It’s imperative to drink sufficient quantities of water during physical activity. When it comes to hiking and other outdoor adventures, proper hydration is of paramount importance. Depending on the situation and the duration of the trip, having access to enough water may even be life-saving.
A water backpack is a great piece of equipment for hikers, climbers and other outdoor enthusiasts. Do you really need a hydration pack and what are the advantages of buying one? Keep on reading to find out.
Reasons to Get a Water Backpack
Water backpacks, as the name indicates, are tourism and outdoor adventure pieces of equipment that can be used to carry items and to store water.
Using a hydration backpack is great because you can drink water while you’re moving. They come with all of the necessary tubing to give you an opportunity to drink water without slowing down, taking off the backpack and looking for a bottle.
Hydration backpacks encourage you to drink large quantities of water because the process is simple. As a result, the risk of getting dehydrated becomes minimal.
Because of these characteristics, a water backpack is suitable for every outdoor enthusiast. It’s easy to use, it’s convenient and there are dozens of products to choose among. The size of the reservoir and the backpack itself will depend on the intended use. Some backpacks are designed for trips that exceed four or five days. Others are much more compact and perfect for use during day-long hiking adventures.
How to Use a Water Backpack
Using a water backpack to stay hydrated is very easy. Usually, the backpack comes equipped with a hydration bladder or a reservoir that’s located inside the main pocket. This bladder is properly insulated, which keeps the water cool regardless of the weather.
A backpack will come with all of the necessary instructions. The manufacturer should provide information about getting the backpack assembled and filled with water. You’ll see the tubing that is used to drink the water from the reservoir. If you stick to the manufacturer’s recommendations you’ll soon be using the backpack effectively during your trips.
Remember that it’s very important to clean the reservoir and the tubing after every use. Hang the bladder upside down and allow it to drain and dry completely. Denture cleaning tablets can be used every now and then to get the reservoir fully sanitized.
If you are to use the hydration backpack for a longer trip, you may want to bring a lemon or two along. Lemon juice is a powerful antioxidant and it also has antibacterial qualities. Apart from keeping your drinking water clean, lemon juice will also give it a refreshing taste. A few drops in the reservoir would do the trick.
Choosing the Best Water Backpack for Your Trip
Making good use of your hydration pack depends on buying the right one. You will need to examine a couple of important factors in order to select the best product.
The first and most important consideration is the size of your water backpack. It should be sufficiently big for the type of trip you’re about to undertake. For day hikers, a water backpack that has a two to three liter reservoir will be sufficient. Touring cyclists will need at least three liters of water. Mountain bikers and people that do longer hikes should look for a hydration pack that has a reservoir exceeding three liters.
Ease of Cleaning
Proper sanitation is the key to keeping a water backpack safe. The best products on the market feature an easy to clean design.
Bags that are zipped open and closed are easiest to clean. Some of the reservoirs are even dishwasher-safe for added convenience. This is particularly beneficial for the people that put athletic or energy drinks in the hydration pack. Getting rid of the sugar and mineral traces without using the dishwasher could be difficult.
Single compartment bladders that have a large opening are also relatively easy to clean, even if they aren’t intended for use in the dishwasher.
Choose Between Pressurized and Non-Pressurized Backpacks
Some of the water backpacks come with a pressurized hydration system. In the case of a pressurized system, you don’t have to suck on the tube – the water will simply squirt out.
Most hikers and outdoor adventurers find non-pressurized backpacks to be convenient enough. After all, the innovation doesn’t add an awful lot to the experience but it can make the water backpack more expensive.