Over the past year, there has been a significant trend towards minimalist hydration vests for use in a variety of outdoor sports. You no longer have to carry a full backpack for simple day hikes or even during paddle sports. The hydration vest also offers a convenient way to carry ample water and snacks for those longer runs.
Taking a super minimalist approach, the Hydrapak E-Lite Vest provides everything you need in a package weighing less than 10 ounces. The hydration vest comes complete with a an easy to use 1L Reversible Reservoir featuring the Quantum Clip, Plug-N-Play Connector, and Surge Bite Valve.
The shoulder straps house two stretchy zippered pockets that are perfect for storing valuables such as your keys (complete with key clip) and money. In addition, four stretchy holsters can hold a variety of snacks and your cell phone. You will definitely want to secure your phone behind the elastic band, as the pocket stops about halfway up the height of an iPhone.
I have been wearing the Hydrapak E-Lite Vest for a variety of outdoor activities including running on the beach, trail running, and hiking. The vest even comes in handy for cycling to carry some snacks and money, as well as transport home the 1lb bag of beans you bought on that mid-ride coffee stop.
I haven't yet tried climbing with the hydration vest but I can see it coming in handy for multi-pitch rock routes where you want to bring some snacks and water up with you. The vest even has a loop for clipping on your approach shoes if you don't want to clip them to your harness.
The hydration vest comes in one unisex size but has five adjustment points to help dial in the perfect fit for you. Women will be happy to hear that the shoulder straps tuck in nicely to the side of your chest instead of trying to smush over the top or up under your armpits.
One bonus to wearing a hydration vest versus a backpack is that you can just throw it in the wash when the fabric starts to smell or get dirty.
Bottom Line: The Hydrapak E-Lite Vest is a versatile, lightweight, hydration and snack carrying solution for any number of done in a day type outdoor activities.
The Hydrapak E-Lite Vest retails for $55 and is available now.