soap making sure to rinse away any cleaning solution completely. There are Camelbak cleaning kits available also which contain brushes.
4. Then be sure to air dry the reservoir so that there is no moisture at all as this is what can cause mould.
Makes Perfect Sense To Own One Right?
I believe these are a brilliant piece of kit to own for your adventures even for the useful pockets on them as well as the reservoir itself. It surely makes sense to own one of these especially out for long days and they are so convenient.
Camelbak has got to be the best brand for a hydro pack in my eyes. They have been on the market for so long and I guarantee you will see almost everyone who owns a hydro pack out on the trails, it will be a Camelbak!
See a list of more Camelbak Hydration Packs at Amazon.
Please feel free to leave comments below or ask any questions.