The brands Platypus and CamelBak are synonymous with hydration bladder. With packs that come with bladders and easy availability at big stores like REI, it’s hard not to associate the two with being the sole makers of water bladders. Despite their small name, GEIGERRIG’s got their water storage niche figured out.
When I heard that GEIGERRIG had signed on to sponsor #HellHikeAndRaft, I was super excited! I’d eyed up the packs on the Clymb’s website, came super close to pulling the trigger, but ultimately ended up passing them up for better known brands. Little did I know how wrong I would be when I tested out the GEIGERRIG Hydration Engine.
Each standard water bladder, or hydration engine as GEIGERRIG calls it, comes with a slide top, water tube (hose), air tube, power bulb, and reservoir. Pretty standard, right? Wrong. The water tube comes with in-line filter attachments so you don’t need to filter while you’re on the go. These need to be purchased separately, but super nifty when you’re in a pinch, or if you know you’ll be consuming tons of water. An air tube and power bulb allow you to pressurize your bladder system to maximize the amount of water you’re drinking. No flopping water bladders exist here. The reservoir itself has a super wide mouth, making it fill up and clean. You can also flip it inside out and toss it on the top shelf of your dishwasher rack for extremely easy maintenance. Quick release valves on both the air and water hose allow you to remove your bladder without a hassle. If you need options, this comes in a two liter and three liter variety.
Unfortunately, despite all the extra features the GEIGERRIG hydration pack has and its stellar reviews on Outdoor Gear Lab, I still find myself reaching for my 3L CamelBak. I honestly couldn’t figure out how to use the air tube and power bulb. Jeff at Missouri Howell kind of maybe got the hang of it. I ended up ditching the pump inside my pack. I also experienced a leaky mouth piece which dripped into my camera buttons. Even while locked, I got a couple drip drops here and there. That was a pretty big bummer. I was also disappointed by lack of a cover for the mouth piece. I’m really good at throwing my pack into piles of dirt and stepping on my hose and what not, having to constantly rinse off the mouth piece was really annoying. I’m really bad at rinsing, especially when thirsty.
Lately I’ve been using the 2L bladder as backup for super duper long trips like Mt. Whitney where I don’t want to carry a filter. It’s a lot of extra weight but I go through water like crazy on hard hikes at altitude. I recently got a new daypack so I’ll probably be tossing this in there to stop switching bladders from pack to pack.
This was sent to me for review as a part of #HellHikeAndRaft. Other crew members who have reviewed this are Annie @ Outdoorsy Mama, Jeff @ Missouri Howell, Val @ Val In Real Life, and Trevor @ Colorado Hikes.