As an ultra runner, I have a great interest in hydration packs. They are vital to my successfully completing my long races but also my long training runs. While I already have what I feel is “the” pack, the only one I will ever use for ultras, I still am always looking for good other packs for training and other outdoor family activities. I don't like to overuse my special pack plus it's pretty disgusting even though I wash it, so it's reserved for those events where no one gives a crap that I smell worse than a dumpster.
At first glance, I really liked the Orange Mud hydration pack. It's pretty sharp looking with the black and green. It also comes in Orange and Gray and there is an additional option for a trekking pole upgrade for a little bit more money. I have to admit, I was impressed by the space in the back of the pack. It holds a 2L bladder (with a velcro strap to hold the bladder in place!!!) and has a large zipper pocket back there as well. The front has two cinch type pockets and then two velcro pockets on the shoulders. Now, don't get me wrong, the Orange Mud does not have near the space that my special pack does however it does have just as much if not more storage space than other packs I have seen and tried. Unless you need to carry enough food for two days, fuel, batteries, phone, extra charger, safety kit and extra water (yes I've had to carry all of this during a couple of ultras) then the Orange Mud pack has enough room for what you do actually need.
Ok so you know it can hold 2L of water and a bunch of other stuff but how does it feel. The pack felt comfortable to me as soon as I put it on. There were no weird/uncomfortable edges or straps digging in anywhere. The pack is designed to fit both men and women in a range of sizes. Being a small, lady, I did some adjusting of the straps to make the fit better for me. Emir was also able to adjust the pack so that it fit him comfortably and we are two completely different sizes. And yes I have boobs which after Josh from Orange Mud explained how to move the bottom strap lower under my boobs, were no problem. I ran many runs with the pack mainly in tanks and singlets. I didn't have any chafage anywhere, which is a HUGE plus in my book. Everything felt pretty good during all my runs with the pack. Since I'm smaller there are some excess to the straps that tend to dangle but they don't bother me. Just feel I should mention it since it bothers Emir and I'm guessing might bother other people too. I'm sure you could either trim these or tuck them in somewhere.
Lastly, I love how user friendly Orange Mud is. They sent instructions on how everything works on the pack, how to clean the pack and tips for cleaning the bladder. They also have most of this info on the website. I know everyone likes to use the different features on different packs in their own ways but it's always nice to be given some other ideas as well because maybe my way isn't the best way or I could optimize how I use the pack.
|Using as a pillow on the top of the mountain ;-)|
Overall I felt like it's a solid pack, good product. I definitely will continue to use it a lot. It seems to be made of very sturdy yet light material, I think it will last a long time and handle the tough wear I tend to put on my packs and not get tears easily as a few of my other packs have. Like I said, I think it has plenty of storage for what most people need in a pack and is priced appropriately for it's size and durability.