CamelBak has long been known for its hydration packs and water bottles. For long distance adventures, such as ultra-marathons, lengthy trail runs, and even extended treks, hydration is critical. Particularly during training when there are no water stations or support crews. CamelBak’s answer is the Ultra LR Vest, adding the longest of distances to CamelBak’s run-specific hydration portfolio.
We asked one of our gear testers, Phil Sawyer, in training for the Ironman Asia Pacific Championships to be held in Melbourne, Australia, next March, to review CamelBak’s Ultra LR Vest. His first comment was comfort. The key to the Ultra LR Vest is the 2 Litre lumbar reservoir, which CamelBak has redesigned to sit lower in the pack and wrap around your waist, so it’s supported more by your hips than the shoulders. This gives the pack more stability, particularly on uneven terrain. The attached delivery tube and the bite and sip valve also ensure a good flow of water to your mouth when you want it.
Another useful feature of the pack is storage. The Ultra LR Vest comes with two front mesh pockets for extra water bottles. The pack also comes with an additional 2 front mesh pouches and 2 zip pockets at the waist for nutritional supplements and other essentials.
The Ultra LR Vest has also been designed for safety, with reflective details on the front and back, as well as a whistle attached to the shoulder strap.
The CamelBak Ultra LR Vest does require some up-front set up. You’ll need to adjust the various straps through trial and error to ensure maximum comfort. The two sternum straps can compress against your chest unless you get the fit right. And it’s best to take the lumbar reservoir out of the pack to fill it with water.
CamelBak products are now distributed in Australia by Sea-to-Summit, one of the biggest and best distributors in the country, and by Extreme Gear in New Zealand. The Ultra LR Vest retails for approximately A$ 130 and comes with CamelBak’s “Got Your Bak” guarantee covering manufacturing defects in materials and workmanship for the life of the product.
Don Jurries (Gear Tester: Phil Sawyer)
Featured Photo: CamelBak Media Images