Updated August 29, 2020
Are you sick of having to carry a couple of bulky water bottles in your hand while you’re going on a short snowboarding or skiing trip? If the answer is yes, then you may want to consider investing in a hydration pack. Hydration packs offer a simple and convenient way of carrying varying amounts of water on your back with zero hassle whatsoever. Most of the time, we end up overestimating the amount of water we need to carry before embarking on a short run or a quick hike, which results in a lot of unnecessary weight that can slow us down. Sometimes 1-liter (35oz) of water is all you really need. With that said, we’ll be reviewing a few of the best 1-liter hydration packs on the market today.
The Source Kangaroo Hydration Bladder is a modular pouch with a fully functional hydration system that provides an excellent alternative to back-mounted systems. The pouch features the Molle system which allows for easier mounting onto a vest and provides greater stability. The bladder is made from a number of different materials such as Source’s very own taste-free, 3-layer, co-extruded Polyethylene film. It also features a great aesthetic because of its low-maintenance glassy surface. The bladder is also equipped with the Integrated Grunge-Guard technology that protects it against microbial growth. This hydration system comes with Source’s Storm Push-Pull Valve, which is a no-bite, push-pull valve that features an integrated shut-off mechanism. Cleaning this hydration system is made simple as it can be easily disassembled. The angled valve eliminates the excess extension of the drink tube, which helps prevent it from bouncing. The whole system can also double as a collapsible canteen. Thanks to the Cool Wave Tube Cover, the tube is kept insulated and UV-light is blocked out, keeping the water cool and further enhances the protection against bacterial growth. The reservoir is sealed by the airtight, patented Widepac Slide Closure, which can be opened wide for easier refilling and cleaning. You can also fit a few ice cubes in there. The co-extruded Polyethylene film helps keep the water completely pure and taste-free with no plastic flavor no matter how long the liquid is kept in the reservoir.
The Badlands Hydration Reservoir is the result of a very welcomed collaboration between the two companies Badlands and Hydrapak. This hydration pack is among the most durable and more quieter products on the market. Further, it features a full-width top opening that allows for quick and easy cleaning process. Unlike many products with rather narrow openings, filling up this reservoir was quite a breeze. It’s also worth mentioning that the reversible nature of the reservoir allows for fast drying. The rectangular shape and the fairly compact size of this pack are great because it allows for easier storage almost anywhere. The pack also features a 36-inch tube equipped with Hydrafusion technology that helps insulate the tube, and therefore, keep the liquid cool for extended periods of time. The drip-proof Elite Surge Valve helps deliver one of the steadiest water flows among many other hydration packs. Additionally, the reservoir has a slider opening mechanism that allows for quick refilling and provides a leak-proof seal. Another neat feature that this pack offers is that it comes with a Plug N Play tube connector that makes attaching and removing the drink tube really easy. This is also great because it makes it possible for you to replace the tube if needed. If you’ve tried a low-quality hydration reservoir before, you’re probably familiar with the water tasting like plastic. Well, you can forget about that dreadful taste as this BPA-free, PVC-free reservoir will deliver body-safe and taste-free hydration to your body.
Even with absolutely nothing inside of it, backpacks can be a bit bulky and annoying. Enter the hydration vest, a much lighter and less bulky method to keep your body hydrated. The Gear Vest 2.0 is a very popular choice among a lot of cyclists and joggers. It features a 1-liter bladder that you can use without having to stop or use both hands. The vest is designed to be light and comfortable throughout the long haul. It’s also properly ventilated to keep your back cool in hotter conditions. The Gear Vest 2.0 features good storage space in the form of large chest pockets where you can keep your phone or wallet and a few trash pockets in the front. There are also some shoulder pockets where you can keep a snack or some energy bars. The back of the hydration vest holds fairly commodious storage compartments where you can keep some of your gear. To add an additional layer of safety on your trip, the Gear Vest 2.0 features a safety whistle placed on the top slider. This hydration vest is an ideal choice for both men and women. It provides the perfect fit and balance through the adjustable side straps. For an ideal fit, you should adjust the side straps until they’re nice and snug fit and then tighten the front straps accordingly. This way the vest is anchored on your shoulders firmly. You’ll also be happy to know that this vest comes with a full money-back guarantee return policy with no questions asked if it fails to live up to your needs. You either love it or get a full refund.
The InnerFit hydration pack is an extremely popular choice among a lot of dedicated runners, snowboarders, cycling enthusiasts, and even casual hikers. This pack features 6 independent storage compartments. The main compartment features an elastic strap pouch that’s meant to keep the bladder secure and in place. You can also keep a towel or some of your clothes in the same compartment. The upper compartment is divided into 3 parts where you can keep smaller items such as your keys or your wallet. You can use the middle compartment to keep some energy bars or a small snack. The 1.5-liter hydration bladder features an advanced, leak-proof, BPA-free, taste-free design. The bladder can be easily cleaned and dried, thanks to its large opening. The opening is also large enough for you to drop a few ice cubes in there to keep your water cool. The drinking hose is equipped with a 1-click connection on both ends, making it much easier for you to clean and dry the whole pack in a flash. The pouch is thermally insulated to keep the liquid cool and it also helps prevent condensation that can get your backpack wet in humid weather conditions. The InnerFit hydration pack is equipped with a soft mouthpiece that makes drinking from it pretty effortless. Further, the mouthpiece features an on-off valve that prevents water from leaking out of the hose. There’s also a cap that protects it from dust and maintains optimal hygiene. As far as durability, the backpack is made from ripstop, which consists of square patterns of a bunch of woven materials. The strength of ripstop lies behind the threads of synthetic fibers within the weaves. Unlike a lot of commonly used materials, ripstop is much more efficient and durable when it comes to resisting harsh conditions. Comfort is arguably the most important factor you should consider before buying a hydration pack, which is something this pack excels in. The back is padded with breathable mesh that helps keep your back cool. Moreover, the pack is designed in such a way that it alleviates the pressure on your body, which is a relief for people with weaker backs. There are 3 sets of adjustable straps that ensure stability and a bounce-free experience. It also helps provide a snug fit for both adults and children of all body types.
If you’re in search for a hydration pack that heavily prioritizes storage capacity, this high capacity backpack will allow you to store a large volume of gear and accessories. This pack features 2 primary compartments that are water-resistant where you can put a towel, clothes, or some of your sports gear, along with a medium internal storage compartment where you can keep some snacks to feast on along your journey. Additionally, there’s a retractable storage net that gives you even more extreme storage capacity. Apart from the bladder, the overall estimated storage capacity of this backpack is around 3 liters. You’re probably thinking that all of that storage capacity must come at the expense of comfort. This is not the case here. This backpack is pretty flexible and restriction-free. It doesn’t put any form of back-breaking pressure on your body. The backside of this backpack is padded with pressure relief troughs that make you feel like you’re carrying absolutely nothing on your back. They also help keep your back from overheating. The bladder on this pack can easily hold 1-liter of water and it’s free of BPA and FDA. The RVOIR backpack comes with a bunch of neat accessories such as an additional helmet net, a safety whistle, and pull zipper tags for gloves. However, one major bummer is that the chest strap isn’t really designed for women. Luckily, RVOIR Inc. provides a lifetime warranty with 100% satisfaction guarantee. So if you happen to buy this backpack and it somehow fails to live up to your expectations, the manufacturer will provide a full refund with no questions asked. Can’t really turn down such an offer.
While they’re all of the same tier in terms of reservoir capacity, each one of the above-mentioned products offers something that the others lack. However, one product that seems to combine practicality, efficiency, versatility is the Source Tactical Kangaroo Hydration System. It’s clear that Source has put a lot of thought behind making this product, and we can’t help but admire this fully integrated hydration system.