HER GEAR: Pack on a thirst quencher

Because even the slightest case of dehydration can slow you down, hydration packs -- once an accessory for only the most dedicated gearheads -- are becoming a near indispensable tool for those of us who like to play hard.

Whatever your pleasure, there's a highly technical pack to fit your needs. And gone are the days when your drinks tasted like hose residue. These bad boys are anti-microbial, super ventilated and full of compartments to pack your portables.


Camelbak Dream
Click for larger version

Camelbak Dream
$50

The Dream's women-specific design is so pretty you may mistake it for just another flirty accessory. But this new entry from the pioneer in hydration systems has performance features you'll adore. Our favorite is the easy-access 72-ounce Omega reservoir -- just open the front flap on the exterior and fill. Two zippered side pockets feature internal mesh pouches to store energy bars, gels or tools. Best of all, its compact design keeps jersey pockets accessible. Available in Sky Blue and Celery Green. www.camelback.com


The North Face Mako 12
Click for larger version

The North Face Mako 12
$80


GoLite Impulse
Click for larger version
Designed just for us girls, the Mako 12 gives you access to 100 ounces of fluid while letting you haul enough necessities for a half-day adventure or more. A wide-mouth cap makes for effortless filling, and with a safety whistle on the sternum strap, reflective detailing to keep you visible, internal organizer, air-mesh shoulder harness, and an external bungee to hold your bike helmet, what's not to love? www.thenorthface.com

GoLite Impulse
$89.99

Add the Impulse to your list of all-weather gear. The durable, ultra-light ripstop Cordura pack will stand up to snow, rain and ice, and a two-liter (70-ounce) reservoir will keep you hydrated in heat or cold. A generous zip pocket gives you plenty of room to pack your gear, and a detachable neoprene pocket carries your MP3 player or cell phone. All this and you get a neoprene-insulated hose and watertight zippers too. Available in medium and large sizes in Sun, Fire (pictured) and Sea. www.golite.com



Hydrapak Chute
Click for larger version

Hydrapak Chute
$35

The Chute is a lightweight technical wonder. Multi-layer tubing delivers high-flow liquid without added taste, a reversible 50-ounce reservoir makes for quick cleaning (just turn it inside out to dry) and mesh shoulder straps keep you cool. And with a deep front zipper pocket, it's a low-profile pack with room for your extras. Available in Blue, Lime, Gunmetal and Red. www.hydrapak.com






Christina Gandolfo is editor and chief of Her Sports. Her book The Woman Triathlete (Human Kinetics) was published in December.


Discuss This Article