July 22, 2019
Affordable, Lightweight, Has compartments, Does the job
Small, designed for shorter riders, mediocre features
This is a good hydration pack. Not perfect, not awesome, but good.
First off, it holds 2L of water, comes with the bladder/drinking tube/bite valve. It does not come w/ a hangar to dry out your bladder after cleaning, but it does come with a very long metal pipe cleaner to clean your tube. The compartment that holds the bladder is "insulated" (think of the foil backing you may find in a fabric lunch box) and there is room for more than just the water bladder.
When cold water or water with ice is in the bladder, I found water would condense along the bottom of the pack. At first I thought it was leaking but as soon as the water was closer to room temperature, the wetness was gone. This is something to keep in mid should you choose to put something else back there alongside the bladder.
The other storage compartments work reasonably well. The zipper compartment holds (when I'm out biking) a 29 innertube, my first aid kit, wallet, phone and could store a spare set of cheap sunglasses (#ZZTop.) There's a mesh net at the bottom of the pack where I can store eitehr a small shirt or something like a locking chain. There's a bungee system on the back where you can keep a larger shirt/windbreaker or something more. Two side compartments along the waist belt hold my multi-tool and levers in one and (occasionally) my phone in the other.
Waist & chest straps help distribute the weight; there is a hose clip on the right main backpack strap. There are reflective surfaces along the back as well. It's a good pack for the money.
Things I don't really like begin with the size. It's really designed for shorter riders which may help several out there. Personally I'm 6'5" so the waist strap normally comes in around my ribs. Loosening the shoulder straps helps to a point, but when the waist strap goes to my waist . . . the pack is already half way down my back.
There are some things I'd love to see in this pack, including a dedicated phone case and more room. I couldn't carry a helmet on the back of this beneath the bungee system. A sweatshirt *might* work. A long sleeve Tee is about the limit if I use the mesh pouch to supplement the bungee system. But these are closer to nitpicks at this price.
Overall, I think this is a good buy. It holds 2L of H2O (primary job) and has enough room to carry the essentials . . . even a couple other things. It's economical and is great for casual/beginner use. It does the job.
Hope this helped.