Basic Guide to Hydration Packs
Fluid intake while cycling is essential. Dehydration while riding increases both fatigue and the likelihood of heat stress. In extreme cases, dehydration be very dangerous.For off-road riding or long rides where lots of fluid is required, the best solution is a hydration pack. They are usually constructed of materials like cordura or nylon pack cloth. Thicker materials (cordura) are more durable while thin (nylon pack cloth) weigh less. Hydration packs can hold over 100 ounces of water, plus tools, repair kits, extra clothing or food.
Common Components of a Hydration Pack
- Padded Shoulder Straps (A) make carrying heavy loads more comfortable
- Main Pocket (B) holds water bladder and usually has extra room for bulky items like wind jackets or larger repair items.
- Accessory Pockets (C) frequently have sewn in organizers to hold small tools, keys or other easy to mis-place items.
- Web Pocket (D) is ideal for stowing damp riding clothes or other items that need to dry.
- Reflective Loop (E) also just the right size to clip on a rear safety light.
- Waist Stabilizer Strap (F) holds the pack in place on very rough terrain.
- Bite Valve (G) controls the flow of water from the bladder.
- Drink Tube (H) The hose connection between the bladder and the bite valve; makes drinking while riding quick and easy.
- Sternum strap (I) provides stability and keeps the shoulder straps in place.